Vancouver, BC must do's

Jul 30th, 2012, 03:31 PM
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Vancouver, BC must do's

Spending a week in Vancouver with my grown children. We have tickets to Bard on the Beach but what are some of the must do's. What about evening hot spots? Best walking areas?
Also we want to spend 1 day in Victoria but can't decide if we need to ferry our vehicles over or just use Taxi's, and public transportation. What is the best eatery in Victoria? In Vancouver.
And I am terrified I made a terrific mistake in renting a house that is located past deep cove in sunshine falls area. How sorry will we be that we are so far out?
amazingjandjanee is offline  
Jul 30th, 2012, 04:58 PM
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Location: Vancouver
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Does the rental come with a boat to commute to Deep Cove?

Rather than the taxi and/or public transportation look into
taking a seaplane from Vancouver harbour to Victoria harbour.

So many choices in restos in Vancouver - do you want high end
or ethnic or North Shore or?? What type of dining interests

Walking areas - Stanley Park for sure; Lynn Canyon, the
Seawalls - both along from the Bayshore and along the West
Vancouver waterfront. Almost all of the Inner Harbour in
Victoria is great for walking.

Go to the search function on this site and you'll get some
great info. on all your questions...well, except your choice
of house rental. lol.
immimi is offline  
Jul 31st, 2012, 10:46 AM
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Thank you for your reply. We like middle eastern food, fusion, anything interesting that is not a chain but local. Would like medium price, low and high end prices. The sea plan sounds expensive but I will give it a look see. I still need to know if once in Victoria can we get around easily without a car? I am pretty sure our rental is without a boat. But I will inquire. It seems like it is accessed by road. But as I say I think it was a mistake because it is futher out then I realized.
Is there a resturante close to the bard on beach site?
amazingjandjanee is offline  
Jul 31st, 2012, 11:09 AM
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amazing - I just posted my trip report on PNW including 3 days in Vancouver. You may find it of interest. Have a great trip!

In Victoria the city itself I think you do not need a car. The ferry, however is not near Victoria. It is a bit of a drive. I imagine there is public transport but we did not use it.

We did not go crazy over Victoria - I would probably skip it unless you have a definite plan for something you want to do there. Just our opinion...
gruezi is offline  
Jul 31st, 2012, 12:37 PM
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There are lots of restaurants close to BOTB - it would be fun
to eat somewhere on Granville Island either before or after
- Bridges is the classic resto there but there are others and
some on the water.

I know the road out from the area of your rental - it takes
a little time but it's not that bad. Certainly pretty up

Arm's Reach in Deep Cove is a nice place for dinner - they
serve good seafood dishes. Rez a must. Moderate prices.

Vij's in S. Granville is the go-to place for great Indian
fusion food - no rez and VERY popular - you must get there
around 5 before they open to secure a table. Worth it!

If you fly to Victoria you land right there - taking the
ferry you drive to get to the city. Not sure where you
get off the bus but it's probably in town too.

Victoria is a total tourist town - great museum and nice
areas to walk but with only a week I'd stick to Vancouver
and the Lower Mainland - lots to keep you occupied and happy.
Sure others would disagree, lol!
immimi is offline  
Aug 1st, 2012, 01:43 PM
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So much of Vancouver is walkable... but Deep Cove is tucked away in the corner of a mountainous suburb about an hour's bus ride away from downtown Vancouver. If you're hoping to walk everywhere, you're in the completely wrong area. If you're trying to isolate yourself away from the city, you're in the right area.

If you want to walk everywhere, you'll ideally want to stay in downtown. The main areas are the West End (beachy, eccentric, scenic, lively), Coal Harbour (affluent, scenic, but sterile), Yaletown (affluent, lively, but superficial), or somewhere in between along False Creek. There's also Gastown, which is historic, gritty, but has a wonderful cocktail/dining scene.

Other areas worth looking are immediately outside of downtown but are close enough: into

Kitsilano aka: Kits (where Bard on the Beach is) which is scenic, lush/green, beachy, a bit yuppy, mostly quiet and residential except for the waterfront and the commercial shops/restaurants along W 4th as well as along Broadway.

Mount Pleasant, which is the area along Main between E 5th and E 16th - lots of indepdently-owned clothing boutiques, lively pubs/restaurants, hipster cafes, one-of-a-kind coffee shops, and a real vibrant art school chic vibe. However, it's not as scenic nor is it beachy. It's kind of like Portland (or the TV series, Portlandia).

There's also Commercial Drive "The Drive", the bohemian neighbourhood along Commercial Drive between Venables and E 12th Ave which used to be Vancouver's Little Italy, but has become much more diverse culturally (home to the city's African, Latin, lesbian, activist/eco-friendly communities) as well as a flourishing live music/cafe culture.

Asking what the best eatery is in Vancouver would be like asking what the best eatery is in San Francisco or New York. There's so much, it depends on what you're seeking.

To help narrow it down, Vancouver is famous for its Asian cuisine (especially Hong Kong/Taiwanese/Cantonese/Shanghainese style Chinese, Japanese of all kinds from sushi to izakaya) as well as local ingredients (fresh seafood like Sockeye salmon, dungeness crab, halibut, spot prawns, lingcod, oysters, mussels, scallops; free range Fraser Valley chicken, Okanagan stone fruit, Okanagan wines, Vancouver Island cheeses, locally-grown vegetables, local Fraser Valley blueberries, strawberries, etc.)

What's it's not famous for is Mexican cuisine, southern-style BBQ, or large portions of anything. Americans typically try to stake out these styles of cuisine and are always disappointed by what Vancouver offers in these departments, so my recommendation is to avoid them and try to focus on what Vancouver does best.
BC_Robyn is offline  
Aug 1st, 2012, 02:11 PM
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In regards to Middle Eastern food, I do have some favourites:

Nuba - any one of their locations, although their Hastings/Cambie location has the best atmosphere:

Afghan Horseman - right at the entrance to Granville Island:

Babylon Cafe - there's a location on Commercial Drive & Graveley, and on Denman Street by Davie in the West End. It's primarily takeout, but their chicken shwarma is the best in the city.

Finally... nearby Bard on the Beach on Cornwall Avenue (just around the corner from Vanier Park) is one of Vancouver's best Japanese restaurants that still manages to fly under the radar of many locals: Octopus' Garden:
BC_Robyn is offline  
Aug 1st, 2012, 02:16 PM
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Oh, and how could I forget? East is East - my favourite Middle Eastern-inspired restaurant (and only a short drive/taxi ride from Bard on the Beach):
BC_Robyn is offline  
Aug 1st, 2012, 02:20 PM
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Should also note - while you may not be able to get out of your rental home (I had to look up Sunshine Falls - that's even further north than Deep Cove; you're quite far away!), North Vancouver *is* home to the city's Iranian population, so there's quite a culture of middle eastern food right there. However, you'll have to travel to Lonsdale Avenue to sample some of it. While I haven't been Yaas Bazaar is supposed to be good value:
BC_Robyn is offline  
Aug 1st, 2012, 08:55 PM
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Robyn - Yaas is not longer there; it's now a construction site
for a huge high rise.
immimi is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2012, 09:40 AM
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Oh no, thanks for letting me know.
BC_Robyn is offline  
Aug 8th, 2012, 07:08 AM
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I definitely recommend going to Denman Street for Vancouver restaurants. You'll find every ethnic restaurant you can imagine for several blocks. It's located near the tip of Stanley Park. I also recommend the Vancouver Aquarium, which is also in the park. A hike or tram ride up Grouse Mountain (depending on how much you enjoy climbing hills) is one of the highlights of the city.

My wife and I rented kayaks and kayaked in the Victoria Harbor. That was a lot of fun. You have to go to Butchart Gardens if you decide to go to Victoria. World class. You don't need a car in Victoria, but you'll need some kind of transportation (bus, taxi) to get to the gardens.
Dave_Taube is offline  
Aug 8th, 2012, 07:24 AM
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Visit Vancouver frequently and agree with those who suggest the trip to Victoria is not worthwhile for the short time you will be there. The island is beautiful but deserves at least several days and a car to even start making the trip.
lauraleesteakley is offline  
Aug 9th, 2012, 10:49 AM
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I lived in Vancouver most of my life but moved about 10 years ago. One of my favourites is Granville Is, lots of eateries, art galleries, interesting shops etc. Check it out on the web. Parking can be difficult so I always went early. You can take a small ferry across the inlet from the West End to Granville Is. It in itself is a nice thing to do. There is so much to do and see in Vancouver, it really depends on your interests. The skytrain is an excellent way to get around. Busses across town can be tedious.
cdnnomad is offline  
Aug 9th, 2012, 10:59 AM
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I couldn't edit my reply so I have to post again. You can use public transport to go to Victoria for a day. You would need more than one day to include Butchart Gardens which is in Brentwood Bay and worth a day in itself. A taxi would be a horrendous cost. It would be cheaper to rent a car in that case. Try finding a one day tour to Victoria so everything is taken care of. Since you have tickets already to Bard on the Beach, it may not be worth trying to fit in Victoria depending on when your tickets are. Bard on the Beach is in Kits so plan on eating in that area that day. West Braoadway is the centre for the Greek Festival. A visit to Stanley Park is a must.
cdnnomad is offline  
Aug 9th, 2012, 11:54 PM
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Is your rented house *near* Deep Cove towards Sunshine Falls? Or is it actually *near* Sunshine Falls?
Deep Cove is a suburb with good roads, 30 min. into Vancouver (more during rush hour). Sunshine Falls is a lot further (there's a road there now, 20 years ago the ONLY way to get there was by boat). estimate that will be an additional 15 to 30 min. from Deep Cove - you will *definitely* need a car there.

Vancouver is hard and expensive to drive in. For those days you'll spend in downtown Vancouver think about driving from Deep Cove to Lonsdale Pier in North Vancouver and there taking the very fast and very frequent SeaBus (a fast passenger only ferry) to the heart of downtown.

Re Victoria: you definitely don't need a car if you are just visting downtown. Very frequent busses run direct from Vancouver through to Victoria (they drive onto the ferry between Tswassen and Swarz Bay).
elbegewa is offline  
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