Vancouver – that’s a mix of San Francisco, New York and Frankfurt. Therefore, a combination of my favorite big cities. Alone and with my train friend Ben, who lives there, I explored the city.
First off: Hostels and hotels – and actually everything in British Columbia – is comparatively expensive. But that doesn‘t matter, because the city and the region are worth a visit. Vancouver has it all: beaches, mountains and everything a big city has to offer.
A nice first impression of the versatility of the city comes from English Bay. From there you have a view of the city to the south, you can see over the Strait of Georgia in the direction of Vancouver Iceland in the west and get a view of the mountains of various Provincial Parks in the north. So almost all the benefits of the city on an incredibly beautiful view. In addition, the beach is pretty quite empty at least in the morning and early afternoon.
I like to explore cities on foot. Likewise, I also walked north-eastfrom downtown Vancouver. Destination: Gastown. There are countless cozy restaurants, cafes and shops as well as the famous Steam Clock. Driven by steam and with a great roar of its pipes, the clock announces the time every fifteen minutes. I was there at noon. A spectacle …
Those in need of a short break and rest can walk from Gastown towards the Harborfront. From there, there is a view of North Vancouver.
Back across the city, head towards the Vancouver Aquatic Center. From there, small boats transfer to Granville Island and the local market. Here you will find fresh fruits, vegetables, pastries and various freshly prepared fruit juices. And the area with its small shops is pretty to look at, too.
Along the water with a beautiful view of the marina and the skyline Ben and I headed towards Kitsilano Beach. Here lives who earns significantly more than the average population. The sunset from the beach is truly breathtaking. People from Vancouver and tourists alike know that. The beach was packed in the evening. With a group of Lindy Hop dancers, Ben and I danced in the sunset in the so-called showboat in front of a fantastic scenery.
Dark Table Restaurant
So far I haven‘t given any tips for restaurants. But I really want to share this special experience: In the Dark Table restaurant you eat your dinner completely in the dark. The service staff are blind, guiding guests in the dark to their table or, if they wish, to the restrooms. They indicate where plates and glasses are on the table. With the shouts “Careful! Careful!” They move through the restaurant in the dark to communicate with their colleagues. None oft he guests dare to get up alone or move away from the table anyway. Rather, Ben and I were glad that we could find our food on the plate and eat it accident-free. Incidentally, cocktails, wine and the menu were outstanding. Also a clear recommendation. Thank you, Ben, for this exceptional restaurant tip.
By the way: There are several blind dining restaurants in many cities. Anyone who doesn‘t come to Vancouver in the near future can experience dining in the dark somewhere in their homecountry.
Capilano Suspension Bridge
The bus from downtown Vancouver to the north of the city takes about 20 minutes – and leds into the middle of nature. Impressively, the Capilano Suspension Bridge with its 136 meters in length spans across Capilano River. It swings 70 meters above the ground. A very shaky matter and certainly not for people with fear of heights. But what a view. And not only there. The bridge leads to the foot of a forest. Across smaller suspension bridges you can walk halfway between mighty Douglas firs. There is also much information about the nature of the forest and the animals that live there. Ben and I spent only a few hours here. The area offers enough to stay for at least half a day.
For me, Vancouver is one of those cities where I don‘t feel like having to visit one tourist attraction after another. I rather sat in cafes or restaurants and watched the people. Whether it’s Davie Village, Gastown or Granville Island, there’s always something to see here. For me a good start in British Columbia, the most western province of Canada.