Our time in Vancouver went by quick! I’ve always wanted to go to Canada and check out what our neighbors to the north live like. Be warned, this is a long one.
Our first impression of Vancouver was on a Thursday night, while we were trying to find our Airbnb. The houses were HUGE! I was so surprised. I thought maybe everyone in Vancouver was rich, but it seemed common that there were large houses all around the city. Housing must be cheaper there (well, anywhere is cheaper than the Bay Area at this point). But, at the same time, the houses reminded me of the home in the movie Get Out. If you’ve seen it, you know what I mean. I wish I took a picture – it’s something I need to work on if I’m going to keep this blog up.
We didn’t do anything that night since we got in pretty late, we spent the rest of the night freaking out about cellular service and data…how would we get around? Why didn’t we research this earlier? I’m so thankful that T-Mobile has free international data & text. This is probably the only thing I like about it, and it was a savior.
On Friday morning, we had breakfast at this place called The Breakfast Table, kind of near downtown. It was #1 on Yelp for breakfast nearby, so why not. Once we parked, we realized we had no coins for the meter. Luckily there was a bank the next block over. I went to the ATM, got some cash, but realized I needed some change. So I got in line and asked the teller for coins and she asked me how many loonies and toonies I wanted…I was like huh? But didn’t want to reveal that I was a tourist so I just made up some numbers…she didn’t seem to notice…I think. Later I learned that a loonie is $1CAD and a toonie is $2CAD.
Breakfast was good, I had a salmon and avocado benedict while the boyfriend had a fried chicken omelet. My only issue was that the salmon was a bit cold.
After, we went biking around Stanley Park! It had great biking and hiking/walking trails and the weather was perfect. Pretty views of the city, beach, and water!
After, we went to Granville Island. I didn’t know what to expect, but it was definitely underwhelming. It just came up as one of the top places to visit in Vancouver, so I thought it would be cool. There were a lot of souvenir shops, art stores, a public grocery market with overpriced food stalls, and places to sit by the harbor. I definitely would not go there again, especially because the food wasn’t anything special. I could see why locals would go there for fresh produce though.
We were pretty tired from walking and biking, so we went back to our Airbnb to rest up for a bit. After, we went to the Van Dusen Botanical Garden. It was pretty, but nothing spectacular unfortunately. I guess we’ve been spoiled by other gardens we’ve been to, but the hedge maze was still cool! I would have definitely been stuck there if it were not for Allen.
Then, we got sushi for dinner and went to Safeway to pick up some snacks. Safeway was IN A MALL. Isn’t that odd? Not sure if that’s normal over there.
The next day, we had limited time because our flight back home was that night in Seattle. While Allen slept in, I went to a juicery and got a smoothie and some green juice. Lucky for me, it was customer appreciation month and they gave us free mason jars! Yes, I washed and stuffed them in my suitcase. Then, I went to Beaucoup Bakery, which apparently had the “best croissant” in Vancouver. I got an almond croissant and it had the perfect amount of crispyness, flakiness, and flavor.
For lunch, we had Chinese food. Vancouver has lotssss of immigrants from Asia, with a large population being Chinese. We had soup dumplings, Xinjiang noodles, and beef noodle soup!
I really really wanted to hike while we were in Canada but time really didn’t allow it. So instead, we spent some time walking around UBC. The campus was huge and parts of it were in the forest just like UCSC! It was nice, and I wish we had more time to check out the whole campus. We probably only walked around 1/3 of it, not to mention there’s a beach right on the side of campus too.
On our drive back, I remembered that I need to try POUTINE (fries with gravy and cheese over it). I love french fries, and that was the one food I wanted to try while I was in Canada! So, we quickly google searched for one on the drive back, and went to this cafe that sounded very French. Turns out, it was Japanese! They even had poutine with Japanese curry on it, but we opted for their more Canadian option. I almost can say the poutine I had tasted better than animal fries from In n’ Out, which is definitely something. Allen also got some strawberry cake from the cafe…if you know him, he doesn’t like sweets. But it looked THAT good.
The snacks kept me awake for our drive back to Seattle and after that we pretty much dropped off our rental car and took a Lyft to the airport. Overall, Vancouver was nice, and I will have to go back for the amazing hikes up there!
If you’ve read all my blogs from this trip, thanks for joining me! 🙂