We had an amazing visit to Vancouver in August. The only thing I would have changed is that I wish we had stayed longer! We missed out on some fantastic attractions that we will have to return to see some day. We stayed at the Georgian Court Hotel, right downtown and loved how close we were to everything. We were only a boat ride away from Granville Island and the Telus World of Science and a quick ride on the Skytrain to downtown. While we were Downtown we walked around Canada Place and went to the new Attraction, Fly Over Canada. We LOVED it! Fly Over Canada is an indoor movie ride where you are suspended in the air right in front of the IMAX screen. You literally feel like you’re flying! It’s not a rough ride but it can be dizzying at times so if you’re prone to motion sickness, you might not enjoy it. We got to see almost all of Canada from the air. It was an amazing way to end our tour of Western Canada. The Vancouver Aquarium was the top request from my 10-year-old, who loves animals. I was a bit wary, because I really don’t believe in keeping large animals in zoos or aquariums, however, the staff at the aquarium convinced me that they are doing everything they can, for the good of the animals. I was really impressed that the dolphin show was based completely on learning about how they take care of the Dolphins, in their care, and not at all about showing off tricks the Dolphins can do. The aquarium facilities are clean, educational and very well-kept. I loved the amazon rainforest area. We even saw a sloth! The Vancouver Aquarium was definitely one of the highlights of our trip. You can’t go to the Vancouver Aquarium without driving through Stanley Park. Don’t make it just a drive. Stop and see the Stanley Park Seawall, the Little Mermaid, the old growth forest of Coniferous Trees, and the Totem Poles. If you have more time, take a hike through the middle of the park, play at the play ground or spray park or bike around the Seawall. The park is truly a gem in the centre of the city. You really cannot visit Vancouver without going to the top of Grouse Mountain. The view is amazing, the gondola ride fun and there is a lot to do at the top. Grouse Mountain has a really funny lumberjack show, where they throw axes and have competitions. You can meet the resident bears, Grinder and Coola, and learn about conservation. There is zip lining, para gliding and a chairlift up to the peak of the mountain. A new addition is the Eye of the Wind, the world’s only wind turbine you can stand inside and see for miles from. If you’re hungry there is The Grouse Grind Coffee Shop, Lupins Cafe, Attitudes Bistro and The Observatory, a fine dining restaurant. Last, but not least, we also visited the Capilano Suspension Bridge. Suspended over the Capilano River, the bridge dates back to 1889, when George Grant MacKay built the first footbridge over the river. Now the attraction is huge and includes some beautiful totem poles, a large gift shop, coffee shop and restaurant, a great section on the history of the bridge and viewing platforms. Our favourite part was the Treetops Adventure on the other side of the bridge. There you can walk among the trees, on bridges suspended high in the air. There is a treehouse and a great kids scavenger hunt where they can learn about local animals and trees. There is even a Raptor house, where you can learn about local birds.
There is no doubt that we had an amazing visit. Have you been to Vancouver? What was your favourite attraction?
Disclosure: We were given a media pass to visit these Vancouver attractions, however all opinions are my own.