Canada is a beautiful, sprawling and diverse country, rich in culture and wildly various in its topography. Its people are famously friendly and its “mosaic, not melting pot” approach to multiculturalism means that one can come back to different spots Canada again and again and have a completely different experience each and every time.
It’s a staggeringly easy place to fall in love with.
But, for me, there is no city that encapsulates the uniquely Canadian brand of charm than Vancouver BC. Indeed, it’s widely regarded to be one of the best cities in the world to live in and even a fleeting visit can assure just about anyone as to why.
It’s incredible verdancy, friendly atmosphere and incredible sense of multicultural community make it a welcoming place to visit but in terms of attractions it ranks amongst the very best in the world.
It’s important to note that since March 2016, an eTA has been an essential requirement of entry for all foreign nationals travelling to for through Canada. For more information visit visit the Canada eTA site where can also access an online application.
To call it a park is almost a disservice. The stunning scenery is pretty much a given, but you’ll also find the park’s famous aquarium at its heart along with its famous totem poles. The aquarium is home to sea otters and the giant beluga whales that it’s impossible for me to think of without smiling.
Best of all, all 400 hectares of it are completely free to explore! And if you’re not feeling up to tackling it on foot, then you’re more than welcome to ride the Stanley Park train or (if you’re feeling ostentatious you can get a guided tour by horse drawn carriage).
This unassuming but infinitely charming beach is special to me because whichever way you look, you see something awesome, from Stanley Park’s seawall to the southern Spanish Banks beaches. It’s a tranquil and serene place where one can walk, jog, skate or cycle surrounded by natural beauty, yet within striking distance of the boutique shopping and culturally diverse dining of Denman street.
As an art and theatre buff, the bohemian vibe of Granville island makes it one of my favourite parts of the city. Parents may be interested to know that the island is home to the Vancouver International Children’s Festival in May but if you’re more of a shopper then you’ll enjoy the bustling atmosphere of the famous Granville Island Public Market.
While ostensibly a ski resort there’s so much more to this wonderful location that is also home to wolves and grizzly bears. There’s so much for everyone to do, in and out of ski season. Out of season there are lots of cool activities to enjoy in the bewitching scenery including hiking, golf, lumberjack shows (you will believe a man can juggle chainsaws) and…an absolute must… ziplining.
Grouse Mountain is readily accessible by car or bus but there’s absolutely no substitute for the SkyRide tram!