Member since 10/1/06
Date: 4/11/08 6:03 PM
My family is planning a 4-5 day visit to Vancouver, including a 2-day guitar seminar for DH and DS. This gives me some time alone. Does anyone have suggestions for fabric stores, sightseeing, walking tours, or anything else I should not miss?
Member since 3/28/08
Date: 4/11/08 6:08 PM
There's a big garden there that's well known ... drawing a blank on its name right now ... some locals can probably fill you in.
I grew up in the NW but haven't been to Vancouver since grade school. I would like to go back and explore its nightlife and culture now though!
Member since 1/27/06
In reply to KathySews
Date: 4/11/08 7:32 PM
Vancouver has one of the best anthropology museums in the world! It is on the University of BC campus, west of Vancouver, on the coast. If you have any interest at all in Northwest native culture, you MUST see it! I try to go every time I am in the area, which is all too infrequent.
There is also a great aquarium; there is a huge crab sculpture at the entrance, and a native carved Orca too. When I was there last, admittedly two decades ago, they had performances by orcas, beluga whales and seals.
I think it is Stanley Park that FirecrackerKTM is thinking of. It occupies the end of a large peninsula north of town, and has hiking trails.
The last time I was there in 2005, I shopped at Fabricana, in Richmond. They are an independent store, with higher quality fabrics - silks, wools, etc and lots of cottons.
Have fun - Vancouver is one of the most cosmopolitan cities on this continent, and also one of the most beautifully situated.
ETA: I forgot to mention two more favorites, although you may want to pass on the second. The first is Murchie's Coffee, Tea & Spice shop. Many teas from all over the world. The second is Rodger's Candy; their Victoria Creams are to die for! Just walking into the shop will add 5 pounds, from the luscious smell. (This is NOT the cheap Roger's candy sold in this country.)
-- Edited on 4/11/08 7:35 PM --
Well-behaved women rarely make history.
Member since 1/8/03
Date: 4/11/08 11:21 PM
you HAVE to visit Dressew on Hastings (I think it's at Homer?). It's in a rather icky neighborhood, not far from Gastown and the Library (a cool building), but it's MECCA. They do not take credit or debit cards, only cash or in-province cheques. They also have a tendency to carry some rather odd "odd lots", but the basement trim & notion department is to die for. There's also a wonderful button shop down the street on Cordova.
Fabricana in Richmond or Coquitlam is also good, as is Gala Fabrics on Granville, just south of Broadway (small and expensive, but nice). Fabricland is our equivalent to JoAnn's or Hancock - standard high-poly content stuff.
Touristy stuff - there are several lovely gardens. Van Dusen is amazing (admission fee), so is Queen Elizabeth (free, but there is an admission to the conservatory). There's also a great botanical garden/centre at the university, not far from the Museum of Anthro mentioned above.
The aquarium is excellent (I love otter feeding time). The crab sculpture mentioned above is actually in front of the Planetarium which is in Kitsilano (on the other side of False Creek)
For pricey shopping and celebrity spotting, stroll along Robson Street. For fun local stuff (food, crafts, arts), visit Granville Island (and pick up some handmade soap from Seashore Soaps - she's a friend). Denman Street is in the heart of the West End (near Stanley Park and English Bay) and features some fun shops, restaurants and a very lively gay scene. Gastown is fun and funky - the old part of town...a stop at the Irish Heather for a pint and some good Irish fare is a favourite of mine.
The art gallery often has some wonderful displays, and you don't want to miss Stanley Park - whether it's the stunning rose garden, a loooooooong stroll along the Seawall, or a horse-drawn carriage ride (the tour is really quite interesting). The hollow tree is unfortunately being removed (it's becoming unstable), but there are some lovely spots. The aquarium is in Stanley Park, BTW.
One of North America's oldest and largest Chinatowns is in Vancouver. It's not my favourite place to go, but it's a huge tourist draw. Vancouver actually has TWO Chinatowns...the original one in Vancouver, and the new HongKong style Chinatown in Richmond - called "The Golden Triangle", it's an area of Richmond (the city the airport is in, about 20 min from downtown) where there are several very large Asian malls. While you're in Richmond, check out Steveston, the original fishing village. Lots of cute shops, restaurants, a lovely park where you can watch people "grass surfing" (skateboards plus giant kites on a dune), and a beautiful memorial to fishermen who lost their lives at sea.
If you like more "naturalist" stuff, there are great suspension bridges on the North Shore - Lynn Canyon and Capilano. Capilano is the more touristy one, Lynn Canyon less so. Both are fun, Lynn Canyon is free. Both are VERY high.
If you've got time and a car, a drive up the Sea-to-Sky highway towards Squamish and Whistler is beautiful.
There aren't any Roger's chocolate shops in Vancouver (they're in Victoria, on Vancouver Island), but you can pick up their creams in a few touristy places. I'd rather stop at a Bernard Callebaut shop myself. *swoon*
I'll be on my way to Montreal and Halifax when you'll be here, otherwise I'd offer some guiding services!
what if the hokey-pokey really IS what it's all about?
Member since 8/24/02
In reply to KathySews
Date: 4/11/08 11:38 PM
Check out Tourism Vancouver. If you take the Gondola up Grouse Mountain you will have a spectacular view over the city. If you plan the trip up for just before sunset, you will see one you will remember for many years.
Enjoy your trip.
Proud parent of a Dwight International School Honour Roll Student
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