Day 2 - October 8, 2007 – Monday – Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
We woke up at 6:00 and went down to our buffet breakfast at the hotel at 7:00. Rosalie gave us an information-orientation briefing at 8:00 and by 8:45 we had just enough time to go back up to our room to get our cameras and backpacks for our tour of the city.
There are 45 of us on this Vantage trip with travelers from California to New York and Florida to Oregon. Many are seasoned tourists with Vantage and all seem very lively!
We boarded our tour bus at 9:00 and our driver, Neil gave us a commentary as we passed through the famous areas of the city. He even pointed out the red light district where the “ladies of negotiable affection” used to work!
We drove through Stanley Park where we had walked yesterday. The park was named for Lord Stanley who was known for his gift of hockey’s Stanley Cup. Our first stop in this park was at the Totem Poles where we had a 20 minute break to explore the arts of the Coastal First Nations!
We continued our journey around the park to the port, one of Canada’s busiest and one of the 4 largest in North America. At Prospect Point we got out of the bus again and were able to take photos of Lion’s Gate Bridge and the fantastic views from the overlook.
At 10:35 we were all back on the bus and Neil continued to tell us about the history and culture of the city. Vancouver is very multicultural with over 25% of its population being of Asian heritage.
Our next stop was Granville Island an old industrial area now home to trendy shops and the Emily Carr Institute of Art. We spent our hour at the Farmer’s Market enjoying the colors and scents of the northwest coast. We had a light lunch of cod and calamari with chips and then met our group back at the bus at 12:15.
As we drove back to the city center we saw the new construction for the 2010 Winter Olympics. W e also saw the GM Place, the home of the Vancouver Canucks.
We drove through Chinatown. Rosalie pointed out that the whole city was very quiet today because of the Thanksgiving Weekend. We moved on to Gastown and completed our tour back at the hotel at 12:45.
We dropped our packs off in the room and then went out exploring the inner city on our own. We entered the Urban Center Grocery, a very upscale grocery, coffee house, and restaurant where we bought two delicious Honey Crisp apples. The fruit here in the markets is exceptional! It has been a beautiful fall day, crisp with the temperature high of 58 and the humidity at 69%.
We decided to walk further so we followed Bute Street southwest until we got to Davie. Here we saw and met a whole new group of people enjoying the national holiday in Oriental, Thai, Indian, Singapore, Persian, Chinese, Mongolian, etc. restaurants. The experience was wonderful as we had a chance to talk with many people and to enjoy the sounds and smells of this vibrant community.
We then returned to the hotel by way of Burrard Street photographing the glass and aluminum high rise buildings and then the century old Guinness Building entrance. As we entered the hotel I had a chance to speak to the concierge who was from Chile, mentioning to her that Gennie and I would be visiting her city of Santiago in November.
We returned to our room where we downloaded our pictures and began to type this journal.
At 7 PM we had the welcome dinner at the Port of Vancouver Room on the 2nd floor. Rosalie celebrated our adventure with a glass of wine for the group and we had either salmon or chicken. Dessert was apple flan and then coffee. As we all knew we had to be up by 5 AM it was an early evening.
Renaissance Harbourside Hotel (B & D)
Day 13 - Saturday, April 22, 2022 - Depart for U.S.
The hotel prepared a box breakfast for us as we had to be in the lobby way before the breakfast room was open.
Last night we found out that our departure flight back to...