I’m a Canadian girl, born and raised. Vancouver, however, is all the way across the country from where I’m from so I haven’t been there too often. I remember going once with my family when I was a little girl, but I don’t have very specific memories of exactly what I did (isn’t that sad?). Thankfully, I had the opportunity to go again last summer! My friend Stef and I hadn’t seen each other in a while – she’s from Edmonton, so hanging out can sometimes be tricky – so we decided that we would meet up in Vancouver!
While I was there, I stayed at the Westin Bayshore. It was right on the waterfront with a great view of the mountains in one direction and the city in the other. There was also a nice boardwalk that I really enjoyed walking along; it gave me a great view of all of the amazing boats in the harbour that I could never afford haha.
There’s so much to do in Vancouver! Since we went in July, the weather was great and Stef and I spent a lot of time outdoors. We were able to go on a hike in Lighthouse Park thanks to a friend we have who lives in Vancouver. He drove us to the park, where we hiked through the woods (both on- and off-trail) and swam in the ocean.
We also did some sunbathing at Kitsilano Beach. While the sand wasn’t as fine as what you would find in the Caribbean, it was still really nice! There were a bunch of logs set up along the beach for people to lean against (we were lucky enough to find one that wasn’t taken!) and if you walked a little further, there were volleyball courts, a playground, and a tennis court. We, however, were content to stay laying on the sand.
I also visited the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park. The park was beautiful – I loved being in the treetops, surrounded by the towering evergreens. Crossing the Capilano Suspension Bridge 110 feet above the forest floor was also a unique experience. I’m good with heights, but I’m a very clumsy person so walking along the bridge while it swung in the wind was a true accomplishment haha.
While I love spending time outdoors regardless of what I’m doing, my favourite thing that we did outdoors was go paddle boarding. It was so much fun to be out on the water and to be active. The amazing view of the city didn’t hurt either :P. What made this a once in a lifetime experience, however, was a surprise appearance by a seal! He popped his head out of the water about three meters away from me (sorry to the Americans out there reading this…I’m not good at measuring things in feet haha). I don’t think I’ve ever been that close to a wild animal of that size before. I’m not gonna lie, it was exhilarating!…and a little bit scary. He stayed with us for a while and made a few more appearances before disappearing into the ocean. That was a moment that I’ll never forget.
There’s still so much I want to do and see in Vancouver. I’m glad I got to spend a week there, and most importantly I’m glad I got to spend time with Stef!