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Thread: Vancouver & BC

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    polyglot's Avatar
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    Vancouver & BC

    As per my previous question, I'll be in Canadia shortly. I've managed to get our flights split at Vancouver and will have probably 11 days there at the beginning of September.

    While realising that this is an unanswerable question that will start nearly as many fights as "what is the best developer", what do we go see? I'm not a ski-bunny so Whistler doesn't appeal. Something that looks like Whistler but isn't covered in people might be good, but I'm assuming there won't be much snow yet, or will there?

    We think we'll spend maybe 3-4 days in the city proper as a change of pace from Nova Scotia and then we'd like to book a cheap weekly accommodation somewhere maybe out of the city and use it as a base for a bunch of sightseeing. Should we do that in Vancouver itself and take daytrips from there or are we better off staying somewhere like Kelowna or Nanaimo?

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    It really depends on what you're into and what you're into photographing. Neighbourhoods like Gastown, Strathcona, and the new Olympic Village will have exquisite architecture. The Skytrain might be neat to ride as well. For hustle and bustle or street photography, Robson St, Granville St (including the main part downtown and South Granville in Kits), and Commercial Drive are safe bets. You can get some great city views from False Creek, Stanley Park, Spanish Banks, and from the SeaBus (goes from Downtown Van to North Van). Iconic architecture would mostly be relegated to Canada Place, the flatiron in Gastown, Living Shangri-La, and the Vancouver Public Library. Vancouver Art Gallery might be worth a visit if that's your thing, as would the Harbour Centre for the observaton deck. What else? There's the Capilano Suspension Bridges, the Golden Gate Bridge, Grouse Mountain, and Stanley Park for more nature-y stuff. Vancouver also has a heavy Asian influence, so you might want to check out Chinatown or Richmond.
    cities & citizens - edmonton street photography (mostly), 100% film

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    DO you like hiking?
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    Quote Originally Posted by polyglot View Post
    I'll be in Canadia shortly.
    Canadia?
    Dave

    "She's always out making pictures, She's always out making scenes.
    She's always out the window, When it comes to making Dreams.

    It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up."

    From It's All Mixed Up by The Cars

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    sly
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    Nanaimo has lots of lovely green spaces, ocean front to rainforest. Gabriola Island and Newcastle Island, are both worth visiting. Gabriola has some fantastic sandstone formations. Nanaimo can be a gateway to the rest of Vancouver Island. After decades here, there are still lots of places I haven't explored yet.

    The biggest problem is getting here from Vancouver. The ferry ride is worth taking, threading through the Gulf Islands. Foot passenger is reasonably priced, but it is a long bus ride from Vancouver to the Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal. Taking a vehicle on the ferry is expensive. On the Nanaimo side the ferry arrives in town. You can also fly from downtown Vancouver to downtown Nanaimo. More expensive than the ferry. Very attractive if time is tight - it's a 20 min flight. Bussing from downtown Vancouver to the ferry, and over to Nanaimo is at least 3 hours.

    Would certainly be glad to give some pointers, maybe show you around.

    Do you like hiking?

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    Vancouver Island

    If you have time get over to Vancouver Island not sure how September weather is I went in early June. You will need to rent a car to get around Victoria is a old English city that is very walkable. The rest of the island west of the major highway that runs north south is very wild and scenic. If you like smoked fish little shop in the west coast town of Tofino is worth the ride also stop at the town of Ucluelet saw my first bald eagle there. They only sell the fish you will need to go to the market up the street to get the fixings then walk down the ferry dock for a picnic table. Store is between market and dock kind of out of the way. If you have a few days to spend take ferry to Nanaimo and base out of there Victoria is about a hour south and most of the rest of the island is north.

    Have a safe trip beautiful area of Canada to visit

    John

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    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    MY wife and I spent three days in VAncouver after an Alaskan Cruise out and back from there. If you have 11 days, you might want to spend 6 of them doing that as the mountains and ocen and scenery are spectacular. You can take helicoptors onto the glaciers or seaplanes into the interior of a days trip off the ship. When we got back to Vancouver, we stayed there for three days. We drove up to Whistler during the summer. Although there's no snow, the landscape is craggy and mountainous along the water. You might get some nice shots along the way. My also drove over to Vancouver Island taking the ferry which is neat. Hit Butchart Gardens which has the most amazing floral displays you'll ever see. The city of Victoria is very pretty on Vancouver Island as well. Good luck and have fun.

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    You'll need much more than 3 days to see all of Vancouver! It's not a small city by any standards. Lots of history worth taking in like Canadian First Nations. Vancouver has a big park about this. Stanley Park, Chinatown, Gastown, English Bay, the harbour (at night) and the Icefields Parkway are all worth seeing.
    You may not be a snow bunny, but that does not mean Banff, Whistler and other alpine areas are not worth seeing. Those mountainous areas are huge and a visual spectacle — and high (fancy a bit of altitude sickness?). Take a helicopter trip over Sun Peaks or the glaciers. Anything but sit in a hotel and drink and talk. Bears active around Banff. People are friendly, very friendly.

    Two from this family are at this time on an APT Australia tour of the Rockies and Canada (one month). "Sanitised" for older folk (no walking, cushy beds and 7 days drifing up the Inside Passage) and apparently dripping with luxury and indulgence. So it should at $20,000 a pop...
    Last edited by Poisson Du Jour; 06-23-2013 at 10:02 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    “The photographer must determine how he wants the finished print to look before he exposes the negative.
    Before releasing the shutter, he must seek 'the flame of recognition,' a sense that the picture would reveal
    the greater mystery of things...more clearly than the eyes see."
    ~Edward Weston, 1922.

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    polyglot's Avatar
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    thanks for all the replies!

    hv: we'll certainly use that as a starting point for things to see - probably also doing museums etc but can sort that on google. I'm not so much into the street/city photography though. Got any recommendations for excellent+cheap food around chinatown? Vietnamese in particular I suspect I'll be missing badly after 3 weeks in Nova Scotia.

    Yep, we definitely like hiking (typically spent 8+ hours/day walking on previous travels, but that was just 2 of us). Now, we'll have a 13-mo-old girl along who will be in a backpack. That means I'm carrying the child on front (9kg? she's small) and cameras (10kg) on back so won't be doing any huge ascents or distances and probably can't hike in the rain. 5km sections with good rests should be OK; probably 10km if I can share child-carrying duties.

    sly: I think I'll have to PM you. We'll have to look into car rental costs in Nanaimo vs the ferry costs because I really want to see more of the island than just the towns at the south.

    mosport: my wife will be all over the smoked fish

    AK: we're looking at Alaska, but we don't want to be stuck on a boat for that long. I think we'd rather get an apartment-type thing in Nanaimo and spend a bunch of time driving/walking around the island and getting more personal with the rocks & forests.

    PdJ: we expect to soak up a good 1% of what there is to see, and thoroughly; we have no illusions that a month is enough to cover any one of the places we're going to spend 2 days in. Hotels are for sleeping and storing luggage! I would like to see mountains, but moreso if there's white stuff.

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    lbenac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by polyglot View Post
    Vietnamese in particular I suspect I'll be missing badly after 3 weeks in Nova Scotia.
    Go to Phnom Phem in China Town, best beef salad rolls in town, bo-lu-lac and garlic prawns....

    Quote Originally Posted by polyglot View Post
    Yep, we definitely like hiking (typically spent 8+ hours/day walking on previous travels, but that was just 2 of us). Now, we'll have a 13-mo-old girl along who will be in a backpack. That means I'm carrying the child on front (9kg? she's small) and cameras (10kg) on back so won't be doing any huge ascents or distances and probably can't hike in the rain. 5km sections with good rests should be OK; probably 10km if I can share child-carrying duties.
    Ha a man to my heart.
    Rent a car in Vancouver, rent a room with kitchen in Whistler (it is low season so good rates) i.e. Blackcomb a little outside of the hubbub and go hiking from there. Just make a stop in the village for a cold one on the way back.
    I can recommend Brandywine Meadows/Glacier (outside of the more popular Garibaldi park with Black Tusk:-) ) nice and quiet. Toward Pemberton I do like Joffre Lakes and of course a little bit more popular the whole Garibaldi provincial park. I have a few out of the beaten tracks hikes but require a 4x4 and knowing well the places. It is worth taking 3 or 4 days there.

    Quote Originally Posted by polyglot View Post
    sly: I think I'll have to PM you. We'll have to look into car rental costs in Nanaimo vs the ferry costs because I really want to see more of the island than just the towns at the south.
    Tofino is totally worth it. Should consider also Denman and Hornby Islands on the way North and there are a few more pass Campbell river. Maybe a stop in Comox and going up Mount Washington. Strachona park is beautiful and wild but more backpacking so likely out.

    Quote Originally Posted by polyglot View Post
    mosport: my wife will be all over the smoked fish
    What about oysters? look for Little Wings and Kushi a delight.

    Well that should pretty much take care of the 11 days before you even realize it.
    ps: in Vancouver hike Mount Seymour nice easy and beautiful views.


    Cheers,

    Luc
    Field # ShenHao XPO45 - Monorail # Sinar F2
    Multi format P&S 4x5, 6x12, 6x9 # Chamonix Saber
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