Blog 257 Vancouver First Impressions – May 2013
Having got our passports back just in the nick of time we were ready for our flight to Canada which was superbly clear throughout and by luck we procured a window seat. We flew directly over London and could make out the Thames river, many of the bridges and even the London eye. It was still clear as we left the last bit of land in the United Kingdom at John O Groats in Scotland. After a lot of sea we travelled over Iceland and the endless ice fields of Greenland before landing in Vancouver. The airport was a nice surprise with water features and totem poles.
We were lucky enough to have a soft landing in Vancouver courtesy of Harri one our longest followers. He picked us up from the airport and took us home to West Vancouver passing through some of the city which we later went back to explore.
Harri and Judy his wife took us out for many breakfast/brunches/evening meals in their favourite restaurants down at the picturesque seaside docks and got us acquainted with the laid back Canadian lifestyle. At one such spot we could look out across the bay to the city beyond. The tugs were moored up next to the restaurant.
Harri and Judy showed us some of the sights while we were still waiting for the bike to clear customs. Here is a selection from our trip out to the city.
Below is the Chinese sector. The cruise ship further on was doing its best to blend into its surroundings and look like a building. Further down was the Olympic cauldron used in the 2010 opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics and now a feature in the city centre. The vespa sidecar was outside a very expensive hotel and the Chinese dragon was a decoration inside. The killer whale sculpture was made of blocks a bit like huge lego.
Cypress mountain is a ski resort where the winter Olympic ski and snowboarding sports were held which Judy took us up to in her car just for a look. It was the end of the season but there was still a fair bit of snow unlike the Olympics when they had to truck it in at times. I have to say it was cold on the toes in Flip Flops, (Thongs, Jandles) but I braved it for a photo. Spring started just as we arrived in Vancouver and we had a couple of weeks of lovely warm weather but it was nice to see snow on the hills before it melted.
Harri took us in the car on one of his favourite runs the Sea to Sky hwy, we went as far as Squamish which was on route to Whistler another Olympic village and the route we would eventually ride out on. It was one beautiful view after another and we stopped for lots of pictures.
We turned around at Shannon falls which were seriously impressive dropping 1,105ft.
This area is a haven for rock climbers and you can just make out two in the zoomed in photo which gives you some idea how huge that rock is. Skiing is way of life here in Canada so you see all sort of ways to carry them even on a bicycle. We also spotted a motorcycle with a mountain bike on a rack hanging 5 feet straight off the back of it but he disappeared too quickly to get a picture.
Next Up – More from Vancouver – Stanley Park