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3 reviews of Vancouver in English
I do not understand the fuss around Vancouver.
Nowhere in this world, were we more frequently stare at by bums.
Water Front Street
There are no specific architectural highlights imprinted in our memories.
Tip: One day is perfect to discover Vancouver.
Tip: walk by Stanley Park, and then dinner in the Tennis Club (in the park). The best oysters that I have ever eaten anywhere.
This review has been translated from the original language.
Vancouver is a fabulous city. It is frequently voted the best city in the world to live in and it’s not difficult to see why. It’s climate is pretty stable as it doesn’t get too hot in summer or too cold in winter due to basically being in the rainforest. It has the sea and mountains which offers spectacular scenery. It is also home to a very wide variety of nationalities which is reflected in the wide array of cuisines offered in the restaurants here. The standard of food in the restuarants is very high and they are relatively cheap compared to the UK. Public transport is very good and reliable.
UPDATE: thanks to the Qype database being updated, Vancouver is now in Vancouver… I still think it was sort of fun being in Welt!
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I rather wanted to have the first review of places in Vancouver on Qype. I was waiting for it to be added to the database of places… and got beaten by the Germans, who didn’t wait. Sniff. Never mind, here’s the first ENGLISH review for Vancouver. I think I’ll stick to the German convention of placing Vancouver, Canada in Welt, Germany. It’s sort of amusing… Welt is both a real place in Germany and the German word for ‘World’.
First a little questionnaire for you:
1) What environment will you find around Vancouver?
2) What two main languages will you find spoken in Vancouver?
3) Which of these was filmed in and around Vancouver?
a. Stargate SG1
b. X-Men movies
Answers to be found in the following text… Vancouver is the unofficial capitol of British Columbia (the official one being Victoria, which is, quite ironically, on Vancouver Island). It’s built on a river delta, with nearby Richmond (officially a separate town now, but locals aren’t precious about it) and the airport actually being on low-lying flat islands. The climate is not the ice and snow associated with Canada. In fact it rarely snows in Vancouver itself, though rain is frequent. However it’s surrounded by high mountains where the rain gives way to snow, making for good ski-ing very close to town. These mountains are also covered in temperate rainforest. Huge red cedar trees, dripping with moss and ferns.
Vancouver has a large Chinese population. In many areas street signs are in both English and Chinese (Cantonese is the most common dialect apparently). If you like Chinese food you’ll find plenty! The Dr Sun Yat-Sen Garden is also reputed to be the only authentic classical Chinese garden outside China. Diverging a little, food is generally excellent, often superb quality, including local seafoods, and reasonably priced.
Not forgetting the First Nations: this being the largely preferred term to refer to the local native/indigenous peoples. Totem poles greet you at the airport, and their stylised representations of eagles, ravens, orca, salmon etc are common motifs on T-shirts and more.
Another population that’s influenced Vancouver is the influx of American draft-dodgers during the Vietnam war. There’s now quite a few aging hippies live in Vancouver! On the positive side Vancouver is very lively in terms of culture and arts, and has a thriving gay scene. On the negative side there are areas with major drug problems. Avoid the Downtown area if you don’t want to be pestered by beggars supporting drug habits (and possibly worse if you get unlucky or stupid). This area is centred around the junction of Main and Hastings (and is easy to wander into if walking between the tourist areas of Gastown and Chinatown). Some advise avoiding Hastings east of Cambie Street. Pender Street is generally considered a safer route.
These days Vancouver is also popular as a film location for Americans looking for somewhere a bit cheaper to film than LA… Everything listed in (3) was filmed here! (Smallville is nearby Cloverdale) If you wander around downtown you’ll usually find at least one film crew somewhere!
For the tourist Vancouver is a great place to visit. Locals are very friendly and service standards are high. It’s not somewhere for those that want sun, sand and boozing. But if you’d like stunning natural scenery, water sports and winter sports, wildlife (whale watching is a must), good food and culture, (including First Nation culture of course…), then it’s amazing. UK visitors will find exchange levels to their advantage. But look out for tax… prices in shops etc do not include this, and it will be added at the till! You should keep receipts for large purchases and accommodation (not other services unfortunately) and claim back this tax (forms at the airport, allow time to get them and get your receipts stamped when you leave, services that offer to do it for you aren’t really worth it: it’s easy).
Public transport is excellent: I’d recommend you don’t hire a car unless you are driving well out of town.
More reviews of places in Vancouver and the area coming up…
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