The title says it all really. I love everything about Vancouver and would go back in a heartbeat. How could you not love it; the food was fantastic, everywhere was beautiful and there’s so much to explore. Despite staying for a week, 3 of those days were designated purely for a convention, so I really didn’t feel like I had enough time to explore everything I wanted to, but I guess that’s just reason to go back (not that I really need a reason)!
I stayed in the Riveria hotel, which is on Robson Street. Honestly, it was in an ideal location, less than a 5-minute walk down to the sea and Convention hotel and then super close to places like Gastown and Chinatown. The hotel itself was lovely. Spacious, clean and included a balcony for chilly early mornings watching the sun come up. The staff were helpful and polite, I don’t think we had one complaint our entire stay. Would I stay there again? Definitely, but I do feel you can get somewhere that feels a bit more ‘fancy’ along the same road.
So what did I get up to? We did lots of walking down random roads and getting lost, only to end up in places like Chinatown. The Chinese Garden was fantastic and a must on the list to visit again. Honestly, it’s so calming and beautiful, the pictures just don’t do it justice at all! We didn’t explore the rest of Chinatown, due to being on a mission to find Gastown, but I am definitely going to put it on the list for when I go back!
Speaking of, there’s something about Gastown that makes it feel like it’s own little town. I’m not sure whether it’s the shops, the lights, the buildings or just the atmosphere, but it almost feels like it’s in its own little bubble away from the rest of Downtown Vancouver. It was a great place to just wander around and chill in, we also met some of the loveliest people (and their dogs) which may be swaying me slightly, but Gastown may just be one of my favourite gems from the whole trip.
Stanley Park and Granville Island are recommended time and time again for very good reasons. They were both so beautiful and are well worth the visit. For Stanley Park, you will for sure need your walking feet on, but it is well worth the exercise. There are plenty of places to sit down and have a break on your way around the sea wall, in fact, I wish we’d taken a picnic and spent some time sitting under the trees and just chilling for a while. So I would definitely recommend taking some snacks with you although maybe watch out for the squirrels.
Granville Island is also incredible, lots of little independent, quirky shops, as well as one of the biggest food courts I’ve ever seen. I’m still thinking about the chocolate stall we walked past but regrettably didn’t get anything from, very much a bad move.
I think that if you have the opportunity to go, you simply have to. Vancouver has a pace of life and a community I think you would hard pressed to find anywhere else. It truly is like a home from home – I can’t wait to go back.