We crossed the Strait of Georgia and made our approach into Vancouver. It’s a big city and a very busy port, and we had to wriggle among the dozen or so ships at anchor waiting for their turn to dock.
We were pretty excited to finally get here to explore a bit – all our friends have told us what a fun city this is. We decided to anchor in False Creek, just off the Science Center and adjacent to what used to be the Olympic Village when Vancouver hosted the Winter Games in 2010. We were surrounded by beautiful condos and two arenas, right downtown and convenient to everything.
Little water taxis buzzed past us as well as kayaks, canoes (how do they stay balanced in that!)…
…and most importantly – dragon boats! We were anchored near a dock that was home to about a dozen dragon boats, and the various teams and clubs were out practicing every evening until dark, and all weekend long. There are many more teams than there are boats, so they take turns. It was especially fun watching the younger kids learning to paddle together. We’ve watched dragon boat races here in BC last summer, and it can be serious business! It involves about 22-24 paddlers, someone to steer, and someone to yell.
There is a lot to see around the city, but we had heard good things about the arts and the market on Granville Island, so we headed there first. Amidst all the shops and arts, there is a concrete factory, and it happened to be having an open house the next day. Some of their trucks are painted up like fruit and vegetables so they were clearly an interesting bunch. The open house was very interesting – we learned that “cement is the ‘flour’ and concrete is the ‘bread'”, as well as other interesting tidbits. The variety of concrete products would surprise and amaze, and we had fun learning some new things.
Our good friends Linda and Ed suggested a great noodle place for dinner (featured on the Food Network), and we enjoyed the northern Chinese cuisine… a nice break after walking many miles around town all day. We hit the Maritime Museum (of course), and the Aquarium when the weather was a bit iffy. But for the most part we had great weather and we loved all the different views of the city. This photo below is from Stanley Park – a huge forested park downtown, with a group of fellows playing cricket in the foreground.