Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
This modern city of glass, built up quickly in the years since I left school. “Hollywood north” as it is dubbed, has a big entertainment and tech sector, is diverse, cultured, and surrounded by spectacular natural beauty. Its numerous public parks, mountains, and waters in and around the city make it an excellent playground for outdoor enthusiasts. It’s a much milder climate compared to other parts of Canada, and just a few hours North of Seattle, it shares the rain.
Travel + Leisure actually had the perfect neighborhood description: “There are several neighborhoods worth exploring while you’re in town. Downtown is framed by English Bay and Coal Harbour, and is full of Asian restaurants, big-name shops, and shimmering skyscrapers. Gastown is the city’s oldest neighborhood, and it’s home to grand historic buildings and fashion boutiques. Kitsilano is a happening area on the west side, known for the young and stylish crowd it attracts at its organic restaurants and popular Kits Beach. The city’s best galleries and design stories, along with great sidewalk cafes, are in South Granville, which borders downtown. And Yaletown, a formerly run-down warehouse district, now has a thriving nightlife scene.”
Both hotels and housing are pricey here, and they are often full, but there are a lot of good options. Four Seasons, Sutton Place, The Rosewood Hotel Georgia, Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver, Fairmont, The Westin Bayshore
This City is a Seafood and Asian food dream! Bao Down, Bauhaus Restaurant, Bishop’s, Blue Water Cafe, Chambar, CinCin, Flying Pig, Forage, Guu Kobachi, Hon’s Wun-Tun House, Japadog, Meat & Bread, Miku, Rodney’s Oyster House, The Oakwood Canadian Bistro, Vij’s Restaurant
Vancouver Aquarium, walk or cycle the seawall, Granville Island, Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge, Grouse Mountain, Vancouver Art Gallery, try one of the many hikes around the city like Quarry Rock in North Vancouver
Whistler, Victoria (Vancouver Island), Tofino, the Okanagan (west coast wine country)