A walk in the park
Trip Start May 16, 2011
203Trip End Jul 31, 2012
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Where I stayed
This isn't just any old park but Stanley Park, named after Lord Stanley, Governor General of Canada in 1888 when the park was opened. It's bigger than Central Park in New York and is surrounded with water. It's green, very green, a backdrop to the downtown madness, made up of majestic cedar, hemlock and fir trees. The blanket of green greets you in fact, as you drive down West Georgia Street through the high-rise skyscrapers to locate the park entrance.
After a quick stop at the visitor info kiosk to work out the parking and grab a map, we set off on the one-way anticlockwise sea wall route around the park. First stop was the totem poles. A first nation masterpiece of a garden
We take a walk (and rest) in the sun along the sea wall looking back at Coal Harbour and the cityscape of Vancouver. Then it's onto the Brockton Point Lighthouse and time to look at the north shore and watch the goings on in the very busy harbour. We spot various herons and a seal and her pup in the water before getting back in the car. A short drive past the girl in a wetsuit and to Lions Gate Bridge and Prospect Point. Another walkabout, some seaplane watching and it's back into the car again.
Sorry have to pause here. Andy - seaplanes are everywhere, it's amazing, they have a special harbour/port/landing and take off strip! It's so cool. Ok plane thing over...
Time for food, we pick a spot looking over Third Beach and watch the madding crowd playing, sunbathing and swimming. We're not so sure about the swimming option, the water doesn't look the cleanest. After all English Bay is a busy harbour waiting area before entrance through the Narrows and into Vancouver.
Time is slipping away, alas we can't spend all day in the park, we are on a deadline to return the hire car for 4pm at the airport! So yes off we go, through the crazy swing Davie Street in downtown and across the bridges to return the car.
At the airport we sort out tickets for the skytrain and work our way back getting off at the Olympic Village station and walk through to False Creek
Everyone seems to be using the waterfront path - dog walkers, runners, cyclists, commuters, families, tourists, folks on roller blades, you name it they're doing it. They're making use of the water too; kayaking, sailing, swimming, paddling, with ferries going back and forth. We even spot people doing something called stand up board paddling(!).
So time to explore Granville Island, (not actually an island) a place full of wonderful shops selling arts, crafts, gifts and food! My favourite place was the Granville Island Public Market. I had a joyous time picking out my dinner, eventually deciding upon a chicken noodle stirfry, a strawberry fruit tart and a chocolate brownie! Mum had something which I can't remember at the present - salad or quiche perhaps?
When we were worn out (of eating!) we retraced our steps along the waterfront back to Olympic Village and got a ride back to the city centre station to walk around the corner to the hotel and a soak in the bath!