India’s 3rd birthday and our only full day in Vancouver. Also the last update – am quite glad, don’t know how anyone keeps a diary, its very time consuming!
Lazy start and went out of the hotel to get breakfast but didn’t like the look of any of the options including the recommended Tim Horton. Decided to get a Hop-on Hop-off Trolley bus and have brunch at the Aquarium. The bus took quite a long time to arrive and then we had a very slow journey up to Stanley Park. By Canada Place the bus was full and everyone wanted to go to Stanley Park, but we still had to stop at all the stops on the way. Each stop had loads of people waiting and they weren’t best pleased to be told that bus was full. One woman said she had already been waiting for an hour. Got to Stanley Park Aquarium stop, having had points of interest identified by the driver along the way (most of which we had seen yesterday on the Vancouver City Tour but still good to have a reminder). The park is glorious, huge trees and very lush still despite the drought, although a fountain had been switched off to conserve water. Had lunch outside including a large mug of Echinae Chai which was delicious.
Spent a brilliant few hours in the Vancouver Aquarium, it is part museum and part zoo, so lots of whales, fish, sea-lions, penguins, jelly fish, tropical fish, turtles etc. all beautifully displayed; but also rooms of skeletons & dissected sea creatures, with excellent explanations. One skeleton of a pregnant whale, even showed the babies inside. Whales are mammals and have live births like humans. Also saw a 4D film called Sea Monsters, which used the actual skeletons of two pre-historic water dinosaur type creatures to weave an animated story of their lives. Very cleverly done – the 3D bit was the normal 3D, so sea creatures and waves come at you out of the screen; the 4D meant you got sprayed with water, the seats shook and you were prodded in the back at appropriate points. It was great and 15 minutes was too quick. Not suitable for children under 6, and a couple did have to be taken out as it was too scary.
Jelly Fish, Vancouver Aquarium
Beluga Whale, Vancouver Aquarium
Then, having seen the queues for the bus on our way in, we decided to head for the stop – good thing we did as we had to wait about 40 minutes before one came along. Came back to the hotel and had a cup of tea; Denis has gone out for a proper walk, not the amble he has had to do for the last 2 weeks, though he never complains and is very kind.
2010 Winter Olympic Flame – Canada Place, Vancouver
Not sure the Hop-on Hop-off system is good value for money as the first bus is at 9 and the last is at 4:45 from the Park and given the wait and the queues there is limited opportunity to do much hopping. Given we only managed to do on trip each way a taxi might have cost the same and we would have saved loads of time.
Famous Art Deco Hotel door that has appeared in many Hollywood films apparently
Not sure where we will eat tonight, one restaurant we did like the look of last night was “accommodated until 9:30”. Might try there again tonight and go a bit earlier. While we were waiting for the green man (white in Canada) so that we could cross the road, a young man crossed the road anyway and said to us – “just go when it’s safe, the lights don’t mean shit”. We think the traffic seems very orderly and the light systems work well!
We have tomorrow morning free in Vancouver and will be collected from our hotel at 2:30. But will have to check out by 11 and stash luggage downstairs. Not sure what we will do with our last morning (apart from packing of course). Tonight we will try to check in for our flight.
See you soon.