I’m switching gears today to share another Canadian vacation recap with you guys! Want to see everything we did? Check out our western Canada hiking trip itinerary.
The last few days of our trip were spent in Vancouver! We arrived on a Friday in the early evening and my brother drove up from Seattle to meet us. We lucked out with phenomenal weather – in the 70’s/low 80’s and sunny! Gotta love that lack of humidity, too, and the cool ocean breeze!
It was so fun to spend time with two of my favorite gentlemen! On our first night we enjoyed strolling around the city before deciding on dinner at a hole-in-the-wall sushi spot near our bed and breakfast (we stayed at the adorable English Bay Inn) called Kitaya Sushi. Delicious and really affordable!
The sunset on our walk back was amazing – what a beautiful city!
On Saturday morning, Matt and I enjoyed breakfast at our B&B – so delicious, and multiple courses! The scones were my fave.
Right after breakfast were out the door to meet my brother for an adventure: hiking the famous Grouse Grind up Grouse Mountain!
A ton of you guys recommended this as a touristy but fun thing to do – and a great workout, too! The Grouse Grind is basically a straight uphill hike – called “Nature’s Stairmaster” – you do 1.8 miles straight up with 2,800 feet of elevation gain. Intense!
As you can see from the pictures, there were a lot of people out there with the same idea – unsurprising since it was a beautiful morning. I was really impressed with how many people were doing this – it was not easy!
We stopped at the 1/4 and 1/2 marks for a quick break, then climbed up the rest without stopping. Whew! That will get your heart rate up.
All the hiking the week prior at higher altitudes definitely helped – my legs were burning but my lungs felt strong.
1 hour and 15 minutes later and we made it!
That was no joke, but man are those views worth it!
You aren’t allowed to climb back down the stairs for safety reasons, which was fine with us – we got to take this gondola down instead! The views were beautiful and it was crazy to see how high up we had climbed.
We spent the rest of the day over at the Granville Island Public Market! It was fun to take a little water taxi over there and to explore all the delicious local food offerings. Yum!
For dinner on Saturday, we hopped in a cab down to an area of the city called Gastown. Gastown is Vancouver’s oldest neighborhood and actually a national historic site. It’s located at the northeast end of downtown. There were a ton of great restaurants and it was a nice area to walk around – definitely recommend checking it out if you ever find yourself in Vancouver! We went to an Italian restaurant that I can’t remember the name of and forgot to take pictures. Oh well!
Sunday morning began with another must-do: running the seawall! Everyone I talked to said that this was not to be missed for runners visiting Vancouver. Well okay then!
The Vancouver seawall is actually the world’s longest uninterrupted waterfront path. It extends for 28km and runs from the Vancouver Convention Center to Spanish Banks Park. The part of it that we ran is that which loops around beautiful Stanley Park. I love that it has designated areas for runners/walkers and bikers, so you aren’t constantly getting yelled at/in the way!
We ended up doing 2 miles along the seawall and then cut in to Stanley Park to do 2 miles on the trails.
After our run, Matt and I decided to forgo our B&B breakfast in favor of one last meal with my brother before he had to make the drive back to Seattle. We hit up Chambar at his suggestion – and wow, you guys. You MUST go here. The waffles were absolutely incredible – highly recommend the Greek yogurt + orange and fig marmalade toppings!
Matt and I rented bikes after saying goodbye to my brother and spent some time exploring the Stanley Park trails. I was expecting Stanley Park to be like Central Park – open and manicured – and was surprised to find it was really wild! So beautiful – it reminded me of a much bigger Roosevelt Island. The seawall was crowded with bikers but when we ventured into the dirt/gravel trails in the park there weren’t many people around at all – perfect!
The rest of the afternoon was spent relaxing on English Bay Beach! Put this on the list of things we did not expect to be doing in Canada – lol! I couldn’t believe the weather was warm enough to lie on a beach – and had no idea Vancouver even had a public beach! Very cool.
We got gelato too – perfect day for it! Mint chocolate chip = my fave.
For our last dinner in Vancouver, Matt and I walked over to the Beach Bay Café near our B&B. We were able to snag a seat outside so we could enjoy views of the start of the sunset! We shared this fabulous salad to start – loved the vinaigrette:
And for my entrée I had a bunch of starters because they sounded delicious! Their seafood was awesome.
After dinner we walked over to the seawall and sat on the ledge with our legs dangling over the water watching the sunset. So stunning – the perfect end to a great trip!
I’ll share some of the other highlights from our Canada vacation over the coming weeks, interspersed with my regular daily life content. Stay tuned for more!
Have you ever been to Vancouver? What should I put on the list for our next visit? I definitely hope we can go back someday – such a gorgeous, lively, and active city, especially when the weather was so beautiful!