Vancouver is one of the most vibrant cities in Canada. Located in the province of British Columbia, Vancouver is known for its beautiful coastline. It boasts of a lot of sunshine, rain and very little snow (unlike the rest of Canada).
Vancouver is one of the most ethnically diverse cities in Canada and one of the most densely populated ones in North America. It is consistently named as one of the top five cities for livability and quality of life globally.
What to do when you only have 48 hours in this vibrant city? Keep reading for my recommendations.
Arrive early into the city, to enjoy your hot cup of coffee or tea. Vancouverites are high on cafe culture.
Start your morning as early as 7:00 am. Drop by a coffee shop, especially the ones around the Port of Vancouver to kick start your day.
This park is very organic, in the sense, that only a handful of structures and areas are man-made, while the rest is au natural. There are different structures placed at the park in different locations.
There are totem poles located in the park as well. Significant effort was put into constructing the near-century-old Vancouver Seawall, which can draw thousands of residents and visitors to the park every day.
You can witness art and architecture in almost every part of the city and Stanley Park is no exception. That’s why this Park always is featured as “one of the world’s most popular parks“.
Prospect Point and Lions Gate Bridge – Head to Prospect Point next. Drive through dense forest from Stanley Park to arrive at an observation point (Prospect Point) to view the city and this particular bridge, called the Lions Gate Bridge.
The Lions Gate Bridge refers to “The Lions”, a pair of mountain peaks north of Vancouver. This bridge connects the city of Vancouver to north and west Vancouver.
Granville Island – Granville Island is a peninsula and shopping district, located across False Creek from Downtown Vancouver, under the south end of the Granville Street Bridge. You can easily spend a couple of hours here. There are tons of places here to eat and shop. Don’t forget to enjoy some finger-licking fish and chips on Granville Island for lunch.
Vancouver Chinatown – Vancouver has a huge Chinese community and the Sun Yat Sen Gardens located in Chinatown are an absolute favorite of tourists.
Gastown Steam Clock – After Chinatown, head to Gastown for a stroll. A few blocks along, you will see the Steam Clock. This clock is over 40 years old and it whistles to tell time. You can also see the steam coming out from top. Isn’t it amazing to see such art when you are strolling and exploring a new place?
- Five Sails Restaurant
- Le Crocodile
- Salam Bombay
- Blue Water Cafe
At the end of the night, choose to stay in one of the centrally located hotels. Hotel accommodation starts at $80 CAD and can go upto $500+ in Downtown Vancouver.
Start your Day 2 in Vancouver early with some great breakfast options in the downtown area.
Breakfast and Brunch Options:
- Jam Cafe on Beatty
- Medina Cafe
- Le Petit Belge
Capilano Suspension Bridge – The Capilano Suspension Bridge was originally built in the late 1800 by George Grant Mackay, a Scottish civil engineer. And was originally made of ropes with a deck of cedar planks. The engineer didn’t like to socialize and so he also had his family home built in the vicinity and used the bridge to cross the forest. After his death, the bridge passed through many owners. It is currently owned by Nancy Stibbard. You can learn about the bridge’s early history from a local guide when you take the entrance to the park.
You can easily spend your entire afternoon exploring the park (anywhere from 2-5 hours, depending on your interest).
In the evening, head to Robson Street for some shopping and entertainment. Robson Street is located in the heart of the city of Vancouver. BC Stadium and Downtown is just a stone’s throw away. Pacific Centre Mall is located on Robson Street and it is home to 100 stores. You will find several ethnic dining options in Robson Street as well. Don’t forget to shop for souvenirs. Unique Vancouver/Canadian souvenirs include First Nations Art (painting, postcard, jewelry, wood-work), active-wear (Lululemon), BC Craft Brews to name a few.
After an action-packed day, head to your downtown hotel for some rest and bid adieu to this amazing city.
Mayuri is a Business Management Professional based in Canada. Originally from India, she moved to Canada to finish her masters degree and has been calling it home ever since.
Mayuri is a history nerd and loves to explore a city’s past and culture. She works full time and encourages people to travel even with busy schedules. She blogs about her travel stories and tips on Someplace New . Her blog has a series of short-term itineraries and weekend getaway guides to suit travelers with hectic lifestyles.
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