Whistler/Vancouver

Though I enjoy my time in Hawaii, I have been due for a return visit to Canada.  I travelled to Vancouver once some years back.  Though I don’t recall it making a big impression on me, I don’t recall disliking it either.  Since I end up an emotional rollercoaster every time I go back to Toronto, I decided to take a pass on going back there again for a while and opted to go somewhere I didn’t leave my heart in.  I decided to give Vancouver another go since airfare was relatively inexpensive.

View from Granville Island
View from Granville Island
Panorama of Vancouver Using An Extreme Wide Angle Lens
Panorama of Vancouver Using An Extreme Wide Angle Lens

I made a stop in Honolulu for a lunch date with Cory, my favorite bartender on Oahu, before continuing to Canada.  I hadn’t seen him in quite a while and it was good to see him again and enjoy his company.  If ever in Waikiki, stop by and see him at Wang Chung’s Kareokee Bar.

Honolulu, HI
Honolulu, HI
Cory
Cory

Once in Vancouver, I met up with Ryan, a registered nurse in Calgary with family in Hilo.  We met up at the airport and took the train to the hotel.

Ryan
Ryan

DAY 1

Since Ryan and I were both tired from our flights, we rested for a bit at the hotel upon arriving.  It was a rustic hotel with few amenities, but it worked for me.  In the afternoon, Ryan accompanied me to run a few errands, and then some urban photography of Vancouver.  My initial observations when I starting pressing the shutter button was that Vancouver is located in a magnificent natural setting, but the architecture and streetscape tend to lack any memorable character.  I’m not saying it’s ugly…..just plain.

Downtown Vancouver
Downtown Vancouver

For lunch, we stopped at an eatery that specializes in waffles.  I had the chocolate covered waffles for lunch.  I know it’s an unorthodox choice, but hey, I was on vacation.

Ryan Taking A Picture of The Sign
Ryan Taking A Picture of The Sign
Enjoying My Chocolate Covered Waffles
Enjoying My Chocolate Covered Waffles

Since I’ve been to the Tower of the Americas in San Antonio, Stratosphere Tower in Las Vegas, and CN Tower in Toronto, I thought it would be nice to have dinner at the Top of Vancouver Revolving Restaurant.  We did just that.  The food was good, but you’re ultimately paying for the view, which did not disappoint.

View North From Top of Vancouver Restaurant
View North From Top of Vancouver Restaurant

DAY 2

My phone crashed and became completely inoperable.  There was no buying a new one because I was in Canada and I have an American phone.  Truth be told, I kinda liked not having a phone.  It was almost liked being back in 1999 when people actually spoke to each other.  Much of the day was spent walking around snapping pictures.  As I walked along Granville St and saw the hostel that I stayed at the first time I was in Vancouver, I was surprised at how unfamiliar the whole place looked.  I normally can remember at least some things about a place I travel to…..but not Vancouver.  The whole area was so unfamiliar to me that it may just was well have been my first time there.  I guess Vancouver didn’t leave a lasting impression on me the first time I went.

Robson St
Robson St
Granville St
Granville St

For lunch, we walked over to English Bay and ate at Cactus Club Cafe along the shoreline.  The food was good.  I enjoyed it.  While shopping at a discount shoe store, I was pleasantly surprised when the store owner almost offered me a job to photograph her products after she saw the pictures I had taken at lunch of the fish tacos I ordered.  If I only was able to stay in Vancouver a few more days, I would’ve been able to take the offer.  But it was still nice to be asked.

English Bay
English Bay

Fish Tacos
Fish Tacos

At night, we went out for some drinks on Davie St, but I left the camera at the hotel since I didn’t want to have to look out for it all night.  Davie St. was alright for a Tuesday night but nothing spectacular.  I still enjoyed myself though.

DAY 3

While Ryan stayed in Vancouver to hang out, I decided to rent a car and drive to Whistler.  On the way, I stopped in North Vancouver for a quick lunch because it looked so beautiful from the Top of Vancouver restaurant.  It was a quaint little community.  I can dig it.  As I was driving through rural British Columbia after I was through with my lunch, I did take notice to how beautiful the natural scenery is.  That said, I have seen many places that are just as beautiful if not more.  I live in one.  I think to truly appreciate the beauty of British Columbia, I would have to go back in the winter time when the area has more character to it because in the summer time, it’s still beautiful, but looks like too many other beautiful places.

Crossing The Lions Gate Bridge
Crossing The Lions Gate Bridge

Whistler was in a class all it’s own.  It’s a very cute little town.  Too cute.  Sickeningly cute.  It’s like the whole town was in complete utopia.  I’m not kidding.  Whistler looks like a village wonderland straight out of a fairy tale, and all that was missing were the magic elves spreading happiness and cheer.  I didn’t dislike Whistler.  It was simply just a little too cheery for me.

Whistler Olympic Village
Whistler Olympic Village
Shot after the Sun Went Down
Shot after the Sun Went Down

DAY 4

After spending the night in Whistler, I drove back to Vancouver in the early afternoon and spent my last day driving around and taking pictures along the way.

Whistler, BC
Whistler, BC

I hung out most of the day at one of the local beaches, though I never did catch the name of the beach itself.  As I drove to return the rental car after the beach, I was thinking about the first time I came to Vancouver and why I didn’t remember much about it.  Truth is that Vancouver is a great place, and I would never tell anyone to not go there, but for me, it simply doesn’t have the “wow” factor or the excitement that would make me ever desire to call it home.

DAY 5

My trip ended on a good note.  Once I got to the airport and printed out my boarding passes, I found out I was upgraded to first class.  I guess life is good.  All in all, I enjoyed my trip to British Columbia and I would definitely go back to again to visit.

Vancouver Airport
Vancouver Airport
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