Vancouver was named after British explorer Captain George Vancouver. It’s Canada’s third-largest city, with about 604,000 people who call it home. Ethnically diverse, with a strong Asian influence, this city is a looker: Ocean, mountains and parks are all within easy reach of its growing core.
That Vancouver vibe
The new millennium has been good to this city, allowing it to come into its own. A bustling food scene since the early 2000s has attracted international acclaim, but there’s nothing like a little event called the Olympics (2010) and the arrival of TED (2014) to really make you grow up.
Explore the outdoors
Take a walk or hike through the 400-hectare forest of Stanley Park ‘ voted ‘best park in the world’ by TripAdvisor in 2014 ‘ or jog the nine-kilometre seawall that wraps around the park’s shoreline. The park is a true urban park, just a stone’s throw from downtown.
Where to eat in Vancouver
Brunch: Gastown @ Catch 122 (catch122.ca). Try the Chorizo Hash, with house-made sausage, green kale, goat cheese, fried eggs and potato hash. Wash it down with a Beer-Mosa (Pilsner + juice).
Dinner: Davie Village @ Exile Bistro (exilebistro.com), a cozy neighbourhood spot with eclectic offerings. At the bar, try E3live Fizz (blue-green algae, lemon, maple and sparkling water). For your main, explore the Forager’s Bowl (black rice, egg, mushrooms, pickled veggies, walnut and chili sauce).
Where to stay in Vancouver
Vancouver provides many fab options, from luxury brands (The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver) to hip havens (Loden Hotel). But our fave is the Wedgewood Hotel & Spa (wedgewoodhotel.com), an 83-room hotel in the heart of downtown that holds the distinction of being the city’s only Relais & Chateaux. It has many lovely attributes, including spacious rooms and gracious service, but what we love most is that the Wedge understands hospitality: The experience is always about the customer.
Tour the Vancouver food scene
Vancouver’s food scene is worth exploring in detail and all the better with an insider. Sign up with Off the Eaten Track Culinary Walking Tours (offtheeatentracktours.ca) and discover a few hidden gems, best urban eats or new brunch spots. The Downtown Food Carts Tour ($45) is especially fun. Eating as you walk helps you deal with the guilt of calories, which always feels like a win-win.
Planning a trip? Get travel inspiration and booking deals at our sister site, readersdigest.ca/travel.