Posts Tagged ‘Seabus’

How to see the very best of Vancouver in just a few short days.

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

Its been a crazy Winter here in Vancouver as we have not seen this much Sun over the winter period for as long as anyone can remember – maybe, just maybe this is a sign of a good tourist season to come for 2014.
We are starting to notice a big upswing in reservation calls for people who are now looking ahead to the Spring and Summer season get away’s. We feel this will be a good time to give you advice on how to utilise your time in the city with the few days that you may be stopping over. So we will guide you on what to do if you are stopping by the city for just 1, 2 or 3 days…

1 DAY VISIT
One day in the city may seem like there is no time to see anything, but we feel you can actually see a fair bit of the city due to the size and geography of the area, so, if you are only making a whistle-stop tour and still want to catch some sights, here are the places to see for just one day.

BIG BUS CITY TOUR – HOP ON HOP OFF Big Bus will be the very best way to see the sights of the city while having the freedom to get around at different stops so you can experience some pretty decent areas that Vancouver has to offer. The bus stop is quite literally a 1 minute walk from the hotel on Thurlow St – we suggest that you do a full circle tour on the bus, and then once back around, its time to use the Hop on Hop off option to good use.
Granville Island is a must see area in the city, it is our own version of Seattle’s Pike Place market There are some amazing boutique shops to browse and shop in, the wonderful Granville Island Market whic is open from 9am till 7pm seven days a week. There are also some really excellent restaurants to choose from too, our suggestion is to visit The Sandbar Restaurant, this really showcases the very best Pub style dishes, Seafood and an Asian infusion twist which is very very Vancouver.

Granville Island Website: http://granvilleisland.com/

After spending some time on Granville Island we highly recommend that you take a walk inStanley Park A diamond in the rough – Stanley Park is one of the largest public parks that shows you what the area once looked like before the rapid expansion of the city. The Park is located at the Western end of the downtown peninsula and at 1,001-acres there is plenty to see. Here you are in the heart of an ‘urban Rainforest’ so to speak, there is no shortage of spectacular scenery with the various species of Plants, trees and wildlife, it is a must see area of the city, just like Granville Island.

We also recommend that you purchase your Big Bus tickets with us at the front desk as it will be a cheaper deal for you – as opposed to buying a ticket directly from their website. We will send you their link below so you know what to expect when you get here.

BIG BUS Website http://bigbus.ca/home/

Sandbar Restaurant http://www.vancouverdine.com/sandbar

2 DAY VISIT
Now that you have gotten some of the downtown area out of the way, you can now start to explore a little deeper, if you have purchased a ticket with Big Bus you will have seen that they have a 2 day Pass – this will help get you to explore some of the older areas of the city.
Gastown and Chinatown are also a must see area of Vancouver, here you will step back in time and get to see where the original and oldest areas of the city began, you can check out the famous cobble-stoned Streets, incredibly stunning architecture and historical landmarks such as The Steam Clock, the Chinatown district (which is one of the oldest in North America and Canada – including the majestic and beautiful DR SUN YAT SEN CLASSICAL CHINESE GARDENS website http://vancouverchinesegarden.com/

Gastown Website:http://www.gastown.org/

GROUSE MOUNTAIN & CAPILANO SUSPENSION BRIDGE can be visited after spending some time in Chinatown and Gastown, you can head over to Waterfront Station where you can catch the Seabus over to North Vancouver and Lonsdale Quay (which is North Vancouver’s version of our own Granville Island, its smaller but very cute and offers some great views of the Burrard Inlet, Downtown Vancouver and Stanley Park.

Grouse Mountain overlooks Vancouver and can be easily spotted as the middle of the three North Shore mountains that overlook the city, it is nestled in between Cypress Mountain to the West and Mount Seymour to the east. Grouse is excellent for Winter sporting activities for all the family – and in the summer it has great hiking trails, the famous Grouse Grind if you are up for a steep walking challenge and entertainment at the top for all the family to enjoy, this includes a lumberjack show which is funny and breath taking and a Bird Sanctuary and Grizzly Bear enclosure.
Just one stop down from Grouse is the world famous Capilano Suspension Bridge, here you will get to experience one of the worlds largest suspended Suspension Bridges, high above the Capilano river and canyon, there is also a daring cliff walk and glass paths for the especially daring – its a stunning sight to be so high among the trees in this amazing rain-forest canopy.

Grouse Mountain – The Peak of Vancouver https://www.grousemountain.com/

Capilano Suspension Bridge Website: http://www.capbridge.com/

3 DAY VISIT
if you happen to be here for 3 days or more, then we absolutely encourage you to start to explore further out to areas like Victoria on Vancouver Island.
Vancouver Island is a pretty big place – many believe that it is a fairly small place but don’t be fooled it is actually close in size to the UK!
Victoria which is the capital of BC is a very quaint and beautiful town, much smaller than Vancouver and certainly steeped in rich history of its colonial past – it too has a decent China town to explore.
We recommend that you use a Tour Operator to visit Victoria, the one way trip itself take roughly 3 to 4 hours to get from Vancouver to Victoria – this includes the stunning Ferry ride that meanders through the Georgia Strait and the Gulf island, if you are lucky, you may even catch a glimpse of some travelling Whales…..when you are in Victoria, take a visit to the Empress hotel for some High Tea!

We really like LANDSEA TOURS, they have an excellent package that will take you directly from the hotel to Victoria, they will also ship you around the town so you can get to enjoy the world famous Butchart Gardens, The Museum of Victoria and some time to walk around the downtown area, they will also bring you back to the hotel too – its an awesome tour where you can sit back, learn about the area and not have to think! We like that very much!

Victoria BC Website: http://www.victoria.ca/

High Tea at the Empress Hotel Victoria http://www.fairmont.com/empress-victoria/dining/afternoontea/

Landsea Tours http://www.vancouvertours.com/

Haunted Vancouver Trolley Tours & Lonsdale Quay ‘Savour Saturdays’

Friday, October 5th, 2012


The Vancouver Trolley Company will be running their annual ‘Haunted Vancouver Trolley Tours’.

The tours will run from October 19th through to October 31st where you will be involved in a haunted evening filled with murderous tales and infamous buildings of Vancouver.

Your host will tell gruesome tales of troubled ghosts, how they met their end, and where they now occupy their time. You will be visiting locations such as the Mountain View Cemetery and the autopsy room at the famous Vancouver Police Museum where over 15.000 autopsies have been performed.

The 2 1/2 hour Haunted trolley tours will depart every evening from Canada Place at 5.30, 6.30, 7.30 and 8.30pm, returning once again to Canada Place. The tour is suitable for adults (13+) at the rate of $40 (including tax) per person. If you wish to reserve, full credit card payment is required, you can do tihs by contacting 604 801 5515 ext 100.

Here is a video from their tour!

http://youtu.be/BP11CJLYSN4

Book in advance as this is likely to sell out!!!

http://www.vancouvertrolley.com/tours/seasonal/haunted-halloween

Lonsdale Quay Market – ‘Savour Saturdays’.

Every Saturday throughout the month of October is ‘Savour Saturdays’ at Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver. The market here is the North Shores version of Granville Island market, and it is one to visit – especially if you are making an excursion to see the sights such as Capilano Suspension Bridge and Grouse Mountain.

It is going to be a great food festival, where you can taught some amazing recipes with the help of some amazing Chefs from the area – the festival will have something for everyone so it will be a fun filled family event.

The Market itself has plenty to see and do, with an amazing selection of local produce, fine meats, cheese, wine and artisan stores.
It is also very easy to reach this area from The Sunset Inn and Suites – Just catch the Number 6 Downtown Bus on Davie Street (outside Dennys) to the very last stop at Waterfront Station, transfer here to get the Seabus to Lonsdale Quay, where you are immediately at the Market!!!

http://www.lonsdalequay.com/events.php

If you do plan to go here, please see the Translink.ca link below which give you bus options to the Quay…

http://tripplanning.translink.ca/hiwire

How to get around Vancouver?

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Big Bus, Land Sea Tours, Translink, Butchart Botanical Gardens

One of the regular questions we receive at the hotel is “What is the best way to get around Vancouver?”, and “Where can we park our vehicle?”. We have decided to explain how it all works and what the best options are for you to see the city with the least amount of effort, and something that will also be informative and as fun as possible.

Using the vehicle may not be the best option within the downtown core, however, we do recommend using the vehicle to go further afield if you are feeling adventurous and will like to go your own way, please make sure that you ask us at the Front Desk for advice and pointers on how to get from A to B. A day trip on your own clock to Whistler or Victoria can be achieved, however, we will like to introduce you to Tour Operators that will do the hard work and really make a day trip work, so you don’t have to get lost and figure it for yourself.

Vancouver has multiple options for you to get around the city, the most obvious being the Public Transportation of either Bus, Skytrain and of course Taxis. The bus and the Skytrain are run by Translink (who also run the Seabus from Vancouver to the city of North Vancouver at Lonsdale Quay). Taxis are everywhere, so when ordering they will literally be at the hotel in minutes.

What is so good about the Translink company running the bulk of the public transport is its efficiency, one ticket will last you 90 mins which means you are able to transfer on any mode of transport they offer within that hour and a half, and with Vancouver being a smaller city in consideration, that ticket will get you quite far at a very small cost. For further details on the pricing and zoning areas, we will be more than happy for you to come to the front desk for directions and pointers…we will also happily provide you with change as paying on the bus you will need coins. The Number 6 Bus is available right around the corner, this will take you to English Bay heading out West, or Eastbound through the heart of the downtown core and Granville Street.

Big Bus Sightseeing Tours.
As for sightseeing and a tour that will be fun and engaging, you will need to look no further than Big Bus. We have been recommending Big Bus for many many years, we strongly feel that they are one of the best ways to get yourself around Vancouver, we are confident that you will come away from their tours with great knowledge of the city, and above all an unforgettable experience, they are fun, engaging and above all very experienced within this industry. Their routes pretty much hit every major attraction within the city, such as Granville Island, Gastown and Stanley Park.

There are various tours that they have on offer, the most popular being their Hop on Hop off excursions, you have an option of 1 day or 2 day passes, the best thing about Big Bus is that you can Purchase your ticket directly with us at the Front Desk (we will need your credit card) and the pick up stop is literally just around the corner from us, no more than a 30 second stroll on Thurlow Street. Perfect!

Landsea Tours and Adventures.
For travelling further afield such as Whistler and Victoria, we will recommend Landsea Tours & Adventures. Landsea Tours are perfect if you have a limited amount of time, and are looking for a day trip to Whistler or Victoria or even the North Shore of Vancouver. The tours will come directly to the Hotel and from here, they will whisk you away to your destination where they will set the agenda that you get to see the major hotspots and have time to sight-see and explore the destination for a few hours.

The Victoria trip also includes the Famous Butchart Botanical Gardens, we highly recommend that if you need to visit Victoria and the Gardens, please consider this tour option, as it will be more productive to let Landsea tours set up your trip, whisk you away from your doorstep with less fuss and more to see!

There are a few more options, but for now, we feel that these options will be sufficient and enable you to sightsee and explore with the least amount of fuss.

We look forward to hearing about your experiences, please feel free to write in and explain what the tours had to offer and why you would use them again.