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First Timers need help

Sydney
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First Timers need help

Hi

we are an Australian couple in our late 30's who will be visiting Vancouver for the first time in Feb/Mar. Needing some advice on transport and what to do

Arrive on a flight on the 26 Feb

The only plans we have is tickets to see the Canucks play on the 1st Mar and the then we will take the train at 5.30pm to Seattle on the 2 March

So we have 3.5 days in Vancouver.

I was thinking a tour of some sort and maybe some shopping

Would appreciate some help and advice on suggested tours, things to do in Vancouver and shopping venues.

What should we expect with the weather at this time. Will there be snow? We don't get much snow where we live so a tour involving snow would be nice.

Also some advice on getting public Transport from the Airport to the St Regis Hotel and the St Regis to the Train Station

A little about us

My husband loves history, Music, sports, comic books, science fiction and is a gamer

For me I am interested in the destination - seeing the tourist attractions, reading, shopping (everyday and business clothes), cooking ( food)

Vancouver BC
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1. Re: First Timers need help

Snow? Not likely but if you Google Grouse Mountain you'll find some snow as well as a good day destination. Plan for 5C and rain. Colder up Grouse. Read the Top Questions on the right of this page and it will give you plenty of info including how to use Canada Line subway from the airport and how to get tickets. Your hotel is near Vancouver City Centre Station and if your arrival is during store hours you can exit the Canada Line at City Centre and walk to your right at the top of the first escalator. You go through The Bay department store following signs to Skytrain. Exit the Skytrain station at the Dunsmiur exit and the St Regis is on your right. Otherwise exit at City Centre go up two escalators and walk along Granville Street a block north towards the mountains. Turn right on Dunsmiur and the hotel is on the next corner.

Vancouver, Canada
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2. Re: First Timers need help

More options for snow play at Cypress I think:

http://cypressmountain.com/

We have three ski hills right here in the city, Cypress, Grouse and Seymour. Grouse is literally 15 minutes from the heart of downtown and easy to get to. Cypress has a shuttle from Park Royal Mall in West Vancouver. And then you can always take a day up to Whistler.

There will probably not be snow at sea level, but there will definitely be snow in the mountains, so take in some altitude and go play in the snow. Skiing, snowshoeing, tubing, skating. Lots of fun for all.

Vancouver, Canada
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3. Re: First Timers need help

If you want to enjoy the snow and the view then make sure it is a sunny day. This year we have been having the odd snowfalls in the city and then lovely days of liquid sunshine. We have been fortunate to have a few clear days as well. One thing about Vancouver is that we can never trust the forecast particularly at this time of the year. Weather can change quite quickly.

Vancouver, Canada
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4. Re: First Timers need help

For your husband he can poke around this site

http://www.vancouverhistory.ca/

and see what might interest him. Vancouver as a city has a rather short timeline. The Hastings Mill Store which is on this site but doesn't seem to have its own is a small museum but might be of interest. The Museum of Vancouver http://www.museumofvancouver.ca/ covers more of Vancouvers past. Also out in Langley there is http://seefortlangley.com/ an old Hudsons Bay company fort. For a wonderful experience of native culture there is http://www.moa.ubc.ca/ out at UBC ( University of British Columbia ).

I'm not a gamer so the only gaming idea I have is perhaps contacting EA ( Electronic Arts ) "Canada is home to EA's largest Development Studio in Burnaby, British Columbia" according to their website. Contact them and see if they give tours or are having an open house. Longshot but you never know. http://www.ea.com/ca/

As for Science Fiction many movies including the lastest TRON were filmed here. Google Vancouver etc and he should be able to find lots of local settings where these were filmed. Fantastic Four also comes to mind as does X - Men. ( tell him not to miss the http://www.empsfm.org/ in Seattle ) They even have the captains chair from the original T.V. series Star Trek )

I'll let someone else who has more experience in clothes shopping post. If you like libraries our central branch may be interesting http://www.vpl.ca/,

Chapters is a huge bookstore on Robson, but to me is just like all the other mega -sized bookstores out there. A lot of the little ones have disappeared, however downtown there is a musty little bookstore that has a jumble of used books that I like to occasionally poke around in. It's called Macleod's Books. They don't have their own page but this page has the info and some reviews. www.yelp.ca/biz/macleods-books-vancouver

Again though Google bookstores in Vancouver and you will find others.

For me one the best tourist attractions is more of a tourist draw since it is loved by locals as much as tourists and that is the seawall. Biking around it gives you a great impression of Vancouver. It encircles the entire city and can be done in bits and pieces if time doesn't allow for more. If that interests you and you'd like more details, just ask.

Edited: 29 January 2011, 22:31
Vancouver, Canada
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5. Re: First Timers need help

Here are some websites for you to explore re shopping -

Pacific Centre is the main shopping mall downtown and is mostly underground -

www.pacificcentre.ca/en/Pages/default.aspx

Robson Street heads west from Granville Street -

http://www.robsonstreet.ca/

You can hop on the Skytrain from downtown and head out to Metrotown for most shopping -

http://www.metropolisatmetrotown.com/

Granville Island has a public market with all sorts of interesting food and ingredients -

http://www.granvilleisland.com/

As Rustproof says, Macleod Books is quite amazing in terms of both their stock and their ability to locate books in the piles in front of the shelves.

Vancouver, Canada
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6. Re: First Timers need help

Also, re the interest in music, we have a weekly entertainment newspaper - The Georgia Straight, which is available online and also in boxes around the city. It comes out every Thursday -

http://www.straight.com/

Vancouver, Canada
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7. Re: First Timers need help

Have a look in the top right corner of this forum at "Top Questions." There is a whole thread stored there for Museums which might interest your husband.

Have a look at The Tour Guys, reviewed on the "Things to Do - Tours tab" on the left sidebar.

Bookstores:

McLeods at Pender & Richards - used bks

Tanglewood on Broadway between Granville & Fir - used bks

Blackberry Books on Granville Island

Here are some of the highlights I like to post for a question like yours:

Granville Island and False Creek

Stanley Park, including the Aquarium

Gastown - for a self guided walking tour: http://www.gastown.org/history/index.html --> take a self guided walking tour. Otherwise this historic birthplace of Vancouver will just be brick and stone to you.

4 Self Guided walks - vancouver.ca/commsvcs/…index.htm

Chinatown

Museum of Anthropology at UBC

Robson Street

Bill Reid Gallery at 639 Hornby St. between Dunsmuir and Georgia

Vancouver Art Gallery, with its great Gallery Restaurant

Grouse Mountain

Lynn Canyon Susp Bridge (free) or Capilano Susp Bridge ($$$)

Maritime Museum - www.vancouvermaritimemuseum.com/page216.htm

Van Dusen Gardens

Queen Elizabeth Park and the Bloedel Conservatory

Food you say? You might be interested in experiencing the rather good culinary students at Vancouver Community College's JJ's Restaurant - when school's in session. I can't imagine why it wouldn't be in Feb. They rotate during the months of their 10 month term learning/practising the various aspects of the culinary industry. Make a ressie. I have enjoyed a number of meals there.

tourismvancouver.com/visitors/…

Edited: 30 January 2011, 02:01
Vancouver, Canada
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8. Re: First Timers need help

Re: Canucks game -- do yourself a favour, and get to the game early. It's a 7:00 start, so I would recommend getting there by 6:15 - 6:20, so that you can watch the pre-game warmup. No matter where your tickets are for the game, you can go right down to ice level to watch the players take their pre-game skate. Unless you have seats in the lower bowl, it's the only way to get a true appreciation of the skill level (skating ability, speed of the shot and stickhandling) of these players.

For the Canucks, keep your eyes on the Sedin twins (#22 and #33) and Ryan Kesler (#17); hopefully Luongo (#1) will be playing goal that night. For the Blue Jackets, watch #61 Rick Nash, he's a real sniper. And be sure to leave some time to hit the Canucks Team Store for some great souvenirs.

Sydney
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9. Re: First Timers need help

Thanks everyone. Most helpful.

Thanks Steveston - Its our first time to the Ice Hockey so its great to know this stuff before hand.

We try and see a sports game each time we go away. We have done NFL, Baseball and this trip Ice Hockey and the Basketball.

My husband loves sports especially the NFL

Vancouver
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10. Re: First Timers need help

Here are a few things I would recommend you do during your stay.

1) Vancouver Food Tour-if one is available its a great way to experience some amazing local restaurants with a fabulous guide http://vancouverfoodtour.com/

2)Have Brunch at Cafe Medina www.medinacafe.com/

3) Head up to Grouse Mountain to enjoy the view, and hopefully some snow. If its warm then I would suggest a day trip to whistler and take the peak to peak gondola, ziplining, photography tour and other great activities http://www.whistlerblackcomb.com

4)Have fresh, locally made with the best ingredients gelato at Bella Gelateria www.bellagelateria.com

5)Grab the Aquabus to Granville Island and explore! Then take the Aquabus over to Yaletown and stop at Rodney's Oyster House for some amazing local seafood! www.rodneysoysterhouse.com

6) Try dinner at the Helm They have some live music during the weekend that may interest you! All local ingredients as well! www.thehelmofvancouver.com

7)The Museum of Anthropology would be a great stop for both of you to enjoy www.moa.ubc.ca

8) Make a reservation for dinner at the Irish Heather for their Long Table Series! Meet other locals and travellers over a great meal for just $15! on the 28th of Feb they have Monday, February 28, 630pm. $15

Lasagna, Ground Fennel Sausage, Preserved Tomato Sauce, Parmesan

w/ 20 oz Pint Of Newcastle Brown Ale http://ltsmenu.blogspot.com/ Its a great deal!

9) Pick up some bike rentals and tour yourself around Stanley Park

10) Keep your eyes open for the Hamilton St. Grill http://www.hamiltonstreetgrill.com/ They do $25 wine and food pairing evenings! They haven't announced yet for February but there will likely be some that come up!

Hope that helps! It will still be cold but will be mild in temperature overall during your visit. Rainy though!