Thursday, June 24, 2010

Vancouver: Roadtrip begins

Our summer has begun! Rob and I have pretty awesome summer schedules, working very part-time. But even before that we have some time off and just like last year, we decided to go on a roadtrip! We settled on Vancouver for 2 nights (that's where we are now), Manning Provincial Park for 2 nights, Osoyoos Park for one night, Chelan for one night, then home. After Vancouver we'll be camping each night. Here's the route pictured:

Fun, eh? We began planning a few months ago and we are pretty stoked about it. Deciding the route, committing to 4 nights of camping by ourselves, and then packing for the trip has all been very grown-up-feeling. Helping my parents pack for a long camping trip was always fun for me (unpacking is another story), but there's so much involved! We're keeping it pretty simple and I've pretty much realized that the only difference b/w camping for 2 nights, which we've done, and 4 nights is just the amount of food.

This trip feels a bit like 2 trips in one. I packed a Vancouver bag (cute clothes for the big city) and a camping bag (for when I won't care what I look like)! We're about to be done with the first leg of our trip and it has been great so far. See, I'll show you....

Rob's obligatory roadtrip hat. The great thing about this roadtrip is that there is only 2-3 hours of driving between each leg of the trip. Brilliant.

Switching to metric is a little strange. It just adds to the overall strange feeling I've had here in Vancouver - in that I know we're in another country, but there are only a handful of things that show that (metric system, Canadian $, road signs, not being able to watch Top Chef on Hulu... but that's about it). Oh, and I keep telling Rob to use up our coins - they're like fake money to me.

The first things we did once getting into town was head to Stanley Park. It was just so nice outside that we had to take the opportunity to ride our bikes on the Seawall, which was the number one thing we wanted to do. My main recommendation for visiting Vancouver: bring or rent bikes! The Seawall at the park is amazing, and Vancouver is just a great cycling city.

Some shots of us at Stanley Park. It took just an hour to ride the 5.5 miles (stopping multiple times to take in the view and check out other parts of the park included).

We wanted to ride the Miniature Train at the park, but didn't end up doing it. Here's how bummed Rob was when I wouldn't even let him wait around until the train passed by us (the thing was S-L-O-W).
Stanley Park also has a awesome looking outdoor pool. It was so very unfortunate that we didn't have our swim gear with us when we discovered the pool at Second Beach. If you're visiting Vancouver in the future, don't make the same mistake we did.

After Stanley Park we dropped off our car at the hotel (west-end-ish of Robson) and started walking. Then we kept walking. We saw a lot of Vancouver on our walk and learned a few things: Robson is busy, Granville has an H&M, Davie has cheap food, Clothes are more expensive here, Sears is fancy, the streets are still crawling with people at 10pm, and Starbucks are everywhere.

Vancouver is a great urban town and I really like the size and amount of "busy." As most great big cities there are also many impressive nature spaces. Here is a community garden on Davies. I loved it.
I love this picture of Rob, too. What a great travel buddy, a few things about Rob as a travel buddy: he has amazing sense of direction (I know this, and still I try to disagree about where things are or how to get somewhere... he's right, but I hold onto the hope that one of these days I'll be the one who's right), he loves the hunt for cheap and good food - that post coming later, he will rub my feet after hours of walking, and he will wait around for me while I'm browsing (never buying) through a store he has no interest in.


Scott Christopherson said...

I know that hat.

Kendra said...

Rob sounds a lot like Andy. Yay for great husbands! And yummy, cheap food!

Natalie Braithwaite said...

Steph you are so funny! I'm so happy to be your friend and have loved reading and seeing your way way way fun road trip.