My lovely parents and I took a trip over to Vancouver for a little vacation time from April 19th to the 24th. It was my first time ever to explore the beautiful country of Canada, so I was completely stoked out of my mind during the entire trip! Mom would constantly keet telling me how gorgeously beautiful the city of Vancouver was and that I would immediately fall in love with it. I could not wait to sight-see and explore the living shit out of this city, and of course, see the family whom I haven’t seen in a long time! Majority of the pictures are taken with my iPhone.
When we arrived at the San Francisco Airport (SFO), Steve Aoki literally passed by me right when I stepped out of the car! Talk about perfect timing and a great way to start the morning!
It was freezing cold out once we arrived in Vancouver early in the morning. Now rather than taking a cab, my parents and I thought it would be a great idea to take the public train down to the main city, where our hotel was located.
We checked in at the Vancouver Marriott Pinnacle Downtown Hotel. I was very impressed. They carried a very friendly staff, spacious bedrooms, and these amazing pillow-soft beds.
While I was resting up in the hotel room, my parents decided to step out for a quick bite to eat. While they were on their way back, they picked up a hot dog for me at the famous Vancouver street vendor, Japadog! My “Terimayo” hot dog was simply made out of Teriyaki sauce, mayo, and seaweed. Definitely a perfect combination!
We then met up with my Auntie Precy, who just happens to have a little condo in down town Vancouver, and luckily, she lives close by to our hotel! We all headed out for our first dinner in the city at an adorably small Japanese restaurant called, Ichiban-Ya. We had the sweetest waiter!
After dinner, my Auntie Precy invited us back to her place to hang out. We went to a local bakery/grocery to buy a little Tiramisu Cheesecake, grabbed some coffee at Blenz (Canada’s famous coffee shop), and continued to walk down to her condo.
She has the cutest condominium ever! The interior was very old-school, and I absolutely loved her small vintage mustard/brown-colored oven! Sorry, no pictures!
We ended the lovely first night by we placing two candles on the little Tiramisu Cheesecake and sang “Happy Birthday” to the two April babies, my dad and Auntie Precy!
The following day, we started our morning by visiting the Olympic Cauldron, which was only walking distance from our hotel. Even though it looked sunny out in the picture, it was still freezing cold outside!
This 25-foot Lego-looking Shamu, known as the “Digital Orca”, caught my attention.
Made by author/artist and Vancouver resident, Douglas Copeland.
The Chevron gas station located… Where?
We took the bus across the bridge to Granville Island (located under the bridge!), which is pretty much like San Francisco’s ultimate tourist spot, Fisherman’s Warf.
Walked around and grabbed lunch at the indoor market, selling the freshest of seafood and local pastries drenched in their famous Canadian maple syrup. Mhmm…
My “Oyster N’ Chips” — Big chunks of fried oysters over a handful of fries. Now that’s what I’m talking about Canada!
Didn’t realize how many back shots my mom took of me!
Headed to Pacific Centre for a little shopping!
A street performer and his hooves.
Yes, it was April 20th that day. We accidentally came across the Manitoba Legislative Building, where the city of Vancouver gathered for one big joint convention. Believe me, it wasn’t my intention to go there! I absolutely hate smoking in general (Yes, us girls in this generation still exist!). My parents had no idea about the history behind 4/20, so we walked around and ended up leaving the scene and smelling like marijuana. Hah, great.
Walked around Gastown, named after “Gassy” Jack Deighton.
Beautiful architecture in this quaint-looking town.
Dropped by Stussy to bring back a Stussy “Canada” shirt for my brother. I completely forgot to ask the employees if they had a “Vancouver” shirt instead, since that’s what my brother wanted. But whatever, my brother seemed satisfied and content with what we got him. Well, he better like it! It sure as hell wasn’t easy getting to the place!
After a long walk around the city, it was break time at Blenz Coffee, where I enjoyed their free wi-fi and a hot White Belgian Chocolate. Twas’ the bomb!
Walked back to the hotel to rest and freshen up to meet with family I haven’t seen since I was little!
Auntie Precy picked us up from our hotel and insisted having lunch at popular greek restaurant called, Stepho’s Souvlaki Greek Tavern. We arrived about thirty minutes early before the restaurant opened, so we decided to wait and walk around. She mentioned how people would actually line up at this restaurant, which was true, because once we arrived before its operating hours, there was already a line formed!
Auntie Precy and I waiting for Stepho’s to open up its doors, and getting a head start on what to order.
For the appetizer, we ordered these cheese balls with pickled beets.
Dad and I about to feast it up!
Dad and I both ordered the Roasted Lamb, which is a specialty at Stepho’s.
Big serving at an affordable price! The lamb melted right off the bone…
We visited the Capilano Suspension Bridge
in North Vancouver. This popular tourist spot had a ton of attractions to check out, so it pretty much consumed four to five hours of our day!
The Capilano Suspension Bridge was originally built in 1889. Stretching 450 feet long and hangs 230 feet above the Capilano River. If you could only imagine how terrifying it was for me to stand in the center of that bridge! I was so terrified that I had to look straight ahead and hold on to my father for dear life! Me dealing with heights is like putting oil and water into a glass, we don’t mix well! Twas’ a thrilling experience indeed!
The only positive side about being in the center of the bridge is that breath-taking view of the Capilano River. Nature at its finest!
The second attraction we went on was the Treetops Adventure
, which consisted of small suspension bridges that were all connected to one Douglas Fir to another. They hang 100 feet above the ground, and gives off an awesome squirrel’s eye view of the forest.
The third and newest attraction to the park was the Cliffwalk, which opened its door to the public on June 3, 2011. The Cliffwalk was clearly my favorite attraction of all, due to its insanely breath-taking views of the forest. Though I admit it wasn’t as terrifying as the Capilano Suspension Bridge, the Cliffwalk still has that exciting “thrill” to it. You’ll be taking the stairs going high up, walking on narrow wooden bridges, and at one point, you’ll will be stepping on a floor made out of glass.
I remember a woman walking along the Cliffwalk telling me, “Don’t rush through it! Enjoy the beauty of every step you take on here. It’s definitely a good way to get your money’s worth.” …And that’s exactly what I did.
After those long hours spent at the Capilano Suspension Bridge, we drove straight to the city of Surrey to meet up with the family.We walked down to the local market to pick up some fresh seafood for the mighty Filipino feast the family prepared for us that night!
We met up with my dad’s long time friend, Imelda. She is truly one of the sweetest people I have ever met! We started off the day by having lunch at a Filipino restaurant called Josephine’s Restaurant & Catering. There was quite a selection to choose from.
We told Imelda how we were looking for souvenier shops, so she took us to Chinatown. Looks pretty much the same when compared to the one in San Francisco.
Diamonds are a girls best friend! — Engagement rings on Sunset Beach. Designed by Dennis Oppenheim.Keeping this place in mind for my future wedding pictorials!
Afterwards we went to Metrotown Mall in Burnaby, which was one of the few biggest malls in Vancouver. Of course, I had to do little shopping for myself!
Imelda took us to another greek restaurant for dinner… Ordered the exact same thing from yesterday, Roasted Lamb! This was delicious as well. Less fatty compared to the one at Stepho’s.
On our last day, we continued our sight-seeing around Vancouver.
Walked around Robson Street for some last minute shopping!
Checked out more of Vancouver’s historic totem poles at Stanley Park.
Last view of this beautiful city!
On our last night, Auntie Precy recommended we have our last dinner at Ebi Sushi, a Japanese All-You-Can-Eat Restaurant.Ended the night with coffee and chit-chatting at Tim Hortons.
The following morning, we packed our belongings for our trip back to San Francisco and said our goodbyes to the beautiful city of Vancouver. Had such a wonderful time during my entire stay. Those five days went insanely fast, which made me so bummed to leave! On my next future trip to Canada, Toronto and Montreal are next on my bucket list!