Archive for the ‘Parks & Recreation’ Category

The very best Outdoor Swimming Pools in Vancouver

Monday, May 9th, 2016

When the BC bank Holiday known as Victoria Day passes in May we know for sure that this is where Summer begins in earnest and that marks the beginning of the activities for the late Spring and Summer season. The Patios at many restaurants and bars are open for the patrons, Farmers Markets pop up all over the various and varied districts of Vancouver, the best part for us is the opening of the many outdoor swimming pools and the freedom to swim on the many beaches of Vancouver.

Kits beach with Vancouver in the distance

The best Beaches and Swimming Pools.
One thing you will notice with Vancouver is that it is quite literally surrounded by Beaches, with a great Sea wall hugging the downtown core all the way around False creek to the South and then ending at the Kitsilano district which is where we will begin our tour.

Kitsilano Beach.
Kits Beach as it is more commonly known with the locals is our version of ‘Venice Beach’ in California, it is an appropriate title considering Vancouver is literally known as the Hollywood north of Canada and this Beach certainly fits the bill. It has glorious views of the downtown core, Stanley Park and the North shore cities and mountains, and has no shortage of people getting some serious tans playing Frisbee and beach Volleyball, but don’t be perturbed by the beach loving sun soaked buff bodies – everyone is welcome here and so you should as it is a stunning place to visit.
There is more – Kits Beach is home to Vancouvers largest outdoor heated swimming pool.

Kits Outdoor Swimming Pool
This is the daddy of all outdoor pools in Vancouver at a length of Length 137m which means it is almost three times the size of an Olympic pool. It also features 3 Slides, a Café and is accessible for all as it is wheelchair accessible has aquatic wheelchairs and is fitted with an aquatic pool lift.
The pool is filled with salt water and is heated, this year Windbreakers will be installed as this will benefit the pool in many ways, it will prevent heat loss from the heated pool and it will also reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 220 metric tonnes which equates to removing 46 cars from city streets. This was proven the case last year when the city installed windbreakers at other pools, it is anticipated the drop in these emissions will be much more.

Sunset beach & the False Creek ferry station to Granville Island

Sunset Beach, English Bay & Second Beach
English Bay is undoubtedly the most popular & well known Beach in Vancouver due to its prime location in the downtown Vancouver area and is sat at the entrance to the popular Stanley Park.
A great way to get to English Bay will be to walk south from the Sunset Inn hotel and in a little over 5 minutes you will reach our namesake beach Sunset Beach. Here you get gorgeous views of the Burrard Bridge and False Creek – start waking west along the Seawall and you will be greeted by the famous Inukshuk stone monument which is located at English Bay. Keep following the Sea Wall and after 10 to 15 minutes you will reach Second Beach – it is called this as English Bay is the ‘first beach’ but generally not known as such.

Second Beach Pool
Second Beach Pool is a heated, outdoor pool located near the beach & sea wall, trails, and forest of Stanley Park.
The summer pool is open May to September. It features a a sloped entry and gradual depths for families, and separated lanes for lap swimmers. The pools Length is 80m with a 50m section for some serious swimming lengths -like the Kits pool it is wheelchair accessible.

Making a short visit to Vancouver? We will show you what to see!

Thursday, April 21st, 2016

The Cruise-ship season is soon to be in full swing in Vancouver which means the city has a large influx of tourists coming and going from Canada Place. If you happen to be travelling to the city from a cruise lets us help you see the best of Vancouver in a day or so as you maybe on a whistle stop tour between sailings.

DAVIE STREET & VILLAGE
Davie Village has a wealth of great restaurants, bars and cafes to choose from and is by far one of the most colourful districts in all of Vancouver – it is also officially designated as the Gay District of Vancouver hence the stunning array of colour and the famous Rainbow Crosswalk at the intersection of Bute and Davie (which is currently being transformed into a plaza named after a Davie Village icon Jim Deva.

STANLEY PARK & THE BIKING THE SEAWALL
Stanley Park is a gorgeous wooded forest and Park that completely dominates the centre of Vancouver. At 400 Hectares it is bigger than New Yorks Central park and is home to a vast array of incredible Gardens, Sporting facilities an outdoor pool, playparks for children and the natural Fauna and Flora that make the park come alive.
In the Summer time it is a great place to take your family to explore the dense forest and you can also check out the many beaches that can be found following the Seawall that encircles the outside perimeter.
Stanley Park is also home to the world famous Vancouver Aquarium which is home to the rehabilitation of the beloved Beluga Whales

The Seawall itself is a great way to explore the majority of the city and along the way you will be able to come across some notable features of the city such as Granville Island, Science World, the Totem Poles of Stanley Park, the Inukshuk and the Vancouvers most popular beaches such as English Bay. The best way to explore the full 22km wall is by bike rentals.
English Bay Bike Rentals: http://www.englishbaybikerentals.com/

BIG BUS CITY TOURS
This is an excellent way to sight-see around the city and to take in all the major attractions. Big Bus have an excellent reputation and the Big Bus staff are incredibly knowledgeable and fun! They offer 1 day and 2 day passes where you can Hop on and Hop off at your leisure. Tickets can be purchased directly at the Hotel, ask the staff about discounts!
Website: http://bigbus.ca/home/

GRANVILLE ISLAND
A cultural hub that lies in the heart of False Creek. Granville Island is home to Vancouver’s largest Public Market which has a huge array of colourful stalls, unique homemade products and the very finest in gastronomic delights. All fresh from the ocean, the oven or the field. Try closing your eyes right now and imagine the rich aromas permeating from the lavish displays. Shimmering seafood, warm baked goods, plump fruit.
There is also plenty of dining out options, entertainment in the form of Theatre, comedy and Arts – it is also a huge hub for busking to delight the masses as they meander around the Island.
Website: http://granvilleisland.com/

CAPILANO SUSPENSION BRIDGE
Built in 1889, Capilano Suspension Bridge stretches 450 feet (137m) across and 230 feet (70m) above Capilano River and has created a whole complex within the rain forest canopy that is found located above the river half way up the mountainside towards Grouse Mountain. In the last few years the area has expanded so now we have a daring cliffwalk path that leads you out over the canyon close to the steep Granite cliffs that create the towering gorge that has been cut and eroded by the river over thousands of years. There are also treetop viewing points dotted all over the park.
Website: http://www.capbridge.com/

BIG BUS HOP ON & HOP OFF CITY TOURS WITH WESTCOAST SIGHTEEING TOURS

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016

BIG BUS HOP ON HOP OFF TOUR VIDEO

April 15th is the beginning of the Spring schedule for the Big Bus hop on hop off city tour. April is typically when all the major tours will now be up and running, we will like to introduce to you the Big Bus and Westcoast sightseeing tours that will take you around Vancouver.

BIG BUS HOP ON HOP OFF VANCOUVER CITY TOUR & WESTCOAST SIGHTSEEING TOURS.
The Big Bus Hop-On, Hop-Off Sightseeing route offers over 20 stops, getting you within walking distance of many of the top attractions in the city. Enjoy a birds-eye view of Vancouver at your own pace, complete with one-of-a-kind commentary. Ask about value-priced attraction add-ons, and 24 & 48 Hour Passes.
Enjoy all the sites of Vancouver with the flexibility of hopping off where you like. Wake up late? No problem, the ticket is valid for 24 hours – Use it the next day with no extra charge – up to 24 hours of the first use.

Big Bus + Local Attraction Tickets
There are also bundle packages that you can purchase with the Hop on Hop off tour – so make it a combo deal and get a second 24 hours of exploring for free! These packages include entrance to the following Flyover Canada, the Vancouver Aquarium, Capilano Suspension Bridge, Grouse Mountain, Dr. Sun Yet Sen Chinese Garden, the Vancouver Lookout and the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Please speak to the front desk about special offers and you can purchase your ticket with us at the hotel, the bus stop is literally a 30 second walk away from us on Thurlow St and the this stop opens up again on April 15th. Until then the stop is at the Century Plaza hotel on Burrard Street which is under a 10 minute walk away

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

WESTCOAST SIGHTSEEING TOURS – This is the same company that runs the Big Bus city tours. If you have the time and really want to get out and about and explore then Westcoast Sightseeing have tours that will pick you up at the hotel, they will also drop you back off at the hotel once the day tour has been completed. The Day tours they offer are as follows:

Whistler + Shannon Falls
Escape the city and wind along fjords and inlets, ascend into the coastal mountains, and stroll through the alpine Village of Whistler during this epic day of exploration.

Victoria + Butchart Gardens
With the journey to Victoria equally as fascinating as the city itself, this tour offers scenic ocean travel, a captivating series of gardens, and an introduction to the enchanting waterfront city of Victoria.

Grouse Mountain + Capilano Suspension Bridge Park
Get outside, breathe in the fresh Pacific air, and immerse yourself in the natural wonders surrounding Vancouver, with a visit to Capilano Suspension Bridge Park and Grouse Mountain.

Craft Breweries of Vancouver
An experience you can taste! With over 20 craft breweries in the area, this is the perfect place to learn about the craft beer industry and its history in the Vancouver area.

Vancouver City + The Lookout
Explore, learn, and be amazed by Vancouver’s soaring skyscrapers, architectural masterpieces, urban beaches, and coastal rainforests.

Vancouver City + Capilano Suspension Bridge Park
Explore, learn, and be amazed by Vancouver’s soaring skyscrapers, architectural masterpieces, urban beaches, and coastal rainforests.

For further details please click here: https://westcoastsightseeing.com/

Discover the local wildlife of Vancouver

Wednesday, February 17th, 2016

If you have been following our posts lately on Facebook and Twitter you will have noticed that the various local wildlife of BC have been causing a stir as of late. First off we had a guy in his car have an encounter with just not one Cougar but three in the Comox valley on Vancouver island. Meanwhile just off Ogden Point in Victoria a Sea-lion was spotted wrestling with an Octopus which is actually a common part of the Sea-lions diet, but what made this extra special was that it had actually been filmed which has not been captured too many times before. Then to end it all – we had some amazing footage of a Momma Bear with her three cubs frolicking on a roadside in British Columbia.

You can check out the footage of all these amazing moments here.
A trio of Cougars: http://www.vancitybuzz.com/2016/02/vancouver-island-cougars-video/
A Sea-lion and Octopus wrestle: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/seal-wrestles-octopus-in-rarely-captured-scene-in-b-c-waters-1.2952020
Momma Bear and her Cubs: https://www.facebook.com/getbearsmartsociety/videos/10151117963329632/

THE MOST EASILY SPOTTED URBAN ANIMALS OF VANCOUVER
It seems hard to believe that there is so much wildlife within Vancouver and the surrounding areas that it surprises many of our guests who come to stay with us at the Sunset. The most easily spotted creatures are undoubtedly the city Squirrels, Crows, Birds of Prey and then the Skunks! We will break down the most popular animals that can be spotted around the city.

Squirrels
The most common squirrel in urban B.C., the Eastern Grey Squirrel, is actually an import from eastern Canada which was released into Stanley Park in 1909.
They were then introduced to Vancouver Island in 1966. Eastern Grey Squirrels are much larger than native squirrels, are either grey or black in colour, and flourish in urban environments.

Skunks
Notoriously famous for their distinctive bushy tail, black colour with white stripes and of course their smell if perturbed Skunks are everywhere throughout Vancouver- it does surprise many of our visitors as it is not an animal you would expect to reside in the city, but reside here they do and are guaranteed to be spotted everywhere especially after dark.

Raccoons
As well as the Skunks – you could easily say that these are their cousins or nemesis of the skunks, you will likely see just as many of these creatures as you would of them. Famous for their bandit like stripe across their eyes these cuties are one of the most intelligent urban species just getting by day to day just like us. Do not be surprised to see them anywhere in the city, sometimes you will even catch them down by the sea fishing or just enjoying a bathe!

Crows, Bald Eagles & the Great Blue Heron
Crows are everywhere in the city and love them or loathe them they really are a fabric of the Vancouver society. They get a special mention as the crows are easily spotted when they are travelling too and from their roost in the Burnaby area around Sunrise and Sunset, we mention this as it is one of the largest and most spectacular murder of Crows around and if you can see it you will certainly not forget it, this so called train of Crows can add up to a few thousand so keep your eyes out for this daily occurrence. Click here for footage over Commercial Drive: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_QuEjaG4Ghs

Bald Eagles are also everywhere and the best time to catch them is in the Spring and early Summer during Fledgling season although they can be spotted all year round. Vancouver is a prime area for spotting all kinds of Birds of Prey as we are lucky enough to be located in one of the busy migratory paths for these mighty and majestic birds.
In the 1960s only two pairs of bald eagles were nesting in the City of Vancouver – one pair in Stanley Park and one near UBC.
These large aerial predators nest in the forests of Stanley Park and throughout the greater Vancouver area and beyond, also they can be found in large trees on the waterfront. From their nests they overlook soccer and baseball games, arts venues, parking lots, picnics, houses and streets.

Stanley Park is home to one of the largest urban Great Blue Heron colonies in North America. They have been nesting at their current location behind the Tennis Courts at 2099 Beach Avenue since 2001 and have been documented nesting in various other locations in Stanley Park as far back as 1921. Today, sightings of these majestic birds in and around the park are common place.

You will certainly see them at the Waters edge picking for fish and you can actually get very very close to them if you are quiet and still, it is quite the sight to watch them as they effortlessly pick out the fish. We encourage every one to check out the Herons at the Tennis courts as it is a breathtaking site to witness. The best time of year to see them nesting is during Spring and early Summer!

For further information on the local wildlife check out the Stanley Park Ecological Society website: stanleyparkecology.castanleyparkecology.ca

Winter Solstice and Christmas in Vancouver

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015

December 21st is the shortest day of the year which marks the Winter Solstice, this means it is the peak of the long dark nights in the northern hemisphere and in a few weeks time the longer days will be noticeable and celebrated.

It is also Christmas day on Friday and it is going to be a special one as we have the rare event of a Full Moon dazzling the night skies for the first time since 1977, the next Christmas full moon will be way into the future in the year 2034!

There are still many events to look forward too during the Christmas week – here are some highlights we feel you and the families will all enjoy!

Flyover Canada at CANADA PLACE
Fly over Canada has transformed itself into a Christmas Winter wonderland and continues to wow the masses with their 20 minute experience including a visit to the North Pole where we visit Santa himself. It is just as well too as you will be helping Santa with a problem as his Elves are missing, so while you are up there saying hello and enjoying the scenery you will be helping him find his missing elves!

Hours of Operation
Daily 10AM until 9PM
December 24 10AM until 6PM
December 25 Closed
December 26 10AM until 9PM

https://www.flyovercanada.com/tickets/christmas/

Enchanted Nights at the Bloedel Conservatory
Enchanted Nights at the Bloedel Conservatory starts at 4:30 every day (save Christmas Day) until January 3rd. Here you will visit an enchanted Forest wonderland that is home to magical Sprites and Fairies. You will be walking through gorgeous Art installations of Jelly Fish and Dragons – this will be spectacular and sure to fire up anyones imagination!

http://vancouver.ca/parks-recreation-culture/bloedel-conservatory.aspx

Vancouver Christmas Market – open until Christmas Eve
The Vancouver Christmas Market has become known as one of British Columbia’s most delightful holiday attractions. The much-anticipated event is a magical outdoor experience, featuring more than 50 traditional wooden huts decorated with thousands of twinkling lights, all showcasing an assortment of vendors selling authentic food, handcrafted decorations, sweets and gifts.

http://vancouverchristmasmarket.com/

We hope you all have a great holiday season and a prosperous new year!

Snowbus is now running excursions from Vancouver to Whistler

Thursday, December 10th, 2015

Courtesy of Westcoast sightseeing and Big bus tours we welcome the return of the Snowbus for the Whistler winter season of 2015/2016. This runs until March 28th 2016

You can book tours with us at the Front desk so you can make the most of your stay by visiting the winter wonderland that is Whistler. Snowbus offers round trips and one way excursions with packages available to add on if you wish to ski the fantastic hills of Whistler Blackcomb.

So far the season has not disappointed. In Vancouver we are experiencing a succession of relentless rainstorms and mild temperatures, however, the same cannot be said for Whistler as this has been generally a pure snow storm event, as we write this blog there is around 153cm of Snow at the base and summit with more predicted to come with a drop in temperatures which is fantastic news.

Our closest stop to the Sunset inn and suites is at the Comfort Inn hotel on 654 Nelson Street – it is the same corner as Doolins Irish bar on the corner of Granville St.
Pick up times: Comfort Inn Downtown, Vancouver 6:30am & 1:45pm & 5:45pm (Fri Only)

Website: https://snowbus.com/

Christmas season at the Vancouver Aquarium

Thursday, November 26th, 2015

The Vancouver Aquarium will be open all through the festive season and Santa will be taking a dip among the marine life as he travels the globe throughout December. Here are the events at the aquarium between now and January 3rd.

SCUBA CLAUS!
Did you know that Santa is quite an excellent swimmer? If you didn’t you do now and you can witness this firsthand at the aquarium. You will get an excellent chance to wave hello to Santa as he makes his annual visit to Vancouver – you can watch him take his daily dive among the gorgeous Beluga Whales and other aquatic friends.

CHRISTMAS TREE POWERED BY ELECTRIC EELS.
How cool is this – the aquarium came up with this genius idea that puts the Electric Eels to work albeit in a festive mood – these are remarkable animals and of course it is all in the name, these Eels have the ability to produce electricity, the power they can create can be up to 600 volts of electricity! Ouch.
Fear not – these Eels want you to enjoy the season just as much as they do and they will harness their power to light up the Christmas tree – making this a must see unique holiday display.

THE POLAR EXPRESS 4-D EXPERIENCE.
If you have never experienced 4-D now is your moment at the Aquarium. This has been a staple over the last 10 years and has wowed the audiences that visit the aquarium. If you are a thrill seeker then this is a must for you, so hop on and enjoy this incredible ride – you will feel the rumble of the train, be among magical falling snow with the scent of hot chocolate making this feel very festive indeed!
Experience the Youtube trailer here:dmO-4wXgB9Y

CANADA’S ARCTIC GALLERY.
Time to bundle up and visit the the far north of Canada albeit under water in the frigid waters of the Arctic. The tour will highlight what the exhibits and inhabitants of this world, you may have a chance encounter with the feeding animals, you can test your cold tolerance and experience the freezing temperatures of these chilly waters. Tours are daily.

BECOME AN ANIMAL TRAINER!
If you are a true animal lover then this is the job for you! Put on those rubber boots, grab yourself a bucket filled with yummy fish and you are ready for a fantastic animal encounter. You will be up close and personal with beluga whales, dolphins, Sea lions and Sea otters.

For further information on the Vancouver Aquarium click here: http://www.vanaqua.org/

Big Bus Hop on Hop off Winter Hours & Vantage Whistler Winter tours

Wednesday, October 28th, 2015

The BIG BUS Hop on, Hop off sightseeing tours have officially switched to their Winter hours and routes as of mid October 2015.

The frequency of these tours will be every 60 minutes every day with the first buses leaving at 9.15am and the final routes at 3.15pm. The closest stop to the Sunset Inn and Suites will be on Burrard Street outside the Century Plaza hotel pick up stop #16. The first Bus arrives at this stop at 10.16am.

Rain or shine Big Bus have a great reputation for an easy no fuss tour that enables you to see the very best of Vancouver and you will be fed plenty of information about Vancouver. Tickets can be purchased directly at the Hotel with payment by credit Card only.

About Big Bus Hop on Hop off
The Hop-On, Hop-Off Sightseeing Pass is a fun and flexible way to see the best of Vancouver! Check out their Live Bus Map to find a stop near you. http://westcoastsightseeing.com/live-bus-map/ Our buses are equipped with GPS so you know exactly where we are in the city!

Cruise and choose from over 20 stops at world-class attractions. Enjoy a birds-eye view of Vancouver at your own pace, complete with one-of-a-kind commentary.

Included with your Hop-On, Hop-Off Sightseeing Pass:
Mix it up! Choose from over 20 stops to create your adventure
Free one-way ferry ride to the public market, galleries and colourful culture of Granville Island
As many as 7 stops in Stanley Park, voted the best urban park in the world
World-class commentary in English, French, Spanish, German, Japanese, Korean, and Mandarin
Vancouver’s only company with convertible, clear-top bus covers for stunning views rain or shine

For further information on their city tours click here: https://westcoastsightseeing.com/hop-on-hop-off/

VANTAGE WHISTLER TOURS
With the Winter season soon knocking on our doors it is time to look north and towards Whistler – Canada’s premier Ski resort – one of the best ways to enjoy Whistler and this Winter wonderland is by using Vantage Whistler tours!

Vantage Whistler offers daily sightseeing tours from Vancouver to Whistler. We provide hotel service, pick up and drop off at your downtown location. Experience 6 stops on our tour, which include Prospect Point in Stanley Park, Cypress Mountain, Porteau Cove, Shannon Falls, Brandywine Falls, and Whistler Village. Spend over 4 hours of free time exploring Whistler which is full of great attractions. The tours are commentated and include complimentary snacks and drinks. And if it happens to rain on the day of your tour, we also provide you with an umbrella. The duration of the round trip tour is approximately 11 hours, starting at 8:00am in Vancouver and returning by 7:00pm. We provide all tours using Mercedes-Benz Sprinters. We also keep the tour groups to a maximum of 11 guests per bus, offering a more private tour experience.

Website: http://www.vantagewhistler.com/

Queen Elizabeth Park is 75 years old!

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015


Come celebrate Queen Elizabeth Park’s 75th year. Take in a free concert, enjoy our licensed area, free pitch and putt, free admission at the Bloedel Conservatory, $5.00 zipline rides, food trucks, family fun, and much more!

Queen Elizabeth Park
The park itself is located right in the middle of Vancouver and is one of the highest points of the city – the location is affectionately known as ‘Little Mountain’.
Some of the gardens are found to be a in a sunken hollow – this is actually the remnant scarring as the land was once used as a quarry, the rocks that were taken were used to lay down the new road systems for the growing city of Vancouver at the time.

The idea was to transform the ugly scarring of the Quarry into sunken gardens on top of the hill, the growth of plants that had become quite overgrown and not a very good sight to the eye was also transformed to create a larger park for the public to enjoy. The site had been turned over to the Vancouver Park Board for park and recreation purposes, and was dedicated as such by King George VI and his consort, Queen Elizabeth (the mother of Queen Elizabeth II) on their much lauded visit to Vancouver in 1939, as King and Queen of Canada.

Happy 75th Birthday QE
As this is a very big birthday there will be some great events and activities happening in celebration.

Live Music Stage schedule
Beginning at 12:00 noon to 12:30pm with Opening Speeches

12:30pm to 1:30pm Pop Junkies
1:45pm to 2:45pm Hot Panda
3:00pm to 4:15pm Patrick Nazemi
4:30pm to 5:30pm The Zolas
5:45pm to 7:00pm Delhi 2 Dublin

At 2:00pm, 3:30pm, and 5:00pm there will be an aerial show by CircusWest at the fountain plaza.

All day activities from 12:00 noon to 7:00pm with the Stanley Park Brewing licensed area.
$5.00 zipline rides
Free pitch & putt
Free admission at the Bloedel Conservatory
Face painting at the fountain plaza
Photo booth at the fountain plaza
Pickleball at the tennis courts
Free drop-in at the QE lawn bowling club

City of Vancouver QEP: http://vancouver.ca/parks-recreation-culture/queen-elizabeth-park.aspx

Urban Wildlife in Vancouver

Saturday, August 15th, 2015

Vancouver is highly rated as one of the most stunning cities in the world to visit and it is very hard not to see why. The city is situated in a temperate rainforest that encompasses much of the Pacific Northwest and is greeted by vigorous weather systems that barrel in from the massive Pacific Ocean for 9 months of the year. Due to this and the large mountains that greet the weather Vancouver and Vancouver Island is an area that has incredible dense forests and amazing fauna that is home to some incredible wildlife.

Nature in the city – meet your fellow neighbours!
It is not unusual for a guest to come in from sightseeing and being quite surprised and astonished at some of the animals that they have just spotted in the city – to many of us it is just a normal every day occurrence, however, we really do appreciate and love the diversity of the local flora and fauna that makes up the fabric of the city. So let us introduce to you the local wildlife of Vancouver.

Skunks, Raccoons and Squirrels
These animals are everywhere and are easily spotted all year round but more especially in the Summer months and after nightfall – however, if these creatures are hungry enough you will catch them in the daytime too. It is likely you will see a skunk more regularly than a Raccoon and when you do you will probably see a few as they tend to wander around with their young.
We do not advise that you feed these animals, they are cute but there is always the possibility that they may bite and Skunks are famous for spraying an oily substance that smells like an awful strong stench of Sulphur and marijuana – not a great smell. They are harmless overall though, so if you wish to have a peak of them you can do so but give them their space as they go on their merry way.

There are so many Squirrels here it seems unreal, you will always catch them scurrying around the streets and up the trees – they are pretty tame overall and have really worked out how to live in harmony in the city.

Bald Eagles, Crows and Herons
These birds are by far the most noticeable of all the animals in the city all year round – the Bald Eagles are certainly more noticeable in the Spring and Summer months due to the Fledgling season where they have many options to hunt for food and this can easily be seen when you are out and about in the city. One of the signs that there is a bald eagle not too far above you is when you hear the Seagulls and Crows crying out a warning cry to each other as they are fearlessly protecting their young from being prey, if you hear this commotion look up – it is almost guaranteed that a large bald eagle or other type of Bird of Prey is about to swoop down and feed itself and its own chicks.

Crows are everywhere in Vancouver and they are one of the most respected and revered creatures that many of us have a love hate relationship with. There is a fantastic phenomenon that happens daily in Vancouver which involves thousands of Crows heading to and from their roosting spot in Burnaby. The murder of crows is quite the sight to see and happens at Sunrise and Sunset every day – if you have a keen eye you will spot the spectacular ‘Crow train’.

Check out this Video of the Crows going home: https://youtu.be/IhVdcjyKdSU

The other gorgeously majestic Bird to spot in Vancouver is the Great Blue Heron. The Herons you can find wading in the shallow waters at pretty much any Beach in and around Vancouver and soaring smoothly in the skies above you. For a better sighting of these birds you need to head to Stanley Park near the Tennis courts, here, the Herons have been nesting at this site for quite a few years and there are roughly around 80 nests at top of the trees and the months of April to June are the prime time to catch them rearing their chicks.

For further Animal watching head to the Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park where you can see all the above creatures but lots of Ducks, Canada Geese, Turtles and plenty of people if you like to people watch!

For further information on Vancouver wildlife check these sites out.
Stanley Park Ecological Society http://stanleyparkecology.ca/

Vancouver Aquarium http://www.vanaqua.org/