Hot Spot Vancouver, British Columbia

November 08, 2009|By Tribune Newspapers

It's less than 100 days until the Winter Olympics take place in Vancouver. The games begin Feb. 12 with opening ceremonies at BC Place Stadium. Many of the sporting events will take place at Whistler ski resort, ranked as the top resort in North America for 13 years in a row by readers of Skiing magazine. The last round of Olympic tickets, about 100,000, to events including curling, hockey and the ceremonies go on sale this weekend.

1

Be on the lookout. : Tourism officials suggest making your first stop at the Vancouver Lookout, a 430-foot outpost where visitors can ride a glass elevator to the top for a 360-degree view of the city, mountains and even Vancouver Island.

2

Feel the island spirit. : Take a ferry to one of several islands off the coast of Vancouver. Bowen is the closest of the bunch, a 20-minute ride from West Vancouver's Horseshoe Bay. Galleries, nautical-style pubs and more line the harbor-side boardwalk. Farther on, Salt Spring Island, three hours away, is known for its artists' colony and organic farms.

3

Drink in Commercial Drive. : Formerly known as "Little Italy," this neighborhood on the city's eastern side is the place for a hip, urban, culturally diverse experience. Check out the variety of ethnic dining or have a cup of java at one of the many coffee bars.

4

Hike the Grouse Grind. : Just outside of Vancouver is Grouse Mountain, where visitors can take the Skyride to the top for awesome views or hike a very steep 1.8-mile trail up the face of the mountain.

5

Take a train tour. : Several trains offer sightseeing of British Columbia's lush landscapes, including the Whistler Mountaineer, which features a train with full-length dome windows and panoramic views.

Info: tourismvancouver.com, vancouver2010.com

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