Smithsdownunder
Our journeys around Australia

We left Rathtrevor Provincial Park and headed for the ferry for our trip back to the mainland. The whales and orcas were still doing their stuff elsewhere but the weather was good.

The motorhome had to be returned the following morning so we booked into a commercial camp site in Mission which wasn’t too far from Abbotsford where the rental company was based. After booking in the motorhome we caught a Greyhound bus to take us back to Vancouver and our hotel where we were staying for 3 nights.

Our hotel is the buff coloured building in the centre of the picture.

Pinnacle hotel

We were on the 14th floor so had a good view across Vancouver Harbour to Grouse Mountain in the distance and Stanley Island on the left.

View from hotel room

We visited the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park and its suspension bridge and cliff walk. The suspension bridge spans 137mtrs across the Capilano River 70mtrs below.

Capilano suspension bridge

As you can imagine it moves around a bit, especially with quite a few people on it. Ali plucked up courage and gingerly made her way across.

Ali suspension bridge

It was worth the effort because across the other side was a tree-top walk (and 7 more suspension bridges!).

Tree top walk

There was also a Cliff Walk in the park which runs along the cliff face above the Capilano River.

Capilano cliff walkAli is looking much more confident here.

After leaving the park we caught a bus to Grouse Mountain and took the gondola halfway up the mountain and then the open chair lift to take us to the top. A few minutes after getting on the chair lift it rained!

At the top of the mountain there is a wind turbine with an observation pod at the top:

Grouse mountain wind turbine

With all the rain and cloud, the view from the top of the turbine wasn’t very special:

View from wind turbine observation pod

By the time we got back down from the mountain we were a bit soggy. The rain didn’t seem to bother the resident grizzly bear who was enjoying a bath.

Grouse mountain grizzly bear

The next day we jumped on a hop-on hop-off bus to see a bit more of Stanley Park and the city.

The rose garden in Stanley Park.

Stanley Park rose garden

The Guinness family purchased 4700 acres of land on the North Shore and in 1937 built the Lions Gate Bridge for better access to the city.

The Lions Gate bridge

The ‘Girl in a wetsuit’ is Vancouver’s equivalent of Copenhagen’s ‘Little Mermaid’.

Girl in a wetsuit

We jumped off the bus at Yaletown and caught a small ferry across False Creek to Granville Island and had lunch in the large market. After lunch Ali found a patchwork shop so I had a wander around and took a couple of photos.

Granville Bridge with one of the False Creek ferries underneath.

Granville bridge and ferry

These concrete silos were painted by two Brazilian street artists.

Granville island silos

After loading up all the fabric from the patchwork shop we walked across the Granville Bridge and re-joined the bus to take us to Gastown and the steam clock and arrived just in time to hear the 3 o’clock whistles.

The steam clock in Gastown

We finished the day with a meal on the quay not far from the hotel overlooked by a large orca. On the next visit perhaps we will get to see the real thing.

Orca