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From starlit cinema sessions to sustainable seafood, a trip to Vancouver will put a smile on your face, says BA’s man on the ground, Michael Makowy. With one of the airline’s newest fleet members, the Airbus A380, now flying to the city, there’s no better time to go
Want to hang out with the locals? Head to Stanley Park. A Canadian National Historic Site, it’s an oasis in the middle of Vancouver’s urban landscape. If you’re visiting during July and August, don’t miss Summer Cinema, free outdoor movie nights that take place every Tuesday. Grab some takeout from a local restaurant, bring a blanket, and watch a movie under the stars.
Steveston is a waterfront community in the southwestern part of Richmond BC. It’s perfect for quirky souvenirs: find pieces by local artists at A Monkey Tree, or head to Wool & Wicker – a yarn and basket store – to pick up supplies for knitting, crochet and weaving projects. Wine lovers will enjoy a mooch around Steveston Winemakers, while jewellery from local designer Juvelistro makes a nice memento of your trip. Before you leave the area, buy fresh fish straight off the boats or grab lunch at a restaurant. The Blue Canoe Waterfront Restaurant (pictured) offers sustainable seafood and Canadian classics, including west coast salmon chowder and bacon poutine (chips with cheese curds and gravy).
Vancouver has a big Indo-Canadian community, so there are many great places to eat if you’re a curry fan. Crave India on Granville Street is a family-run, hole-in-the-wall restaurant, serving brightly coloured dishes (pictured) at reasonable prices. I recommend the chicken tikka masala with garlic naan, and the paneer croquettes.
While tourists go to the Capilano Suspension Bridge, the locals head for Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge (pictured). It’s free to visit and provides an excellent chance to get back to nature. Download a walking trail from the website. Lighthouse Park in west Vancouver is also worth a visit. There’s a nice walk to the ocean and beautiful views of the lighthouse and Point Grey.
Wondering how to spend your last evening in Vancouver? Take the gondola to the top of Grouse Mountain in the late afternoon and watch the sunset as you look over the city (pictured). Stay for dinner at The Observatory, which offers a five-course tasting menu with wine pairings for CAD$125 (£65), and enjoy the twinkle of the city lights.