We are starting our video series in Vancouver, Canada, which is our home base. Vancouver is a spectacularly beautiful City on Canada's west coast bordered by the Pacific Ocean. While we may be biased, others seem to agree as Vancouver is consistently ranked as one of the best cities in the world in which to live.
When flying into Vancouver, you will land at Vancouver International Airport, which is located in the municipality of Richmond. Vancouver is located north of Richmond and is a 30 minute taxi ride, or 37 minute train ride, from the airport.
The geographic area now known as "Vancouver" was originally settled by indigenous groups 8,000 to 10,000 years ago and is located on the unceded territory of the Squamish, Musqueam, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples. One of the first Europeans to explore the area was British naval Captain George Vancouver, after whom the city was named. Vancouver has grown to become the third largest city in Canada with a population of about 2.6 million in the metro area. It is also the most expensive city to live in Canada.
Click on the 360/VR video above to take an immersive tour of some of the sights Vancouver has to offer. Below is some additional information about the tour stops in the video.
The various stops on the tour are highlighted on the map below with each of the Points Pals logos representing a stop.
The start of our virtual tour is Gastown and its famous steam clock. Gastown is where the city of Vancouver got its start as it grew around a tavern owned by "Gassy Jack". The steam clock was built in 1977. Gastown has excellent restaurants and gift shops.
As you walk toward Canada Place, you will pass Waterfront Station, the central transit hub in Vancouver. From here, you can catch the Sea-Bus to North Vancouver, the West Coast Express to the eastern suburbs or Skytrain to various locations in the metro area. Fun Fact: Waterfront Station is also the home to the first ever Starbucks location outside of the United States.
Our next stop is Canada Place, situated on Burrard Inlet. It is home to the Vancouver Convention Centre, the Pan Pacific Hotel, Vancouver's World Trade Centre, the virtual flight ride "Fly Over Canada" and also the Vancouver Cruise Ship Terminal.
Next, we stop at Vancouver Harbour Flight Centre and Vancouver Harbour Water Aerodrome (Vancouver Coal Harbour Seaplane Base). Here you can take in a view of the North Shore mountains which are home to three of the local ski hills close to the downtown area. You can also observe the 2010 Olympic Cauldron and Stanley Park further to the west. This is a great spot to sit and watch the boats in the harbour as well as the seaplanes landing and departing.
Our next stop is further into the heart of Vancouver as we arrive at Robson Square. Robson Square connects to the Vancouver Law Courts, home to the British Columbia Provincial Court, Supreme Court and Court of Appeal. This is also where the Vancouver Art Gallery is located in a historic building which used to house the Law Courts. As well, this is an ideal location to satisfy that shopping habit, being located next to Robson Street and the Pacific Centre Mall.
From here, we head to the world famous Stanley Park, a 405 hectare public park surrounded by Burrard Inlet and the waters of English Bay. Our camera was close to a popular site with a collection of nine totem poles.
Our final stop is at English Bay Beach, also called First Beach, located along Beach Avenue, between Gilford Street and Bidwell Street. It is an urban beach in Vancouver's downtown area. The Stanley Park Seawall runs along the beach and is a very popular running and biking route that continues around the entirety of Stanley Park. English Bay Beach is a great locale to catch a spectacular sunset.
If you were to take this tour in person, it would take you approximately 3 hours to complete it on foot, with a total distance of approximately 14 kilometres (8 miles).
If you plan to visit Vancouver, be sure to check our Travel Tips to see if there are any current hotel specials in Vancouver.