The northern coastline: How I fell in love with the cold sea

There’s this incredibly cute pastry shop in downtown Vancouver. You can’t find it immediately, but it’s possible to get to it, just follow the rich chinese kids and you’ll find it soon enough.

Vancouver is Canada’s west coast gem and is a glimmering city of shiny skyscrapers with amazing backdrops of the Coast Mountains and Pacific Ocean. A laid back, liberal lifestyle mixed with an outdoorsy attitude makes this a favourite for skiers, boarders, kayakers and mountain bikers. It is often in the top 10 of most livable cities in the world, currently (2011) ranked number 3. In February 2010, Vancouver was the host city of the Winter Olympic Games.

Dine Out Vancouver (Late January/Early February) – 17 days of thousands of locals, thousands of food lovers and a load of tasty food. It’s Canada’s largest restaurant festival where over 200 participating restaurants offer discounted lunch and dinner menus for all to try. Sample Vancouver’s regional and international eateries for cheap!

Celtic Fest and St Patrick’s Day – During March, Vancouver celebrates Celtic Fest which includes the parade celebrations for St. Patrick’s Day. The Celtic festival showcases the best of Celtic music, dance, spoken word as well as film, food and fare. The five day festival features a lot of free entertainment and has become an annual springtime tradition in downtown Vancouver. The St. Patrick’s Parade runs every year starting at beginning on Howe and Drake, proceeding north along Howe to Georgia, and ending at Georgia & Granville Streets.

Cherry Blossom Festival – This festival runs from the end of March to the end of April to honour the 37,000 ornamental cherry trees that were generously given from Japan in the 1930’s.

Vaisakhi Parade – Every April hundreds of thousands turn out for the traditional Indian celebration of the harvest. There are two seperate events – one in Surrey and one in South Vancouver. The Surrey event is the largest Vaisakhi celebration outside of India. The streets are lined with people giving away home cooked food – a traditional part of the celebration of the harvest – so it is a great place to sample authentic Indian cuisine.