Returning To Vancouver
We started our Alaska cruise with a visit to Seattle. It was great to return to Seattle and get settled on west coast time before we set sail. Our cruise did not have a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise. So when we landed back in Seattle, we headed north for Vancouver.
On previous trips between Vancouver and Seattle we took the Amtrak train or drove. The train was a fast easy way to get between the downtown areas of both cities. We did not really need a car when we arrived in Vancouver, so didn’t want to rent a car just for the transit. We could have taken a plane or a ferry.
But we thought we had found the perfect transit option for this trip. We wanted to leave from the cruise terminal in Seattle, go to downtown Vancouver and then return to the SeaTac Airport. The Quick Shuttle seemed to be perfect. Our pickup at the cruise terminal was over an hour late. Everyone had to leave the bus to clear customs. And it seemed we were almost the last people picked up or dropped off. The return tickets were non-cancellable, so we suffered both ways. Next time we will take the train!
We have visited Vancouver many times. This would be a quick visit to see family. It would give us a chance to repeat a few of our favourite things to do. We will give you a quick view of how to enjoy a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise.
Walk The False Creek Sea Wall
We stayed in a hotel in the downtown area. On a previous visit we rented great AirBNB condo. But this time we wanted to keep building our loyalty IHG points.
It was a short walk from our hotel to the False Creek sea wall. Once on the path, you could walk along mostly parkland. The waterways were busy with boats, canoes and we even saw the BBQ boat.
All along the sea wall you will find art.
At one end of the False Creek sea wall, you will find both BC Place and the Telus Science Centre. There are shops to rent watercraft and bikes.
If you keep going around the Liberty Village, there are great restaurants and a lot of outdoor patios. We spent many hours lounging in the sun trying flights of craft beer and local wines.
Enjoy the False Creek area when you have a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise. Many people don’t get out of the downtown Vancouver area. But if you find False Creek, this will add so much to your Vancouver experience.
Visit Granville Island
Walking the False Creek sea wall, we got a great view over to Granville Island. Artwork under the Granville Bridge gave a great introduction to this island.
We have walked over the Granville Bridge and biked onto Granville Island. You can catch one of the two ferry services that run to various spots on the False Creek waterway. One of the ferries is even a bicycle ferry!
There is a lot to do on Granville Island. You can wander the path and watch the boats. You can even rent a boat from here.
The Granville Market is always a fun place to stop. You can get a full range of fresh produce, homemade foods and handicrafts. Our favourite stop in the market is always for chocolate.
When we want fresh seafood, Granville Island is always a great choice. We grab a patio seat and enjoy the view while we eat. The menus always show what is fresh that day.
Don’t miss a visit to Granville Island on a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise. No matter what you choose to do, you will enjoy wandering the island.
Rent a Bike
Vancouver is a great city for biking. Most of the city is pretty flat. The city is well laid out to support bike traffic.
When we stayed in Vancouver for a long stay, we brought our bikes with us. When we visit for short time there are a number of options for renting a bike. On this trip we found a new option. The SPIN bikes can be picked up with simply an online membership and a QR code. They are very cheap to rent and can be dropped anywhere.
If you want to save your legs and see more things, consider renting a bike on a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise. They are easy to find and easy to use in this very bike-friendly city!
Some Of Our Favourite Things To Do In Vancouver
On this trip, we stayed pretty close to downtown. On other visits, we have explored the city and wandered far and wide around the Vancouver area. If your Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise is your first visit, you may want to start with a city tour.
If you are looking for some other things to do on a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise, start with this list. There are so many things to see and do just a short drive away. We rented a car and headed out of town for a many day trips.
1) See the ski town of Whistler in the summer
2) Head north of Vancouver to explore the north shore, walk in the Lynne Valley Canyon or head to Horseshoe Bay
We have enjoyed the wildlife that British Columbia offers:
1) See the orca whales on a whale watching excursion
2) See the eagles and the Harrison Hot Springs
There is so much to see and do on a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise. You will fall in love with the city. And you can finish the list on many return trips.
Finish With A Vancouver Stop On An Alaska Cruise
It was great to be back in Vancouver. Whenever we visit the west coast or head to SE Asia, Vancouver is a regular stop on our travels. One of our children lives there. And the other two wish they did. This ensures that Vancouver will be a regular stop for us. If you have a Vancouver stop on an Alaska cruise, you will find lots of things to see and do.
Did you do a Vancouver stop on an Alaska Cruise? What did you do?