I really liked Vancouver. It’s quite compact and everywhere is walkable, but if you’re not into walking there is a good public transport system.
On my first day I was totally overwhelmed by everything. It was way too noisy, there is never silence in the city. Ever. Even at 4am it is not quiet. Especially not in a hostel. Everything is so bright. The lighting in the shops gave me an instant headache. There are so many different and strong smells. I felt like I just didn’t belong in that environment. I wanted to run away back to the woods, set up my tent and hide in it. But, just like you adapt to walking 25 miles a day, you soon start to regain your sensory filters and you slip back into normal life remarkably quickly.
Here’s a little insight into my few days in Vancouver…
I bumped into Courage!
I did the Grouse Grind on Grouse Mountain in North Vancouver. 2800ft ascent over 1.8 miles (about 2830 steps). My time was 1hr 7minutes. I took the cable car down.
I got overwhelmed in Whole Foods and bought some overpriced organic treats. But the chocolate milk comes in a glass bottle!!
I was supposed to go Whale watching but that got cancelled because of the wind, so I spent the day on Granville Island. Which isn’t strictly and island, but it has an awesome food market, where I got totally overwhelmed again. I wanted to eat all of the food.
I was so exhausted from wondering about all day that I had to go and have a nap before meeting Bumble and his partner Matt for dinner, which was nice.
I hired a bike and took a little ride around the 6mile sea wall that goes around Stanley Park.
I went to the aquarium and got obsessed with the Jellyfish
The digital whale.
And I went to Gastown to see the steam clock. I walked everywhere and ended up waking about 12 miles this day. I didn’t go out out. I left that to all the youngsters who were staying at the hostel (although a couple of people asked me if I had just finished school! Haha!).
As a solo traveller a youth hostel is a great place to stay, there is always someone to talk to, and there are people of all ages, I met people from all over the world. Where else would you find yourself playing a German card game with 4 German 18 year olds?!
Tomorrow I am heading back to Stevens pass to complete the 100 miles of trail I missed because of the fire closures. I’m looking forward to the rest and being back in the peaceful calm of the wilderness. This time it’s fingers crossed for no rain.