Vancouver - A locals perspective

Wanderguide by

Alicja Lei

It's pronounced Vang-couver

Vancouver was my home for about 5 years. It's the perfect balance between urban and nature with amazing diversity, delicious food and endless things to do and see!

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Restaurants - Oh so Asian

The quality and choice of Asian food in Vancouver is unparalleled. Here are some of our favorites, but I'm sure we're just scratching the surface.

Image - Dinesty Dumpling House
Place
Dinesty Dumpling House
Alicja:Have the stir-fried rice cakes, the crab and pork soup dumplings, and the green beans
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Image - Western Lake Chinese Seafood Restaurant
Place
Western Lake Chinese Seafood Restaurant
Alicja:MAKE RESERVATIONS....and the portions are huge so don't over order.
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Image - Jinya Ramen Westside
Place
Jinya Ramen Westside
Alicja:Be ready to wait outside...but totally totally worth the wait.
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Image - Motomachi Shokudo
Place
Motomachi Shokudo
Alicja:This place has been in business a while now so I find that I rarely have to wait. But it's really very good!
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Image - Minami
Place
Minami
Alicja:The salads, the cocktails and of course they have their specialty rolls...the salmon one is my favorite.
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Image - Hapa Izakaya Yaletown
Place
Hapa Izakaya Yaletown
Alicja:Fun music, good vibes and tasty food. Get the crispy rice bowl and the udon noodles.
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Image - Vij's
Place
Vij's
Alicja:You can't make reservations and you will definitely have to wait...but it's worth it.
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Image - Phnom Penh Restaurant
Place
Phnom Penh Restaurant
Alicja:Not your typical pho joint. Get the chicken wings.
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Image - Pho Goodness
Place
Pho Goodness
Alicja:I think I ate here once a week. It's where I get my pho fix.
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Restaurants - Everything else

Most of these places you're going to have to make reservations for well in advance.

Image - AnnaLena
Place
AnnaLena
Alicja:Make reservations and I think family style is the best way things.
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Image - Blue Water Cafe
Place
Blue Water Cafe
Alicja:A place to be seen in the evenings where you can get beautiful fresh fish and amazing sushi. Make reservations
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Image - Ask For Luigi Restaurant
Place
Ask For Luigi Restaurant
Alicja:It's tiny, it's in a sketchy area, it's so so so so good. Put your name on the list and then go for a drink at Urban Winery.
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Image - Osteria Savio Volpe
Place
Osteria Savio Volpe
Alicja:I've had some of the tastiest bites in my life here. Make reservations and try the tiramisu ice cream dessert.
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Image - Tacofino Taco Bar
Place
Tacofino Taco Bar
Alicja:Mmmmm...spicy margarita and fish tacos.
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Image - La Catrina Tacos
Place
La Catrina Tacos
Alicja:This is a little hole in the wall and they have really yummy tiny tacos.
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Image - Tavola
Place
Tavola
Alicja:Beautiful pastas and the burrata appetizer is ooey gooey delish.
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Image - The Mackenzie Room
Place
The Mackenzie Room
Alicja:Must make reservations, eat the bread and be courageous with your cocktail choices.
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Image - The Greek By Anatoli
Place
The Greek By Anatoli
Alicja:It's not cheap and cheerful, but the food is delicious and it's a great atmosphere and it's one of my favorites.
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Image - Nook
Place
Nook
Alicja:The sister of Tavola. An amazing place for quality italian food. It's by the beach so you can take a scenic walk after dinner!
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Image - Siegel's Bagels
Place
Siegel's Bagels
Alicja:Be sure you come here and then buy a dozen bagels to take home. These are literally the best bagels in the world.
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Bakeries

Butter and sugar in copious copious amounts

Image - Purebread
Place
Purebread
Alicja:You might short-circuit when you walk in and see the choices. But try the Coconut Buttermilk loaf and the black cherry scone.
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Image - Butter Baked Goods Ltd
Place
Butter Baked Goods Ltd
Alicja:Sweet treats and beautiful birthday cakes.
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Image - Beaucoup Bakery
Place
Beaucoup Bakery
Alicja:Get here early and get a traditional croissant and a double baked almond croissant.
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Sight seeing - The smart way

Priority for me is always food...and then I'll stop and see some sights along the way. So here's what not to miss.

Image - Stanley Park Loop
Place
Stanley Park Loop
Alicja:Rent a bike and take a cruise around this truly magical oasis.
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Image - FlyOver Canada
Place
FlyOver Canada
Alicja:You have to check this out...it's an immersive experience and you really feel like your flying.
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Image - Gastown
Place
Gastown
Alicja:You can meander in and out of restaurants and shops for a good part of the day.
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Image - Baggio Gelateria & pizzeria
Place
Baggio Gelateria & pizzeria
Alicja:So I know that this is a gelato place, but it's award winning, and then you can go for a stroll with your delicious gelato along the harbour
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Image - Third Beach
Place
Third Beach
Alicja:If you're visiting during the summer months, pack a big blanket, a picnic, your sunblock and get ready to people watch and sunbathe.
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Shopping

Robson St is the main shopping street where you can find the major department stores like Holt Renfrew and Nordstroms, but below are the boutiques where you can find something special.

Image - Bacci's
Place
Bacci's
Alicja:For high end women's apparel and an amazing home side where you can find something for everyone.
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Image - misch
Place
misch
Alicja:Mid to high end women's apparel, perfectly curated for a bit of everyday luxury.
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Image - Mine & Yours
Place
Mine & Yours
Alicja:Brand name luxury items that have been barely used...think Hermes bags and Valentino pumps.
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Night out

Poppin bottles and gettin silly

Image - The Parlour
Place
The Parlour
Alicja:So this is actually a pizzeria, but it gets busy and turns into more of a bar. Make late reservations and then CALL to confirm!!
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Image - Pierre's Champagne Lounge
Place
Pierre's Champagne Lounge
Alicja:On the back end of a restaurant, gets pretty busy on the weekends...plays top 40s house.
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Image - Celebrities Nightclub
Place
Celebrities Nightclub
Alicja:The biggest gay club but they bring in amazing DJs!
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Image - Reflections: The Garden Terrace
Place
Reflections: The Garden Terrace
Alicja:Outdoor patio...perfect for those breezy evenings
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Image - Twelve West
Place
Twelve West
Alicja:If you want to go to da club, go to this one.
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Working out

It's not about eating guilt free (although it's a bit of a bonus), these gyms are FUN!!

Wanderguide map

  1. Dinesty Dumpling House
  2. Western Lake Chinese Seafood Restaurant
  3. Jinya Ramen Westside
  4. Motomachi Shokudo
  5. Minami
  6. Hapa Izakaya Yaletown
  7. Vij's
  8. Phnom Penh Restaurant
  9. Pho Goodness
  10. AnnaLena
  11. Blue Water Cafe
  12. Ask For Luigi Restaurant
  13. Osteria Savio Volpe
  14. Tacofino Taco Bar
  15. La Catrina Tacos
  16. Tavola
  17. The Mackenzie Room
  18. The Greek By Anatoli
  19. Nook
  20. Siegel's Bagels
  21. Purebread
  22. Butter Baked Goods Ltd
  23. Beaucoup Bakery
  24. Stanley Park Loop
  25. FlyOver Canada
  26. Gastown
  27. Baggio Gelateria & pizzeria
  28. Third Beach
  29. Bacci's
  30. misch
  31. Mine & Yours
  32. The Parlour
  33. Pierre's Champagne Lounge
  34. Celebrities Nightclub
  35. Reflections: The Garden Terrace
  36. Hello Goodbye Bar
  37. Twelve West
  38. Spin Society Downtown Vancouver
  39. Ride Cycle Club
  40. YYOGA Downtown Flow

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High Five Alicja