August 21, 2017Posted by Bethany Larson Bloch
Downtown Vancouver. Image via Flickr Creative Commons, by JamesZ_Flickr.
There’s a lot more to Vancouver than first meets the eye. Sure, there are breathtaking mountain views, sleek glass towers and beautiful tree-lined streets, but beyond its layers is a small town populated by passionate, dedicated, supportive residents.
Whether it’s the gritty, authentic character of Hastings-Sunrise; the hard, polished edges of the downtown core; or the artistic fringes of Commercial Drive, it’s the nooks and crannies that make Van City truly interesting. Often referred to as a melting pot of sorts, it’s not uncommon got pass Thai, Japanese and Greek restaurants all in one city block – but knowing where is worthy of your coin is another story altogether.
The HUNT Vancouver writers, Adrian Harris and Jeremy Inglett, recommend you to take the time to walk around and truly explore, an activity they partake in regularly as it’s a wonderful way to take in different areas while getting a nice workout. Dig a little deeper and find what the city truly has to offer.
9am: Make your way to East Van’s Roundel Cafe for a satisfying breakfast to start your day. Our favorite plates are the smoked salmon eggs Benny and the organic grain pancakes. You’ll also never go wrong with whatever is on special here.
11am: Throw in a spot of shopping before lunch. Walk over to Dayton Boots and consider customizing a pair of leather lace-ups or knee-highs. Pop into Tiny Finery for handmade trinkets, ceramics and bespoke jewelry.
1pm: Hungry? Cross over to Commercial Drive and pull up a seat at Kin Kao Thai Kitchen for some authentic, gutsy Thai street food. The deep-fried, sour-cured pork ribs are a must-try.
3pm: Wander over to Bomber Brewery, just a six-minute walk away, for some ice-cold beer. Whether it’s a basic brew from the regular line-up of booze, or an intriguing limited-edition seasonal, this friendly Strathcona tasting room manages to strike a balance between the familiar and the new.
4:30pm: Walk or grab a city bus into nearby Chinatown and browse through the district’s charming retail, tea and grocery stores such as Treasure Green Tea Company and Space Lab before stopping by Bestie for another pint.
6pm: Next, proceed downtown and catch a live show at Vogue Theatre, located in the heart of the Granville Street entertainment district. Whether live music or comedy is your jam, there’s always something exceptional taking place here.
8:30pm: Your tummy should be rumbling by now. Head to Yaletown L’Antipasto for reasonably priced, lip-smacking Italian eats.
9am: Breakfast at Medina Cafe is always a good idea to jump-start the day. We recommend splurging on their epic Belgian waffles to go with that much-needed morning java.
11am: Enjoy a walk around Gastown and check out the area’s unique boutiques like Old Faithful Shop, who hawks some seriously desirable swag. Then, stop for a refreshing peppermint, calendula and blue cornflower soda at The Capilano Tea House & Botanical Soda Co. before dropping by Inform Interiors for major design inspiration.
1pm: If lunch sounds good, amble over to The Birds & The Beets for a light me
al and to rest your feet. We’re particularly fond of their avo toast, with a perfectly poached egg on top for good measure. This charming little café is also a great spot for people-watching.
2:30pm: Board a city bus and head over the bridge to Granville Island. Explore the area’s many interesting, independent stores, services and cafés, and spend the afternoon taking in the sights and sounds. We love shopping the public market and its many food vendors; you’re always sure to find something fresh and seasonal. For a snack, grab a bagel and schmear from Siegel’s Bagels. The rosemary rock salt variety is Adrian’s choice pick.
7pm: Catch the Aqua Bus from Granville Island to downtown, and make your way to Ancora Waterfront Dining and Patio for dinner. Order a cocktail to pair with your meal, and take in the stunning views of False Creek from the terrace.
11pm: Before you completely run out of steam, hop in a cab and head to Biltmore Cabaret in Mount Pleasant for some live music and another drink or two. There’s something going on here most nights of the week, from special DJ sets and live performances, to album release parties and trivia nights.
About The HUNT Vancouver Writers: Adrian Harris and Jeremy Inglett are the two smiling men behind The Food Gays, a food, travel and lifestyle blog. What began as a hobby has transformed into a career for both, with the always-hungry duo now running their own digital media company. When not writing and creating stunning visuals for their blog and Instagram, you’ll find them spending time with their dog, Milo, who’s considered the resident helper on set. Adrian and Jeremy are freelance contributors for Yahoo!, as well as the digital versions of Food & Wine, The Province and Martha Stewart.
For more great insider recommendations, pick up The HUNT Guides on gatehousepublishing.com.