Why Vancouver? - A question I get asked on a near daily basis. "Why not Toronto? Or London? Or New York, or Sydney?", people ask. Well, for me, Vancouver has that somethin' somethin' that i've never found elsewhere.
We arrived here roughly 14 months ago, and we've since had the most incredible journey. Before we moved here, I knew it would be beautiful, but I didn't think it would be this beautiful. Vancouver isn't just a pretty city though - it's got so much more. If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know that I never shut up about how much I love it (ha, sorry!) But honestly, it's captured my heart and I've fallen in love. And here's why...
1 - Lifestyle
The #1 reason why I've fallen in love with Vancouver is the great lifestyle. You can hike or ski in the snowy mountains in the day, head down to the beach for sunset, and spend your evening dining by the marina surrounded by yachts and city lights.
I'm not afraid to admit that I love a bit of luxury - I like having nice clothes, nice handbags, a nice house and good food. But I also love getting outdoors and adventuring around the mountains, skiing, hiking, diving, and the rest. Lifestyle-wise, it has the perfect mix of everything I love.
2 - Views
There's a viewpoint half-way up Cypress Mountain that I love going to every now and then. It offers sweeping views of Downtown, Stanley Park, Mount Baker (in Washington), Vancouver Island and the ocean. Whether we're up a mountain, by the beach or in the city, the views take my breath away every time.
3 - Summer
Summer in Vancouver is something else. Temperatures hit a steady 25/26 degrees daily, and there are so many outdoor things to do. Whether you like paddle boarding, kayaking, hiking, swimming, or simply tanning on the beach with a gelato, everyday feels like a vacation.
4 - Rain
"I fell in love with Vancouver because of the rain" - said no one, ever. But we can't forget that especially in the winter, rain in the city means snow in the mountains. And that's NEVER a bad thing!
5 - Sunsets
No two sunsets are ever the same here - if the sky's not illuminated with honey-gold hues, it's dotted with cotton-candy puffs of clouds or dramatic streaks of lilac that stretch for miles and miles.
6 - Seasons
It sounds like a strange reason to love a city, but hear me out. The seasons in Vancouver are so distinctive and characterful, which is a nice change from England where the seasons all merge into one. Spring is filled with cherry blossoms and fresh air. Summer is hot hot hot. Fall is beautiful as the streets are lined with fiery orange leaves. And Winter - when it's not raining - is lovely and crisp. Even if it is a little wet, all you need to do is head north 20 minutes and you'll find yourself in a Winter Wonderland.
7 - Mountains
It blows my mind that you can go skiing 'for the day'. Literally, you can wake up in the morning in the city, enjoy a full day of skiing up at Whistler or the North Shore mountains and make it home in time for dinner. We don't ski as much as we'd like to as it's quite pricey since we don't own our own gear, but nonetheless, I still love having the option to go. Even if you don't ski, you can go hiking, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, find waterfalls, or simply go for a drive through the mountains...the possibilities are endless.
8 - Wilderness
If you want those Bear Gryllz days where you run off into the wilderness and find nothing but nature, mountains and beautiful viewpoints like the one below, this is the place. Sometimes you'll go a whole day hiking and you literally won't run into a soul.
9 - Attitude
Vancouver is a new city, so it doesn't have immense history or incredible ancient architecture like you'll find in places like Paris, Rome, or London. But what it does have is an incredibly forward-thinking attitude. I find that people are more open - open to diversity, multiculturalism, homosexuality, technology - and I like that. The city is full of creatives and the entrepreneur generation has really taken over. The attitude towards working for yourself and 'making it work', is much more positive and supportive compared to what i've experienced anywhere else too.
10 - Wildlife
It's always exciting to know that you can run into wildlife at any point. Take a stroll around Stanley Park and you'll come across otters and raccoons. Kayak around Deep Cove or English Bay and you might find harbour seals, grey whales or a pod of orcas (I'm not exaggerating either, whales are regularly spotted around the harbour). Take a stroll through the mountains and you'll come across deers and if you're lucky (or unlucky), black bears or grizzlies.
PS. The photo below is of Coolo and Grinder, the rescued grizzlies at Grouse Mountain. Not sure I'd get this close if I saw them in the wild!
As you can see, Vancouver is suited to both city dwellers and outdoor lovers. Sure, the city isn't huge, but it's perfect in that you can live the city life but escape to the wild whenever you need it. Canadians are welcoming, the foodie scene is amazing (not to mention the sushi..it's so cheap yet so good) and there are so many activities at your disposal.
Vancouver isn't for everyone, of course, but it's definitely stolen my heart and i've fallen hard!
Have you ever visited Vancouver? If so, what did you like (or dislike!) about it? Drop me a comment in the box below!
Definitely on my list! I so need to go there. Great pictures, by the way! 🙂
Thank you lovely – it’s really beautiful so it makes all the photos look great too!! 🙂 xx
We’re heading to Vancouver for three months this summer! Looking forward to exploring the city, enjoying the summer weather and those gorgeous sunsets.
Ahh you’re going to love it Shelly! Summer is gorgeous 🙂
Hi Alicia, with this blogpost you have here. Many people would want to visit or stay here too.
That sunset and foliage are stunning. I’ve never ventured into Vancouver but my sister has. I’ve only been to Toronto.
Vancouver sounds amazing!! I love the mix you get if activities and chic lifestyle and nothing beats a good attitude ??
I love that you love it here! It is the best place to live.
I’ve always wanted to see Vancouver Alicia — you just reaffirmed by desire. It looks like an amazing city. Thanks so much for sharing!
Thanks Chris, you should definitely visit if you get the chance! 🙂
Wow – I’ve never been but you have captured the beauty with these great pictures… and the different seasons – and looks like there is so much outdoor fun to be had there!
Hey Clare. Thanks so much – that’s so nice of you to say! It’s definitely lovely to have such distinctive seasons, especially when England is a mix of rain and wind (and the occasional bit of sunshine) year-round!
I love BC – it’s such a beautiful place.
I couldn’t agree more Liv!
A picture of a diving man on the background of a huge trees and incredible mountains, it is 100 of 100. Bravo!
Nature Canada is really impressive. And it’s only Vancouver. Thank you.
Thank you, I’m glad you like it!
Wow! So wonderful, and your pictures are great! My sister and bro-in-law went there for their honeymoon, and I have always wanted to go, and you have sold me!
Thanks so much Leah! Glad you liked it & that I could sway you to come visit 🙂
Diggin’ the Vancouver love
Vancouver looks like such a gorgeous city with no shortage of activities – what a great place to live!
Thanks Lauren! It’s got a lovely mix of city & outdoors which I love.
I’ve loved Vancouver, in the few times I’ve gotten to visit! It’s so gorgeous. The architecture is fun and modern, and there’s so much to do outdoors. And I actually don’t mind the rain. It’s usually a nice light drizzle, like Seattle, right? I’m more used to Seattle than Vancouver. Means I need to make another visit 🙂 I also love the food!
Yes, in fact it’s lightly drizzling right now! The summers are beautiful so I guess we can handle a little rain 😉 Where abouts do you live? And I’d love to visit Seattle, i’ve passed through once to get to the airport but it looks like a nice city! And I agree – the food is really good, I love eating out here. Thanks for stopping by Jenn!