Dear Vancouver...

Saturday, May 7, 2011
I just wanted to let you know that I am coming to visit you June for three weeks and I'm very excited! We will be spending one week on Vancouver Island and two weeks in Vancouver itself.

I've already hunted down a Castle to visit on Vancouver Island and The Butchart Gardens (yay, we will be there in late Spring and it will be magical...) but I was wondering if you'd be able to tell me some other things that I must visit. Perhaps something off the beaten tourist track that locals know all about and tourists just pass on by.

I'd also love it if you'd be able to point me in the direction of some of it's lovely inhabitants that may have a chance to catch up for a coffee and a chat? You see, David will be researching and conferencing for a lot of the time, so I'll have plenty of time on my hands for exploring and meeting friends from afar.

Also, weather? What does one bring to Vancouver in June? Is it cold? Wet? Hot? And can I bring my knitting on the plane? (Probably not, but it was worth a try!).

Anyway, I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Write back,

15 comments on "Dear Vancouver..."
  1. Ok, so I can't really answer any of your questions, except - the knitting. Apparently your regular long metal kneedles are a no-go, but there are certain aproved plastic ones. I was talking to the lovely ladies at Morris and Sons ( had a few suggestions - so they might be able to help!

  2. Ohh sounds lovely. Ive never been to vancouver so cant help much there but I do know that they wont let you take knitting needles on the plane. You might be able to smuggle some bamboo ones on though. My mother-in-law did last time she came over to visit but she was in business class so I think they looked the other way a bit! x

  3. Hi Jen !

    Well, Vancouver's weather has been pretty unpredictable lately. It's still very rainy and on the cold side right now so I would definitely bring rain gear and a couple sweaters. Hopefully in June, we'll have some real spring weather though (you're welcome to bring all the sunshine you want !!)...But it always gets chiilier in the evening (even in the summer). I think Victoria gets a little less rain since they don't have the mountains so close..
    I'll be happy to compile a list of "things to do" around town while you're here. I'll try to put it together in the next few days !

    I have been following your blog, but we haven't had any exchange before, I don't think. if you'd like to check out mine, the address is

    Cheers !

  4. Hi Jen, I'm in Canada but sadly not Vancouver and was only nine when I was in Vancouver so I don't have lots of tips. I do recall Stanley Park is a must visit. And I recommend Tofino on the Island (there's whale watching) and Long Beach (I think that's what it was called) was fabulous. Knitting needles are fine on flights now (the yarnharlot takes them on flights all the time). June is summer in Canada although it's not too hot yet in June. British Columbia tends to get a lot of rain. You can look up past weather trends on Environment Canada's weather website to get a better idea []. I hope that helps a bit - feel free to email me if you want any more info!

  5. One never really knows how the weather will be in June, sometimes it feels like we get all 4 seasons in one day, so I'd be sure to pack a raincoat at the very least. An umbrella is often good keep on hand too.

    Queen Elizabeth park (and Bloedel Conservatory) is nice to visit and has a great view!

    Stanley park is fantastic too, and the fish house in stanley park has lovely afternoon tea.

    I'd also recommend the Vancouver Art Gallery, which is really easy to find if you're downtown.

    Also the Kitsalano area has lots of pretty shops to explore

    Also, I'd love to grab coffee and chat!


  6. Jen, you have to go to Saltspring Island. It's AMAZING. I spend two summers on Vancouver Island and had the best time ever! There heaps of gorgeous little bays and lakes around - I'll think about it and get back to you :) I have a lot of friends there, if you wanted me to put you in touch with someone to have a cup of tea with!

  7. Definately no knitting on the plane. They confiscate knitting needles.

    Weapons of mass destruction and all that...


  8. I went back in 2001 (when I was 11!) and I remember Stanley Park being really interesting. As for the island, Victoria was nice & we saw a lovely garden there (possibly Buchanan?) but it was July I think.
    Tofino is worth a visit for the whales, and there's a little laundrette with a bead shop in the back! We stayed in a bungalow just outside and there was a beautiful lake and hummingbirds in the garden!
    I'd recommend the forest trails around there too, there are all sorts of interesting plants and banana slugs too! And Wickininininin or however its spelt has a nice wild sort of beach with loads of starfish!
    Enjoy :)

  9. Pack for changeable weather. I'm from Everett, Washington which is about 2 hours south of Vancouver. Usually, the Pacific Northwest doesn't really get much summer weather until July. June can be warm, cold, hot, rainy, sunny, windy. The only thing we usually don't get in June is snow. Plan on dressing in layers because the weather can start out cold and raining in the morning and be warm/hot and sunny in the afternoon, or vice versa.

  10. Sounds like such fun, I have heard Vancouver is very beautiful.

  11. Just supporting the yes you can knit on a plane answer. Air Canada lists them as acceptable carry on

    Yaletown in Vancouver has nice restaurants and shops, as does Gastown, which is home to the flagship John Fluevog shoe store.

    Main Street is also good for shopping, particularly Smoking Lily and Three Bags Full yarn store.

  12. The lovely Tasia ( lives in Vancouver and I'm sure would be happy to point you in the right directions, as well as show you around herself! :) Perhaps an international blogger meet-up?

  13. Greatings from Victoria! The butterfly gardens are not far from Butchart Gardens, and is pretty darn cool. The Royal BC Museum
    is always interesting. the undersea gardens in Victoria's inner harbour, and the aquarium up in Sidney are both great if you like marine critters. There are lots of places to walk and explore which shouldn't be too crowded this early in the year. Have a great trip!

  14. Hi Jen,

    The weather here in June will be nice, warm and springy, however it will rain whenever you don't want it too, but not as much as it does in the winter.
    There are a lot of things you must see that tourists do, like Stanley Park and the Art Gallery and awesome things that we locals know about, like the Marine Building, the Hastings Mill and the morgue where they took Errol Flynn.
    I don't know if you can still knit on places or not, but Dressew downtown has $2 balls of yarn and cheap needles.
    I'd be happy to show you around, my family has lived in Vancouver for over 100 years, just let me know.
    I also wrote a guide to vintage shopping here last February

    P.S. wear flats when you visit the Castle, there are a lot of steps.

  15. How exciting, Vancouver is a really pretty place to visit. I live here and I would love to meet up when you’re around.

    I moved here about a year and a half ago from the UK and had lots of visitors come and stay last year, we put together a little packet of information about the city which I can send to you if you like. I definitely agree with the other commenters though, Stanley park is a must, you can walk the sea wall too, which is lovely. The Museum of Anthropology is great, it’s out at UBC campus, which is a bit of a hike from downtown but definitely worth it. If you go out to the campus the botanical gardens are also here and they’re full of amazing beautiful old trees. The Vancouver art gallery is good and it has a wonderful cafĂ©, with a nice outdoor section if it’s a nice day. Main Street is good for shopping and Gastown is good for wandering.

    Also I don’t know where you’re going on the island but if you’re anywhere near Nanaimo then you should try and stay here: I wrote about our wee trip on my blog which you can see here if you like:

    Please let me know if you would like me to forward the information I wrote for people last year, you are under no obligation to use any of it!
    Hopefully I’ll get to meet you in June.

    PS. Definitely bring something summery and something warm and something waterproof!


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