Our trip seemed to be made up of contradictory experiences. Where our train ride from Portland to Seattle had been anything but pleasant, the trip from Seattle to Vancouver was breathtaking.
The rail traveled along the waters edge giving us a great view the entire way.
We arrived on time, hopped in a cab, and made it to our hotel with a hop, skip and a jump.
We stayed at the Pan Pacific which typically acts as a pit stop for people leaving on cruises (mostly to Alaska). I appreciated the resort-esque atmosphere…and the hot tub.
Every afternoon we soaked our tired bodies in the hot tub, and every morning we had breakfast on the terrace (luckily just outside our room)…then soaked in the hot tub before showering and heading out on the town.
The first day in town we felt a little weary. Going back to the first post about our trip, we realized upon arriving in Vancouver that although every city was very different, in a way each was just another big city. We were faced with searching out places to eat, things to do, and lots and lots of walking. It was at this juncture we realized in the future, our vacations can still include lots of site seeing and big cities, but at least three or so days at the end need to be devoted to pure relaxation and luxury. I was desperately missing the pool floaties, endless umbrella drinks, and amazing food at the Excellence.
But you live and you learn, so we trudged on.
We had lunch at Meat & Bread. We LOVED this place. There were only about four options on the menu, but each had been carefully handcrafted into a mouthwatering treat for your taste buds.
We were famished by then so we didn’t share, well we shared, but we got two different sandwiches.
Both were amazing.
The rest of the afternoon we walked around town then returned to the hotel to hang out in the hot tub. Our piggies were tired and sore, and we needed a break.
Vancouver provided an interesting experience. As we passed the border, we lost our ability to use our phones unless we wanted to accrue a massive phone bill. I have no disillusions about our dependence on smart phones for the majority of things in life, no less the task of finding our next meal and directions to said meal.
For this leg of the trip we were back to paper maps and concierge recommendations. I would like to say that it was a nice “unplugging,” but it wasn’t. It was difficult, and stressful at times. Not to mention frustrating trying to make sure we didn’t miss the important places and best restaurants in the area. We survived of course, but I had a new appreciation for my phone.
A perfect example of this was our dinner experience. We relied on pre-downloaded trip advisor maps and the recommendation of a few of the doormen at the hotel and ended up very disappointed. We wanted sushi and went to a highly rated restaurant nearby, but it was pricey and nothing special.
Just an hour later we discovered Gastown, which was lined with fun shops and awesome restaurants. We felt cheated out of a good meal.
So we picked a spot to return to the next night and headed back to hotel.
It was just one more thing to add to our list of mishaps and disappointments from this trip.