I’m planning a “romantic” trip to Vancouver and Victoria BC this august. I’m looking for good quality reasonably priced hotels and restaurants.
We won’t have a car, we are taking the train up from Seattle. I would like to be centrally located to the touristy stuff, though taxis aren’t out of the question. I don’t have a problem with splurging on dinners and we will probably staying one night at the Empress in Victoria, but would appreciate any other hotel suggestions that would be nice but a little (a lot) cheaper.
Any other suggestions for romantic things to do would be great, we are pretty simple, our last weekend together we loaded a cooler with fruit, salami, and cheese and drove all over Mt Rainier and Mt St Helens.
MmMMMM Nautical Nelly’s in Victoria. It’s a lovely seafood restaurant.
You want to stay in the West End of Vancouver’s downtown, near Stanley Park, Lost Lagoon, Sunset Beach.
I know Victoria better. Never stayed in the Hotel Grand Pacific but it’s on the harbor and looked pretty impressive. Have stayed in the Chateau Victoria and it us a great value. Plenty nice, but not especially “romantic” from what I remember. Guess it depends on how much you want to pay for that something extra.
We enjoyed eating at the Irish Times Pub. Quite a nice atmosphere for a “pub.”
I’m sure you’ve heard, but the main attraction is Buchart Gardens. Greyhound does tours from near the harbor.
Thanks for the suggestions everyone
Since you like mountains you might want to ride the cable car up to Grouse Mountain.
Back in '98 I was able to get public transport there from Vancouver.
If you like touristy stuff Gas Town has a bunch of little touristy shops, and the Steam Clock is kind of cool if you like that kind of stuff.
The Lookout at Harbour Center has a great view of the city.
Stanley Park is nice. As I recall they had a tour in a sort of horse drawn bus thing. I don’t know if they still have that or not.
I don’t remember any specific restaurants but I do remember that there was a large assortment of many different ethnic cuisines.
A few months after we married the Ms and I took a trip to Victoria and spent an enchanted evening at a pub called Garrick’s Head. I think the name attracted me. Walked in and stumbled out. Always wanted to make it back. Haven’t yet. Been going on 15 years. These days we could use a bit of that back…
Dinner at the Raincity Grill - a really great, reasonably priced restaurant steps away from a romantic walk around theseawall. Can’t be beat!
For your return trip, take a ferry back through the San Juan islands.
Thanks everyone, We looked into it but we’re not sure how we would get from the ferry terminal to the Amtrak station to pick up the car.
Yep, the horse drawn trolley is still there:
Very romantic… especially if you go during the evening. Actually, in the evening, even if you don’t do the horse drawn trolley, the walk around the seawall is very serene and you’ll see quite a few couples just holding hands and enjoying the scenery.
Depending on when in August you come to Vancouver, there are also going to be Celebration of Light, our summer fireworks display. It gets crowded at English Bay, where it’s officially held, but if you go to Kits beach that’s directly across the inlet, you can watch them while snuggling intimately on a blanket.
Trolley! Geeze, I guess I’m showing my age that that word wouldn’t come to me.
“Bus Thing”, lol.
It wasn’t exactly romantic for me. I was in Vancouver on business with a male coworker; but yes I’d imagine that Stanley Park can be very romantic.
Apropos of nothing, it’s a very liberal city. I think there was as many gay couples holding hands in public as there were straight couples.
There is a superb restaurant at the top of Grouse Mountain. Great food and a stunning view. When I ate there the tram ride up the mountain was free with the dinner reservation.
If you’re interested in “Victorian life”, there’s a cool old mansion called Craigdarroch Castle that you can walk through on a tour, if you’re so inclined. I’m not sure exactly how romantic it is, but we spent a very interesting couple of hours there when I was in Victoria.
I’m recommending a stay at the Granville Island Hotel while in Vancouver. Nothing special, it cost us $129 winter rate for one night last year, but it puts you right in the middle of Granville Island, a retro earthy marine and market community (island connected by causeway). To add more flavour to your day, You can hop onto one of the small ferries and travel the length and breadth of False Creek with many destinations including B.C. Place and Science World.
In short plenty to see and do without getting in a car or bus.
Every time we visit Vancouver from Vancouver Island we just have to visit Granville Island.
Granville Island is pretty awesome… it’s very artisan.
But for the love of the deities, do not go to Science World! It’s a pathetic shell of an excuse for knowledge. Even the little cousin I brought there thought it was pathetic. It’s dilapidated and full of little brats running around, and unless there’s a really interesting exhibit (last time I went, it was for Body Worlds), it’s not worth your money or time. If you want to rest your feet and enjoy air conditioning in an Omnimax theatre, go to the one at Canada Place instead!
If you want to do something science-y and will be around the Granville Island area, go to the planetarium. It’s dinky too, but they have laser shows in the evening!
Spending an afternoon at the Buchardt gardens, punctuated with high tea, certainly fits my ideal of romantic! That restaurant on the spinning observatory in Van city was also pretty lah dee dah!
Oh yes we will be doing the gardens, and high tea, not really my cuppa, but the sacrifices we make.
Is the Sylvia Hotel in Vancouver still a cool place? We used to love to stay there.
I second Granville Island, and the ferry ride.