People come to Vancouver for many reasons, including a departure or arrival from a cruise, to experience the sheer beauty of the place—-with mountains, connected to the sea, for the excellent food—with every gourmet or ethnic option available, and for the people, being so welcoming and hospitable.
And while visiting Vancouver, it is a good idea to take a tour to get oriented. At least three options for touring come to mind.
One unique option for touring is to engage Alfred Esmeijer or his assistant with Vancouver Private Tours.
Alfred can pick you up at the airport, cruise terminal or hotel and whisk you immediately on to a custom-guided tour. This is VIP treatment—at your own pace—complete with fascinating and personalized information and stories about the places, people and culture of the ethnically diverse city of Vancouver.
Riding in his ultra-comfortable 4-wheel drive vehicle we made several stops including Vancouver’s Chinatown where Alfred bought use warm apple turnovers at a famous Chinese dumpling shop.
Alfred includes the typical sights including Stanley Park, downtown, and Granville Island, but he goes beyond the usual spots—into neighborhoods on the edge of the city, like Olympic Park, which is experiencing a gentrification and “re-make” into a trendy enclave .
Alfred is a gracious host who loves to show you “his city,” even though he originates in Holland (and speak fluent German and French) His tour is an altogether unforgettable and satisfying personalized experience.
A second viable option for touring Vancouver is presented by Landsea Tours and Adventures and is called the “Vancouver City Highlights Tour.”
Landsea Tours will also pick you up at your hotel in a comfortable custom van and show you the fascinating major sites of Vancouver with an experienced and knowledgeable guide.
Included in the tour is a 360°- degree scenic view of the skyline from the Vancouver Lookout Viewing Deck. (The tour includes the admission ticket.)
Besides having a responsive, knowledgeable personal tour guide for the 4-hour tour, you have the option to end your tour either back at your hotel or at another location, either “Fly Over Canada” or at the Vancouver Art Gallery. (Landsea Tours will also take you to the airport at no extra charge.)
A third option for touring Vancouver is The Vancouver Trolley Company “Hop-On, Hop-Off Trolley Tour.”
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This option for touring Vancouver goes on a set circle route in Vancouver City and allows you to view the attractions of the city at your own pace.
Whatever tour you choose to take, Vancouver is a dynamic and fascinating place to visit. Visit Tourism Vancouver for a complete list of all there is to see and do in Vancouver.
By Diane Sukiennik and Michael Reiss Courtesy www.foodandwineaccess.com “Photos by Michael Reiss”