Opening my eyes to Vancouver

Well after a long sleep I think I am almost cured of the jetlag! Now that I remembered what it’s called my brain must be working a little better I’d say hahaha. I got up late this morning and had to throw some clothes on and run downstairs to make the most of the free breakfast. Once I’d had my fill I came back up to my room to have a shower and get ready for my day. I hate to sound like a broken record here but – what a day it has been! haha.

I’d worked out that today I wanted to visit Stanley Park and the Vancouver Aquarium and that if I hopped on a bus I should be able to get there from my hotel pretty easy. I was right!

I’m still getting over cars driving on the wrong side of the road! Haha. Not only that but the steering wheels are on the wrong side too.. I didnt realise that. The buses in Van run kinda like trams – connected to these wire lines ontop. It’s a little unusual but it seems to work well.
At the gate to the park I was greeted by these signs.


Hahaha! Thats exactly what I wanted to see! No ‘danger snakes’ or ‘beware spiders’ – but coyotes!! I didnt see any though – infact the only wild animals I saw were these.

Boy the park was pretty! So gorgeous!! But it was really cold today – almost as cold as it gets to in Melbourne’s winter. Not quite but almost. Infact I had to buy an umbrella as it was pouring down at one stage. More on that later.


I only saw a tiny fraction of the park, but I got some amazing photos. Oh and I asked a lovely Canadian man to take this one for me.


The trees are so alive and beautiful – I just wished I had a tripod to take some fashion shots!! I had to make do with some self shots instead.

Then next thing I knew I was out the front of the Aquarium.

I was hoping it’d cosy and warm – and they have this new exhibit of the tropics that features parrots that is really humid and had me feeling hot in no time.
But I had to venture outside to the pacific dolphin and beluga whale areas – and I got to watch both shows. I hadnt really seen any other dolphins up close except bottlenoses, so that was interesting!!

They were so fast through the water!! And they did these huge jumps that I didnt manage to catch on my camera.

The belugas were a lot fatter and slower but fun to watch too!

I got to see the jellyfish that were at the airport – ok not the exact same ones but they are the same species I am pretty sure. Love the lighting!

I thought the Aquarium was set out really well – it had descriptions and photos of the habitats above each exhibit.

So yeah, I had fun. Then outside it was pouring and I had to buy an umbrella. Luckily they had a lot of choices and I got to make a stylish decision.

Oh yes I did!! Looks a little bit like my one at home doesnt it? Well it is, except that this one is retractable and much smaller, and still heavy duty!! YAY!!! Do you like it??

I took it down to the sea wall and we looked out along the water, and watched people pass us by.

And then I took the bus home and was watching out the window when I saw something in the street a block before my stop. Me being me, naturally I got off and went to investigate.

I walked down until I came to the street and here is what I saw.


A film/tv set!!! Right near my hotel!! That is so Vancouver, and so very very cool!!

I’m excited to see my first hockey game tonight, should be lots of fun!!
If you’re in the crowd – be gentle.
GO CANUCKS!!!

Wandering down the cherry blossom streets

Hello!! WOW what a day! I think I walked atleast 20 kms today – and boy are my feet sore. Where to begin?! I guess at the beginning! Oh by the way anyone interested in seeing more photos than the ones I put on my blog, can go here to my flickr There just isnt enough space to put them all on here!
So this morning I went down to breakfast and chose the ‘bread’ and ‘fruit yoghurt’. This is what came..


I do like my pastries! I think maybe tomorrow I’ll get the buffet as it will be my last day here! So after stocking up on that I grabbed a map from the hotel desk and headed off. I was determined to walk myself and not get a taxi… and let me tell you by the end of the day I was barely hobbling along. But I did it!

There are some really beautiful streets in Kyoto. You’ll be walking along and then there is a stream and lots of pretty trees.

I asked several people to take photos of me today. Here is one of them!

So my intention as you may remember was to go to a shrine and to find the philosophers walk. I can proudly say that I accomplished both of these things and much more!!
I felt pretty safe walking around – infact I have done so the whole time I’ve been in Japan. Even though at times I’ll look around and notice that I’m the only foreigner in the crowd it hasnt phased me too much. I’ve seen some beautiful things.


All this walking and I was only about 10 mins from my hotel. So much to see!!

Ok eventually I found a sign that said Nozonji Shrine, I was on the right track! I wandered down the road a little bit and came across this path that everyone seemed to be following – I thought at first it may have been the philosophers path but I was wrong. It was still pretty though!

So I followed the flow of traffic, jumping on the pebbles and we headed down to a waterway.

When we came out at the top I saw a sign for Kyoto Zoo! That wasnt even in my plans – nowhere in my mind at all but I found myself being drawn in. It cost me 600 yen, which is I think about $10 and it was an adventure!

Seeing Zebra and Elephants and Giraffes against the cherry blossoms was a real unexpected sight. Now, I’m not a big fan of animals in captivity and some of the cages were quite small but it was interesting to see how it differed from Melbourne Zoo.

I got to see a badger! And an Andean Condor – I couldnt believe how HUGE they were!! After some more wandering around I got this photo.

As I was walking along I realised that I have hardly said anything since being here – apart from ‘Arigato Gozaimasu’ but it didnt feel strange. I often find myself wandering along without speaking, lost in another world. Here are a few posters or strange things I have seen on the streets.

And look Uncle John, they grow your grass on the stairs here! hehehe.

My goodness! Thats a big post already and I’m far from done about my day.
Stay tuned for part two 🙂