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Vancouver's Scenic Seawall


Although the Olympics were in full swing and Robson Street was spilling over with tourists, within minutes it was possible to navigate outside of the chaos and find yourself in one of the many parks and green spaces Vancouver hosts. The seawall, which wraps itself around the entire downtown area of Vancouver, was particularly inviting. This wide, paved pathway is perfect for strolling, biking, and jogging and locals fervently put the seawall pavement to good use.


The seawall and I became very good friends over the course of the week, and the majority of my city navigating involved taking this scenic route to avoid the drunkenness of downtown. This is not to say the seawall was without its share of crazies, but the majority of people were sane, sober, and friendly.


If there were ever a place to jog, the seawall is it. Running a length of 14 miles the seawall wraps around city streets, harbors, beaches, and parks. It connects downtown with Granville Island, Stanley Park, and Kitsilano Beach – all of which assumed top ranks on my list of Vancouver favorites. The scenery ranged from snowcapped mountains, stretches of ocean, and miles of forest.

Avoiding the gym when travelling is one of my specialties, and Vancouver was no exception. But the seawall was my saving grace, that and pushing a two year old in stroller. At the end of each day, I pulled up Google Maps, plotted out my walking route and calculated the distance. No wonder my feet were aching, thanks to the Seawall I was averaging 11 miles a day. Some days I hit 13 miles. I secretly was wishing there was a half marathon exclusively for walkers; I would totally wipe out the competition.

I often find that my most memorable travel experiences are the ones spent mingling with locals, engaging in their everyday activities. It is in this space that we learn the most and acquire the greatest sense of place. Navigating the seawall introduced me to the diversity of people who call Vancouver home. These are the folks I might have never rubbed elbows with had I remained in the vicinity of the touristy Robson Square. No matter where your travels take you, step off the well trodden tourist path, you’ll be surprised what new discoveries await.

Posted by Jennylynn 21:33 Archived in Canada Tagged foot

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