Monday, 24 February 2014

Expat life in…Vancouver

Vancouver is one of Canada’s most popular cities and there’s no denying its popularity with expats, perhaps on account of its outdoor, green lifestyle and high quality of life – which are bound to help you to adjust to your new life abroad!

Image source: Creative Common/Thom Quine

Get fit
Vancouverites are fit. They love to exercise and eat well. It’s a passion rather than a choice. The area is very popular for expats and tourists who are looking for an outdoor lifestyle inspired by exercise and adventure. Jogging or walking along the sea wall is a very popular past-time. Stanley Park is also a great place to kick start your day or weekend with some exercise.  Vancouver enjoys a temperate climate and it boasts a vast range of natural landscapes so you can exercise or spend your down time on the many beaches, rivers, lakes and mountains.  Boating is a common sight and for the more daring among us, white water rafting when it has been raining or in spring melt is available. On the other hand, if you want fun in the snow, head to Whistler for skiing or snowboarding.

Dream Green
Green living is popular in Vancouver, clear from its aspirations to be the greenest city in the world by 2020. Over 90% of electricity is produced with renewable sources and the city is encouraging greener jobs and businesses. Of course, consequently, pollution is much less of a problem here than in most other major world cities and Vancouver is especially well known for how clean its streets are.

Transport
Getting around a new city can be daunting but it is exceptionally easy here. The transport is convenient—it includes a bus network, a sea bus operator, ferries, trains and a sky train. The trip to Granville Island on the AquaBus has been recommended by many expats and tourists alike for its scenic route, plus when you arrive on Granville Island you can peruse the market and shops, eat in the restaurants, buy delicious local produce or even take a trip to the theatre.

Image source: Creative Common/Ice-Babe

Things to do in Vancouver:
1.       Climb the Grouse Mountain (a heavy sweat-inducing hike), or jump on the airborne gondola for an easier way up this dramatic feat of nature.
2.       Cross Capilano Suspension Bridge—but if you’re partial to vertigo, you may not want to look down!
3.       Have lunch and drinks at English Bay, and spend the afternoon overlooking the beach.

Have you ever lived in Vancouver? What has it done to your lifestyle? Share your ideas here with other expats: https://expatexplorer.hsbc.com/hintsandtips/

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