This morning I saw a 24 hour guide to Vancouver in Design Sponge and it reminded me that I never posted photos from last summer’s trip to visit my best friend in Tacoma/Seattle and our trip to Vancouver. While I impatiently wait for this summer’s vacation, here’s a look back…

Seattle from West Seattle

After getting in from the airport, we drove over to West Seattle where there’s a beautiful view of downtown, the ferries, and the Space Needle.

Mount Rainier

Back in Tacoma, we enjoyed an evening walk along Commencement Bay and a gorgeous Mount Rainier sunset.

Maury Island

The lighthouse at Point Robinson Park on Maury Island, WA.

car graveyard

We came across an old car graveyard driving around Vashon Island, WA.

Harbour Green Park

After a day in Seattle, we hit the road to Vancouver. The weather was perfect so we walked over to Harbour Green Park and took in the water, mountains and seaplanes.

Chinatown

We spent our first day getting settled in and getting a feel for the neighborhoods, including Chinatown.

totem poles

The next day, we rented bikes and rode around the seawall at Stanley Park. It’s a gorgeous 5.5 mile trail that goes around the entire park on the waterfront with interesting sites, including these totem poles, along the way.

Third Beach

Third Beach, one of the many beaches in Stanley Park accessible from the seawall.

water taxi

After riding around Stanley Park, we decided to keep our bikes and ride down to Beach Avenue and Sunset Beach Park. From there, we locked up the bikes and spent the rest of the day riding the False Creek Ferries, cute little water taxis, to different parts of the city.  On a hot day, it was the perfect way to get around!

breakfast

The following morning, we were up early to drive to Whistler, but first we stopped at 49th Parallel for some coffee and scones–they also have awesome donuts.

Cleveland Dam

Driving out of Vancouver on the Sea-to-Sky Highway (Highway 99), it was amazing how quickly we were in the mountains and surrounded by incredible scenery. Our first stop was the Cleveland Dam at Capilano River Regional Park in North Vancouver.

Porteau Cove

Then we visited Porteau Cove which was so peaceful and serene.

Shannon Falls

And we stopped by Shannon Falls to see the waterfall–and also saw lots of bear warnings!

suspension bridge

Then we arrived at our main destination–the Sea-to-Sky Gondola in Squamish. The gondola ride to the top of the mountain was so much fun and once we were at the top, we walked across the suspension bridge and hiked some of the trails.

Sea-to-Sky gandola

The view from Summit Lodge of the Howe Sound fjord.

mountains

We hiked over to the Chief and took in the mountains.

the Chief
A panoramic view of the Howe Sound fjord and mountains from the Chief.

gandola view

Unfortunately, after a couple hours of exploring, we had to head back down to continue our drive. The view from the gondola was truly spectacular.

olympic rings

Then we made one last stop in Whistler before heading back to Vancouver. There wasn’t too much to see in the summer, but the Olympic rings were cool!

bokeh harbor

We happened to be in Vancouver for the Celebration of Light–an annual festival where three countries compete over the course of a week in a musical fireworks competition. After getting back from Whistler, we didn’t want to battle the crowds that had been gathering all day at the beaches, so we walked over to the Granville Bridge and got a great spot to watch the show from.

fireworksChinese garden

Before heading back to Tacoma the next day, we stopped by the Dr. Sun Yat-Sun Chinese Gardens, a beautiful Asian garden right in the middle of the city.

Tacoma sunset

After a very long drive back through Seattle and another day in Tacoma, it was time to say goodbye to the west coast!