Cruise ship season has begun here in Vancouver, and yesterday there were several cruise ships in port with 20,000 tourists disembarking to visit Vancouver. I happened to be downtown while they were here, and I overheard several folks remarking on what a gorgeous city Vancouver is. I felt like saying to them, "You ain't seen nothing' yet. Wait until you get away from the downtown area..." So, for those of you who are planning a trip to Vancouver, or just a stopover during a cruise, I thought I would show you some of the must-see places you should visit while you're here. My favourite spot in the Lower Mainland is the lighthouse at Point Atkinson, which was named by Captain Vancouver in 1792, apparently for a "particular" friend of his. I wonder who she was.
The park is exquisite but even more beautiful is the view from the lighthouse. I never get tired of it. The park surrounding the lighthouse is 185 acres of old growth rainforest with ancient trees 200 feet tall and 500 years old. In 1994 Point Atkinson Lighthouse was designated a National Historic Site. A few years later the light keepers were phased out and it is now automated. As well, Point Atkinson is part of the territory being negotiated in treaties between First Nations and local, provincial and federal governments to settle longstanding disagreements about land, resource, social, and citizenship rights. ~~ West Vancouver Museum and Archives
The drive from downtown Vancouver to Point Atkinson is about half an hour, along gorgeous Marine Drive, a winding road that has been compared to the famous drive between Monaco and Cannes. Some of the most expensive homes in Canada are along Marine Drive, selling for between $10,000,000 and $20,000,000. That's a little beyond my price range, but the view is free. However, If you don't get the opportunity to drive out to Point Atkinson during your visit here, your cruise ship goes right past it as you leave Vancouver and sail off into the sunset.