This week’s I Heart My City contributor is Mehnaz Thawer, a communications professional in Vancouver, British Columbia. Mehnaz has lived in Vancouver for 20 years — ever since her family moved there from East Africa. Here are her recommendations for what to see and do in the city she knows and loves so well. Catch up with Mehnaz on her personal blog or on Twitter @mehnazt.
Vancouver is My City
The first place I take a visitor from out of town is downtown Vancouver to experience the gorgeous waterfront, amazing cobblestone streets in Gastown, brilliant architecture (including the Marine Building and the steam clock), and a blossoming street-food scene.
When I crave coffee I always go Caffe Calabria on Commercial Drive. It has an Old-World charm that reflects the neighborhood’s Italian roots — and great pastries and coffee, too!
To escape from the rain I head to Vancouver Public Library. Beside the books, there are always interesting things going on.
If I want to enjoy excellent classical music I go see the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.
For complete quiet, I can hide away at Jericho Beach.
If you have to order one thing off the menu from Vij’s, it has to be tamarind-marinated steak.
MacLeod’s Books is my one-stop shop for great used books, one-of-a-kinds, and first editions.
The most random thing about my city is that our airport is kind of gorgeous. There’s lots of local art and the lighting is lovely.
In my city, an active day outdoors involves biking, hiking, jogging, and rollerblading around the Stanley Park Seawall. If it’s wintertime, it involves skiing or snowboarding on one of the many local mountains.
For live music, check out listings for the Commodore Ballroom.
You can tell if someone is from my city if they wear rain boots.
In the spring you should go out and photograph the Cherry Blossom Festival.
For a great breakfast joint, try Twisted Fork Bistro on Granville Street.
If I want to splurge, I have high tea at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver.
The best way to see my city is on public transit or by foot.
If my city were a pet it would be a really energetic dog.
If I didn’t live in a city, I’d live in London (but I would miss the mountains).
Passionate discussions about bike lanes could only happen in my city.
My city should be featured on your cover or website because we have a bit of everything — oceans, water, mountains, and great people!