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Trip to Vancouver BC


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  • Trip to Vancouver BC

    I'm taking a much needed mini-vacation from May 17-21 to Vancouver BC. I'm the type of person where I like to have my itinerary all planned out before I go, so I can make the most of my time while I'm there. We are planning on going to Grouse Mountain and maybe the aquarium. Are there any other cool things to do or places to eat that I should know about? How's the night life in Vancouver?
    Dance like no one's watching -- Sing like no one's listening, and work like you don't need the money.

  • #2
    It's a nice place in the day time, but make sure to travel in a pack at night. My guys at Fort Lewis call the place "The Canadian Amsterdam" for a reason.
    Watch your drinks (As in take them to the bathroom with you, only accept them from waiters/Barkeeps.) and stay under the streetlights and you'll have a good time

    Will Coy

    Kicked out of canada in 1999. it was totally not my fault...
    "It's a thankless job but I have a lot of Karma to burn off."


    • #3
      Vancouver Police Called Abusive in Crackdown

      Dateline: Vancouver, British Columbia - 5/8/2003

      Salt Lake City Tribune

      VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- A police crackdown on drug dealers in downtown Vancouver is causing more harm than good for the neighborhood's AIDS and hepatitis epidemic, a Human Rights Watch report says, asserting addicts are being driven away from needle-exchange programs and other services.

      Called Operation Torpedo, the crackdown has gotten some pushers off the streets, "but at a high cost," said the report issued Wednesday by the New York-based rights group. Its findings were echoed by health care workers, activists and addicts in the city, known for its progressive drug policies.

      "The flouting of due process in this crackdown is shocking for a country with Canada's strong commitment to human rights," said Joanne Csete, director of the HIV/AIDS Program of Human Rights Watch. "Vancouver risks making its HIV/AIDS crisis much worse, and it's already the worst on the continent."

      Illegal searches and arrests, excessive force and other abuses committed by police on addicts not accused of dealing drugs have worsened the already dire situation in the 15-block neighborhood on Vancouver's east side, which is frequented by more than 5,000 addicts, the report said.

      "These actions, which violate Canadian and international human rights guarantees, contributed to driving drug users underground and away from lifesaving HIV prevention and other health services," it said.

      Vancouver police denied officers abuse their power, saying the crackdown is aimed at dealers, not users.

      "This whole report lacks credibility," Inspector Doug LePard said Wednesday.

      "There's no reason for addicts to be worried," he said. "We're focusing on disorder, and we're focusing on traffickers."

      Still, health workers fear a new wave of HIV and hepatitis C cases in Vancouver, which already has the highest infection rate in North America. The British Colombia Center for Disease Control puts the AIDS rate among area addicts at more than 30 percent, while well over half the intravenous drug users are infected with hepatitis C.

      Mayor Larry Campbell, a former police officer and coroner, won last year's election on a platform that included the promise of safe injection sites as part of a "four pillar" drug policy involving treatment, prevention, harm reduction and enforcement.

      So far, Operation Torpedo is the only visible step taken, with regular police patrols on foot and in squad cars.

      On streets littered with orange needle caps and stinking of urine, users and those trying to help them complain of police intimidation or worse.
      "I've seen a guy down and three cops on top of him with a knee in his forehead," said Chantal Brunet, 37, who called herself a recovering heroin addict.

      At a corner near a known heroin market called "the shooting gallery" by locals, two men handed out needles, clean water and condoms for the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users, a local support group.

      "It's going to increase the human tragedy tenfold," the group's president, Rob Weppler, said of the police operation.

      Needle distribution has dropped by half and condom handouts to prostitutes are down 60 percent since the crackdown began April 7, according to Weppler. That will fuel the AIDS and hepatitis spread in the area, he said.

      With Vancouver a finalist for the 2010 Olympics, there are fears of a broader crackdown before the July decision by the International Olympic Committee. When an IOC evaluation team visited in March, it was kept far from the downtown east side.

      PHOTO: Two Vancouver police officers Saturday patrol the city's east side, which is frequented by more than 5,000 addicts. The crackdown, called Operation Torpedo, has removed some pushers, but a human-rights report says the policing is doing more harm than good. (Richard Lam/The Associated Press)
      I'll post, You argue.


      • #4
        I was there for a couple days two summers ago. I enjoyed eating in the Chinatown section and I also had a great meal at an Irish pub downtown. But I can't remember the names of any of the restaurants. sorry.
        Caution and worry never accomplished anything.


        • #5
          As a frequent visitor to Vancouver I can offer these tips:

          1. Vancouverites are rather aggressive drivers. Pretend you're in LA and you'll do just fine.

          2. If you're driving across the border, make sure to fill up on the US side. Fuel is more expensive in Canada, even with the exchange rate. That's why you'll find Canadians lining up for gas in US border towns like Blaine.

          3. If you can, AVOID using the I-5 "Peace Arch" crossing in Blaine...the wait can sometimes be 2-3 hours long. I recommend exiting at Guide Meridian in Bellingham (I forget the exit number, it's the road adjacent to the Bellis Fair Mall), and driving north to the Aldergrove crossing. I've never waited more than 5 minutes there, and the last time there was NO wait whatsoever, even on a Friday afternoon. It also has direct access to the Trans Canada Highway, which takes you into Vancouver.

          4. The Lower Mainland has a high rate of auto-related theft. DO NOT leave any valuables in your car, even in your hotel parking lot. If you're renting a car, make sure to peel off any stickers that identify it as a rental. If you can, do the same with similar license plate frames, and stick them in the trunk.

          5. Don't venture east of Main St on foot, particularly at night. You'll end up in the notorious Downtown Eastside neighborhood (see nickg's post). By car is OK, but keep the doors locked when passing through here (Hastings St is the major arterial).

          6. Canada has a GST refund program for visitors. If you plan on buying a lot of things to bring back home, definitely look into this. You can mail the form back for your refund, but the easiest way is to stop at a participating Duty Free shop before crossing back (note: the one at the Peace Arch is no longer there...the nearest one is at Aldergrove). Note that each receipt has to have a minimum value of CDN$50, and your total purchases have to be at least CDN$200.

          7. Most of Vancouver's nightlife will be along Robson Street in downtown Vancouver. Check out the link to see a list of stores, restaurants, clubs, etc.

          8. Speaking of food, if you like Chinese you MUST go to Hon's at 1339 Robson Street.

          PM me if you have any further questions.


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