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Fireworks on Canada Day

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Mumbai, India
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Fireworks on Canada Day

We are boarding a cruise from Vancouver on July 2, and will be staying at a Vancouver hotel on the 1st. We subsequently discovered that July 1 is the Canada Day, and there will be parades and fireworks in the city. If we stay in a hotel close to the airport, and want to go out to see the fireworks and other festivities, would it be possible to take a taxi? Would the streets be blocked? Or is it better to pay twice the price and stay in a hotel in the downtown? Which would be a good place to watch the fireworks from?

Vancouver BC
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1. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

The fireworks are at Canada Place beside the main cruise ship terminal. There are many vantage points around Canada Place and the Vancouver Convention Centre. The Canada Line subway from the airport terminates there so you could keep your airport hotel and commute by subway. I would always recommend a downtown hotel before/after a cruise just to enjoy what this city has to offer. If budget is your concern the Met often has very good rates for a solid 4 star hotel close to everything. http://www.metropolitan.com/vanc/

Vancouver, Canada
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2. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

The so-called "airport hotels" are, with one exception, in the City of Richmond, with shuttle service to the airport. The Canada Line (rapid transit) runs down No. 3 Road from Richmond into Vancouver and ends downtown. It's about 25 minutes from the Brighouse terminus in Richmond to the Waterfront terminus downtown. Here is the link to our public transportation system -

www.translink.ca

There are several stops in Richmond. The Brighouse terminus is about 10 - 15 minute walk from the hotels along Westminster Highway. If you are looking at specific hotels, let us know and we can tell you how far they are from the nearest Canada Line station.

By the way, because Canada Line is a statutory holiday, the fare per person each way would be $2.50 (at current rates - no idea whether any increases are being considered for 2011)..

Edited: 17 November 2010, 12:27
Vancouver, Canada
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3. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

You could quite nicely stay at a hotel near the airport. Canada Line is very convenient and takes 25 minutes to go right downtown to Waterfront Station which is 1 block from Canada Place and your cruise ship departure area. The last train from Waterfront Station to YVR Airport (Bridgeport is 3 short stops east of the YVR last stop.) leaves at 1:05 a.m. so you would have plenty of time to catch a train after the fireworks. And you would not be alone! on the train.

Canada Line travels from the airport east-west along the south side of the Fraser River and crosses the River at the foot of Cambie St in Vancouver. The station that would work best for you would be Bridgeport Station because a number of Richmond hotels will have a complimentary shuttle to that station. Also the River Rock Resort is located right at that station so you might look into that.

http://www.riverrock.com/hotel/

There are a number of other hotels that are quite comfortable in Richmond and you could check the hotel reviews on the Richmond Forums.

On Canada Day, you would pay the rate mentioned: $2.50 pp. And as July 2nd is a Saturday and you decided to take the Canada Line to your ship, you would also pay $2.50 pp. Because the line services the airport, there is lots of room on the train for luggage.

If you arrive at YVR early in the day, you could go into town and make a day of it. It is a statutory holiday here, so many offices and banks will be closed, but shops will be open for business. As will the tourist information office, almost directly opposite Canada Place.

If you do take Canada Line to your cruise ship on July 2nd, you will have to walk about 100 m to get into Waterfront Station and then you would want to cross the main hall and go down to the Skytrain platform, walk across that to the west and up to Canada Place. There are elevators. All but the last 75 m is indoors.

Edited: 17 November 2010, 13:56
Vancouver, Canada
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4. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

Remember to purchase fare savers at the airport before you get on the Canada Line as you will not have to pay the extra fare for your suitcases. Most of the major hotels in Richmond are quite close to Canada Line, so you could easily take the line downtown to watch the fireworks. Remember they will not be as spectacular as the July 4th fireworks. Check to see where your cruise is leaving from as it can leave from either Canada Place or the Ballantyne PIer. You will need to take a taxi to the latter.

Vancouver, Canada
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5. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

These fireworks are pretty under-whelming in my opinion. They are nothing like the Fireworks competition held in English Bay at the end of July. That said you are going to be here so enjoy them. As for the parade, again it's a short, small parade with about 50 entries. It doesn't have a high profile as yet since they have only had 2 so far and I who live downtown had never even heard of it until your post. Not trying to dismiss it all but trying to set your expectations of the parade and fireworks to a more realistic level IF you thought they were both going to be big affairs.

Vancouver, Canada
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6. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

Just a couple of points of clarification for what has already been mentioned.

Faresavers for Canada Line: there is a surcharge of $5 per individual ticket from the closest 3 stations to the Airport (YVR Station, Sea Island, Templeton and Bridgeport). But it's not because of suitcases. It's because people arriving at YVR are a captive audience to make money from!! Luggage or not, a single fare toward Vancouver must pay the surcharge. Faresavers is a book of 10 tickets and on Canada Day and the Saturday, you would need Faresavers for 1 zone only. They are available for purchase in the Domestic Terminal, about a 5-8 minute walk from where you will arrive. If you are away from the airport, they are also available from newstands, Shoppers Drug Mart, London Drugs, Safeway (grocery stores). If there are only two of you, you would each need to take 5 transit trips over the two days to use the tickets. I am always forgetting about the $5 surcharge, so you would pay $7.50 to go INTO Vancouver, but $2.50 to get back out to Richmond. In any event, it's not going to be a huge expense if you pay individual fares.

I believe Ballantyne Pier has not been used for cruises since the depression of the cruise business out of Vancouver over the last couple of years.

Vancouver-by-the-Sea
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7. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

Agree that Canada Day in the city is underwhelming and bland-if it's something different you want head to Steveston Village in the suburb of Richmond.

http://www.stevestonsalmonfest.ca/

Mumbai, India
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8. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

Thanks guys for your advice. It will be very helpful.

Vancouver, Canada
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9. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

I want to echo Sam's suggestion. When you said you would be staying in Richmond, I thought to myself that Richmond is probably as good or better than Vancouver for throwing a good party and you might want to explore the options closer to your hotel.

However, I would also suggest that if you are boarding a cruise, then it seems cumbersome and awkward for you to be based out in Richmond. People seem to be able to find good hotel deals downtown, which would put you much closer to the cruise terminals and allow you to experience the vibrancy and fun of Vancouver's downtown.

10. Re: Fireworks on Canada Day

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