In certain areas of the Stanley Park Seawall Promenade you will find local artist seeling carvings, paintings and other local crafts.
I watched some guy carve for a while and I never bought anything but if I did it would have been here. You could tell the things were local and more authentic as apposed to the tacky touristy gift you will see in most gift shops.
Wendy has a stall at the Granville Public Market.
It's a toss-up whether you'd call what Wendy Murphy does "art" or "craft" but however denominated, her things are quite extraordinary. Although she has a wide selection of animals -- mostly dogs and cats, but I also saw mice, rabbits, chickens, horses, sheep -- she is quite willing to work from a photograph (one presumes also from a live model, but who carts their animals up to Vancouver?) to provide you with a totally unique sculpture or wall hanging. I'm giving her card to my kids and suggesting that this would make an ideal Christmas present!
What to pay: The wall hanging "portraits" run about $250.00.
What to buy:
The film is called: Born into Brothels, and it is one of the most touching documentaries anyone has ever filmed. Zana Briski and Ross Kauffman are the makers of this incredible work, It concerns a small group of children in Calcutta, who's mothers are prostitutes, it deservedly won an oscar award. Briski, a photographer, gives each child a camera and teaches them how to take pictures, causing them to look at their world with new eyes. Humorous and heartfelt, the film reveals the power of art and how beauty can be found in the most unlikely of places. Winner of ten major film festival prizes, including the 2004 Sundance Audience Award for Best Documentary. The people in New York, handling my order had a few problems, with their orders and had a few minor complaints from disatisfied customers, but I was completely satisfied with my order. Because of complaints by some people, I was offered the DVD for the same price as the CD, so now I own the DVD.
Born into Brothels:
Description: Pre-Order: CD Soundtrack from Born into Brothels. To be shipped after Sept. 1st
Price (each): $18.00
Item Total: $18.00
Shipping Charge: +$2.00
Grand Total: $20.00
What to pay: $20.00
Start with a big red caboose. Fill it with a vast assortment of animal paraphrenalia, from the totally ludicrous (fur coats) to the useful (flotation devices for sea-going pets) to the simply fun (mechanical dragonflies to tease cats). I came away with a raincoat for my dog -- something I swore I'd never purchase, but which has already seen a lot of service -- and some adorable cat treats, but I could easily have spent several hundred dollars because the selection is really astonishing, much of it breed-specific. Even my non-pet-mad friends seemed to enjoy the visit and I'm sure kids would go crazy for the caboose itself.
What to buy: Can't find dog jewelry elsewhere? It's here. Darren Monette, the owner, is happy to held with special orders if you need something really extraordinary.
What to pay: Prices were a bit higher than your standard big-box store, but a lot of the goods were unusual.
Whenever I visit (or live in) a place for an extended amount of time I always like to know the favourite places to shop. When it comes to grocery shopping in Vancouver, THE place to go to for the best selection & prices is one of the many Superstores.
These are huge warehouse-type stores that are just wonderful to shop in. I always end up spending more than I had set out to!
Around Vancouver there are many Superstore locations so just check out their website to find the one closest to you.
What to buy: I like everything at Superstore except for the fruits & vegetables. The quality of this produce seems to be poor at times. So for these items I prefer going to Granville Island.
What to pay: Please be aware that they only take cash, debit cards, and Mastercard.
After entering the Departures Lounge at YVR airport, I found that most of the shops were already closed (this was only 6pm!). There were more shops over in the US Departures lounge, but I was in the International Departures section and was not allowed to cross over.
What to buy:
My mother-in-law specifically asked for Golden Bonbon nougat sweets when she heard that I was going to Canada. I had never heard of them before, but on checking them out online, I found out that they are manufactured in British Columbia, and as I was going to Vancouver, BC, I agreed to buy them for her.
When I got to Vancouver, I found the nougat sweets everywhere. There were plenty on sale in the souvenir shops along Robson Street and in the airport. However, you'll get ripped off if you buy them at these places. These shops were charging about $2 for a tiny little pack. Luckily, I found some in a supermarket, on special offer, a 500g pack for $9.99 (RRP $14.99). Bargain!
There are many shops between Cambie and Main Street, along West Broadway (Vancouver), which sell outdoor gear.
What to buy: You can buy all kinds of outdoor gear such as clothing, camping equipment, cycling equipment, backpacking, skiing and snowboarding gear, bikes, etc.
What to pay: Varies from store to store
Vancouver has Robson Street, Granville Street, Gastown, Yaletown and Commercial Drive.
Vancouverites can shop with the best of them. Whether you're searching for designer labels or kitschy retro furniture; ceramic mugs or Cartier jewelry; hand-blown glass sculptures, salt-water taffy, Italian shoes or organic green tea-Vancouver has it all.
La Bicycletta - high end road cycles and gear, located in the 200-block West Broadway (by Cambie). Road & Tri stuff only.
Mighty Riders - 'Ed's shop'. Specializes in cyclocross stuff. Whatever you've broken, Ed can get it working again. Also on Broadway, about 000 or West 100 block. A little road, a little mountain, a lot of courier specials.
Dizzy Cycles - good location in Kitsilano on West 4th, about 2 blocks West of Burrard. Road & Mountain.
Campione Cycles - Specialty is their own brand 'Cramerotti' cycles. Lots of Campy stuff. On W. 8th, just East of Burrard. Only road and tri.
Bicycle Sports Pacific - on Burrard just on the downtown (North) side of the Burrard St bridge. The only place in town to get cannondales. Road, tri and mountain (and lots of clothing).
Mountain Equipment Co-op. Carries a limited selection of both road and mountain components, but if they have it, it's the best price in town.
Diversity within BC's Okanagan/Similkameen wine regions vary broadly throughout the valleys, as do the nationalities of their winemakers. Look for wine styles reminiscent of those found in California, Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
British Columbia adds a 17% sales tax to purchases; however, you can claim reimbursement if you are a foreign citizen. To do that, the sum of purchases must be more than CAN$200, and each check over CAN$50. You MUST have the receipts stamped by Canadian customs at the airport when you are leaving, and since there will be a long line, budget at least 45 min for that. Afterwards, fill out the form available in almost every hotel, and mail it along with those receipts to Canada.
Through out the city you will find Cugan Cigar shops. If you live in the United States, it is always nice to smoke one legally. I bought a small box of Cohibas in Gastown.
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