Today was our last day in Vancouver and the last day of our Pacific Northwest/Alaska mega trip. Unlike previous mega trips, we didn’t wait until the morning of the last day to pack and balance weights in our bags. We mostly accomplished that last night. But that didn’t stop Ryan from neurotically waking us up early to finish the task.
Afterwards we went to the meet friends at the Vancouver Aquarium. Holly and family have frequented the aquarium often and guided us through the exhibits in the right order to get the most out of our visit.
We started at the manta ray touch pool. Some of the rays were comfortable getting near human hands, some were more skittish and would flap away. And sometimes, an over-excited ray would flap away near/at the surface of the water and splash people nearby. Rachel was one of those lucky people… and she got soaked!
Next we saw a short show featuring a rescued pacific white sided dolphin and false killer whale.
No aquarium visit would be complete without Rachel trying to photograph jellyfish. She got a few great images including:
Ryan got to see his favorite aquarium staple: penguins. The Vancouver Aquarium featured several endangered african penguins.
Next we stopped for lunch and got good seats for the beluga whale show. We got to see a pair of these last week in the Turnagain Arm, but we were going to fast to get decent pictures. We had much better luck today.
Belugas are very bulbous whales, so they didn’t perform the usual tricks one might expect from their more lithe dolphin cousins. But they did like to spit water (not hitting Rachel), and do a tail splash (which did splash Rachel) 🙂
Other highlights from the aquarium include sea otters and lots of local fish that go great with bagels and cream cheese.
After the aquarium we walked around Stanley Park. This large urban park has wooded areas that feature how the landscape looked prior to European settlement. Some of the highlights here include a totem pole garden.
And great views of the city and ocean.
We spent the rest of the day exploring the park and city centre. Presently we are at the Vancouver airport, about to begin our journey home.
Today’s weather: High 77, Low 61, Sunny
Sunrise: 5:09am, Sunset: We’re watching ‘breathtaking’ one right now
Total steps (as of typing): 12,607