Vancouver is the third largest city in Canada. It’s located in British Columbia on the Southwest Coast. There are almost two and a half million people in the larger Vancouver area, while the city itself has a population of over 600,000 people. The city is a diverse multi-cultural center, home to immigrants from many countries, mainly from the Far East. To illustrate, less than half of the residents speak English as their first language, and about one quarter of them speak Chinese as their first language.
Vancouver regularly stars at the top of various “most livable city” lists, in which quality of life is measured in parameters such as infrastructures, crime rates, health services, environment, education, culture, etc. If all this isn’t enough for you, the city also has beautiful beach, mountain and woodland views (and even an excellent ski site about 130 kilometers to the north), alongside well-kept gardens and municipal parks, and convenient services for tourists.
Vancouver’s known history starts about three thousand years ago, when aboriginal villages existed here. There are even archaeological findings that indicate people lived here some nine thousand years ago. The white man first came here in the late 18th century: the first was the Spanish Jose Maria Narvaez, who was followed one year later by the British George Vancouver (apparently you don’t always have to come in first). In 1861 a large group of American settlers came here following the gold rush, and twenty years later the completion of the railroad brought new residents and commercial and financial opportunities to town, and significantly strengthened it.
The weather is Vancouver is much more moderate than in other parts of Canada. The best months are July to September, when the average temperature is about 20° C (68° F). However in the winter months, January to March, the average temperature is only 2° C (35.6° F). Its proximity to the ocean moderates the temperatures, and there’s hardly any snow (only in the mountains around the city), but there are long periods of rain (usually light) with clouded foggy weather.