I promised to write this piece when I finished Where To Live Part 1, and I haven’t got round to it. Am I subconsciously keeping the North Shore to myself? Do I want to tuck it into my pocket and keep it away from the crowds? Stupid really, as this is where you can find the real crowds on a bright day like today. The North Shore is home to Grouse Mountain, the Cleveland Dam, Capilano Suspension Bridge, Lonsdale Quay, Mount Seymour and of course, Cypress Mountain, the scene of the ingenious creation of an Olympic ski venue using bales of straw and snow trucked in from more predictable mountains. It is the start of the road to Whistler and the place you go for the iconic photograph of the whole of the Lower Mainland (on a clear day, obviously). So, three ski resorts, ocean side or ocean view property, easy access to downtown and Stanley Park, great villages and shopping – what’s not to like?
North Shore is actually made up of North Vancouver and West Vancouver. North is the slightly poorer relation, a little more grungy in places but still beautiful, and still out of the price range of many. West Van is where you go for the multi-million dollar mansion on the hillside, with easy access to your yacht in the marina below and your Whistler cabin up the road. West Van is very popular with the UK ex-pats, especially those who sold their UK property and took advantage of the excellent exchange rate a few years back. I think the appeal is the small village feel of many of the areas, like Deep Cove, Edgemont and Lynn. When I cross the Second Narrows Bridge, I feel like I am coming home – it’s the same feeling I used to get landing at Vancouver Airport. I know that I will live on the North Shore one day (one day when I don’t need to commute over 3 rivers to get to work) – I’ll meet you in Edgemont Starbucks for coffee.