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Vancouver

What’s Happening in 2014: The TED Conference moves from Long Beach, California for the first time and does so for its 30th anniversary. The 1,200 tickets, priced at $7,500 each, are all sold out and the attendees expected to arrive include some of the biggest names on the planet. One or more Clintons may be here, as might Googlefounders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, as might Tesla mastermind Elon Musk. It is hoped that the TED Conference results in a boom in business activity in British Columbia’s largest city.
Why You Should Go: The afterglow of the 2010 Winter Games hasn’t been quite as bright as Vancouver anticipated. Hosting an Olympics in the middle of the worst recession in generations has curtailed the tourism frenzy mega-events usually deliver. Hotel occupancy rates aren’t as high as expected and tax breaks elsewhere have caused an exodus among the film industry, a vital economic and tourism contributor. But the city continues to improve, with its Jack Poole Olympic Plaza in downtown and Olympic Village, the former home to the world’s elite winter sports athletes, in the False Creek area now complete and laden with restaurants, cafes, and shops. The city’s dining scene is exceptional and cultural events keep growing as artists turn their attention to the Commercial Drive and south Main Street neighbourhoods.
Vacay.ca Columnist Tricia Edgar says: “It was fitting that when my daughter and I decided to explore Stanley Park on a lovely day this spring, one of the first sounds we heard was the little whinny of an eagle — a small sound for such a large and beautiful bird. In this lovely park beside Vancouver’s urban core, the city’s natural beauty meets the urban edge, and the results are intriguing for wildlife lovers. Stanley Park is 1,001 acres of forest that extends into the Burrard Inlet, the water that separates Vancouver from the North Shore mountains. It’s one of Vancouver’s most iconic views: looking up from the park onto the snow-covered peaks, or looking down from the peaks to the harbour and the ocean. Nestled right beside Vancouver’s densely populated West End, the park has a beautiful temperate rainforest, urban beaches with mountain vistas, and a seawall that bridges the two.”