The best city to live in
Vancouver is deservedly ranked among the World’s Top-10 cities to live in. The Economist Intelligence Unit makes annual rankings and evaluates 140 cities based on 30 factors of stability, health, culture, environment, education and infrastructure. In the most recent report for 2019. Vancouver is ranked #6.
Vancouver ranks third (out of 221 cities) on Mercer ‘s list of the best cities on the planet in 2019. Important criteria for this ranking are: safety, education, hygiene, healthcare, culture, environment, recreation, political and economic stability, public transportation, and access to goods and services.
More than 40% of Vancouver’s population are immigrants, the majority of whom came from Asian countries. The first Chinese began arriving in the city during the Gold Rush of the mid-19th century. Later, they came for the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Soon the population of Chinese workers incresed so much that the government was forced to impose an additional tax on them. And from 1923 to 1947the immigration from China to Canada was banned. The population of the local commune was halved.
The revival of Chinatown began in the 1970s, when Vancouver once again was in need of labour force and investors. The flow was mostly from the developing Hong Kong, and in the 1980s and 1990s people even started to call the city Hongcouver.
According to statistics of Worldpopulationreview about 30% of Vancouver residents are ethnic Chinese.
The most expensive housing in Canada
Here is a less exciting fact about Vancouver: until recently, housing in Vancouver was considered to be the most expensive in Canada (ceded the title to Toronto).
In Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey’s the least affordable housing ranking for 2020 Vancouver came second again, losing only to Hong Kong.
The average home price here is a little over 1 million CAD.
Home of the famous California roll
The famous California roll was invented in Vancouver. Japanese Chef Hidekazu Tojo moved to Canada and noticed that customers were skeptical about raw fish and seaweed dishes. Then he came up with the idea of making rolls “inside out”: rice on the outside and stuffing on the inside. It was against the tradition of Japanese cuisine, but the customers and especially the visitors from Los Angeles liked it. That’s how we got the name “California”. In Tojo’s signature restaurant in Vancouver, the roll can be found on the menu as “Tojo.”
READ MORE: How to Make a Real California Roll at Home
Vancouver got this nickname for a reason. In North America, the city ranks second in TV series production and third in feature films production (after Los Angeles and New York).
Canadian tax incentives and a good dollar exchange rate began to attract major American film studios in the 90s. Over time, local film crews became more experienced and the infrastructure developed. Mountains, ocean, forests, beaches, skyscrapers. In addition, companies were attracted by the mild climate of Vancouver and the small time difference with Los Angeles.
Today, BC’s film industry brings more than $3 billion/year to the economy, and it’s easy to see celebrities on the streets of the city. By the way, anyone can get a paid job as an extra by filling out an application at an agency (such as BCF Casting or Hollywood North Extras).
You can check what interesting films or shows are being filmed in the city now on this web-site.
World’s longest uninterrupted waterfront path
Vancouver’s Seawall and Waterfront isn’t just a 9-kilometre walkway in Stanley Park. Its length is 28 kilometers from the Convention Center to the Kitsilano Beach! The Seawall is divided into a pedestrian zone and a bicycle lane. The construction began in 1917 and some works are still in progress. Today Vancouver’s Seawall is the world’s longest uninterrupted waterfront path.
READ MORE: What to see in Vancouver? Top 15 Best of the Best
Home of Greenpeace
Another interesting fact about Vancouver is related to the well-known environmental organization Greenpeace. In the mid-20th century America conducted nuclear tests off the coast of Alaska, which could have caused earthquakes, tsunamis, and negative environmental impact on the entire region.
Several courageous activists from Vancouver organized Greenpeace and in 1971 sailed towards Alaska on a rusty boat. In support of their mission, well-known American and Canadian musicians played a benefit concert for 16,000 people in Vancouver.
The ship never reached its destination. The bomb was detonated. But the fearlessness of the Greenpeace activists attracted public attention and led to the mass protests.
Today, Greenpeace is the world’s most effective and largest environmental organization with 55 offices in different countries.
Alaska’s largest cruise port
Vancouver’s cruise terminal, Canada Place, is considered to be the fourth largest in the world. Each year it welcomes over 800,000 passengers and 240-270 ships, mostly headed to Alaska. As the number and size of cruise ships has increased over the years, the terminal is increasingly being rated as congested. It was designed for old ships and for less capacity.
The season lasts from April to late October and plays an important role in the region’s economy.
Greenest city in North America
Vancouver has been consistently ranked among the ten most eco-friendly and green cities in the world for many years. The government and citizens actively support all environmental initiatives.
In 2009, for example, there was a plan to make Vancouver the greenest city in the world. “TheGreenest City 2020 Action Plan called for better water and air quality, more parks, more cycling and walking lanes, less solid waste in landfills, support for local farmers, and several other important targets. Have all these targets been achieved over the years? Rather yes than no. Even though Vancouver still lags behind the Scandinavian countries.
By 2040, the city will try to get rid of non-recyclable garbage –“Zero Waste 2040”
Administration also plans that everyone switch to electric cars by 2040. Today, the province reimburses up to $8,000 for the purchase of a zero-emission vehicle.
The friendliest city in the world
According to 2.5 million. subscribers of the popular international travel magazine Big 7 Travel, Vancouver named the friendliest citiy in the world. And this is completely accurate. Locals will always help a tourist (or any passerby) to get out of trouble. People here are always polite and tolerant. It doesn’t matter if you have different colored eyes, green hair, prosthetics, black skin, extravagant clothes. Walk as you like, just be polite and don’t disturb others.
Vancouver is home to the one of the largest LGBT communities in North America and hosts an annual Pride Parade every summer. Communities of different nationalities hold carnivals and festivals (the Chinese New Year alone is absolutely amazing!) And it’s worth to mention, perhaps the most scandalous event, Cannabis Festival. 4/20. By the way, the organizers reimburse the city for all expenses and make generous donations.
What interesting fact about Vancouver did you like the most? What other unusual facts do you know about this city? – share in the comments.