One of the stops we made from our Hop-On/Hop-Off tour of Vancouver was near Granville Island. Granville isn’t really an island; it’s a peninsula. You walk over to this shopping district from the H-O/H-O stop that services it by passing beneath Granville Street Bridge and along a marina on False Creek.
I love photographing marinas, for some reason. Perhaps it’s the vertical features of the masts, or maybe it’s just that I enjoy seeing boats.
I was lucky on this particular day, as the sky held some wispy clouds in the distance yet the marina was sunlit.
You’ll know you’re at the right spot when you’re abreast the marina and just before Granville Island when you see this neon signage below the overpass:
Granville Island is basically a shopping and restaurant district. If you’re into sightseeing and travel photography then it’s not going to give you a lot of opportunities for either. Better for both these endeavors is quaint Gastown.
You may think Gastown is just another 19th Century “gaslight” district. Indeed, this impression is reinforced if you do an internet search using the terms “Vancouver”, “gaslight”, and “district”. But Gastown is not a gaslight district, and the name originates from something entirely different.
Gastown is named for a bar owner who opened up his establishment in this area back in 1867. John “Gassy Jack” Deighton got his nom de guerre because he was a huge fan of bean burritos. Just kidding. Gassy Jack’s nickname actually derived from his frequent tall tales and his loquacious nature. There’s a statue dedicated to Gassy Jack on the corners of Carrall and Water, near the former location of his Deighton House saloon.
By the way, notice that clock in the photo above? That is a rare, steam-powered clock. It’s quit the attraction. Here’s a closer photo of this engineering marvel:
Built in 1977, the Gastown Steam Clock actually “chimes” in steam whistle. Here’s the clock in action, chiming first for 9:00 P.M., and then for 10:00 P.M.: