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Sunday, November 15, 2009

The INTERNATIONAL BUDDHIST TEMPLE

TEMPLE GARDEN
This is the garden of the International Buddhist Temple in Richmond, B.C. I've written in more detail about it a year ago in my travel blog, but this past week I paid another visit there so I could do a new story for The Vancouver Guide. This has to be one of the most beautiful places to go on a field trip, yet a great many people have never taken the time to visit here.

This temps is an exquisite example of chinese palatial architecture. The statuary, mosaics, gardens, Worship Halls and many various Buddha shrines are simply amazing. I once heard a man who had been to China say that he thought it was more beautiful than the big temple in Beijing.
MAGNIFICENT GOLDEN BUDDHA
If you want to spend a quiet afternoon meditating and relaxing in lush, exotic surrounds, be sure and go there. It's free, and it's open every day.
ENTRANCE TO THE MAIN GRACIOUS HALL

You can read more details about the Temple in The Vancouver Guide, or in my earlier Blog.

The Temple is open 9.30 to 5:00 pm daily. www.BuddhistTemple.org


BUDDHA WITH OFFERINGS

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HERITAGE SITES IN VANCOUVER


This is the beautiful stone Gothic style Christ Church Cathedral in the heart of Vancouver's downtown. It was built in the late 1800's but in recent years underwent impressive renovations. I attended a concert there recently and was awe-struck by the beautiful interior of the Church.
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Another area of town where there are heritage buildings include this cenotaph at Victory Square. The tall building behind it is the Dominion Building. The cenotaph stands on what was the park grounds of Vancouver's origianal Court House where men signed up to enlist in the Great War. Now the cenotaph marks this place of Remembrance and every November 11 there is a huge ceremony and wreath-laying at Victory Square.
One thing about being a 'Roving Reporter', I learn a lot about my city's history. I had not known the story behind the cenotaph and Victory Square until I went on this field trip to take photos of the wreaths. Then I began to do some research about it and learned that the first stake marking the roads of the new settlement of "Granville" (Gastown) which became the city of Vancouver, was located just at the one side of the the Square. This used to be the heart of Vancouver's financial and legal district but now the area has become somewhat run-down and attempts are being made to gentrify it.




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2010 WINTER OLYMPICS:Venues

This is the outside of the Richmond Oval, the venue for speed skating for the 2010 Winter Olympics. It's an impressive building and I was lucky enough to get a little tour. Unfortunately you're not allowed to publish photos of the interior which is quite spectacular, with a ceiling made of pine-beetle wood. The day we were there, a lot of school kids were skating on the oval. You can still skate there until November 31, and then it will be closed til after the Winter Olympic Games.
Last week they lit up the Olympic sign in Burrard Inlet. Quite a spectacular and impressive show with a backdrop of the North Shore mountains. It's located in Coal Harbour right off the new Convention Centre where the media will be stationed during the 2010 Winter Olympics.
This was my first look at the new convention centre at night, all lit up. You used to be able to walk all around the permimeter of it but now it's fenced off for Olympic security and you can only view it from the street. You can see the Olympic rings just off shore and the lights of North Vancouver.



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FINNS SLOUGH

This is a field trip I went on to visit Finns Slough, a heritage settlement on the Fraser River near Steveston B.C. where a group of Finnish fisherment settled at the turn of the century. There are still several of the family members living in houseboats and shacks at the Slough

You can walk across this board bridge, which is made so the board slats could be removed to allow the fishing boats to enter the slough.
The little shacks can be reached along a narrow path on the other side of the bridge. The residents want Finns Slough to be named a designated Heritage Site. It's an usual place and worth keeping. You can read more about it in The Vancouver Guide
www.planeteyetraveler.com/travel/north-america/vancouver





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STEVESTON, B.C.


These are photos of a field trip to Steveston B.C. where there are many heritage buildings including the old boat building sheds, canneries, and remains of the settlement of Japanese fishermen.

Today Steveston has become a trendy residential area and a good place to eat seafood, or to buy fresh seafood right from the fishermen.
You can read about it in The Vancouver Guide, www.planeteyetraveler.com/travel/north-america/vancouver




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