Vancouver, Canada is where we live. It is a relatively new city, even though it is still about 137 years old. Founded in 1886, and like any city, it has a chequered past, as one group of people after another passes through the fledgling community over the decades. Some came to dismantle the forests around the city and its islands. Some emptied the seas of fish. Some built businesses that still stand today. And there is some history here, mostly in the legends of the indigenous people who populated the city long ago, many now relegated to distant villages.
Where once there were dozens or even hundreds living here, now metro Vancouver has a estimated population in 2023 is of 2.71 million, and covers city area of 2,882.68 sq km (1,113.01 sq mi.) It ranks as the third populous city in Canada. As the city grows larger and more diverse, there will be, of course, change. Some of this change has the potential of pushing the original city into the shadows.
One of the largest populations within Vancouver is the Asian Community. They have been in this area for many decades. In 1858, Chinese immigrants began arriving from San Francisco as gold prospectors in the Fraser River valley, and Barkerville, BC, became the first Chinese community in Canada. By 1860, the Chinese population of Vancouver Island and BC was estimated to be 7,000. Now metro Vancouver has a estimated population in 2023 is of 2.71 million, and covers city area of 2,882.68 sq km (1,113.01 sq mi.) It ranks as the third populous city of Canada. As the city grows larger and more diverse, there will be, of course, change.
Vancouver Island is less busy, more relaxed and far less populated. Many Vancouverites flee Vancouver just to get away from the roar of the crowd and to experience a place that is still Vancouver, but still not. But even Vancouver Island grows by leaps and bounds, and that worries some. One of which is Canada’s oldest Chinese temple. Victoria is home to this historic building. It’s been a fixture of the community for over a hundred years. But now it is facing some challenges.
Founded as a refuge for Chinese people facing racism, the house of worship has fallen on hard times. It is in dire need of repairs and seismic upgrades, and organizers are struggling to raise the nearly half-million dollars to save the historic building. Watch the video above (courtesy of CBC Vancouver) to understand how thriving cities must often face uncomfortable decisions.
Vancouver (and Vancouver Island) are authentic Asia. Sometimes English is not readily spoken.
We really like the Days Inn by Wyndham Victoria On The Harbour. Clean, simple, fun. Click here.
Click here for a fun Victoria: Half-Day Hop-On-Hop-Off Sightseeing Bus Tour
You’ll likely take the Ferry between Vancouver and Vancouver Island. Click here to book tickets.