Vancouver isn't just one thing. It's many things to many people, and it pulls off this balancing act with grace and elegance.

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The weather starts to turn and you get the itch. The itch to put all cares aside for a couple of days and explore and experience one of the most dynamic cities in the world. Vancouver isn’t just one thing. It’s many things to many people, and it pulls off this balancing act with grace and elegance.

From shopping and strolling, eating and drinking, hiking and enjoying nature’s splendor… Vancouver has the ability to inspire and relax, excite and rejuvenate all at the same time.

Whether it’s meandering cobblestone streets and soaking up the unique energy of Gastown, stopping for a morning coffee and decadent chocolate treat at the socially conscious East Van Roasters, or exploring the outer reaches of Coal Harbour until you’re surrounded by a forest of old-growth giants in Stanley Park, you can create a visit that makes you never want to leave – and envy those who don’t have to.

So how should you spend a couple of days?

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There are some local favorites. For those who feel a good time means indulging in the local cuisine and imbibing local brew, there are few better places to do it than Vancouver. And there aren’t many better ways to start a day in Vancouver than at local treasure Medina Cafe.

Settle in at a table and go traditional with waffles that will make you forget your calorie-counter app, or mix it up with a brunch fricassée or paella that will make you promise yourself to start cooking more adventurous breakfasts at home (you won’t … but that’s why places like this exist).

With a full belly and some walking to do, trot yourself over to Robson Street, an epicenter of shopping that rivals the best of Madison Avenue and Rodeo Drive.  You can give your credit card a workout, or happily window shop and make your way over to one of the best cafes  in the city – conveniently clustered here for the shopping bag-carrying weary.

There’s Yaletown to explore, with its gleaming glass, penthouse condos and yachts worthy of a gawk or two, and restaurants and bars aplenty. The West End has its niche with an eclectic mix of festivals, ethnic eateries, shops, beaches, music and patios.

The charm of this beautiful downtown area is that you don’t have to decide what you want. The proximity and walkability make Vancouver a place you can just stroll and feel at home.

But if it’s nature (and exercise) you crave, put on some comfortable footwear and jog (or walk) the Seawall. The Seawall was begun in 1917 and the loop around Stanley Park was finished in 1980. It has since been extended and now encompasses more than five miles of the entire 13.7-mile oceanside trail wrapping around Vancouver’s coast.

You can easily enjoy a night in Vancouver on your way up to slopes, and you certainly should come to town for a concert, Wine Festival, or activity of your choice. The American dollar is strong right now, making this a great time to extend your stay at one of the incredible downtown hotels for all budgets, likes and interests.

Use the exchange-rate savings toward an extra night or two at the hotel and go enjoy nature … or waffles and a couple of bloody marys. Either way, there’s never been a better time to scratch that itch and come see what many already know. There are few places in the world better than Vancouver to inspire and relax, excite and rejuvenate ­– depending on what mood you’re in, of course.

Visit Vancouver and experience what it’s like to Live Like a Local. Learn more at beVancouver.com. Find great deals to make the trip even more fun.