2010 Olympic Cauldron – Vancouver
Since hockey legend Wayne Gretsky lit the Olympic cauldron after the 2010 Winter Games opening ceremony, it’s become a powerful symbol of hope for sports fans and athletes during this nail-biting fortnight.
Down in Coal Harbour, next to the new convention centre, I gazed up at the enormous green-glass structure with four brightly-burning flames. This Olympic flame has travelled such a long way to get here, starting in Greece before embarking on a 106-day torch relay across Canada, through over 1,000 communities.
So it was no surprise to see huge crowds paying homage to the cauldron. In line for the viewing platform I got chatting to Dave and Angela from Yorkshire, UK. Apart from all the Olympics action in Vancouver, they also visited Victoria in BC. “We loved pottering about in Victoria and even had tea at the Fairmont,” Angela told me. “But the ferry over there, through all the little islands was just beautiful. We even saw seals on the rocks sunbathing!”
Afterwards I decided to walk right through Coal Harbour to the Saxony House in Stanley Park. There’s always so much happening along this stretch, from floatplanes swooping down to land in the sea, to luxury yachts, charter boats and whale watching zodiacs plying the water. You can even rent bicycles from the Seawall Adventure Centre to tootle round a little quicker.
Restaurants also offer sea views, across to North Vancouver. Choose from Mills Marine Bistro (with its splash park for kids), great seafood at Cardero’s or the upscale Lift that sits on stilts over the water.