Vancouver is one of the most international city in the world with 52% of the population not having English as their first language! Last week we told you about the Indian community and the celebration of the Diwali festival, today let’s learn about the Chinese community in Vancouver!
The Chinese Canadian population makes up 18.2% of 2.5 million people in Vancouver and are the largest visibly minority group. Though, the term “Chinese” represents a mix of the dialects used by different Chinese communities such as Cantonese or Mandarin.
The first Chinese immigrants came to British Columbia for the Fraser Canyon Gold Rush of 1858 and played a prominent part in building the Canadian Pacific Railway. This railway is still in use today and passes through the dangerous Rocky Mountains.
Flash forward to the 1990s, many Chinese people from Hong Kong decided to move to Canada in anticipation of the return of being a British Colony to being part of China. Moving here when I was 7 in 1998, I can definitely identify as part of this group and recognize myself as both Canadian and Chinese.
In Vancouver, the previous generations of Chinese immigrants used to settle mainly in Chinatown. While Chinatown remains a symbol of the Chinese community, many people have decided to love in other neighbourhoods such as Burnaby, Richmond and West Vancouver. Still, this area remains full of thriving businesses and history.
The Millennium Arch, a gate that signifies the start of this neighbourhood is the biggest in North America and contains the beautiful Sun Yat-Sen Garden that is for sure worth a visit.
You might also be surprised to find out that the best Chinese food, isn’t actually in China or Hong Kong, but that Vancouver was awarded to have the best Chinese food in the world in 2010 by Conde Nast Traveller. Take advantage of the many restaurants available from traditional Chinese restaurants offering dim sum and seafood to more trendy restaurants such as bubble tea cafes to dessert places.
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