The Pacific Northwest’s cool waters are teeming with colorful, fascinating sea-life—and the recently expanded Vancouver Aquarium brings these abundant creatures into easy view. Most popular are the beluga whales—including Tiqa, born in 2008—in the Arctic Canada exhibit (the underwater beluga gallery can even be booked for sleepovers). Rivaling the belugas in popularity are the adorable sea otters—whose wild cousins you might actually see in nearby Coal Harbour. The facility includes two floors of exhibits, with both indoor and outdoor viewing areas for critters such as the belugas and Pacific white-sided dolphins.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.