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You'd be hard pressed to find more arable coastal land in British Columbia than Delta. In fact, if you were to look in the dictionary under fertile...
Delta originally served as home to the Tsawwassen indigenous peoples of the Coast Salish First Nations who fished the Fraser River and farmed the bountiful lands south of its banks. First sighted by Europeans in 1791, the area was settled some seventy years late by two farmers, Thomas and William Ladner. Originally a fairly isolated community, the area that is comprised of Ladner, Tsawwassen and North Delta is now a populated, developed centre, thanks in part to Highway 99, the Alex Fraser Bridge, the George Massey Tunnel (connecting the area to Richmond and Vancouver) and the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal (connecting the mainland to Vancouver Island). Today, Delta's borders are delineated by the Fraser River to the north, the United States to the south, Surrey to the east and the Strait of Georgia to the west. And while the Agricultural Land Reserve preserves the majority of this land for agricultural purposes, there's more to the 364 square kilometers that make up the largest municipality in the Greater Vancouver Regional District.
A Nineteenth Century fishing village that was named after the area's earliest settlers, Ladner now includes a sizeable suburban sprawl. Originally called Ladner's Landing, this northwest corner of Delta is also home to numerous small islands. Westham Island in particular is a popular destination with a bird sanctuary (housing bald eagles and owl species) and numerous organic berry farms. But the most popular area Ladner Village, is a heritage community north of Ladner Trunk Road that features open-air cafes and shops along a wide, picturesque boulevard. At the centre of the activity is the Delta Museum and Archives - an institution keeping the rich 1930's heritage of the area alive. Come check out the town clock, one of the oldest on the Lower Mainland! For distance walkers, Ladner is home to two large malls, but if fresh air is more the ticket, numerous parks along the canals provide all the West Coast fresh air one could want... and some of the best fishing.
Looking for something to keep the kids happy? Ladner has two swimming pools as well as a skating rink and a gymnasium. And don't be fooled -- this rural community has a surprisingly full calendar. Every Spring, Pioneer May Days include a parade, a carnival and numerous other events. Summer Sundays bring the bi-monthly Ladner Village Market that includes live music and food plus fresh local produce and crafts. A popular event all over Vancouver, this market attracts thousands of visitors a day.
Adjacent to Ladner, the suburban community of Tsawwassen in Delta's Southwest is known as the sunniest place in Metropolitan Vancouver. The name itself translates as facing the sea, an apt label with a large part of Tsawwassen's population of 25,000 residing in the luxury waterfront homes that dot the beautiful coastline. Oceanic industry is a large part of this community. The Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal (the largest of its kind in North America), services Vancouver Island and the smaller Gulf Islands while the Robert Banks Superport handles much of the area's ocean-going trade. Tsawwassen is about fun, too. Check out Splashdown Waterslide Park, the only facility of its kind in Greater Vancouver with slides ranging from kid-friendly to downright hair-raising. And for a dryer time, the F440 Grand Prix Race Track is right next door. But adults need to have fun, too. Scott Road, otherwise known as 120th Street, is Delta's commercial centre featuring everything from groceries stores to restaurants to boutiques - a great place to give that credit card the exercise it deserves!
The middle-class neighbourhood of North Delta is home to 52 thousand residents (almost half of Delta's population). The area is popular for its parks and recreational facilities. Burns Bog is 10,000 acres of natural wetlands - the largest urban peat bog in North America. Watershed Park also has a variety of walking and biking trails. Don't let bad weather keep you inactive. The new Sungod Recreation Centre has both swimming and ice skating facilities and the area's oldest facility, the North Delta Recreational Centre has an ice rink, curling sheets and an outdoor pool. And of course, the area offers some fine places to swing a club. Kings Links Golf Course By The Sea is surrounded by breathtaking views of the Coastal Mountains as well as the San Juan Islands and the breathtaking Mount Baker and provides some of the most British golfing outside of Britain. Delta Golf Club is a Masters length golf course that has been providing affordable green fees and pleasant rounds since 1975.
Come check out the flatlands. The Ladner boys weren't wrong.