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Frankly, I would recommend you go on bus tours because you will see a lot more than by trying to do it yourself. In Vancouver you will certainly be better off on a tour as it will be able to take you around Stanley Park, out to the university, around Gastown, maybe up Grouse Mountain, etc. The Monterey area is pretty and has the large aquarium and close by the 17-mile drive which takes you through a nice housing area and the various famous golf courses (Pebble Beach, etc.). If you can incorporate a visit to Carmel on any offered tour, that is a very cute little town and well worth a visit.