A vibrant city, Vancouver is a cosmopolitan and international city that reflects the various cultures, ethnicities and nationalities that comprise it.
Selected as a Top 100 World Destination in Trip Advisor’s 2008 Traveler’s Choice Awards, Vancouver offers travelers a mixture of an outdoor adventure paired with the amenities that make it a world-class destination.
Even more than the sights it offers, we think that Vancouver’s greatest attractions are its vibrant neighborhoods. You can taste Peking Duck or try some Dim Sum in Chinatown. Alternatively, you can take a stroll along Robson Street and visit one of its many cosmopolitan shops. If there’s time, you can take a break for a coffee or a beer at a Yaletown micro-brewery.
Explore the cobblestone streets of historic Gastown. Wander through booths as your mouth waters while shopping at the Granville Island Market. There are so many things to explore throughout Vancouver. Just take it one neighborhood at a time.
Start in the Downtown Area near the sights, museums, dining and entertainment options. Located just East of the West End, you can make your way down to the water to see Coal Harbor and the view of the North Shore.
Heading over toward Canada Place, you can then wander through Chinatown and Gastown. From Gastown, you can hop on the SeaBus from Waterfront Station in order to reach Lonsdale Quay and North Vancouver.
From there, you can visit one of the many food or craft booths at the Londsdale Market. For the more adventurous type, catch a bus from Lonsdale and explore nature by taking part in a variety of outdoor activities on one of the North or West Vancouver Mountains: Mount Seymour or Grouse Mountain in North Vancouver; Cypress Mountain in West Vancouver.
Returning to the city core downtown, you’ll take a jaunt over Lion’s Gate Bridge from North Vancouver (by car or bus). On the way, you’ll see Stanley Park situated at the tip of the peninsula. Acres of forests, parks, trails, gardens and beaches make up Stanley Park–a must-see while in Vancouver!
Stanley Park reaches on one side to Coal Harbor, along Denman Street and to the other side to English Bay. On a sunny day, take a seat on the lawn, in the sand or in an outdoor cafe overlooking English Bay. Enjoy any meal, snack or beverage from one of the many inviting spots along Denman Street and English Bay. Complete the stroll with shopping along Robson Street or inside one of the indoor malls located in the West End or downtown area.
You can continue your journey another day along Davies Street for a sample of casual and simple-life urban living. This is the place to grab lunch or a snack, from here you’re ready to explore Yaletown, along Sunset Beach and under Burrard Bridge.
Once satisfied with your West End and Yaletown Exploration, venture over to Granville Island for a beer at the Granville Island Brewery or catch a show at the Vancouver TheatreSports League. Cross the Burrard Bridge by foot, bus or water taxi and enjoy the evening on Granville Island at one of the many seafood restaurants or grab something quick at the Granville Food Market, a definite stop.
Next, head over toward the UBC (University of British Columbia) to do a hike through one of its many trails through the forests that dominate the peninsula along the university campus.
Just before or after visiting the UBC or its trails, don’t forget to make a pit stop or full-day exploration through Vancouver’s most popular neighborhood—Kitsilano! Boasting an assortment of parks and beaches you can’t go wrong here! Located just across the Burrard Bridge between Burrard Street and toward the UBC Campus, Kitsilano is nestled among some of the greatest shopping, dining and strolling streets: West Broadway, West 4th Avenue and a few more spots like Cornwall Ave. and Yew Street. If it’s summer, it’s time to hit a Kitsilano Beach: Vanier Park, Jericho Beach, Locarno Beach, etc. A great bike and running trail connects the beaches.
Moving beyond Kits, head back up Broadway toward the Burrard Bridge and the Granville Bridge. Shopping awaits you at 4th Ave. and Burrard and then along South Granville Street, the street that you most likely will take to and from the airport. For more shopping and laid back dining options, visit Main Street dubbed SoMa or South Main, starting at Broadway all the way to 30th Street.
A local favorite, blocks and blocks of shopping heaven exist along Commercial Drive. Situated between Venables Street and Broadway at the Skytrain Stop, Commercial Drive is a destination for shopping at organic markets, at fruit and veggie stands, vintage shops, gift shops, etc. Formerly known as Little Italy of Vancouver, “The Drive” not only houses the Italian restaurants, cafes and bakeries but also a menagerie of eateries reflecting cuisines from around the globe in a non-pretentious way. Sample Ethiopian, Indian, Greek, Thai, Jamaican food as well as Southern BBQ, vegetarian and Mexican! Another developing area nearby is an ethnic shopping area at Nanaimo and Hastings Street.