Having spent three years in Vancouver I’ve come to know this city very well. There is something quite special about Vancouver, where mountains meet the ocean.
While it rains an awful lot, Vancouver does turn on a beautiful summer. Regardless of the season you will find Vancouverites outside being active rain, hail or shine.
This metropolitan city does the outdoors, food and relaxation all really well. Here is My Guide to Vancouver.
There is something to do any time of year on Grouse Mountain whether it be skiing/snow boarding and snow showing in the winter or viewing the grizzly bears, bird and lumberjack shows in the summer. Consider doing the grouse grind hike up the mountain which is one of Vancouver’s most challenging hikes.
Stanley Park would have to be a Vancouver favourite. This 1000 acre park has much to do, including the Vancouver Aquarium, walking trails, Totem Poles and in the summer, watch local artists paint under the large trees in the park.
The oldest area of downtown Vancouver, Gas town features many historic buildings, souvenir shops and also the famous steam clock.
The newest part of downtown Vancouver features many great restaurants. Yaletown also features large parks along the seawall where you will see locals running and playing with their dogs.
Visiting the seaside neighbourhood of Kitsilano spending time at Kits Beach, shopping and eating in the many restaurants are among my favourite things to do in Vancouver in the summer.
Once an industrial area, Granville Island features gourmet food Granville Island Public Market.
Wander through the Olympic Village of the Vancouver Winters Games of 2010.
Vancouver loves their sports teams, but like most Canadians, ice hockey is probably the favourite. See the Vancouver Canucks play at Rogers Arena.
Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden
Located in Chinatown, Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden is a little pocket of Chinese heritage in Vancouver’s Chinatown.
Robson Street – Four streets worth of stores in the outdoor Robson Street. Some of my favourites include Zara, Lulu lemon, Victoria Secret.
Pacific Centre – Located on the corner of West Georgia and Granville Streets, the Pacific Centre contains an Apple store, H&M, Club Monaco, Coach, Sephora and Banana Republic.
Where to stay
Airbnb – My suggestion for a comfortable and affordable stay in Vancouver is to rent out an apartment through Airbnb. Airbnb is a website which contains thousands of homes and apartments for rent by their owner, and they are everywhere. You can rent out an entire home, just a room or even share a room. Airbnb provides an alternative to hotels and gives you the flexibility to stay in residential areas of the city and live like a local! Sign up for free here.
Weekend trips from Vancouver
Victoria – just a short ferry ride away, take a weekend trip to Victoria. Read My Guide to Victoria.
Whistler – A 2 hour drive from Vancouver, spend a weekend skiing or snowboarding in Whistler. The Sea to Sky Highway is also an impressive drive.
Vancouver Island – Coming soon – My Guide to Vancouver Island
The Okanagan – Coming soon – My Guide to the Okanagan.
Bike around Stanley Park
Skytrain from Airport – Take the skytrain from the airport for less than $5 to get downtown
Groupon – in the summer, Groupon often offers 2 for 1 on hop on hop off tours.