Lives in Vancouver, Canada
Since Jul 2009
25-34 year old female
Educational sites, Aquariums
Islands, Neighbourhoods, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Natural History Museums
Equipment Hire, Kayaking & Canoeing, Stand-Up Paddleboarding
The best way to see the Vancouver waterfront up close and personal is on a bicycle. Rent one for the day on Denman Street and from there, you can see everything! The seawall wraps around Stanley Park, passes along English Bay, under the downtown bridges along False Creek, all the way to the Telus World of Science and ending up at Granville Island.
How you want to ride the seawall is up to you. You can meander through Stanley Park first and then do the sea wall. You can bike just around the Park or all the way around False Creek. It's up to your time constraints, energy level, physical limitations or weather. It's all up to you!
Stanley Park is the gem of Vancouver. You'll probably already be well aware of the highlights everyone wants to see, like Prospect Point, the Seawall, the Vancouver Aquarium, the hollow tree, Lost Lagoon, or the several beaches. On an especially warm day there's an amazing pool at Second Beach. What you choose to see depends on your idea of a good time.
You don't need to have children in tow to appreciate the Vancouver Aquarium. It has an amazing variety of sea creatures indoors and out, as well as a tropical habitat with butterflies, sloths and other species. This would be a nice place to stop during the heat of the day or a rainy period to grab a hot dog, stroll through the exhibits and watch the beluga show.
You don't need to spend a lot of time at English Bay but it's a nice place to pull your bicycles over, grab a log and catch your breath for a few minutes. There's always a lot of quality people-watching and if you head back here at sunset, you won't be disappointed. After a quick rest, hop back on your bikes and hit false creek!
The Aquabus runs from several points along False Creek. If you tire out on your bicycle and want a short cut back to Denman street at any point along your travels, find an Aquabus station. If you make it all the way around False Creek to Granville Island, grab an ice cream or donut and sail back across the inlet in just a few minutes. At day's end, just ride down Denman and you'll be back to the rental place in 10 minutes. No need to backtrack the entire seawall.
End the day with dinner at Cactus Club. It's a local favourite with delicious appetizers, entrees and cocktails. The new location at Canada Place is right on the water and has amazing views of the North Shore mountains, landing float planes, departing cruise ships and a fabulous sunset.
What's not to love about Granville Island? Hop on transit or walk to the Aquabus and arrive at Granville nice and early to beat the crowds. Wandering through the shops and markets will take hours if you let it. There are so many local artists and handcrafted products, an area dedicated to children, and plenty of outdoor spaces to kick back in the sun and enjoy a latte. Buy a broom, tip a busker, grab a large bouquet of flowers and watch for dive-bombing seagulls along the water. The food court has an awesome selection of items from around the world for when all that window shopping takes its toll on your tummies.
Just before you leave Granville Island, make sure to stop here for a tour and sampling of their beers. Seasonal beers include Raspberry ale!
Back downtown, walk the two blocks east of the Waterfront transit station and you're in Gastown, named one of the most stylish neighborhoods in the world. Take advantage of the shopping and city streets because tomorrow is all about nature. Clothing boutiques, souvenir stores, cafes and more line the Gastown neighborhood. Make sure to take your photo at the iconic steam clock and enjoy the historic architecture. Head on back down here at day's end for tons of nightlife!
If you're a bakery fanatic, this place is your mecca. Don't worry if it takes you half an hour to decide what to choose. Everything looks amazing and you really can't go wrong with anything. So get one of each and call it a day!
Make sure to head to Tuc for dinner. This place is must when you're looking for simply scrumptious food mixed with a fun atmosphere. You'll love it. The crispy bacon and egg will change your life.
Today is all about nature and what the North Shore has to offer. Take the Seabus to Lonsdale Quay directly from the Vancouver Waterfront Station downtown. From there, buses will take you where you need to go. This suspension bridge, as opposed to the more popular Capilano Suspension Bridge, is free to the public and has an extensive trail system. So grab your hiking shoes and spend the morning exploring this rainforest-like climate and foliage.
Just up the road from the suspension bridge is the Ecology Centre. It's informative and worth a quick visit.
Head back to the bus and make your way to Deep Cove. This part of the North Shore will knock your socks off. You're probably hungry from your hike so grab some fish and chips, eat them on the beach and enjoy the view before your next adventure of the day.
Renting a kayak or canoe is the best way to see Deep Cove and all of the natural wonders it has to offer. From your perch just above the water you'll likely spot harbor seals, sea otters, purple starfish along the shorelines, jellyfish and crab. From the departure point, you'll see an old barge off to the far left of the cove. Here female harbor seals like to chill out and nurse their babies. Dads can get territorial so stay silent and watch from a distance. The trailhead directly across the cove from your departure point is a great place to aim for. It offers beautiful views and a pebbled beach to stretch your legs. This is seriously the most calming way to spend your afternoon. If you still have energy after all this action, try the Quarry Rock hike in Deep Cove for spectacular views before heading back to Lonsdale Quay.
This hidden gem of a restaurant is right in the lobby of the Pinnacle Hotel, just a block from the seabus terminal. You won't regret ending your day of adventure with dinner here. Everything is tasty and service is efficient. It will give you plenty of time to reminisce on all of the fun you packed in to just three days in Vancouver!