It’s easily one of the cleanest and greenest cities I’ve ever seen. The mayor rides his bike to work, plants fruit trees in the parks for residents to enjoy, and even holds the endearing nickname of Mayor Moonbeam. Beautiful ocean views surround most of the city proper, with snow-capped mountains towering over the region’s perimeter, and a constant fresh ocean breeze.
If you’re going to be in BC, Vancover is a must-see. There’s a lot to note about Vancouver and the lower mainland, but spectacular coffee, craft beer, budget eats, the ocean, and unlimited amounts of fresh air make this an excellent stop on any Canadian roadtrip. Around the city, you’ll find thousands of fun things to do, but I’ve compiled ten of the most epic adventures, which all happen to be my personal favourites.
Ten Epic Vancouver Adventures
- Check out the gigantic black squirrels (seriously, they’re huge), and old-growth cedars of Vancouver’s iconic Stanley Park. There is hours of trails, a lake, owls, woodpeckers raccoons, beavers, blackberries, restaurants and playgrounds.
- Walk for hours along the magnificent Seawall, picking up coffee (or ice-cream if it’s August) from each part of the city you walk through.
- Taste-test as many beers as you can at any or all of the micro-breweries on Main Street.
- Cruise all the budget eats. Pizza from Broadway, Vegan cupcakes from Commercial Drive, Bento box from Denman, Gyros from Granville street. It’s hard to go hungry if you’ve got a pocket full of change.
- Hunt for treasure at Vancouver Flea market on Saturdays or Sundays. Guitars, antiques and classic video games!
- Catch a show at The Rio Theatre in East Vancouver. This is a spectacular place to catch a blockbuster, live theatre show, monologue, or a midnight showing of a classic. Did I mention they serve alcohol, and that it’s not uncommon for people to come dressed up as their favourite characters? Five stars.
- Stare into the eyes of a Beluga at the Vancouver Aquarium. Although these type of places are looked down upon, the Vancouver Aquarium prides itself on it’s rescue-first operation. That means that most of these creatures are happy, and would have died if they had been left in the wild. This place is truly good for people of all ages. There’s loads to look at, and you can get an amazing view of these animals, and learn something while you’re here.
- The Richmond Night Market is truly a spectacle. The lights, the great food, the thrill of the treasure hunt. Get your iPhone repaired on the spot by a guy in a tent, delight your tastebuds with 50+ asian delicacies, pick up a few (fake) Gucci handbags for Christmas presents or get yourself some classic AirForceOne’s.
- Have a picnic on Granville Island. I had some amazing experiences down here over the years. Pick up some top-notch bread, some incredible European cheese, some hot mustard, and some rootbeer, and you’ve got yourself a picnic! There are some great docks you can spread out on and catch some sun off the water. Beware the seagulls. They’re pesky.
- Have yourself an awkward and awesome adventure on Wreck Beach. Home to many nudists during the summer, this epic beach is located on the UBC grounds, and is definitely one of the greatest beaches around. This beach has it all. Really. Aside from the vast expanse of light, soft sand, you can buy organic sodas, joints, guitar lessons, and much much more from any of the pantsless salespeople cruising the beach for unsuspecting tourists. If you’re not comfortable with unapologetic nudity, this place probably isn’t for you, but for anyone else, this place makes for a fantasic summer afternoon, with beautiful ocean views, a rainforest backdrop, and all the organic sodas money can buy.
In the years I spent in Vancouver, I was lucky enough to experience each and every one of these adventures, and truly feel these are top-shelf activities for any fun-lovin’ roadtripper who finds themselves in the city of Vancouver.