There’s no shortage of cool things to do in Vancouver, that’s for sure. We’ve compiled a list of 9 of them to help you decide what to do and where to go in this coastal city. From massive night markets to brewery tours, there’s always something to do here. So, without further ado, here are 9 cool things to do in Vancouver.
1. Sip on International Wines
Mark your calendar for the last weekend in February, when you’ll want to check out the Vancouver International Wine Festival. This event has been praised for being one of the best food and wine festivals in the world, and it’s right in your backyard. Every year, more than 150 wineries from the theme region are highlighted at the event. Grab your tickets early; they go fast!
2. Enjoy Stanley Park
Perhaps the crown jewel of Vancouver, Stanley Park is a place for all. It was the first park in the city, and continues to be the largest one, too. Check out the 400-hectare West Coast rainforest, ride the Stanley Park train, visit Canada’s largest aquarium, and explore the kilometers of walking, biking, and hiking trails throughout the park. Don’t forget to check out the famous Seawall and enjoy the view of the water.
3. Attend the Chinatown Festival
Every year, this two-day event takes over Chinatown and draws locals and visitors alike to the city streets. Enjoy live entertainment, walking tours of the neighbourhood, a talent show, carnival games, food vendors, and plenty of authentic Chinese food. Don’t miss next year’s Chinatown Festival!
4. Go on a Craft Brewery Tour
Vancouver is home to more than 20 craft breweries, and what better way to enjoy them than with a brewery tour? Canadian Craft Tours offers a $75 tour which includes a van shuttle to 4 different breweries. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous and want to get a little workout in the process, try this self-guided bike tour of Vancouver breweries.
5. Spend the Day on an Island
If you haven’t quite quenched your thirst yet, head to Granville Island Brewery on Granville Island. Their 10-beer flight of samples for just $18 should do the trick. Once you’ve had your share of brew, stroll over to the Granville Island Public Market, a local favorite for fresh produce and made-to-order food. The market boasts vendors selling hand-crafted artwork, more than 10 different restaurant options, cafes, and a few bars.
6. Eat Your Way Through Historic Gastown
Gastown has always been on the cutting edge, so it’s no surprise it’s become known for its trendy restaurants, cocktail lounges, and boutique shops. Meat & Bread, although its main menu items are sandwiches, is one of the trendier spots in Gastown. For something a little more refined, try the locally-sourced, farm-to-table menu at Wildebeest. Calabash serves up Caribbean cuisine with a side of live music. After dinner, head downstairs to the lounge and enjoy local hip-hop, reggae, and blues artists as they sing the night away.
7. Cool Off at Kitsilano Beach
Whether you’re taking a dip in the massive, saltwater pool or swimming in the English Bay, you’re bound to find some relief from the heat at Kitsilano Beach. Catch a panoramic view of Vancouver, soak up some Vitamin D, and hang out with friends at this ever-popular summer spot. You can usually catch food trucks around Kitsilano Beach, but there are always staples like The Boathouse or Local Kitsilano.
8. Get Cultured in Davie Village
Known as Vancouver’s gay neighbourhood, Davie Village is a historic and diverse place full of life. From gay-owned businesses to gay-friendly events, this hood has it all. You’ll notice that rainbow flags and colorful storefronts line Davie Street, and locals hit the restaurants here when they want anything from tacos to gyros, pho to cheeseburgers. Check out the spacious, outdoor patio at Fountainhead Pub or try the monster-sized Caesars at Score on Davie if you’re in the mood for drinks, and keep walking south on Davie Street if you want to hit up Yaletown.
9. Take Advantage of Two Night Markets
Vancouver locals are lucky enough to have not one, but two fun-filled night markets in their city. The Shipyards Night Market feature more than 35 different food trucks, a beer garden pouring local craft beer, artisan vendors, and live music every night until 10pm. Plus, it’s dog-friendly so you can bring your furry friend to this summertime event.
And then, there’s the Richmond Night Market, the largest night market in North America. This massive market is open every weekend from May to October and features a new theme each year. Come to the Richmond Night Market and indulge in local seafood, craft ice cream, and plenty of other foods from Vancouver restaurants’ stalls. Let the kids run around on the inflatable obstacle course, live music, dancing and martial arts performances from 7:30-10pm on the stage, and so much more. Dogs are also allowed here, so bring your pup on a leash and spend the evening strolling through North America’s largest night market.
Ready to take on the town? These cool things to do in Vancouver are just a few things that make this city such an incredible place to live. Don’t take it from us, though, find your perfect apartment and see for yourself.