Top Ten Things to Do in Vancouver

Mary Jane Dempsey

Looking to head north to Vancouver? This city has become a multicultural center perfect for those looking to add more green scenery and Pacific adventures to their lives. Check out this guide on the top 10 things not to miss when taking a trip to Vancouver.

Grouse Mountain

1. Grouse Mountain

Grouse Mountain

Take a hike…in a great way on Grouse Mountain. The Grouse Grind is a trail that is open for hiking from May through October. If you would like your view of Greater Vancouver without the work, you can take the Swiss Garaventa aerial tramway. This is also home to the “Cut” a famous ski run at the bottom of the mountain Opening hours: Grouse Grind – sunrise to sunset from May to October; Skyride 9am – 10pm Grouse Mountain, North Vancouver, BC, Canada +1 604 986 6262

Rogers ArenaRogers Arena | ©bjbieg / Flickr

2. Canucks game

Canucks game

Canadians are famous for their national passion for hockey. While in Vancouver check out a game of the Vancouver Canucks of the National Hockey League. Come and cheer on the hometown team in the Rogers Arena where a number of Olympic games were played in 2010. Opening hours: Tickets can be bought online Rogers Arena, 800 Griffiths Way, Vancouver, BC, Canada, +1 604 899 7400

Shangri-La Vancouver | © Tom Nui / WikimediaCommonsShangri-La Vancouver | © Tom Nui / WikimediaCommons

3. Shangri-La

Hotel, Apartment


Towering over the city, the Shangri-La is the tallest building in British Columbia and houses a hotel, offices and apartment complexes. If you have money to spend, you can rent a room with a fabulous view. If not, maybe just take a look at the Vancouver Art Galley inside. Opening hours Vancouver Art Gallery: Daily 10am – 5pm, Tues 10am – 9pm Shangri-La, 112 W Georgia St, Vancouver, BC, Canada +1 604 689 1120

UBC Museum of AnthropologyUBC Museum of Anthropology | © Rr parker / WikimediaCommons

4. UBC Museum of Anthopology

Botanical Garden, Building, Museum

UBC Museum of Anthopology

The UBC Museum of Anthropology is the perfect place to learn more about culture and archeological projects. Perhaps some of the more famous pieces include the totem poles created by tribes native to British Columbia. Make sure to check out the unique design of the building, which architect Arthur Erikson based on Native American post-and-beam structures. Opening hours: Daily 10am – 5pm; Tues 10am – 9pm Museum of Anthropology, 6393 NW Marine Dr, Vancouver. BC, Canada, +1 604 822 5087

VanDusen Botanical GardenVanDusen Botanical Garden | © Stan Shebs / WikimediaCommons

5. VanDusen Botanical Garden

Botanical Garden, Park

VanDusen Botanical Garden

VanDusen Botanical Garden is a public garden that has been in bloom since 1975. If you are looking to add some greenery to your trip, the park offers visitors the chance to see plants growing all over the world as well as beautiful sculpture and a maze. Opening hours: 10am – 6pm VanDusen Botanical Garden, 5251 Oak St, Vancouver, BC, Canada, +1 604 257 8335

6. Whale Watching

Whale Watching

If you happen to be in Vancouver for the summer, check out the orca, humpback and killer whales making their way to British Columbia’s coastal areas. A number of companies offer whale watching tours where you can buy a ticket to be chartered out to the straits to catch a glance at these migrating mammals. Wild Whales is one particular company that has boats that leave directly from downtown Vancouver. Opening hours: 8am – 8pm Wild Whales Vancouver, 1806 Mast Tower Rd, Vancouver, BC, Canada, +1 604 699 2011

Humpback Whale Vancouver IslandHumpback Whale Vancouver Island | © Tim Melling / Flickr

7. Capilano Suspension Bridge Park

Bridge, Forest, Park

Hoping to reach new heights with your travels? Check out the Capilano Suspension Bridge, built in 1889, which is 450-feet long and is suspended 230 feet about the Capilano River. Park guests are encouraged to cross the bridge where they will see unique vistas of the West Coast rainforest below. The staff of Capilano also offer a complimentary mini guided tour every hour. Opening hours: 9am – 6pm (Septr 26 – Oct 12), 9am – 5pm (Oct 13 – Nov) Capilano Suspension Bridge park, 3735 Capilano Rd, North Vancouver, BC, Canada

8. Vancouver Fringe Festival

Vancouver Fringe Festival

Beginning in 1985, the First Vancouver Theatrespace Society organized the Vancouver Fringe Festival, an alternative theatre festival held annually. Located on Granville Island, the festival usually runs 11 days and is hosted in 25 venues. No show is exactly the same…take this year’s The O.C.: The Musical, for example. Opening hours: Mon – Fri 4 – 9pm; Sat & Sun 12 – 9pm Vancouver Fringe Festival. 1398 Cartwright St, Vancouver, BC, Canada, +1 604 257 0350

The Sanctuary at Hastings Park

Environmentalists and tourists alike will appreciate The Sanctuary, a natural pond and marsh area that opened in 1999. The marsh is particularly interesting as the water is cleansed through a sophisticated biofiltration system. Park staff also offer tours of the park, describing the various components of the local ecosystem. Opening hours: Check schedule Hastings Park, 2901 E Hastings St,Vancouve,BC, Canada



The Asian communities in Vancouver have had a strong influence on the city’s food culture, leading to a fusion of flavors. For example, a Japanese couple moved to the city in 2005 and opened up JAPADOG, a small chain of food stands and restaurants that specialize in making hot dogs topped with Japanese ingredients, such as Terimayo sauce and bonito flakes. For dessert, they offer “Age Ice,” which is a deep fried bun with ice cream. We suggest the black sesame and maccha ice cream. Opening hours: Mon – Thurs 11am – 10pm; Fri – Sat 11am – 8pm; Sun 11am – 9pm JAPADOG, Various locations across the city, +1 604 569 1158By Mary Jane Dempsey

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