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The best attractions & experiences in Vancouver

Though the city of Vancouver isn’t necessarily known for its endless sightseeing opportunities, there are plenty of cultural sights to dive into. Must-visit areas include downtown, with its varied shops and lively clubs, bars and music venues along Granville Street, as well as Chinatown, where you can easily spend a few hours exploring the eclectic shops and markets.  Gastown is another area well worth checking out - if not for the indie bars, art galleries and boutique shops than for the chance to sample some of the city’s best restaurants and cafés. If you want to explore further afield, regular flights can take you from Vancouver to the beautiful Gulf Islands to visit the quaint seaside villages and see how the locals live along the West Coast. 

In the midst of the urban sprawl is the lush oasis of Stanley Park - a popular hangout for locals and tourists alike. Explore the scenic forest trails that zig zag through the wild parkland and walk or cycle along the famous seawall. The park also offers some of the city’s best views of downtown, the North Shore, Lion’s Gate Bridge, English Bay and the Westside, so don’t forget your camera. Elsewhere across the city are sandy beaches, forest trails and kayaking routes, while the picturesque North Shore mountains are just a 30-minute drive away and offer an abundance of hiking and biking opportunities. When it comes to natural scenery, you really are spoilt for choice. 

If it’s wildlife you’re after, you won’t be disappointed. Embark on an exciting whale watching tour and spot killer and humpback whales, porpoises, sea lions and seals. Or, if you prefer to stay on dry land, you can spot all sorts of animals in the forests and mountains surrounding the city, including chipmunks, bears, deers and bald eagles. 

If you want to tailor your trip around your interests, simply add an experience pack. For example, the Gastronomic Gastown Tour can be found in the ‘Foodie’ pack. Visit the itinerary builder to see what other activities are on offer.

Experiences and attractions in Vancouver

Stanley Park

In the midst of Vancouver’s urban sprawl, Stanley Park is an oasis of natural wonder and exciting attractions. Spread across 400-hectares of ancient rainforest, wildlife-rich lakes, seaside pathways and sandy beaches, this beloved park is a playground for walking, cycling and sightseeing. Stroll along the scenic seawall, count the historic totem poles and marvel at the mountain-and-sea views.

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Granville Island

A favourite hangout for both locals and visitors alike, Granville Island is a celebration of Vancouver’s culinary, creative and cultural prowess. Just south of the Downtown peninsula tucked under the Grenville Bridge, this vibrant neighbourhood is famous for its food markets, theatres and artisan workshops. Don’t miss the chance to visit one of Vancouver’s coolest communities - we promise you won’t regret it.

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English Bay

With its spacious beaches, laid-back atmosphere and picture-perfect views, it’s easy to see why English Bay is one of the most popular hangouts in Downtown Vancouver. Find a sandy spot to flop down on, take a dip in the water or enjoy a scenic stroll along the Seawall. End your day watching the sunset across the glittering ocean.

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Gastown

With its independent galleries, boutique shops and fashionable food and drink scene, Gastown is the place to see and be seen in Vancouver. Hangout in the cool coffee shops, dine in stylish eateries and soak up the bustling atmosphere. Though the neighbourhood has had a modern makeover in recent years, it still has an old-world look and feel with its Victorian architecture and famous steaming clock.

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Grouse Mountain

The jewel in Vancouver’s crown, Grouse Mountain stands out as one of the city’s most spectacular attractions. A natural playground for outdoor activities, from scenic hiking trails to heart-stopping zip lines, this majestic peak lures locals and visitors from the city with its awesome alpine scenery. Relax and enjoy the views or unleash your wild side with action-packed adventures - the choice is yours.

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Lions Gate Bridge

Spanning across Burrard Inlet with the picturesque backdrop of the Coast Mountains, Lions Gate Bridge is one of Vancouver’s most iconic - and most photographed - landmarks. Admire the huge structure from the leafy walkways of Stanley Park or meander along the deck for panoramic views of the city and sea.

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Salt Spring Island

With its artisan food markets, waterfront galleries and spectacular scenery, it’s easy to see why Salt Spring Island is considered the jewel of the Gulf Islands. Spend a relaxing couple of days tasting locally-produced food and drink, explore the pristine coastline, ramble in the rolling hills and soak up the bustling atmosphere of Ganges.

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