Vancouver boasts some of the most amazing, top-rated tourist attractions in all of North America. Together these stops make up an unsurpassed lineup of cultural, historic and natural experiences guaranteed to make your trip to Vancouver one you won't forget!
Lighthouse Park located in West Vancouver British Columbia is one of the most scenic parks on the West Coast. Families interested in hiking will be able to walk through acres of first-growth douglas firs and stand next to trees that are considered to be giants. This is one of the few places in the area immediately surrounding Vancouver that was never completely logged, making it an easily accessible virgin temperate rainforest habitat. The park provides numerous paths for hiking, and most require just an hour or two of your time. If you want to plan a picnic, there are tables and restrooms in the park to accommodate longer visits. The park is also a great place for bird watching with more than 60 different species known to frequent the area. The lighthouse is located at Point Atkinson and features a beacon that has been in operation since 1875.
UBC Tree Top Adventures & Botanical Garden's at the University of British Columbia
Connect to the natural world at the UBC Botanical Garden! Get a glimpse of the featured plans, pollinators and over 8000 different kinds of plant species on this 44 hectare property. Situated at the University of British Columbia on the bluffs of the Pacific Ocean in a temperate rain forest, the Garden will spark curiosity in guests of all ages. Trek along the TreeWalk to awaken your senses in the rain forest canopy, visit Vancouver's longest established demonstration Food Garden, discover medicinal, alpine and unique plants from around the world and learn local sustainability practices, zero waste and climate change solutions. These Botanical Gardens were established in 1916 under the directorship of John Davidson, British Columbia's first provincial botanist. It is the oldest botanical garden at a university in Canada.
Lynn Canyon Park and Ecology Centre
This outdoor destination is the perfect place for a little learning disguised as family fun. Home to 616 acres of rainforest habitat, a suspension bridge 20 stories above the canyon floor and loads of natural sites, it's a fascinating introduction to Vancouver's natural setting. If you're here in the summer, your kids can swim in the crystal-clear waters of a natural pool. There's also a gorgeous waterfall in the park, which makes the perfect backdrop for a souvenir family photo. The Ecology Centre offers hands-on plants and animal displays, films in a small theatre, puppets to play with and piles of toys. Take advantage of public programs and events designed with kids in mind, many of which are free or require a small donation.
UBC Museum of Anthropology
The Museum of Anthropology, a place of world arts and cultures with a special emphasis on the First Nations peoples and other cultural communities of British Columbia, Canada is open to the public at the beautiful University of British Colombia campus. The Museum is built on traditional, ancestral, unceded land of the Musqueam people and it is fitting that the first artworks and words you encounter outside the Museum are a welcome from the generous First Nations hosts. The Museum itself embodies the essence of Canada’s West Coast. In the Museum’s Great Hall, massive and magnificent First Nations sculptures stand against a soaring glass wall that opens onto a panorama of forested islands and snow-capped mountains bordering the Salish Sea. Outside, eagles glide and ravens caw under a sky whose subtle, constantly changing colours and tones form a backdrop for the stories and performances choreographed in the Museum’s exhibition galleries. This is a must see when coming to Vancouver as the exhibit and works of art are constantly changing.
Vancouver Sea Wall & Bike Rental
Vancouver has the world's longest uninterrupted waterfront path. The 28 km pathway, including the Stanley Park Seawall, extends from the Vancouver Convention Centre to Spanish Banks Park. Perfect for a walk, cycle, or jog, it is the most popular recreational spot in the city with bike and skate rentals conveniently located nearby. Rent a bike at one of the numerous Bike Rental companies in Coal Harbour/Stanley Park (Seawall Adventure Centre Bicycle Rentals | Bayshore Bike Rentals) and enjoy a great afternoon touring the sites. (Not great on wheels? The Seawall is divided into two marked sections – one for walkers and one for joggers; it is a great route for everyone across different fitness levels. Ride the entire length of the path or stop along one of the many beautiful beaches or watermarks).
Gastown is the historic and cultural heart of Vancouver and is the city’s oldest neighbourhood establishing itself in 1867. Designated a National Historic Site in 2009, you can find block upon block of grand Victorian buildings hold memories of Gastown's reign as Canada's third-largest city and one of the most cosmopolitan. Today, these historic aesthetics prove a glorious backdrop for today's urban lifestyle. It’s no surprise Gastown as named 4th Most Stylish Neighbourhood in the World in 2012. Gastown is the epicenter of Vancouver’s creative talent and independent businesses in design, culture, food, and fashion. The neighbourhood crackles with energy, with its dynamic streetscape, cutting edge boutiques and design stores, one-of-a-kind galleries, and award winning dining scene make it Canada’s coolest community. It sets the trends for the future while respecting its unique past. Gastown is the original Vancouver.
Granville Island Market
If Granville Island is the king of Vancouver destinations, then the Public Market is the jewel in the Island’s crown. A fascinating assortment of colourful stalls, showcasing unique homemade products and the very finest in gastronomic delights. All fresh from the ocean, the oven or the field. Try closing your eyes right now and imagine the rich aromas permeating from the lavish displays. Shimmering seafood, warm baked goods, plump fruit. Come and browse for yourself and see just why words don’t begin to describe it.
Grouse Mountain - the peak of Vancouver
Just 15 minutes from downtown, Vancouver's premier attraction offers the perfect destination for a truly rewarding and memorable experience. Imagine a wilderness sanctuary where endangered animals can explore and play, knowing they’re safe and secure. You’ll find all this and more at the research, education and conservation centre on the mountain. The Refuge also offers leading-edge interpretative programs that make learning about nature fun and fascinating. From the Skyride that takes you up to the peak of the mountain, to enjoying a variety of fun activities including Ziplining, Paragliding, Scenic Tours, Dining, Climbing up the Eye of the Wind and much more! With a variety of cultural, educational and outdoor adventures to choose from, you'll love your trip up to Grouse Mountain!
Designated a national historic site of Canada, Stanley Park is a magnificent green oasis in the midst of the heavily built urban landscape of Vancouver. Explore the 400-hectare natural West Coast rainforest and enjoy scenic views of water, mountains, sky, and majestic trees along Stanley Park's famous Seawall. Discover kilometres of trails, beautiful beaches, local wildlife, great eats, natural, cultural and historical landmarks, along with many other adventures. The park offers a wide range of unforgettable experiences for all ages and interests.
The Vancouver Aquarium is a recognized leader in connecting people to the natural world. As a self-supporting, non-profit association, the Aquarium is dedicated to effecting the conservation of aquatic life through display and interpretation, education, research and direct action. More than 35 million people have visited the Aquarium since their opening in 1956. Located in Stanley Park, they are open to visitors from around the world 365 days a year.
Prepare to be amazed, engaged and inspired by what you see and learn in the exhibits and galleries. Watch adorable sea otters holding hands, catch a beluga show or get an up-close and intimate look at some of the creepy crawlers in the Amazon. With over 50,000 animals from all over the world and entertaining interpretive programs that give a better appreciation for the animals that live here, the Aquarium has no shortage of incredible experiences.
Science World at Telus World of Science
Science World at Telus World of Science, Vancouver is a science centre run by a not-for-profit organization in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. It is located at the end of False Creek, and features many permanent interactive exhibits and displays, as well as areas with varying topics throughout the years. Science World ignites the imagination as you explore hands-on interactive exhibits, watch jaw-dropping presentations, and experience the magnificence of the giant-screen OMNIMAX® Theatre. Fun for all ages, Science World is sure to jumpstart your imagination.
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