Vancouver is a beautiful city that offers ample attractions to keep tourists from all corners of the globe entertained. Places like Stanley Park, the Vancouver Aquarium, Granville Island, Grouse Mountain and Gastown attract the largest numbers but what if you want to go a little off the beaten track, to find some of those hidden gems that perhaps only the locals know about? Read on for some suggestions…
Places to Eat in Vancouver
Right in the heart of downtown Vancouver it’s difficult to find places to eat or drink that aren’t always crowded with both tourists and locals, but the good thing is, there are many excellent places to eat in the city. Head to Granville Island Public Market to try and buy some of the freshest and tastiest food in Vancouver. Seafood, baked goods, fruits and produce are all on offer, and they’re all locally produced. Buy what you like, or sit down and enjoy some local cuisine in one of the island’s many restaurants.
Fruit at Granville Island Market
Yaletown is one of Vancouver’s trendiest neighbourhoods and it’s home to some of the best bars and restaurants in the city. Anywhere you go in Yaletown should be busy, but the vibrant atmosphere is part of the appeal. The Flying Pig is one restaurant to try out, as is Cioppino’s Mediterranean Grill.
In the past food trucks and food carts always got a bad rap, but not today. Vancouver has a burgeoning street food scene with over 100 vendors permitted to sell all kinds of different foods direct from their trucks or carts. The great thing is there’s an amazing diversity of cuisines on offer, and the food can be excellent especially when you compare the prices to dining in a sit-down restaurant in the city. Street food is more affordable and is the perfect choice when you’re pushed for time.
Places to Go in Vancouver
While Grouse Mountain provides the fun of riding the cable car, lumberjack shows, views of the city, and grizzly bears this expensive attraction is often busy. Instead, head to Cypress Mountain and take a drive up the scenic Cypress Bowl Road. You don’t even need to go all the way up to the ski runs to benefit from the fabulous views of downtown Vancouver and the Burrard Inlet, as there are several places to stop and park along the way, get out and enjoy the views or spend a little longer taking a walk or having a picnic. The great thing about Cypress Mountain is that it’s free.
You’ll need transportation to get to Cypress Mountain as well as this next gem. The University of British Columbia is south west of downtown Vancouver and has an enviable coastal position. Come here to visit some of the city’s public beaches, including the clothing optional Wreck Beach, but while you’re here be sure to visit UBC Museum of Anthropology. This museum has one of the world’s best displays of Northwest Coast First Nations art housed in an impressive building overlooking the ocean and mountains.
Stanley Park is one of Vancouver’s most famous and popular features so you may find it surprising that it’s included in this list, but once you head away from the Seawall, into the heart of this massive park, you will quickly leave the crowds behind. There are miles of forest trails criss-crossing Stanley Park and providing visitors the chance to experience a different side to this popular tourist attraction.
(Article by Claire Bolgil)
Claire is a freelance travel writer who lives in beautiful British Columbia, Canada. She loves travelling, spending time with her family and two dogs, and exploring the big wide world.
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