There are so many things to do in Vancouver, BC, that it can be hard to know where to start. Do you want to explore the city and all its history and culture? Or are you an outdoor enthusiast who wants to take advantage of the mountains and forests right on the doorstep of downtown?

Maybe you’re looking for some ideas for things to do with your family? And don’t forget about the food! Vancouver is home to some of the best restaurants in the world.

I lived in Vancouver for five years and I’ve also included several suggestions from some friends to give you a rundown of some of the best things to do in Vancouver, including where to stay and eat. So whether you’re looking for things to do in Vancouver in summer or winter, you’ll find something on this list.

So read on, and start planning your perfect trip to Vancouver!

Canada Place

If you are in Vancouver for the first time, a great place to start is at Tourism Vancouver’s visitor centre which is across the street at 200 Burrard St. They will often have coupon books for you to use during your stay and can suggest personalized activities for your family that will fit in with your itinerary.

I was lucky to take in many events during the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and will always remember where I was when we won our first Olympic gold of the games.

And of course, all Canadians will remember when Sydney Crosby scored to win Olympic Gold in men’s hockey! Visiting the Olympic Cauldron in Vancouver always brings back so many memories and should be on your list of things to do in Vancouver.

Take in the incredible FlyOver Vancouver ride at the end of the pier for an amazing adventure that comes as close to flying as you will ever experience.

Or simply stroll along the waterfront. It is a perfect location to start exploring the city of Vancouver.

How to Get There:

You can easily drive to Canada Place and park on the street or in one of the parking lots, but it is much easier to take public transportation. Canada Place is easily accessible by public transit, by car, or even by walking if you’re staying in one of the many downtown hotels.

Where to Stay:

The Pan Pacific Hotel is one of the most iconic hotels located at Canada Place. The cruise ships port there during the summer season and the hotel offers one of the best views in all of Vancouver.

Coal Harbor

two boys sitting on a bench looking at marina in vancouver british columbia
Image Credit: Karpiak Caravan

If you haven’t explored downtown Vancouver, you must take a stroll along the waterfront to Coal Harbour. There is a playground right next to the marina and lots of benches to sit and look at all the beautiful yachts.

Watching the seaplanes land and take off in the harbor is always a sight to see. We have taken a few flights on seaplanes and it is quite an experience landing on the water!

Where to Stay:

The Westin Bayshore is one of the top places to stay in Vancouver. This bright and elegant hotel is located in the Coal Harbour neighborhood of downtown Vancouver, which makes it the perfect base for exploring the city and for those Instagram-worthy shots.  

The rooms at the Westin Bayshore feature a variety of fantastic views, including the Vancouver skyline, Coal Harbour Marina, and the North Shore Mountains.

Getting to the Westin Bayshore from YVR airport is incredibly easy with such a central location. The Skytrain runs from Vancouver Airport and stops at West Georgia St @ Cardero St station, only a 5-minute walk from the hotel.  

You’ll find some of Vancouver’s best attractions right on the doorstep of the Westin Bayshore. The iconic Stanley Park is within walking distance, where bike rentals are available to explore the park. 

Amenities in the hotel include an indoor pool and outdoor pool with a bar, or you can participate in Liquid Yoga classes run year-round. 

The hotel houses a coffee shop and two restaurants. The H Tasting Lounge is one of Vancouver’s most popular restaurants offering a contemporary menu in an Art Deco setting. Their afternoon tea is a staple and changes each season. 

The Westin Bayshore has everything you need to enjoy your trip to Vancouver and is the perfect hub to explore everything the city has to offer. 

By Rachael at A City Girl Outside

Stanley Park

view of lions gate bridge in vancouver british columbia

When it comes to popular attractions in Vancouver, it’s hard to beat Stanley Park. It is free to enjoy and one of the most scenic places in the whole city. So whether you decide to ride a bike, go for a walk, or strap on some rollerblades, Stanley Park is an excellent place for the whole family.

If it’s your first time visiting, the best thing to do is to travel along the seawall, which wraps around the perimeter of Stanley Park, giving you outstanding views of the ocean.

You can enjoy all sorts of beaches, magnificent Totem Poles to admire, and incredible views of Lions Gate Bridge. If you’re craving more, you can also get inside the park by going for various short hikes, visiting Beaver Lake, witnessing the largest Canadian Flag ever made, or even enjoying the famous Vancouver Aquarium.

If you’re looking to go biking, there are many places to rent bikes, but one of the most popular places is nearby Spokes Bicycle Rentals. From there, we recommend starting on the East side of the park, traveling around the seawall until you get to Second Beach.

You can finish off your day with a visit to Stanley Parking Brewing Restaurant and Brewpub.

How to Get There:

Located in-between Vancouver’s West End and West Vancouver, this park is easily accessible by public transit, by car, or even by walking if you’re staying in one of the many downtown hotels.

By Matthew from MustDoCanada

Capilano Suspension Bridge

The Capilano Suspension Bridge is possibly the most photographed attraction in Vancouver. It’s undoubtedly one of the coolest and most unique.

This 140-meter-long bridge is located on the north shore of Vancouver, about 15 minutes from downtown.

The bridge was named for Kia’palano, an Indian leader of the local Squamish tribe. Over time the name, which means “beautiful river,” was anglicized to Capilano.

There has been a bridge in that location since the 1880s. It has been rebuilt and modernized over the years to its present state as a top Vancouver tourist attraction in a beautiful park.

The bridge offers visitors an opportunity to walk across the treetops over the beautiful river the bridge was named for.

The view is breathtaking, if a little scary, as you are pretty high as you walk across. But the bridge is super safe and anchored with steel cables and cement.

Several restaurants and a trading post are selling local crafts. The park is open at different times throughout the year so check first.

It’s one of the city’s most popular attractions, so I recommend heading here early if you’re planning on visiting during peak tourist season. If you’re a fan of suspension bridges (yes, that’s a thing!), you won’t want to miss this one. 

How to Get There:

There is a convenient shuttle leaving from downtown Vancouver and public transportation. Tickets range from CAD59.00 on down for seniors, children, and students. There is onsite parking if you wish to drive.

By Talek from Travels With Talek

Kitsilano Beach

Kitsilano Beach is a gem in Vancouver. There is also an outdoor swimming pool right on the ocean that opens during the summer months which was always a favorite when we lived a few blocks away. The beach is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike to spend a sunny day.

Kids will be happy to spend the day digging in the sand, and the path is always filled with walkers, runners, bikers, and rollerbladers. Pack a picnic lunch and sit on the lawn or enjoy a meal at one of the restaurants that line Kitsilano Beach. The Boathouse Restaurant in Kitsilano offers spectacular views and a great atmosphere for lunch or dinner.

How to Get There:

Kitsilano Beach is easily accessible by public transportation or by bike. There is street parking and a few parking lots nearby if you plan to drive but it is a popular spot and not always easy to find a parking spot later in the day.

Gastown, Vancouver

Anyone visiting Vancouver should dedicate an afternoon to exploring things to do in Gastown. This district is the oldest part of the city and is where you’ll find cobbled streets, older buildings, vintage lamposts, cute cafes, and independent stores! 

Start your time in Gastown by wandering the cobbled streets and admiring the buildings. Time your stop by the old Steamclock to arrive either on the hour or at 15, 30, or 45 minutes past, and you’ll get to see it in action! Locals know it’s not actually steam-powered, but it’s fun to watch nevertheless!

Visit the second-hand bookstore such as The Paper Hound or Albion Books and find a new favorite read and go shopping in some of Vancouver’s best independent stores, such as Old Faithful.

When it comes to food, you’ve endless options. If you’re in Gastown around lunchtime, stop by at Meat and Bread and indulge in a porchetta sandwich that just can’t be beaten. For breakfast Nelson the Seagull’s infamous sourdough and coffee are sure to be a hit!

And then, when it comes to appies, Gastown knows what they’re doing with great happy hour deals at bars such as Six Acres and The Flying Pig.

How to Get There:

Gastown is both close to the water with views of the North Shore mountains from CRAB park and a 20-minute walk from the modern vibes of Yaletown. Situated near Downtown Waterfront Station, it’s easy to get to by taking Vancouver’s Skytrain and not far to walk for those staying in the downtown core of Vancouver.

While there is parking available in Gastown, it’s limited, so it’s easiest to take the sky train to Waterfront or Stadium/Chinatown stations and walk from there.

By Hanah from That Adventurer

Granville Island

street performer on granville island

No trip to Vancouver is complete without visiting Granville Island. Although not technically an island anymore (they attached it to the mainland in the 50s), this small area in the city’s heart is full of fun attractions and activities.

There are plenty of fun activities to enjoy on Granville Island. The first and most popular is to check out the Granville Island Public Market. This huge indoor market has everything you can imagine and more.

You’ll find an entire fresh produce area, another area full of vendors selling everything from handicrafts to freshly rolled pasta. There is even a food court area featuring delicious takeaway meal options – don’t pass up on the hot dogs!

You should also try and dine at one of the restaurants with a view. Since Granville is right on the water, some restaurants have epic views. Opt for some fresh seafood; it is what the area is known for, after all. 

Traveling with kids? Head to the Kids Market! Here, you will find endless entertainment for kids of all ages, including a kids-sized entryway. There are also frequently fun street performers at Granville Island to enjoy on a summer day!

If you’re a beer-lover, don’t miss the opportunity to visit Granville Island Brewing. Here, you can do a brewery tour that includes samples at the end. This is also a vibrant bar to enjoy a few drinks. 

How to Get There:

Granville Island is in False Creek and can easily be accessed via the Aqua Ferry that departs from various points around the city. There is also some limited paid parking available.

By Bailey from Destinationless Travel

Grouse Mountain

hiker walking up stairs on the grouse grind in vancouver

Grouse Mountain is one of the North Shore Mountains and is located right inside the city of Vancouver, close to the downtown area. The mountain towers 1250 meters above the city with a steep hiking trail called the Grouse Grind climbing to the summit.

This challenging hiking trail of 2.9 km and more than 3000 stairs ascends 853 m (2800 feet) to the summit. The Grouse Grind starts at the trailhead located in North Vancouver. This is a one-way trail up the mountain; hiking down this route is not allowed, and most people use the Gondola to get back.

Grouse Mountain is an amazing four-season destination in the city. There is a range of other activities in summer, such as chairlift rides and paragliding. On top of the mountain, you can spend a day all year round with top-quality restaurants, a mountaintop theatre, a wildlife refuge, and other entertainment.

Hiking up is not necessary; just take ‘the Skyride’ Gondola up and down the mountain. In winter Grouse Mountain is a fantastic venue for skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, snowshoeing, and more winter activities.

How to Get There:

A Skyride Gondola ticket includes a transfer from Canada Place in downtown Vancouver to Grouse Mountain and back. Alternatively, drive to the trailhead or take Bus #236 from Downtown Vancouver. Many nice hotels in Downtown Vancouver are the perfect place to stay if you want to do the Grouse Grind.

By Campbell from Stingy Nomads

Queen Elizabeth Park

Queen Elizabeth Park is a 52-hectare park located in central Vancouver, between King Edward and 33rd Street, just off Cambie Street. It is located 152 meters (500 feet) above sea level and offers amazing views of downtown Vancouver and the mountains. 

The Park offers visitors lots of things to do. There are beautiful public gardens, including a rose garden; a paid pitch and putt golf course with equipment to rent and balls to purchase; and a free ultimate frisbee course (however, you must bring your own frisbees).

In addition, there are at least 12 public tennis courts, pickleball courts, basketball courts, and even street hockey or roller hockey rinks, all available on a first-come basis for free.  

You can also visit Bloedel Conservatory, found at the top, for a few dollars per person. There are approximately 120 free-flying birds and 500 exotic plants and flowers within its dome. 

If you are hungry, consider reserving at Seasons In The Park for a delicious, sophisticated meal with spectacular views. 

You could spend a few hours or all day in Queen Elizabeth Park, and you would not run out of things to do in this stunning destination in Vancouver.

How to Get There:

Queen Elizabeth Park is easy to reach by car or public transportation. It is a 15-minute walk from the Canada Line station, connecting downtown and Vancouver International Airport. As for parking, there is some free parking on some of the streets in the neighborhood. However, there is a lot of paid parking in the Park itself.

By Nicole from Go Far Grow Close

Deep Cove

view of water in deep cove british columbia

Deep Cove is 13 km from downtown Vancouver on the North Shore and is one of the most beautiful areas to spend the day in Vancouver. A former fishing and clamming village, it will make you feel like you are miles away from the hustle and bustle of Vancouver streets. Surrounded by the ocean, mountains, rainforests, wildlife, and a laid-back vibe, it is a great little escape.

You will not want to miss getting out onto the water in a kayak or stand-up paddleboard to explore the Indian Arm. Paddling Indian Arm gives a unique perspective of the mountains and wildlife from sea level. 

Deep Cove offers an array of trails for hikers of all levels, one of the most popular being Quarry Rock, which rewards your hard work with scenic views of the Indian Arm and the mountains around Belcarra. Quarry Rock is also a small section of the larger Baden Powell Trail.

Deep Cove is also one of the best places to find Starfish near Vancouver. The rocky beach is best made for exploring at low tide. 

No visit to Deep Cove would be complete without stopping by Honey Doughnuts & Goodies. Their famous doughnuts are seriously a taste of heaven. Expect lines out the door, but it is worth the wait!

How to Get There:

Since Deep Cove is a popular location (and for a good reason!), there is limited street parking. There are several small parking lots throughout the village, but in the summer months, they fill up fast. So arrive early or use public transit.

Contributed by Debbie from World Adventurists

Museum of Anthropology

exhibit at museum of anthropology in vancouver

The Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia features an excellent world-class collection of art and artifacts from Asia, Africa, the Americas, the South Pacific, and Europe. The museum’s mission focuses on research; however, much of its collection is also open to the public. 

The museum is located on the traditional land of the Musqueam people. It is home to an incredible collection of artwork and artifacts from First Nation peoples from British Columbia, Canada. The art on display includes massive totem poles, canoes, sculptures, and textiles. 

The museum also features a collection of over 600 European ceramics; Egyptian pottery and statues; Roman figures, coins, and jewelry; Chinese jars and figures; and much more.  

The museum and university are also located right next to several scenic beaches that are well worth a visit. Wreck Beach and Tower Beach are an easy 14-minute walk from the museum. Please note that Wreck Beach is a naturist beach if you are traveling with kids. The Foreshore Trail connects the two beaches near the coast. 

The museum is currently open every day except Mondays from 10 am – 5 pm. The price for admission to the museum is $15 for adults, with discounts available for students, seniors, and other groups. 

How to Get There:

The Museum of Anthropology is located about 11 kilometers to the west of Vancouver. It can be easily reached by car, bus, or bike. Parking is available for a small fee on site. You can find detailed instructions here

By Merry Allison from Virginia Vacation Guide

Vancouver Art Gallery

exterior of vancouver art gallery

While Europe has many world-class art galleries, the Vancouver Art Gallery, or VAG, is an important art institute in North America. Located in downtown Vancouver, the art museum has a history of over 90 years, with over 12,000 artworks, mainly from Canadian artists, together with renowned international artists between the 16th and 20th centuries – making it the largest art museum in Western Canada.

The museum is an excellent site for art lovers and family visitors. The current location of VAG was originally a provincial courthouse designed by Francis Rattenbury, a British architect who won a design competition with his neoclassical-style design. Apart from the striking ionic columns, classic dome, and marble exterior, the front lawn and steps of the museum are a popular gathering place for several public gatherings and social events, including flash mobs, Zombie Walk, and so on.

Enjoy a relaxing moment like a local on the lawn, have a cup of takeaway coffee, and then explore the 15,300 square meter floor space, which features artworks from the Group of Seven, Ansel Adams, and Marc Chagall.

How to Get There:

It is easy to get to the art gallery by subway, with a 5 minutes walk from the closest subway station is Southbound Howe Saint at West Georgia Street or Eastbound West Georgia Street at Granville Street.

By Kenny from Knycx Journeying

Hit the High Seas on a Whale Watching Tour

whales in ocean in vancouver british columbia

Vancouver is a fantastic place to see whales in the wild! Take a tour to see humpbacks, orcas, porpoises, harbor seals, and more. The whale watching season runs from April to October. We visited Vancouver in September as part of our Northwest American Road Trip.

Many tours leave from Richmond, which is about a 40-minute drive from downtown Vancouver, so leave plenty of time to get there. Tours are 3-5 hours, depending on where whales are spotted on that day. So by the time you account for transit time, you should plan for the whale watch to occupy most of your day.

Boats are covered in the spring and fall and have large clear windows that can be opened and closed in case of rain. The tops come off mid-June through September.

Marine biologists are on hand to explain where you are going, what you are seeing, and even the names and relationships of some of the whales.

We had a fantastic tour with Vancouver Whale Watch that leaves from Steveston Village in Richmond, and we highly recommend them. Costs vary by company but expect to pay around $150 per person for adults and $100 for children.

Many tour operators that depart from different locations keep in touch with each other via radio- they share sightings during the trip, so everyone has the best possible experience.

All boats follow strict regulations as to how close they can get to the whales and how long they can sit and watch specific individual whales before they are required to move on. However, you might get lucky and have a whale dive, then surface right next to your boat!

How to Get There:

The drive to Richmond takes about 30-40 minutes from downtown Vancouver. Street parking is available right across from their office.

By Cynthia from Sharing The Wander

Skiing & Snowshoeing at Cypress

top of cypress ski mountain

Cypress is the largest of three of Vancouver’s three ski mountains, and it’s a great place to go skiing and snowshoeing. Located in West Vancouver, Cypress is easily accessible via public transit or car.

The ski and snowshoe season typically runs from late November to sometime in April at Cypress. There are 11 kilometers of snowshoe trails to enjoy in Cypress Mountain’s Nordic area. Some of the more popular trails include Bowen Lookout and Hollyburn Peak.

During the holiday season in Vancouver, you can also snowshoe the Lights to the Lodge trail at night, which takes you through thousands of twinkling lights to Hollyburn Lodge. Tickets to the Nordic Area trails are $18 for adults and $36 if you need to rent snowshoes. 

Cypress also has 53 downhill ski runs to enjoy! I’ve personally skied at many different mountains throughout the province, and while Vancouver doesn’t always get the most snow, Cypress receives a decent amount since it’s pretty high.

If you get good visibility, the views at Cypress are honestly unbeatable. You can see the sparkling ocean and snow-topped mountains all around you at the top. Costs for downhill ski lift tickets vary by the date and whether you want to ski for a full day, evening, or half-day. Rental equipment is also available. 

How to Get There:

Take the Seabus from Waterfront Station to Lonsdale Quay and then take the Cypress Mountain Shuttle Bus up to the mountain to get there by transit. If you drive up, try and arrive early as parking spots fill up fast, and the farther away you have to park, the farther you need to walk with all your heavy gear.

By April from April Vera Lynn Travels

Ambleside Beach

boy in red and blue striped shirt sitting on ambleside beach in vancouver looking at his cell phone
Image Credit: Karpiak Caravan

Ambleside Beach is located across the Lions Gate Bridge in West Vancouver. The streets in West Vancouver by Ambleside are lined with restaurants and cafes and cute little shops which offer endless options for a picnic on the beach.

There is a beautiful path to walk along with views of the Lions Gate Bridge in the background. If you are traveling with kids, there is a fantastic playground right in the middle of Ambleside for the kids to run free. You will see many kayakers out on the water and people splashing around on the shore on a hot summer day.

How to Get There:

The easiest way is to drive to West Vancouver and park on the street. There is a huge row of street parking off the beach but it does fill up quickly during the summer months. For public transportation, take the Seabus from Waterfront Station to Lonsdale Quay and then hop on a bus to Ambleside Beach.

The Best Day Trips from Vancouver

Bowen Island

One of the shortest and most scenic day trips from Vancouver is to lovely little Bowen Island. Located across the Queen Charlotte Channel from Horseshoe Bay, it is easily reached by vehicle, ferry, or water taxi.

Featuring gorgeous Snug Cove, some lovely beaches, a scenic lake, several excellent hiking trails, and one big hill with extensive views, Bowen Island is the perfect place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

The Pebble Beach Shore Walk is a leisurely stroll with incredible scenery famous for whale spotting. More adventurous hikers can tackle any of the three different routes to the top of Mount Gardner to enjoy panoramic views of the bay, the mountains of North Vancouver, and, on a clear day, all the way to Mount Baker in Washington.

Other popular activities include renting an e-bike to explore the island or a kayak to explore the beautiful coastline. But, of course, if relaxation is your goal, there are also plenty of shops, bars, restaurants, and cafés all close together in Snug Cove. The Branch on Bowen is an outstanding little Mexican food shack right near the dock that also serves delicious ice cream.

How to Get There:

It takes less than half an hour to drive from downtown Vancouver to the Horseshoe Bay Ferry Terminal, and then the ferry takes just 20 minutes ($30/vehicle, $11/pp return). In summer, passenger water taxis also run from Coal Harbour and Granville Island ($40 return).

By Dean and Laynni from Routinely Nomadic

Sea to Sky Highway

view from sea to sky gondola

If you want to explore the mountains and natural scenery, you should drive the Sea to Sky Highway. The 120-kilometer-long route starts in Vancouver and then undulates along the ocean before climbing through the mountains to the ski resort town of Whistler. The drive takes about 2 hours, but you’ll want to plan more time to make stops along the way. 

If you want to sit back and enjoy the scenery, you can take the Skylynx or Epic Rides buses. They pick up in Vancouver or at YVR Airport and drop off in Whistler but don’t make any stops. You can also sign up for bus or van tours that make day trips to Whistler from Vancouver, stopping at several key attractions. 

But the best way to see the Sea to Sky Highway is to rent a car and drive it yourself. It’s a winding mountain highway, so take your time and watch the speed limit – it’s often low for a reason. Try to pick a sunny day to enjoy the views.

The road is open year-round, but it’s easiest to drive in the summer. Legally, you must have winter tires to travel the highway between October 1 and March 31.  

You can enjoy the scenery without pulling over, but you will enjoy the trip more if you make a few quick stops. Don’t miss the oceanside views at Porteau Cove, 335-meter-tall Shannon Falls, the towering granite face of the Stawamus Chief, the mountain panorama at Tantalus Viewpoint, and 70-meter-tall Brandywine Falls.

Ride the Sea to Sky Gondola in Squamish or the Peak2Peak Gondola in Whistler for incredible views if you have more time. Or explore the outdoor adventure town of Squamish or upscale Whistler resort. Both have great restaurants and cute boutiques. 

By Taryn from Happiest Outdoors


Whistler is a fun day trip from Vancouver and a must-see while visiting British Columbia. The village is a world-famous ski resort in winter and a popular summer destination for anyone interested in outdoor activities.

Hikers will love the alpine trails with sweeping views of the surrounding mountain ranges, taking advantage of the Peak 2 Peak Gondola that links the Whistler Mountain and Blackcomb Peak.

From downhill skiing or a ride on the resort mountain Bike Park, kayaking on several lakes, ziplining over creeks and forests, white water rafting, or bungee jumping are available for those searching for the highest thrills.

Boarding a helicopter or floatplane for a scenic flight over glaciers is another excellent option to explore and admire the Whistler landscape from a bird’s view.

While a day can give you a glimpse of what Whistler can offer if you decide to stay longer, consider Blackcomb Springs Suites, located in the heart of the village, a budget option to let you enjoy the resort without breaking the bank.

Among the different dining options, Pasta Lupino will help you recover from your long day outdoor with yummy housemade pasta and pizza at reasonable prices.

How to Get There:

Driving from Vancouver takes about 1:30 hours to cover the 75 miles of the scenic road, but other options include taking a bus, boarding a train, or flying. You can also combine the means of transportation, like taking a train ride from Vancouver to Whistler and flying from Whistler to Vancouver.

By Patricia Ze Wandering Frogs

Where to Eat in Vancouver

Salmon House

The Salmon House is one of those restaurants where your mind is blown from start to finish, and your tastebuds are forever thankful that you brought them here!

Located near the beautiful Trestle Bridge in West Vancouver, the Salmon House is a seafood and fine meat restaurant that sits on the North Shore’s hill and overlooks the Greater Vancouver area. 

At the Salmon House, you’ll find delicious seafood and divine meats, either smoked or grilled, accompanied by fine vegetable concoctions. If you are a seafood enthusiast, a good recommendation would be the Lemon Parsley Pesto Crusted Wild Sockeye Salmon! However, the Sesame Seared Rare Albacore Tuna is a must-try if you feel more adventurous.

Beyond the food, the restaurant’s atmosphere is also delightful. The restaurant is decorated in a West Coast style with a touch of wood which makes it very welcoming.

The warm and elegant interior is complemented by the large glass windows, which stand from floor to ceiling and open on an incredible view of Greater Vancouver.

From Lions Gate Bridge to Stanley Park and even Burnaby, you’ll have an amazing panoramic view during your meal. 

The combination of the food and view makes this restaurant the perfect place for a special brunch with your friends during the day or a romantic dinner with your partner at night when the city lights up and turns the restaurant into one of the most romantic spots in Vancouver! 

How to Get There:

The best way to access the restaurant is by car. Parking is available at the restaurant as well. 

By Mary from Be Right Back By Mary

Maruatama Ramen

bowl of ramen with white spoon

With typical Vancouver, BC weather, it’s no wonder that ramen joints are so popular out here. There is a wide variety throughout the city, from Gastown to Westend, each with its own unique taste and signature. Maruatama Ramen’s signature toripaitan (chicken broth) makes it so popular.

This creamy chicken broth is what makes them stand out from the others. Made from 100% pure chicken broth, it’s a difficult soup to master. It’s won over many locals and tourists making their way through the Vancouver food scene.

Because of their increase in popularity, there are 6 locations, 3 in Vancouver and others in the adjacent Richmond, Burnaby, and Coquitlam areas. However, for this article, we focus on the one located in Vancouver Westend.

The cost is relatively inexpensive and is standard for Ramen restaurants. You won’t find any surprises in cost here. Just enjoy this delicious hot meal to warm yourself up in the amazing Vancouver weather.

How to Get There:

Each of these locations is easily accessible. You can get there by public transit, ridesharing, bike riding, or even walking, depending on where you are staying in Vancouver. There is plenty of street parking and public garages and parking lots you can use.

Contributed by The World Overload

Cafe Medina

Located in the downtown library district, Café Medina is a cafe beloved by locals and coveted by travelers. Café Medina is wheelchair accessible, including the bar, and widened doors for the public restroom as well.

A brunch staple in Vancouver’s food scene since 2008, the word Medina pays homage to the enlightened city and features a Mediterranean cuisine and menu items such as Moroccan lamb meatballs, babaganoush, and burgers served in a pita.

Because Café Medina is one of the most popular mornings and early afternoon spots, it is highly recommended to snag a reservation (up to six people), so you won’t have to wait hours for a table.

There are vegetarian and gluten-free options, so feel comfortable letting the waiter know of any dietary restrictions or allergies.

Of course, brunch wouldn’t be brunch without mimosas and fun cocktails, and there are also craft zero-proof drinks as well. Main brunch entrees average between $17-$25 CAD and are well portioned, however, make sure to leave room for their famed Belgian waffles. 

How to Get There:

With its convenient location, the public transit stop is only two blocks away and walkable from other attractions. If you’ll have a car, there is street parking, however, allow yourself ten to fifteen minutes to find a spot if visiting on the weekend.

By Kay from The Awkward Traveller

Eat Aburi Sushi at Miku

plate of aburi sushi at Miku in vancouver

Vancouver is one of the top places in the world to eat sushi, thanks to its large Japanese community and access to fresh, high-quality fish from the Pacific Ocean. If you can only pick one sushi restaurant to go to in the city, that restaurant is Miku.

The harbourfront restaurant is attributed to introducing aburi sushi to the region. Originating from Osaka, Japan, Aburi is a flame-torching technique that partially sears sushi, creating new, complex flavors.

Eating Miku’s innovative oshi aburi sushi is a divine experience. The rectangular firmly-pressed rice topped with a layer of flame-seared fish and sauce melts perfectly in your mouth.

Combine that with the stellar views of North Vancouver and the mountains across the waterfront; it’s an experience you don’t want to miss adding to your Vancouver itinerary.

Miku has three types of oshi aburi sushi. The first is their wild-sockeye salmon oshi topped with jalapeno and a house sauce. Second is their prawn oshi, topped with lime zest and ume sauce. Third is their house-cured mackerel oshi topped with miso sauce. Get the Oshi Sampler to try them all. Each oshi dish has six pieces for $18. Two dishes should fill you up.

Can’t get a reservation? Try their sister restaurant called Minami in the trendy neighborhood of Yaletown, which has a similar menu. Or pick up some takeout for your weekend getaway from Vancouver

How to Get There:

Miku is located downtown on the waterfront in the upscale Coal Harbour neighborhood. It’s easily accessible by the Skytrain or bus.

By Skytrain, it’s only a one-minute walk from the Waterfront Station. If you are driving, Parking Indigo Vancouver Lot is located beside the restaurant at an hourly rate of $8.33 (gate closes at 9 pm).

By Cecily from Groovy Mashed Potatoes

Consider Visiting These Places From Vancouver

  • Victoria
  • Vancouver Island
  • Tofino
  • Okanagan Wine Country
  • Kamloops
  • Cranbrook

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