Posted March 2, 2011 by Adam Toren in City Guides

Downtown Vancouver – Discover What Brings Thousands of Tourists to Downtown Vancouver

Vancouver is a very exciting place for those visiting and even those that have chosen to live here and make it their home.  Curious what all downtown Vancouver has to offer?  You’ll be surprised!  Old, young, professionals, students, families, and singles will all find Vancouver has much to see and do, whether you live here or have traveled from elsewhere to see the beauty of the Canadian West Coast.  With countless way to get to Vancouver such as by train, plane, or bus, you don’t want to miss out on this city!
Vancouver will make sure you get educated, well fed, well rested, entertained, and amazed while visiting.  Its abundance of hotels, restaurants, attractions, parks, museums, and shopping provide endless days of exploration.
First, let’s talk real estate in downtown Vancouver.  If you’re looking for an opportunity to have a summer place or perhaps start a branch of your business in this lovely city, there are many available properties for investment, purchasing, and leasing.  Decide how much space you’d like to have and then choose from houses, condos, penthouses, townhomes, and apartments.  If you need help, there are realtors, homebuilders, and property managers you can go through to aid in finding what you’re looking for.  Research the beautiful neighborhoods around the Vancouver area like Kitsilano, Chinatown, or False Creek to see where you might like to settle in.
If you’re looking to go to school in this city, you’ll find Vancouver has no limit on the career possibilities you can become educated in.  University of British Columbia is located in Vancouver, and you can find schools specializing in fields such as business and technology, English improvement, and even hotel management.  The Art Institute of Vancouver and Emily Carr Institute of Art & Design are two major schools that bring many students to the area.
If you’re coming to work in Vancouver, or would like to, and feel you can stand up to the city’s tough job market, you can find employment by perusing the local papers, researching Vancouver websites, utilizing job websites like Monster Jobs or Workopolis, or you can have a recruitment agency help you.  Part-time, full-time, seasonal, and temporary jobs are available if you’re willing to take the time and have the patience to perform the search and stick it out.
If you’re just coming for a short stay while on vacation, accommodations are plentiful all throughout the city, and especially in the downtown core.  Whatever your flavor may be, Vancouver offers bed and breakfasts, hostels, motels, hotels, and even homestays.  Familiar chains like Best Western and Hyatt Regency have set up shop here, alongside Vancouver’s exclusive establishments like The Listel Hotel and Marble Arch Hotel.
Downtown Vancouver has amazing sights and attractions.  The city prides itself on providing many educational venues for adults as well as children.  For instance, the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre has a Virtual Simulator you can take a ride in among their activities; Science World has engaging exhibits as well as family science nights; Vancouver Aquarium offers more than 7,000 species to enjoy; and the varying botanical gardens provide a learning experience that will put you in touch with nature and allow the opportunity to appreciate living beauty.  There are art and history museums that sprinkle downtown as well as annual events like the Polar Bear swim to the Vancouver Sun Run that you can catch if you plan your trip right.
Outdoor activities abound in Vancouver.  Beaches, beaches, and more beautiful beaches line the shores of this city, along with parks like Connaught and Rupert Park.  Other well known parks include Stanley Park and Granville Island Water Park, where you can partake in things like pitch-and-putt, jogging, rollerblading and picnics.  Hiking is another past time Canadians and visitors enjoy, especially with Grouse Mountain being so near.  Vancouver has many trails for beginners up to advanced hikers.  Along these lines, Vancouver provides many opportunities to stay fit while indoors with its many fitness centres, community and recreational centres, and yoga studios.
If you love to eat you’ve come to the right place!  Downtown Vancouver has restaurants for people with every imaginable palate and then some.  French, Thai, Italian, Chinese, Korean, Caribbean, and Indian are just a few types of cuisine you will find.  You can find everything from native dishes to fresh seafood to mouth-watering international plates that’ll have you coming back for more.  Coffee shops and cafes are plentiful as well, lining the sidewalks and providing much needed resting spots for those shopping ’til they drop.
That brings us to shopping!  Robson Street is the ultimate shopping experience with all of your favorites like Armani, American Eagle Outfitters, Banana Republic, London Drugs, Gap, Virgin Records, Gucci, M.A.C, Levi’s, Lush, Tommy Hilfiger, Payless Shoes, Bebe and Roots Canada.  Located among the shops are pharmacies, beauty salons, coffee shops, bars, and restaurants for a one-stop strip where you can spend your day.  Another great shipping Mecca to visit for some fresh local goods is the Public Market on Granville Island.  Not quite downtown Vancouver but well worth the visit, if you live in Vancouver you’ll want to shop here for produce and seafood as this is where its freshest.
Let’s talk how to get around.  Transportation options are not limited, with the choice of taxies, ferries, busses, float planes, the SkyTrain, Seabus, and of course car rental agencies available.  There’s always the old reliable form of walking, which will give you a much more up close and personal experience with the downtown core.  You’ll see old buildings complete with fire escapes, get acquainted with locals, and best of all not to have to pay a fare or fee to get around.  There are guided tours you can take if you’d rather have someone else point out the important things to see in Vancouver.  Maps and schedules of busses and trains are available if you’d like to plan out your day.  Just be sure to treat yourself to one ferry ride while in the city!
Vancouver’s nightlife consists of bars and pubs, nightclubs, casinos, comedy clubs, and performing arts.  Whether you’re on a budget or have money to spend, you’ll find something to keep you entertained during the night hours.  If you’re single, join a singles club to make new friends.  The gay and lesbian scene in Vancouver is alive and well with organizations and resources that will help you find gay-friendly establishments including where to stay, where to hang out, and where to eat.
If you’re a sports nut, join the rest of the Canadian crowd and go see a BC Lions or Vancouver Canucks game while you’re in the city.  Vancouver also has soccer events, boat races, horse races, baseball and marathons.  Feel free to either watch or find a way to join and participate in the local sports if you can.  The large venues such as GM Place and BC Place Stadium are great places to take the kids for an afternoon or evening of fun.

Perhaps you have visited downtown Vancouver before and fell in love.  What better place to marry your loved one than this fabulous city?  Vancouver has many beautiful venues to choose from for your special day, and as well as all your standard necessities like caterers, photographers, florists, event planners, musicians, gown and tux shops, and where to find that perfect wedding cake.  Honeymooning here is also a wonderful option, as the beauty of the city and surrounding areas like Whistler and Victoria Island make for romantic getaways while providing plenty of things to keep you and your new spouse busy.


Adam Toren

Adam Toren
Adam Toren is born and raised in Vancouver BC and loves everything Vancouver BC has to offer. He loves traveling and exploring new and unique restaurants and places around the world.