Posted March 2, 2011 by Adam Toren in City Guides

Vancouver Vacations – Enjoy Vancouver Vacations to the Fullest with These Fantastic Activities

It’s time to make some memories on your Vancouver vacation. Have any idea where you’re going to go? Vancouver Canada is jam-packed with activities and adventures for singles, families, and seniors. Whether you’re on a budget or have money to spend, Vancouver’s got something for you! The weather here usually borders on maritime, with occasional rain and moderate temperatures. If you want to avoid any possibility of extreme weather and have the opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities, be sure to go in the summer or fall.

Now, get mobile! What better way to check out the sights without having to walk too much than jumping on the Seabus or SkyTrain for an unguided tour? If you like the thought of having a guide, there are buses, trolleys, ferries, and even air tours available. Rather hit the pavement? Grab a walking tour and make some new friends in the process! If you’d rather spend some time alone or with your family, ditch the city for a while to partake in some skiing or snowboarding in gorgeous Whistler. Have a picnic at Shannon Falls, or play some Frisbee in Stanley Park. Kick up some sand playing beach volleyball, or spend some time out on the water kayaking or paddle boating. You won’t be able to miss beautiful Grouse Mountain looming in the background of Vancouver, begging for pictures and perhaps a hike. Don’t forget that Vancouver is pet-friendly if you can’t bear to part with your canine companion!

Your Vancouver vacation should be full of fun, food, and new experiences, even if you’ve been here before. There’s plenty of shopping, restaurants (remember, tipping in Vancouver is usually 15%), parks, art galleries, and museums to take advantage of during your stay. Vancouver treasurers its wilderness, so if you’re a green thumb, or just appreciate nature, you’ll undoubtedly want to visit one of the many botanical gardens, and of course Queen Elizabeth Park. Situated on an inactive volcano, the greenery and gorgeous flowers here will take your breath away. Don’t leave before you’ve played a little tennis and pitch-n-putt golf! Another fantastic visit would be Granville Island, a prime place to experience the culture and beauty of Vancouver. Explore the public market, dine at the waterfront eateries, head down to the marina for a picture-perfect sunset, and then catch the Aquabus back to Vancouver’s False Creek.

What would a Vancouver vacation be without a little trip to Chinatown and Gastown? Vancouver’s Chinatown is the second largest after San Francisco due to the vast amount of immigrants from Hong Kong that have made Vancouver their new home. Chinatown boasts some beautiful gardens and plenty of authentic food. Gastown, known for the famous steam clock, is a quaint historic setting that provides a bustling nightlife for club-goers and bar hoppers. If you come at the right time of year you can catch the annual Vancouver International Jazz Festival, as well as a number of other events. Bring your camera, as a lot of the architecture here dates back to the 1800s. Yaletown is another jewel, and you’ll be surprised to know it used to be a warehouse district! Now an upscale neighborhood full of boutiques, nightclubs, lavish high-rise condos, and gourmet grocery stores, Yaletown offers visitors a chance to amble among the elite crowd.

If you’re the type that would rather not spend money, there’s stuff for you to do as well. Hit the beach; catch the annual HSBC Celebration of Lights firework display; roller blade through the park; window shop; or sightsee with your camera handy. Vancouver has some of the most interesting buildings you’ll find-historic and modern-as well as fantastic weather and a lot of culture. The Capilano Suspension Bridge and Vancouver Public Library are two places brimming with history and certainly worth a look.

If spending money isn’t an issue, then Robson Street is where you should be headed. Considered one of the best known shopping strips on the planet, you can browse through shops 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, and the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory-yum! Once you’re done shopping, you can hit up one of the many cafes situated along the street to refuel. With an active community based in the wilderness, there are plenty of sporting goods stores located around the city if you’re ready to hit the slopes or spend an action-filled day in the park. Check out Main Street in downtown Vancouver for those shops that specialize in souvenirs for you and gifts for your loved ones.

Did you bring the kids? Great! Saddle up for some kid-friendly activities as Vancouver has many indoor playgrounds like Gator Pit and Kid Zone, family friendly restaurants like Rocky Mountain Flatbread Co. and Red Robin, and an overabundance of parks, gardens, and outdoor spaces where the kids can run wild and enjoy themselves just as much as mom and dad. Of course, Vancouver also has educational centers to slip in some learning amidst the fun. The MacMillan Space Center, Science World, and Vancouver Aquarium are just a few examples of knowledge rich adventures you can experience on your Vancouver vacation. The aquarium has over 7,000 species ready to pose for pictures, and perhaps you can even spy some of the resident sea otters or sharks during their feeding time.

If you’re into sports (as are most Canadians), Vancouver offers many venues where you can cheer on your favorite BC team. You can catch the Canucks at GM Place if you’re into hockey, the Lions at BC Place Stadium for some football, and even drop in on some baseball, soccer, or horse racing. In 2010 you’ll be able to witness the Olympics when they come to Vancouver and Whistler, so secure your travel arrangements now to become a part of Canadian history! Along the same lines are all of Canada’s annual events, like the Polar Bear Swim, Celtic Fest, and Rogers Santa Claus Parade just to name a few. If you plan your Vancouver vacation at the right time of year, you’ll likely be able to catch one of these fun events and add some extra value to your trip.

No matter what your desire, taste, or budget may be, Vancouver is sure to wow you and keep you busy throughout your entire vacation and send you home with a smile.

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.