Things to do in Vancouver
It’s easy to fall in love with this Canadian city – there are just so many things to do in Vancouver. From exploring the metropolis’s ambitious, adventurous and hands-down delicious culinary scene, to partaking in a host of nearby outdoor activities (kayaking, hiking, skiing, you name it) visitors wondering what to do in Vancouver will be hard-pressed to run out of options.
Culture lovers will find a long list of things to do in Vancouver; the city boasts a lively art scene, and boutique galleries – which display work by local artists – dot the downtown and South Granville districts. Meanwhile, the Vancouver Art Gallery, located downtown, features a permanent collection of classical paintings from world-renowned artists, including British Columbia’s own Emily Carr. The nearby Contemporary Art Gallery displays more modern, cutting-edge art.
Visitors wondering what to do in Vancouver who get overwhelmed by the countless options should consider taking a tour – be it by bus, walking, hop-on, hop-off – to get oriented with the city and all the amazing activities, sights and delights it has to offer.
In the Victorian neighborhood of Gastown, this three-story Native American art gallery showcases ceremonial masks and totem poles, limited-edition prints, and bentwood boxes. The beaded moccasins and hand-carved “talking sticks” make for great souvenirs.
What started as a tiny consignment shop in the indie district around King Edward Avenue has grown into the neighborhood’s premiere boutique for all things antique and secondhand. Find vintage leather clutches and bags alongside baby toys, kitchenware, printed stationery, and more.
The trendy South Granville shopping district is home to this popular home decorating boutique known for its feminine style. Twinkling chandeliers, mirrored chests, mercury-glass lamps, and quirky handcrafted tableware share showroom space with Bèrgere chairs and custom sofas.
The Pacific Northwest’s cool waters are teeming with colorful, fascinating sea-life—and the recently expanded Vancouver Aquarium brings these abundant creatures into easy view.
One of the five largest film festivals in North America, the two-week Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) was first founded in 1982.
Housed inside the international terminal inside the Vancouver International Airport, The Spirit of Haida Gwaii, known as the Jade Canoe, is the second bronze casting of this famous sculpture.
Established in 1931, the Vancouver Art Gallery is the largest in Western Canada, and showcases the works of primarily regional artists, with some international contributions, as well.
Operating in False Creek since 1982, this ferry service is the original one providing transport aboard its fleet of 10 vessels, which includes four 20-passenger diesel-powered ferries. The Little Blue Ferries offers routes to several destinations, including the Maritime Museum, Stamps Landing, an
International design house Obakki sells clothing for both work and play that's geared toward young (and young-at-heart) career women. Founded by Treana Peake in Vancouver, the company's line is a favorite of celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Hudson, and Tyra Banks.
A single- or two-person sea kayak paddle around False Creek is a terrific way to spot some of Vancouver’s landmarks—including the still-under-construction athletes’ village for the Winter 2010 Olympic Games.
Olympic Pedigree: Snowboarding and freestyle skiing in 2010, and site of Shaun “Flying Tomato” White’s likely total domination of the half-pipe à la Turin 2006.
Canadian artist Lutz Haufschild created this 131-foot-long stained glass panel inspired by the iconic Hokusai painting The Great Wave off Kanagawa. Using thousands of pieces of aqua and green-hued glass, this piece reflects sunlight as if it were shining off the ocean.
Young music lovers and older fans of Art Deco architecture share an affinity for this restored, historic (built in 1929) venue in the middle of the Downtown entertainment district.
Instead of hiking up north Vancouver’s infamous Grouse Grind, First Flight Paragliding offers a more adventerous alternative: soaring 4,100 feet above sea level, straight off Grouse Mountain’s peak.
Founder Chip Wilson opened the flagship store of his global yoga apparel chain, Lululemon Kitsilano, back in 2000. The brand is known for fashion-forward workout gear that bridges the yoga studio/street wear divide.