Nothing complements an Alaskan cruise like a visit to Vancouver. Considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world, a stay in Vancouver should be near the top of any globetrotter’s bucket list. With a bounty of outdoor activities and attractions, it’s a great place to stretch your legs before or after an Alaskan adventure. As if you needed more convincing, we’ve assembled a list of the top things to see and do in Vancouver.
The jewel in Vancouver’s crown is beautiful Stanley Park. One of the largest city parks in North America, Stanley Park boasts more than 16 miles of trails along a stunning coastline and through majestic forests. Locals love the five-mile Seawall separating park from ocean for walking and biking. Enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride and tour of the park. Other highlights include the miniature railway, the totem pole village and the Vancouver Aquarium, home to dolphins, beluga whales, seals, sea lions, otters and much more. Stick around the park after sunset to hear the Nine O’clock Gun, a cannon fired every night at 9:00 since 1898.
Artisanal Community of Granville Island
Great for strolling, shopping or people watching, Granville Island is an artisanal community in the heart of Vancouver. Restaurants, art galleries, studios, shops…you could spend the entire day here walking the quaint, cobblestone streets. Climb aboard a boat tour of the harbor and don’t miss the famous Public Market, chock a block with stalls of produce, meats, cheeses, and handmade items.
The Museum of Anthropology
The Museum of Anthropology is considered one of the best of its kind in the world. Dig a little deeper into the indigenous cultures of the Pacific Northwest through the large collection of totem poles and other artifacts. Exhibits also include works from the South Pacific, Africa, China and more.
The VanDusen Botanical Garden
Explore more than 50 acres of flora from all over the world, representing ecosystems from tropical to arctic, at VanDusen Botanical Garden. From lawns to woodlands to five different lakes, stroll every type of terrain in search of what’s blooming that season. The garden also features a collection of stone sculptures and an Elizabethan maze.
Ride the Skyride up Grouse Moutain
Climb aboard the Skyride, North America’s largest aerial tramway system, to the top of Grouse Mountain for stunning views of Vancouver. Activities at the top of the mountain include hiking in the summer and skiing in the winter..
The Capilano Suspension Bridge
For those who like a shot of adrenaline, brave the Capilano Suspension Bridge. Spanning 450 feet across a gorge and 230 feet above the Capilano River below, the foot bridge was originally constructed in 1889. Don’t worry, it’s been kept up over the years. Or try the park’s Treetops Adventure, a walkway 100 feet above the forest floor so that you’re eye to eye with the tops of 1,300-year-old Douglas first.
Award Winning Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden
Travel back in time to 15th century China, at the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden. Called the “World Top City Garden,” by National Geographic, the park is a throwback to the time of the Ming Dynasty, when gardens were designed to achieve harmony of four elements: rock, water, plants and architecture. Fifty-two master craftsmen traveled from Suzhou, China in 1985 to construct the garden. Rocks and plants including bamboo and winter-flowering plum were imported from China. The asymmetrical arrangement of rocks and plants are intended to bring about the perfect balance of yin and yang. The result is a peaceful paradise.