Looking for some adventure? You’ve come to the right city. No matter what time of year, when you start your day in Vancouver, it can take you anywhere.
Calling all shopaholics! From independent designers and high-fashion labels to global retailers and coastal-lifestyle brands, shopping in Vancouver is all about diversity—which is what you should expect from Canada’s only major metropolitan city on the Pacific Coast.
Vancouver is Canada’s playground and its proximity to the ocean, mountains and forest is reflected in almost every facet of the city’s culture. You’ll be hard pressed to find a more beautiful shopping destination in any other major city in North America.
As most travelers know, neighbourhood shopping is a great way to discover a city. It’s also a great way to meet some of the people who live here. We also are home to Metrotown, the second largest mall in Canada—so for all you one-stop, shop-till-you-drop visitors, we’ve got you covered too.
In this video, we wanted to give visitors a quick overview of Vancouver’s shopping scene. Here are a list and some additional quick facts about the neighbourhoods and shopping centres we featured. Special thanks to Kildare Curtis from Eugene Choo and Nicole Durnin from LYNNsteve Boutique for their insight and advice.
1) Main Street
The best shopping areas here are on Main Street between 8th to 12thAve and 16th and 33rd. In these areas, you’ll find boutiques, vintage clothing, bookstores and home design retailers, along with fantastic coffee shops and restaurants. This is one of my favourite places to shop in the city.
2) West 4th Ave (Kitsilano)
This street runs above to Kitsilano Beach, which is worth a trip in its own right. The intersection at Burrard St and West 4th Ave is a great place to start. Here you’ll discover ski, snowboarding, yoga and other coastal lifestyle stores. Head west on West 4th and you’ll come across great shoe stores, restaurants and specialty retailers.
3) Pacific Centre
This shopping centre is located right in the heart of downtown Vancouver and stretches for three city blocks—under and above ground—between Robson St and West Pender St. You’ll find familiar stores here, including Holt Renfrew, H&M and many others.
4) Oakridge Centre
This is a popular shopping destination thanks to its proximity to Richmond and the Vancouver International Airport. It’s also easily accessible by the Canada Line-YVR SkyTrain. This shopping center definitely has an upscale vibe and it features many luxury brand retailers.
5) Metropolis at Metrotown
This is the kind of mall where time stops and with over 450 stores and services, that’s a good thing! Located in Burnaby, you can quickly travel here on the Expo and Millennium SkyTrain lines. Get off at Metrotown Station.
6) Luxury Brands
Although luxury brand retailers are located throughout the city, a good place to start your search is where Burrard St intersects Alberni St downtown. You should also check out the Sinclair Centre at West Hastings St and Granville St. Make sure to explore the surround area.
Newly gentrified, Yaletown is Vancouver’s trendy and upscale warehouse district. What used to be loading docks are now sidewalks. You’ll find great fashion, home design, and skin care retailers here. Start your visit by exploring Hamilton St and Mainland St between Nelson St and Drake St.
8 ) Gastown
Best boutiques, best furniture stores and best restaurants…sure I’m biased, but this is my neighbourhood, so I should be! There are also great art galleries and as well as a long strip on Water Street where retailers sell classic Canadian souvenirs.
9) Robson Street
This is Vancouver’s premiere shopping and strolling area. It’s a great place to shop or to sit for a meal and people watch. In addition to the large global brands, make sure to check out Canadian retailers like Lululemon Athletica, which was founded and is still based here in Vancouver.