Vancouver Waterfronts: Steveston

Photo credit: Roland on Flickr

Photo credit: Roland on Flickr

Vancouver is a seaside town through-and-through with north, west, and south boundaries extending to either the Fraser River or Burrard Inlet. Home to Canada’s busiest port and some of the world’s best beaches, existing along the water is a way of life for locals. We get to enjoy diverse wildlife, the hustle and bustle of industry that relies on these flowing thoroughfares, sandy beaches, rocky shores, and incredible sunsets that kiss the sea. Today’s feature takes us to the shores of the Fraser River in Steveston.

StevestonVillage

Steveston is a historic fishing community nestled along the southern Fraser River shore of Sea Island (Richmond). It’s known for its boardwalk, off-the-boat “catch of the day” sales, fish and chips, and attractions where the river meets the Salish Sea. Located just 20 minutes south of Vancouver, it’s as close as you’ll get to a sleepy seaside town which is home to 600 fishing vessels and 350 businesses. It’s also the primary filming location for “Storybrooke, Maine” from the popular television series Once Upon A Time.

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

The village’s population swells on sunny spring and summer days as locals flock to the wharf to pick up freshly-caught crab, shrimp, salmon, halibut, and other tasty ingredients for their supper. The boardwalk also is great for a stroll with an ice cream cone in hand and local retailers offer up unique gifts, antiques, and baked goods.

Photo credit: wlcutler on Flickr

Photo credit: wlcutler on Flickr

Photo credit: GoToVan  on Flickr

Photo credit: GoToVan on Flickr

StevestonMiss604

In the summer the annual Salmon Festival, tallship festival, and the Richmond Maritime Festival draw large crowds of up to 400,000.

Steveston Waterfront Attractions

Visitors and locals can go whale watching with Steveston Seabreeze Adventures, stop by the Steveston Farmers Market, or visit our favourite attraction, the Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site.

Gulf of Georgia Cannery

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

One of BC’s few historically intact canneries, the Gulf of Georgia Cannery commemorates the history of Canada’s West Coast fishing industry from the 1870’s to the present. Inside the massive wooden building visitors will experience an introductory film, guided tours with knowledgeable interpreters, and interactive exhibits. This vibrant heritage is justly celebrated in the picturesque fishing village of Steveston, home to Canada’s largest fishing fleet as well as many tempting shops and restaurants. [Parks Canada]

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

Garry Point Park

Garry Point Park is a 75-acre waterfront green-space on the western tip of Steveston. It’s officially known as a kite park since its location provides perfect winds and gusts for the family-friendly activity. It’s also home to a Vancouver Biennale work “Wind Waves” which is featured in many sweeping, panoramic sunset photos. The park also includes Kuno Garden, a Japanese style memorial garden and the Fisherman’s Memorial.

Photo credit: smilygrl on Flickr

Photo credit: smilygrl on Flickr

Local Tip: Explore beyond Steveston and discover historic Finn Slough fishing village just a few minutes away at the end of No. 4 Road in Richmond.

Steveston Food Options

Pajo’s Fish and Chips is a Steveston institution with two locations: One is right on the wharf and the other is at Garry Point Park.

While the wharf at Steveston is the ultimate place to grab fresh, local fish and chips, there are also a variety of other dining options right along the waterfront. There’s the West Coast and French fusion Tapenade Bistro and one of our favourites, Hog Shack barbecue — with some of the best brisket and burnt ends you’ll find in this part of the country.

hogshack

I asked Allan Yeo, co-owner of Hog Shack, what he loves about being in Steveston and who they usually see coming through their doors. “We see a mix of locals but also see people traveling from as far as Winnipeg specifically to come see us. We are very proud with what we have accomplished since opening in October, 2010. We strive to cater to locals because we know that once they come see us… they will surely make plans to see us again soon.”

Allan said Steveston is “truly a different world” with a maritime-themed heritage village with all the amenities of an urban community. Perhaps it’s only downfall? Not a lot of parking.

tapenade

This waterfront community has a lot to offer, even in during the cold, grey winter months though. My husband and I spent a day walking around Steveston, brushing up on the area’s history at the Cannery and shopping in the boutiques in February. The salty sea air mixed with the roasted aromas of our Steveston Coffees that steamed as we walked along the river’s edge — it was perfect.

Photo credit: tc_terencec on Flickr

Photo credit: tc_terencec on Flickr

Tagged: ,

Comments are closed for this post

One Response to Vancouver Waterfronts: Steveston

  1. I saw the picture and it is really nice what you said, great job!