Rain or Shine: Scenic Vancouver Strolls

The Canadian Trail at Canada Place | Photo Credit: Yasmine Hardcastle

Spring has sprung, and with its 360 degree postcard views, Vancouver is a city where you want to get your step on as a visitor or a local. I love to walk around my city!

Rain or shine, on your own, as a date, or out with your family, an urban hike or stroll is the perfect way to keep active. And I’m always surprised how many steps I’ve gotten in after a day of exploring. So grab your SPF, umbrella (just in case), walking shoes and camera; here are some of my favourite places to trek off a meal and see the city!

The Vancouver Seawall

At 22 kilometres (13.5 miles), the Vancouver Seawall is the world’s longest uninterrupted waterfront space. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can do it all in a day (I’ve done this a few times) with picnics in our many parks along the way, or you can break it up into more manageable chunks with a water taxi ride or do one bit every day. It is also bicycle and dog friendly.

  • Stanley Park – Surrounding one of the most beautiful urban parks in the world, the Stanley Park stretch of the Seawall is the longest and gives the most variety in its views.


  • Olympic Village – With Granville Island and Science World as its bookends, Olympic Village is the city’s most recently developed area (thank you, 2010!) and faces our beautiful skyline from the south bank of False Creek. It’s also an ideal spot to stop for lunch or a beer flight at one of the many restaurants and pubs located along the path.

Olympic Village Seawall Skyline View | Photo Credit: Yasmine Hardcastle

  • Yaletown – With beautiful sculptures and art dotted along the way, this stretch of the seawall also provides a knockout sunrise or sunset view. It is also home to two water taxi stops, one to get you to Olympic Village or Science World, and the other to Granville Island and Kitsilano.

Yaletown Seawall | Image via Reddit

  • Coal Harbour – With its uninterrupted view of the mountains, Coal Harbour provides amazing photo opportunities with every step. Start at The Canadian Trail at the Canada Place sails and watch the seaplanes land and takeoff as you walk down the steps of the Vancouver Convention Centre. There are several restaurants and cafes along the way and the opportunity for city cruises from the popular marina.

Coal Harbour Seawall | Image via InsideVancouver.ca

  • English Bay – Located in the city’s popular and picturesque West End neighbourhood, the view along English Bay can be taken in from any of many of the beaches dotted along the shoreline, and the path will lead you to either Kitsilano or Stanley Park. The Inukshuk and Engagement Ring sculptures are popular landmarks and excellent places to take in the annual Honda Celebration of Light fireworks.

English Bay Inukshuk | Image via Tourism Vancouver

  • Kitsilano – Spanning westward from Burrard Bridge to Kits Beach via Vanier Park and some of Vancouver’s world-class museums, the walk along Kitsilano’s shore is stunning. Known as a hub for Vancouver’s yoga and healthy living cultures, this is also a fantastic place to watch our international fireworks show, the Honda Celebration of Light. This path gateways into the gorgeous University of British Columbia (know locally as UBC) campus and the beauty of Pacific Spirit Park.

Kitsilano Beach | Image courtesy of TripAdvisor

For a full map of the Vancouver Seawall, click here.

Stanley Park

In addition to its Seawall views, Stanley Park is recognized as one of the best urban parks in the world. The 130 year-old green wonder’s walking paths lead you through its majestic trees to something for everyone; ecology, photography, and history enthusiasts will delight and this is a fantastic place for a date or family outing. The Vancouver Aquarium and totem poles are personal favourites for this writer!

Totem Poles in Stanley Park | Photo Credit: Mark Newman

Queen Elizabeth Park

Located outside of the Downtown core, Queen Elizabeth Park is the highest point in Vancouver, and often considered the best viewpoint in the city. The view includes Mt. Baker on one side and our beautiful Downtown skyline and North Shore mountains on the other. With 55 hectares to walk around, the park offers many recreational activities like lawn tennis and pitch and putt, beautiful sculptures, and the Bloedel  Conservatory for bird enthusiasts. A fun thing for everyone is to take a photo with the ‘Photo Session’ bronze sculptures. Make sure to also visit Seasons in the Park for a nice lunch.

‘Photo Session’ at Queen Elizabeth Park | Photo Credit: Mark Newman

Guided Tours

If you have a specific neighbourhood of the city that you would like to explore and would like a guided tour, there are several walking tour options available that cater to everyone from families and historians to foodies and photographers. Click here to check out our excellent tour vendors!

Walking tour Vancouver

Image: Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours via TripAdvisor

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