Vancouver Neighbourhoods: Lower Lonsdale

Welcome to Lower Lonsdale!

Situated along the waterfront in North Vancouver and showcasing picture-perfect views of downtown Vancouver’s skyline, Lower Lonsdale is one of North Vancouver’s oldest and fastest-growing urban neighbourhoods. Boasting a rich shipbuilding history, the neighbourhood’s Shipyards District has blossomed into a hub of independent shops, restaurants and breweries, and specialty food shops. Lower Lonsdale is a scenic 12-minute Seabus ride from downtown; once visitors reach the dock, they’ll find plenty to keep them occupied.

History

At the turn of the century, Lower Lonsdale was a hub of activity thanks to the introduction of ferry service transporting passengers across Burrard Inlet from downtown Vancouver. The booming shipyard and lumber industries attracted workers and residents, and when the housing market opened up in the early 1900s, the beginnings of a commercial sector helped to increase the population influx.

In the 1990s and 2000s, the City of North Vancouver instituted a plan to redevelop the former industrial lands with condominiums and multi-family developments constructed in their place; restaurants and retail shops opened soon after. Currently, Lower Lonsdale is undergoing further redevelopment, which will result in more residential buildings, as well as a three-storey commercial building in the Shipyards District.

Dining and Nightlife

Lonsdale Quay Market is perfect for a quick fuel-up.

Lonsdale Quay Market is perfect for a quick fuel-up with vendors selling tasty handhelds like gourmet pizzas, sandwiches and baked goods. Outside of the Quay is Lonsdale Avenue’s “restaurant row”, whose multicultural offerings are supplemented by sun-washed patios. One of the district’s best patios is at Tap & Barrel’s flagship location; settle in here for local craft beer and seasonally inspired pub fare. There’s also Burgoo, whose globally influenced comfort food is enhanced by frequent live music performances; for excellent Italian fare, you won’t be disappointed by Gusto di Quattro. If beer titillates your palate, drop by Beere Brewing Co., where you can sample the brewery’s craft concoctions while enjoying views of Burrard Inlet; or Green Leaf Brewing Co., which offers beer and whiskey pairings.

North Vancouver is a haven for brunch fiends, and Lower Lonsdale holds its own with plenty of bakeries and breakfast cafes. Lift Breakfast Bakery Ltd. serves great coffee alongside homemade pastries, breads and brunch favourites. Health nuts will adore Buddha-Full, whose plant-based meals and fresh-pressed juices provide a guilt-free pick-me-up. The aroma of eggs and pancakes will set your stomach grumbling as soon as you step into Table 153, whose comprehensive menu will satisfy most palates and preferences.

Shopping

Lower Lonsdale’s commercial district – comprising four blocks along Lonsdale Avenue – is the best place to shop for specialty goods, souvenirs, locally made clothing and quirky shops. If you’re visiting in the summer, don’t miss the Shipyards Night Market, featuring an artisan marketplace alongside live music, a forest of food trucks and an always-buzzing craft beer garden.

Things to See and Do

Don’t miss LoLo’s Fun Alley!

The anchor attraction in Lower Lonsdale is Lonsdale Quay Market, a colourful collection of more than 80 food vendors, retail shops, boutiques and eateries. The market was originally opened for Expo ’86, and has since evolved into a multi-use community anchor.

Just outside the market is Q Tower, where you can catch a bird’s-eye view of the downtown skyline; climb 77 steps to the top for gorgeous views of mountains, ocean and city skyline. Also along the waterfront is the aesthetic Polygon Gallery, whose striking architecture is complemented by minimalist photography displays, media-based art and a curated gift shop. Kiddies will enjoy playing in Waterfront Park, and the whole family can snap selfies with thought-provoking public art.

Further north along Lonsdale Avenue is the aptly named Fun Alley, an interactive spot whose carnival-like hues are perfectly for photo backdrops – take a snap and rack up the Instagram Likes!

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One Response to Vancouver Neighbourhoods: Lower Lonsdale

  1. Long scale Quay is on my ‘ must go ‘ list every time I visit from Ontario!

    The Night Market, the music the view, the vendors!

    ‘ Tap and Barrel’!

    I’ll return in October!