8 Easy Wheelchair-Accessible Hikes Around Vancouver

A man in a wheelchair looks at the ocean

Photo: Palle Knudsen/Unsplash

Nature is for everyone. Thankfully, there are lots of easy and accessible hikes close to Vancouver. These flat hikes are great for wheelchair-users, people who use mobility aids, or child strollers. Put these wheelchair-accessible hikes around Vancouver on your to-do list.

Until further notice, in line with the public health order, non-essential travel into, within, and out of BC is not recommended. BC residents, let’s do our part by continuing to stay small and support local with your immediate household, in accordance with the latest guidelines.


Note: The trails listed in this guide are designated as accessible on park websites and brochures. In general, they are flat, wide, and have hard-packed surfaces with gentle slopes and no stairs. However, trail standards differ and paths can erode. Not all of the trails on this list may be suitable for all users.

Safety First: AdventureSmart recommends bringing a backpack with essential safety and first aid gear on every hike. Check the forecast and pack extra clothing for the weather. Leave a trip plan so someone knows where you are going and when you will be back. Hiking is a little different during the pandemic. Read our tips for getting outdoors during COVID-19.


Pacific Spirit Regional Park, Vancouver

Located on the west side of the city near UBC, Pacific Spirit Regional Park has several accessible trails. Check out the Heron Trail and Cleveland Trail near the park centre on 16th Avenue. Both are wide, packed-gravel trails with minimal slopes. If you’re up for slightly steeper hills, check out the continuation of Cleveland Trail south of 16th Avenue or the Imperial Trail. Dogs are not permitted in some areas on weekend and holidays. See the park website for details.


Burnaby Lake Regional Park, Burnaby

Many of the trails at Burnaby Lake Regional Park are accessible. Park at the Piper Spit entrance to enjoy the wheelchair-accessible boardwalk. The 2.6-km-long Cottonwood Trail starts here too. It has minimal slopes and a semi-firm surface. The Brunette Headwaters Trail, Avalon Trail, Conifer Loop, and Spruce Loop rails are also somewhat accessible with minimal grade changes and no stairs, but they may have loose gravel. Dogs are permitted on leash.

Trail at Burnaby Lake Regional Park

Photo: Burnaby Lake Regional Park


Deer Lake Park, Burnaby

Tranquil Deer Lake Park is a natural oasis in the heart of Burnaby. The trail around the lake is flat with finely crushed gravel, hard-packed dirt, or boardwalk and is accessible to most users. The trail system is currently one-way to allow for social distancing, so be sure to follow the signs. Dogs are permitted on leash.


George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary, Delta

The huge George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary on Westham Island near Ladner includes wetlands, natural marshes, and low dykes in the Fraser River Estuary. Most of the trails are flat gravel, although there can be puddles in rainy weather. The viewing platform at the Southwest Marsh is also wheelchair accessible. Heads up: Admission is charged and you must reserve in advance. Dogs are not permitted in the sanctuary.


Seymour Valley Trailway, North Vancouver

The Seymour Valley Trailway provides 10 kilometres of paved trail through the forest, finishing near the Seymour Dam. The terrain is rolling and some hills may be too steep for some users. There are several picnic areas along the way to stop and take a break. Dogs are not permitted on this trail.


Rice Lake Loop, North Vancouver

The three-kilometre-long trail around Rice Lake in North Vancouver’s Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve is wide and flat with minimal slopes. The wharf is wheelchair accessible too. Dogs are not permitted on this trail.

The wheelchair-accessible wharf at Rice Lake

Looking across to the wheelchair-accessible wharf at Rice Lake. Photo: Taryn Eyton


Yew Lake Barrier-Free Interpretive Trail, Cypress Provincial Park

The two-kilometre-long Yew Lake Barrier-Free Interpretive Trail loops through a subalpine meadow near the ski lodge, passing several ponds. Most of the trail is below 5% grade, although there are a few sections up to 7%. Interpretive signs along the way help you learn about local plants and animals. Save this trail for July, August, September when it is snow-free. Dogs are not permitted unless they are certified guide or service dogs.


Spirea Nature Trail, Golden Ears Provincial Park

This short one-kilometre loop trail in Golden Ears Provincial Park zigzags through a beautiful mossy forest and across a boardwalk over a bog. Stop to read the many interpretive signs to learn about the area’s ecosystem. Take your time to spot many types of trees, mosses, ferns, and fungi. Dogs are permitted on leash.

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