Calm Your Mind Outdoors Without Leaving Vancouver

VanDusen Garden Hedge maze in Vancouver

VanDusen Garden’s Elizabethan Hedge Maze. Photo: Destination BC/Grant Harder

Is your 2024 New Year’s resolution to lower your stress? You can escape the hustle and bustle of the city without leaving Vancouver. Head to one of these oases of calm to breathe in fresh air and unwind.


Lost Lagoon at Stanley Park

Take a nature break with a stroll along the paths around Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park. Pause to sit on a bench and watch the ducks and geese. Keep an eye out for herons fishing in the shallows and curious raccoons darting through the underbrush.

A woman taking photos of ducks, geese and swans at Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park, Vancouver, BC

Spotting birds at Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park. Photo: Destination Vancouver / Suzanne Rushton


Escape to the Tropics at the Bloedel Conservatory

The domed Bloedel Conservatory at Queen Elizabeth Park is home to over 500 species of exotic plants. The entire building is kept at tropical temperatures so you will feel like you have been transported thousands of kilometres away as you wander through the serene jungle.

Inside the Bloedel Conservatory in Vancouver

Photo: Destination Vancouver


Forest Bathe in Pacific Spirit Regional Park

You can relieve stress and improve mental health simply by spending time in nature. Head to Pacific Spirit Regional Park in the Point Grey neighbourhood to forest bathe. Find a quiet spot to sit in stillness or walk slowly and mindfully as you take in the mossy forest and chirping birds.

Towering trees in Pacific Spirit Regional Park

Tall trees in Pacific Spirit Park. Photo: Mia Mackenzie/Unsplash


Chill Out in the Central Library’s Rooftop Garden

Take the elevator up to the ninth floor of Vancouver’s Central Library and leave the concrete jungle behind as you pass through the glass doors into the Phillips, Hager and North Garden. This gorgeous rooftop garden has great views of the city skyline.

A woman sits on a bench in the rooftop garden at the Vancouver Central Library

Enjoying the rooftop garden. Photo: Roelen Photography/Pixabay


Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden

The white walls of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden hide an island of green in the Chinatown neighbourhood. Venture inside the first Chinese garden built outside of Asia to meditate as you walk the paths or just chill out by the lily pond.

Photo: Destination BC/Grant Harder


Discover Hotels With Green Spaces

A few of Vancouver’s hotels have gorgeous natural outdoor spaces where you can relax. At the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel Vancouver, head to the third floor to zen out in the rooftop garden that includes herbs, fruit, vegetables and a honey bee hive. Or escape to the outdoor courtyard at the Westin Bayshore Vancouver. You’ll find a tree-lined pool, gardens, and adorable barrel-shaped saunas. Parq Vancouver has a huge outdoor green space on the sixth floor that includes a water feature, walking paths and two restaurants.

Outdoor space at Parq Vancouver

Photo: Parq Vancouver


Stroll Past Giant Trees in Stanley Park

Take a walk in the forest without leaving downtown. Explore the wooded trails of Stanley Park’s interior to discover towering Western red cedar, Douglas fir, Sitka spruce, and Western hemlock trees. The best trails for big trees are Tatlow Walk, Siwash Rock Trail, Lake Trail, and Third Beach Trail. Use this Stanley Park map to find your way.

A couple walking on the trail in Stanley Park

Photo: Destination Vancouver/Kindred & Scout


Stop to Smell the Flowers at VanDusen Botanical Garden

VanDusen Botanical Garden is spread over 55 acres so there are lots of different plants and flowers to discover year-round. The hedge maze in the southwest corner is a great spot to practice walking meditation. Or find a quiet spot to sit in the Forest Lake section in the northwest corner or the serene Meditation Garden on the south side.

Van Dusen Gardens in Vancouver

Photo: Tourism Vancouver/VanDusen Gardens

Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed for this post

Comments are closed.

  • Insider Access

  • Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram Follow us on Twitter Watch us on YouTube


    Vancouver Event Calendar

    604 Neighbourhoods

    TED Host City