City guide: 

We've visited Vancouver often (here and here) because we love the laid-back West Coast vibe, but also because it's only a two-hour flight from Edmonton and Calgary. You truly get the best of both worlds: a cosmopolitan hub with urban sophistication as well as a green oasis with the mountains and seascape on your doorstep. We're excited to be returning in November 2019 to add to the below city guide.

Visit Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

You'll Love It If You're:

OUTDOORSY | A FOODIE | ACTIVE | A COFFEE SNOB | TRAVELLING SOLO

  OUTDOORSY         A FOODIE          ACTIVE          A COFFEE SNOB         TRAVELLING SOLO          

You can take advantage of the free wifi throughout the city by connecting to any of the #VanWifi hotspots. 

The Canadian currency is the Canadian Dollar (CAD). Gratuities are seldom included on the bill in Canadian restaurants. Listed prices never include tax, which is normally an extra 14%. On top of that is the tip (15 - 20%) you’re expected to pay at restaurants and for other services.

The plugs in Canada are type B (the same as the US). The standard voltage is 110-120 V, and the standard frequency is 60Hz.

Vancouver is a very safe city to visit, but avoid leaving any of your belongings unguarded.  The number of homeless people and drug addicts in Vancouver might be shocking, especially near East Hastings, but don’t let that worry you. You can safely walk anywhere at any time of day or night in Vancouver.

While Vancouver has the mildest climate of all the Canadian cities, Vancouver does have a reputation for rain—it’s even nicknamed Rain City, or Raincouver, by the locals. That said, we dIdn't mind it for this getaway and it's only usually a slight drizzle.

Most people would say it is best to visit Vancouver in the summer, when the days are long and the weather is beautiful, but that is the busiest tourist season. If you want to avoid the crowds, try going in early fall, when the hotels offer reduced rates and there's a quieter pace.

If you're visiting to hit the slopes, December to March is the best time for skiing.

If you’re arriving by air, you’ll be flying into Vancouver International Airport (YVR), located 25 min by car to downtown. The best way to get from the airport to Downtown is to use the SkyTrain for $9.25 each (the standard $4.25 2-zone fare plus a $5 airport fee) per trip. Tt’s faster than taxis and it’s cheaper for individuals and couples.

Vancouver is difficult and expensive to park in, and easy to get around by foot, bike, or public transit, so it's not necessary to hire a car. Currently, there is no Uber, Lyft, or any ride-sharing platform in Vancouver, but it is set to be introduced soon. In the meantime, you will have to ride public transit, walk, bike, use car2go, or take an old-fashioned taxi (use their Uber-imitation eCab app) to get around.

Public transportation is easy to access via SkyTrain, bus, or ferry. Prices vary depending on your destination, but single fares range from $1.30 to $4.00, and a DayPass costs $5.60 to $7.31.

Free shuttle buses run throughout the summer to Grouse Mountain and the Capilano Suspension Bridge.


Good to Know:

When to Go:

Transportation:

Vancouver's foodie scene never ceases to amaze us. Every itinerary is pack-fulled with great foodie options, but this particular travel diary has me salivating. Don't miss a cycle along the 22-kilometer Seawall that wraps around Downtown including Coal Harbour, False Creek, and Stanley Park,

Extend your stay and visit one of the
below nearby cities:

Edmonton // Calgary // Victoria 

You can find other City Guides here.

First off, Vancouver is considered to be a 'casual' city, so you can wear whatever you feel like.

During summer, temperatures average around 21- 25°C, but can reach highs of over 30°C, meaning shorts and flip-flops are a must! Vancouver is an outdoorsy city so be sure to bring your active wear to get out on adventures

In Spring (April - May) or Fall (September - October), temperatures are crisp, and average 11°C to 17°C.

Vancouver enjoys mild winters, and snow is pretty rare in the city.  Temperatures usually range from 5° to 10°C during the day (40° - 50° F).  To stay cozy and dry, you'll need warm clothes, a raincoat and an umbrella. Waterproof boots are also a good idea.

See below for outfit suggestions!

Vancouver has loads of options when it comes to accommodations. The best area to stay in is undoubtedly the Downtown area, along or close to Coal Harbour., a.k.a the West Side. 

Union Bank Inn and Matrix Hotel are both solid options for those looking for small hotels with character. The former is more old-school; the latter on the sleek, contemporary side.

If you’re accustomed to design-forward boutiques (the kind we love), you'll love the Loden Hotel ($$). If you’re looking for something grand, Fairmont Pacific Rim ($$$), which overlooks Coal Harbour and Canada Place, and the old-world charm of the Rosewood Hotel Georgia ($$$) are both great options. 

Find alternative suggestions for accommodation below

What to Do:

What to Wear:

Where to Stay:

Disclosure: Whenever possible, we use links that earn us a cut if you pay for stuff we recommend. It costs you nothing, so we’d be crazy not to. Read our affiliate policy here.

in VANCOUVER / RAIN-COUVER

When to Go & What to Wear

From May to June, the sun is shining, it's warmer outside, and the city feels busier. July & August is officially summer & high-tourist season. We've been in August which is a busy month for events including the Pride Parade and & the Celebration of Light. 

You must pack: comfortable walking shoes, casual comfortable clothes (athleisure is the norm) & a lightweight jacket like a denim or bomber jacket).

For SUMMER >

From May to June, the sun is shining, it's warmer outside, and the city feels busier. July & August is officially summer & high-tourist season. We've been in August which is a busy month for events including the Pride Parade and & the Celebration of Light. 

You must pack: comfortable walking shoes preferably waterproof or rain-boots, casual comfortable clothes, a lightweight rain-jacket & an umbrella (although some high-end hotels have some on hand for you).

For FALL >

From May to June, the sun is shining, it's warmer outside, and the city feels busier. July & August is officially summer & high-tourist season. We've been in August which is a busy month for events including the Pride Parade and & the Celebration of Light. 

You must pack: comfortable walking shoes preferably waterproof or rain-boots, casual comfortable clothes, a lightweight hooded rain-jacket & an umbrella (although some high-end hotels have some on hand for you).

For WINTER >

Spring arrives early in February or March,

You must pack: comfortable walking shoes preferably waterproof or rain-boots, casual comfortable clothes, a lightweight rain-jacket & an umbrella (although some high-end hotels have some on hand for you).

For SPRING >

  SUMMER         FALL          WINTER          SPRING      

Nemesis Coffee ☕️🍳

49th Parallel + Lucky Doughnuts ☕️🍩

Revolver ☕️🍰🥐

Birds & The Beets ☕️🥪

Matchstick Coffee ☕️

Our favourite, plus they serve brunch daily from 9am - 3pm. 

Slightly fruitier coffee than we're used to, it's our go-to when Downtown. 

Located in Gastown, the buzzing cafe is usually a grab-and-go place for us.

Also located in Gastown, the trendy, hipster spot is always busy.

We've yet to try, but have heard amazing things!

THE BEST COFFEE SHOPS IN VANCOUVER  >

(P.S. The Vancouver Coffee Snob is our go-to guide when we're wondering what coffee shop to try next)

Local!

VANCOUVER

HIGHLIGHTS FROM OUR WEEK IN VANCOUVER

EDMONTON

THE BEST COFFEE SHOPS IN EDMONTON

We post about our trips often & even have a highlight reel of our visits to Vancouver on our IG Stories. Follow along so you never miss post’s about our exciting destinations.

One of my favourite ways to research a trip is on Instagram, searching hashtags & popular destinations. For Vancouver, you’ll want to search #VeryVancouver & #ExploreBC or follow Vancouver's Tourism Account.

Other Instagrammers & Bloggers from Vancouver that I love are:

Alex @tovogueorbust
Vancity Wild @vancitywild
Local Wanderer @localwanderer
Inside Vancouver @inside_vancouver




Instagram:

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