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Go North (Vancouver)
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Exploring British Columbia
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Planning your Vancouver visit
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Big city, small-town charm
Vancouver is a fairytale city, complete with stunning mountainscapes directly to the north – making it easy to find your way home from anywhere you may wander. A hub of fine food, craft beers, shopping and nightlife, Vancouver is a cosmopolitan city that provides access to stunning hikes, the snowy slopes of Whistler and brilliant boating. It's home to one of the largest Chinatowns in North America, abundant with laid-back ‘hangout’ parks where locals walk their dogs and convene.
Though sprawling, Vancouver is an exceptionally easy city to navigate by foot, bicycle or bus. It is also a seriously bike-friendly city – and with each neighbourhood boasting its own unique energy and character, two wheels is one of the best ways to get around. The SkyTrain and SeaBus services can link you to the wider Vancouver area, including ferries to Vancouver Island, the picturesque Gulf Islands and other locations, and the Canada –United States border.
The trade-off for the lush green vegetation British Columbia is so famous for is rain. Though the city experiences milder winters than the rest of the country and summers are especially delightful, it’s important to remember that in Vancouver it rains. A lot. Be sure to check your calendar against average weather conditions when planning your trip. Though Vancouver doesn’t receive a lot of snow, it is abundant with transit links to Whistler, where the quality of skiing and snowboard is second to none.
What to do in Vancouver for 3 days
Adventure on the waves
For those who enjoy a stroll along the SeaWall yet find themselves wanting more, there’s no shortage of opportunities to get away from dry land and onto a boat. Take a tour of the Vancouver Harbour, board a ferry to the provincial capital of Victoria on Vancouver Island or enjoy a luxurious sunset cruise: the choice is yours!
Zip from sea to sky
There’s a reason the natural vistas of British Columbia are so celebrated and, from the Sea to Sky Gondola, you can experience the magic firsthand. Rising above Howe Sound, Shannon Falls and the Pacific Coast Ranges, your eyes will be assailed by some of the most stunning assortments of green and blue you’ve ever seen.
Take a trip into the heartland of British Columbia
Whether you’re passionate about pristine beaches and stunning woodlands or fancy a chance to strap on the skis, Vancouver is the perfect launching pad. Enjoy a day hike from the city limits, take a ferry to the delightful city of Victoria through stunning oceanic rock formations or hop on a bus to hit the slopes of Whistler – home to some of the finest skiing in North America (and an incalculable number of Australians, for some reason).
Dive beneath the surface at the Britannia Mine Museum
Howe Sound is more than just a breathtaking glacial landscape, it was once the source of some of Canada’s greatest copper mining. Now a Natural Historic Site, the Britannia Mine Museum provides visitors with the opportunity to delve into the subterranean mine-shafts, pan for gold (and keep anything they find!) and gain a richer understanding of the industry that has made so many people… well… rich.