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Vancouver History Blog

The Forbidden Vancouver Blog
English Bay, Vancouver, BC

Vancouver’s Top Five Places to Visit for Spring 2019

Now that Spring has finally sprung, we give to you Vancouver’s top five places to visit for Spring 2019. These are the five attractions in Vancouver you won’t want to miss during your springtime visit!

Explore Stanley Park

The Dark Secrets of Stanley Park Tour

The Dark Secrets of Stanley Park Tour

Stanley Park is Vancouver’s crown jewel. It is the largest urban park in the city, with incredible views everywhere you look. The world-famous Stanley Park seawall provides a scenic walk around the park. From the seawall, you can view the ocean, the mountains, the city skyline, the Port of Vancouver, and – if you’re lucky – maybe a few seals or sea otters! Perhaps you’ll spot a Pacific Blue Heron while enjoying a spectacular view of the Lions Gate Bridge. The many winding trails within the park provide views of majestic trees, forest critters, and all kinds of indigenous plant life.

In the Spring time Stanley Park is a fantastic place to check out the Cherry Blossom Festival – with trees throughout the famous Rose Garden exploding into colour!

There are all kinds of sites to explore in the park. The Vancouver Aquarium, the beaches (Third Beach is our favourite!), and Beaver Lake are all worth a visit. Or you can enjoy the incredible views from Prospect Point or Lost Lagoon.

The park has an incredible history. Those pristine views and majestic landscapes hide some dark secrets. Buried bodies, buried treasure, crime, colonization, corruption – a dark history you might not expect from such a beautiful park. To delve into the park’s remarkable stories while enjoying its beautiful views, let an experienced storyteller take you on a walk through The Dark Secrets of Stanley Park Tour. Take it in the Spring time and you’ll also catch the incredible cherry blossoms!

Enjoy Granville Island

Granville Island Entrance

Granville Island Entrance

This man-made island was once full of factories, mills, and warehouses. But time has transformed it from a hub of industry to one of our top five places to visit in Vancouver this Spring. The Granville Island Market is the heart of the island’s activity, and it’s not hard to get lost within it for hours. You’ll find all kinds of artisan cheeses, breads, meats, and other exotic treats. Our friends at Vancouver Foodie Tours run a Granville Island Market Tour that will help you find your way through this delicious maze of goodness.

A short walk from the market at Fisherman’s Wharf is the location of the city’s annual Spot Prawn Festival, taking place May time every year. Some of Vancouver’s greatest sea food chefs serve up the best creations with fresh-from-the-boat local spot prawns on the menu!

But the Market is just the beginning. Craft studios, theatres, beer tasting rooms, artisan shops, galleries, street performers – there’s enough fun on Granville Island to keep you busy for the whole day!

Discover Gastown

The Forbidden Vancouver Tour

The Forbidden Vancouver Tour

Vancouver’s oldest and most historic neighbourhood is also one of it’s most colourful. A diverse array of pubs, clubs, bars, and live music venues gives Gastown a vibrant and exciting nightlife. And the food! From high-end cuisine to hot dog carts, from the meaty offerings of Peckinpah, to the vegan offerings of Meet – there is something in Gastown for everyone’s appetite.

Gastown is best experienced at night. The cobblestone streets, lit by old-fashioned gas street lanterns, give the streets a magical air. Some of the city’s oldest buildings remain here to be discovered and explored. It is not surprising that some of Vancouver’s most tantalizing history is hidden in these streets and alleyways. To get the lay of the land while discovering Gastown’s dirtiest secrets, take The Forbidden Vancouver Tour – one of our city’s most popular walking tours.

Parade Through the Davie Street Village

The Really Gay History Tour

Every day is a PRIDE parade in the Davie Street Village! The “gaybourhood” is one of the most vibrant gay villages in North America, and the site of Canada’s first permanent rainbow crosswalks (on the corner of Davie and Bute). But it’s not just the crosswalks that are colourful here – it’s the people! One of Vancouver’s most diverse, eclectic, and open neighbourhoods, this is a great place to have a stroll and just be yourself.

In mid-June each year the West End hosts a car-free day – the perfect time to explore one of the city’s most vibrant communities!

The village is a short walk from both Sunset Beach and English Bay, and offers all you could want after a walk on the shore –  sushi, pizza, pastry, coffee, cake, cocktails, burgers, or beer! The Junction Pub offers regular drag shows, and you’ll find great karaoke at Numbers Cabaret. To go deeper, The Really Gay History Tour will walk you through the village, while exploring some of the more colourful and dramatic moments of the queer community’s remarkable history.

Commercial Drive

Car Free Day on Commercial Drive

Car Free Day on Commercial Drive

This street is perhaps one of Vancouver’s best-kept secrets. This is not a neighbourhood where you’re likely to see a tour bus stop. Off the beaten path, this is one of Vancouver’s least touristy and most vibrant neighbourhoods. Ethnic restaurants abound here – usually small, family-run operations. This is home to quirky, independent coffee shops like Turk’s Coffee Bar, second-hand bookstores like Pulpfiction Books, a small black-box theatre, the Havana Theatre, which sits on top of a bar.

The Drive is a multi-ethnic and multicultural hot-spot. Great for a daytime walk, and equally great for a nighttime visit, to its numerous bars and restaurants. We love to visit Commercial Drive in the Spring, with the North Shore mountains still capped in snow in the distance – one of the best places to check out our city’s most iconic scene!

Vancouver’s Top Five Places to Visit for Spring 2019

If you’re coming to Vancouver this spring, you won’t want to miss these top five places to visit! Whether you explore these neighbourhoods on your own, or delve into their history with an experienced storyteller, we wish you a great time in Vancouver!