Vancouver is quite simply a city like no other, effortlessly combining the buzz of a modern city with the rejuvenating spirit of the great outdoors. Start your day with breakfast at Granville Island Public Market, and end it with a sunset cocktail on a mountain-top patio. Use an afternoon to paddle out on a kayaking adventure, before joining the locals at a neighbourhood café. It truly is a “city of nature,” with imposing glass skyscrapers nestled among stunning temperature rainforest. On a holiday in Vancouver, you don’t have to choose between city and nature.
Vancouver City Centre
What is included?
What is included?
What is included?
6 nights self-drive
What is included?
10 nights self-drive
What is included?
Whether you’re looking for a quirky boutique hotel or a traditional historic property for your 5 star holiday, downtown Vancouver has a great range of accommodation options to ensure you’re always close to the action. The Gastown district of the city is the oldest and most historic, with plenty of attractive buildings, restaurants and fabulous boutiques to explore. Trendy Yaletown is an upscale neighbourhood, with stylish warehouse apartments on the marina and has easy accessibility to Granville Island by water taxi. If shopping’s your thing, opt for a base near the main shopping district on Robson Street, or for a more relaxed city experience choose somewhere close to Stanley Park and the Coal Harbour.
Discover Vancouver’s rich local culture on a stroll through the downtown neighbourhoods. Whether you’re lying by the beach in the West End, mingling with the hipsters in Gastown, sampling cocktails in trendy Yaletown, or exploring the historic sites in Chinatown, you’re sure to find a neighbourhood to suit you. The city centre is home to some of the best cultural attractions in Vancouver, including art galleries, live shows, nightlife and a variety of festivals throughout the year.
Culinary adventurers gravitate toward this bustling foodie centre to sample artisan products and multicultural influences. The Island’s flagship is the bustling Granville Island Public Market, where exotic produce and gourmet ingredients are sold alongside global dishes and local specialties. Sample your way through this Aladdin’s den of culinary treasures on Vancouver Foodie Tours’ Granville Island Market Tour, or wander the massive space on your own and pick up fixings for an al fresco picnic – the nearby docks are always lively with visitors and buskers.
Canada Place is picture-perfect for photo-ops and a great place to relax and watch cruise ships glide into the city. At its tip is FlyOver Canada, a breathtaking flight simulation ride that virtually soars across the country complete with wind, scents, mist and sound.
On the waterfront next to the LEED Platinum-certified Vancouver Convention Centre, stop at Jack Poole Plaza for a selfie with the 2010 Olympic Cauldron. Made of steel and glass, the Cauldron is an everlasting symbol of the splendour of the 2010 Games, which Vancouver hosted in 2010, and offers a ready-made backdrop of cityscape, sky, Burrard Inlet and the North Shore mountains.
Just across the water from Vancouver’s downtown peninsula , at the foot of the Coast Mountains, is a green suburb that beckons with outdoor adventure. Look down at the rushing river as you cross Capilano Suspension Bridge Park’s wobbly bridge, and make time to enjoy the rainforest nature trails, totem pole collection, delightfully Tarzan-like Treetops Adventure and Cliffwalk, a heart-stopping cliff-side journey across a series of cantilevered and suspended walkwaysA few minutes’ away, Grouse Mountain offers the ultimate mountaintop playground, and the fun begins on a thrilling gondola ascent to the summit. At the top, you’ll be greeted by jaw-dropping views, riotous lumberjack shows and – everyone’s favourite – a chance to visit Grinder and Coola, the mountain’s resident rescued grizzly bears.
Located in the Coast Mountains of British Columbia just two hours north of Vancouver, Whistler is Canada's favourite year-round destination. The resort's adventures and activities, from snowmobiling to golf to ziplining to fishing, are complemented by a welcoming Village packed with world-class amenities, including top hotels, restaurants, wine collections and spas.
Stanley Park is one of the largest urban green spaces in the world, and is a must-see during your Vancouver holiday. It stretches over 1000 acres and offers fabulous panoramic views of the ocean, city and the famous Lionsgate Bridge. The park is encircled by an 8.8km seawall, which is a fabulous spot to run, cycle or take a stroll - with the water on one side and the trees on the other. Stanley Park is also home to a fantastic aquarium, where you can see up to 300 species of fish and marine mammals, and learn about their conservation projects. Don’t miss the famous Totem poles at Brockton Point. These monumental colourful sculptures are carved from giant cedar trees, by the indigenous people living in this part of North America, and tell a variety of stories of the past.
Vancouver’s picturesque location between ocean and forest makes it an outstanding city, and there’s no better way to see it than from high above. The Grouse Mountain Skyride is an aerial tramway taking you to the peak of Grouse Mountain from where you have outstanding vistas of the city. There are plenty of activities on top of the mountain, from a museum to a number of walks and you can even zip wire through the forest before heading back down. A nighttime Skyride trip is also a wonderfully romantic way to see Vancouver from above, with its twinkling lights and snow dusted mountains.
With the mountains only a 20 minute drive from downtown, nature is ever present in Vancouver. Ease into the natural surroundings with a leisurely cycle around Stanley Park seawall, or a walk through the urban rainforest. Experience the region’s wilder inhabitants on a whale watching excursion, or visit Grouse Mountain’s Refuge for Endangered Wildlife to see the resident grizzly bears, Grinder and Coola. If you’re looking for more adventurous things to do in Vancouver, Kayaking along the shoreline or hiking the local mountains are experiences not to be missed. All of this and you’re still in the city!
Cultivated with seasonal ingredients and fresh sea produce, Vancouver’s culinary offering is not to be missed. Don’t leave without exploring the city’s thriving dining scene. From traditional izakayas (Japanese pubs) and hearty bistros, to fresh seafood spots, there’s enough variety for any taste. Vancouver has also seen an explosion of craft breweries and spirit distilleries. Tickle your taste buds on a microbrewery crawl in the downtown area. For night owls looking for things to do in Vancouver, the city’s vibrant cocktail scene means your evening doesn’t have to end after dinner. For a unique taste of the city, hop on a culinary walking or cycling tour, where you’ll discover the hot spots, cultural history and current food trends. For the ultimate combination of cuisine and sightseeing, try a floatplane “fly and dine” tour. This unique experience starts with a flight over the city and finishes with a delicious seafood dinner right on the ocean.
Vancouver boasts the largest floatplane network in the world. For many, the thrill of a floatplane ride is a novelty in itself as they experience their first watery takeoff and landing – but it’s the view from above that’s guaranteed to drop jaws as you zoom over Stanley Park and downtown Vancouver, then find yourself gazing down on remote snowy mountain peaks. For a truly awe-inducing experience, book Harbour Air’s scenic Fly ’n Dine floatplane tour, which journeys over Coal Harbour to placid Horseshoe Bay for an intimate waterfront dinner. Afterward, cruise back to the city in style via limousine.
With everything from artisan markets to international designers, Vancouver is sure to please even the most ardent shopper. Browse the offerings on your own, or take a guided shopping adventure. Downtown’s Robson and Alberni streets offer well-known brands and high-end boutiques, while Gastown is home to some of the city’s hippest new ateliers and galleries. Just over the bridge from downtown, South Granville brings together art and high-end fashion. Grab culinary souvenirs among the locals on Granville Island or explore another of Vancouver’s friendly and unique neighbourhoods: Yaletown with its interior décor stores and patio-lined streets, Kitsilano for wholesome yoga-inspired outlets, and Main Street where independent and vintage shops reside.
Time difference: GMT -8 hours.
Currency: Canadian Dollar.
Flight time from the UK (London): Approximately 9 hours.
Arrival Airport: Vancouver International Airport.
Entry details for British passport holders: From the 29th September 2016, if you fly to or transit through Canada, you must have an Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA). If you travel to the US, you must adhere to the US Visa Waiver Programme (VWP). Your passport must be valid for at least the duration of your stay. Before you depart, check the latest travel advice at www.fco.gov.uk.
A local Signature representative will meet you at your arrival airport and escort you to your pre-booked private transfer vehicle. Your travel documentation will contain all contact details should you wish to get in touch with a local representative during your stay.
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