Vancouver city, canada

Where to Stay...

Treat Yourself: Fairmont Downtown Vancouver - With a rooftop pool located in the heart of the downtown shopping district this hotel is a treat!

Affordable: AirBnB - Always a good choice especially with the expensive prices of hotels in Vancouver - we found an amazing spot in Gastown and loved it! 

Day 1

9:30am Breakfast at Birds & Beets This cafe/bakery serves everything from freshly baked vegan sourdough to avocado toast, specialty sandwiches, bunches of flowers and the most delicious pastries.

10:30am After breakfast head up Water St. for some shopping in Gastown and continue to make your way to the central downtown shopping. Commonly referred to as the Rodeo Drive of Vancouver is the high end shops on Alberni St. (more like window shopping for me but still fun) Robson St. has a great collection of more affordable shops and is partially closed in the summer months to accommodate food trucks. We enjoyed The Juice Truck for a mid-morning pick me up. 

12:00pm Head to Chinatown and wander to Pazzo Chow - Home of popular Classic Tomato "Sugo Sauce" and delicious ice cream sandwiches. This little shop is more like a specialty Italian grocery store but also has a variety of coffee/espresso so you could pick one up before heading to lunch or come back after lunch for ice cream. 

1:00pm Lunch at Virtuous Pie on Main Street. for vegan pizza or if you're looking for a more authentic china town experience across the street is Rhinofish Noodle Bar serving up their special niu rou mian (beef Chinese noodles) 

2:00pm Pick up Banana & Lemon To Die For Bread from Dalina or Pappa Roti as an affordable option for breakfast throughout the week!

3:00pm Walk back through Chinatown along E Pender St. and find cool vintage shops and smaller local boutiques like El Kartel and Erin Templeton's Leather Shop 

4:30pm For an afternoon snack checkout  Cartem’s Donuterie (2 for $7) Vegan VGF Salted Caramel / VGF Double Chocolate/ VGF Vanilla Bean / VGF Apple Fritter

7:00pm Dinner at Tacofino Taco Bar Gastown This spot has a great back patio and cool vibes inside. No reservations so you can expect a wait but totally worth it. If you don't feel like waiting you could take a walk down Blood Alley to see if there is any room for margarita's at Gringo.

9:00pm Cocktails at L’Abattoir This beautiful spot with a separate back patio looked amazing for food but was a little out of our price range. They do offer amazing cocktails at the bar and a happy hour menu so there is something for everyone here!

10:00pm Cocktails at The Diamond - This spot serves incredible sushi and tasty cocktails. They also have a hidden back bar area that is only open Thursday-Saturday nights.

Virtuous Pie - Most restaurants cafe don't sell bottled water and instead have these great pieces! Love this idea! 

Vegan pizza at Virtuous Pie

Dalina Cafe

Chinatown E Pender St. 

Day 2

9:30am Breakfast at Homer St. Cafe and Bar for breakfast in Yaletown

10:30am Walk through Yaletown - The brick warehouses are full of trendy clothing boutiques and stunningly curated interior decorating depots like The Cross. Even if you don't have a dog checking out Barking Babies is so fun! With little outfits and treats and a ton of adorable puppies running around this made my day. 

11:30am Walk over the Granville St. Bridge to the Granville Public Farmers Market

12:30pm Wander around this massive market to find a variety of food options, fresh flowers, beauty supplies, hand crafted jewelry and more. We grabbed picnic supplies and went out to the public benches just outside of the market to eat lunch with a view of the yachts and the city. 

2:00pm Walk to Kitsilano up 4th Avenue main street full of adorable boutiques, cafes and shops.  

3:30pm Head down Balsam St. to get to the Kitsilano Beach and pool - enjoy the views and the ocean. 

5:00pm Grab some happy hour drinks at Local or The Boathouse

7:00pm Take the SeaBus from Waterfront Station to Pier 7 Restaurant - With a patio facing the city, great food and delicious cocktails this place is a must. 

9:00pm Take the SeaBus back to water front station and head to Cactus Club Coal Harbor for some more drinks or dessert. 

View of the Granville Island Market from the Granville Bridge

Granville Bridge

Granville Island Market

The Cross Design Store in Yaletown

View from the Seabus to North Vancouver 

Gastown at Night

Day 3

9:30am Breakfast at the beautifully decorated Nelson the Seagull  grab some fresh pastries, breads and coffee. 

10:30am Rent bikes and head out to University of British Columbia - We rented bikes from Cycle City Tours on Hornby St. that connected right to the Burrard Bridge with a bike path and road across Broadway and down to 10th Avenue. If you can you should stop at the adorable Olive & Ruby on Broadway and  Nourish on 10th. NOTE: Vancouver is very hilly and this was a good workout. Most people rent bikes to bike around the Seawall, which would be equally nice. 

12:30pm Arrive at University of British Columbia campus. Head to the Rose Garden / Botanical Gardens and then down to Wreck Beach (500 steps down/back up and clothing optional) with stunning views of the mountains and the ocean. 

3:00pm Bike back through campus along 10th Avenue - find a spot for sushi along 10th Avenue. Everyone says any spot in Vancouver is a good spot for sushi so you could really chose any one you like. 

7:00pm - Dinner at Meet for vegan and non-vegan lovers serving dishes like curry poutine, vegan taco salad and the most delicious cauliflower wings you will ever have!

9:30pm Drinks at The Keefer Bar - This popular spot has a small patio and a dimly lit interior bar area in a narrow building.  

Day 4

9:30am Quick breakfast - Head to the Seabus at Waterfront Station. Once at Lonsdale connect to the bus heading to Lynn Canyon Ecological Centre. Once you arrive you can head to the Baden Powell Trail 3.5 hours to get to Deep Cove or walk about an hour down to the Suspension Bridge and falls, where many jump. We opted to head early in the morning because the afternoons can be very crowded. We also opted to do this suspension bridge instead of Capilano because it was free and locals say it is just as beautiful.

12:30pm Take the bus back to Lonsdale Market for lunch. This market has many stands and food vendors and is a perfect spot to grab supplies for a picnic and eat on the outdoor tables with a view of Vancouver.

1:30pm Rent bikes to head to Stanley Park. You can also easily take a bus or walk about 2 hours - We opted to walk after being on a very crowded bus for 30 mins and loved walking across the Lions Gate Bridge.

3:30pm Walk through Stanley Park - Head to Third Beach on Lovers Lane Trail. 

5:00pm You walk back into the city or call a taxi to come and get you in Stanley Park or if you've rented bikes you could easily bike back through the Park. 

7:30pm Dinner at Nicli Pizzeria Vancouver's first "VPN certified" pizzeria, Naples style pizza.  This modern restaurant overlooking the wood fire oven is a perfect backdrop for a romantic night out. Make sure you make a reservation on Friday/Saturday. 

9:00pm Cocktails or dessert at Chambar Restaurant or WildeBeest 

Lynn Canyon Park 

Lynn Canyon Falls (about 20 minutes before the Suspension Bridge)

Lions Gate Bridge

View from the bridge

Third Beach - through Stanley Park

If you made it this far in the post I hope you found my schedule helpful in planning your trip to Vancouver or just fun to check out! Let me know if you have any favorite Vancouver spots that I should add to my list for the next time I visit! 

- Courtney