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What to do in Vancouver for free!

It’s so easy to fall in love with Canada and the wonderful nature everywhere. I spent 10 days around Vancouver and absolutely loved it! So, I want to share with you guys what to do in Vancouver for free and a couple extra places you can visit with low budget as well!
1. Walk around Stanley Park: This is a really big and beautiful green oasis in the middle of an urban landscape. You can hike in the middle of nature with forests, lots of trails, beaches, a beautiful lake and even an Aquarium. Explore the wildlife of the area: racoons, squirrels, beavers, bats, seals and so on. There are no bears or cougars but you may see coyotes. If you do, please follow the recommendations of the signs around the park. Don’t be afraid to get lost a little bit, it’s exciting to breathe fresh air and escape from big buildings and people! If you want, you can download this STANLEY PARK MAPS.
2. Visit the Pacific Spirit Regional Park: This is another magical place to hike, run or walk around. As soon as you go deeper, you get this incredible feeling of connection with the forest. There are lots of fauna as in Stanley Park, it’s close to the University of British Columbia campus and has lots of beautiful trails. I couldn’t explore all the Park but if you have the time, go ahead and do it, it’s worth it if you enjoy nature as me!
3. Queen Elizabeth Park: At 152 metres above sea level, it’s the highest point in Vancouver and has amazing views of the city. It has exotic trees and a beautiful garden (with lots of flowers during spring) where you can walk around and relax. There’s a small indoor tropical garden conservatory at the top; for a small fee you can enjoy another beautiful environment.
4. Grandville Island: This is the first place I went to when I returned to Vancouver from Abbotsford. It’s a small charming island with lots of places to eat or buy stuff. You can walk around it, enjoy a nice pastry in a local bakery called A Bread Affair and also find people playing guitar or singing to entertain.
5. Grouse Grind Mountain: If you go to Vancouver during summer, challenge yourself and go up to the top of the Grouse Grind Mountain! I went in winter and it was impossible to hike unless I had snowshoes and proper equipment. It’s free but you have to pay to go down in a skyline. Beautiful place, you can skii or snowboard!!
6. Capilano River Regional Park: This is another spectacular forest to hike. A green place with tall trees and a refreshing river where you can go down. We found a great spot to swim or eat something while enjoying the relaxing aura around.
7. Walk around the English Bay and Sunset Beach Park: This are great spots to sit around, enjoy a meal, listen to music and watch the sea while the sun hides away. Vancouver has perfect places to enjoy nature and this two are not the only coasts where you can feel inspired by the views.
8. Vancouver Art Gallery: If you like art and museums, you can visit this gallery paying a donation every Tuesday evening from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm. The first Monday of every month from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, all the seniors (65+) can enter by donation. Sundays are free for children age 12 and under from 10:00 to 5:00 pm. For updated information, visit Vancouver Art Gallery Website.
9. Contemporary Art Gallery: This is another art gallery you can visit for free from Tuesday to Sunday, 12:00 pm – 6pm. It’s closed Mondays and statutory holidays. See what interesting exhibitions you can find ONLINE.
10. Walk around Gastown: This is the oldest neighborhodd founded by John Gassy Jack Deighton in 1867. I didn’t realize I was in Gastown until later that day. It looked a little bit different than the rest of the city with a charming spirit, galleries and pretty architecture. It’s a really nice area to explore around, have a coffee and relax.
Places I couldn’t visit but heard a lot nice things about them:
11. Watch stars at GMS Observatory: I love space and love to learn and watch everything I can of what’s out of the earth. It’s impressive the beauty of planets, moons, comets, stars and the questions without answers. That’s why I wanted to go and have a glimpse of the beautiful night sky with telescope but couldn’t. If you actually visit the observatory let me know how it is. Admission is by donation on Saturday nights from 7:30 PM to 11:30 PM.
12. Cypress Mountain: I was going to hike around the area but decided to go to Capilano instead. Daniel, my friend, told me it was a really nice place to visit for nature lovers like me! Beautiful forest, perfect to do some hiking, breathe fresh air and connect with other source of energy. There are snowshoe tours, you can ski or snowboard in the area. Don’t be shy and try new stuff, check out Cypress Mountain.
13. Lynn Canyon Park: It has an amazing suspension bridge you can visit for free and beautiful hiking trails. I regret not being able to visit this place instead of Capilano. I have a feeling that Lynn Canyon Park would’ve been a way better option and cheaper. If you can, go ahead, have fun and please share with me your experience a pictures!
14. Lighthouse Park, Whytecliff Park and Whistler: Three nature oasis to visit. If you are an enthusiast like me of hiking, landscapes, flora and fauna, you will enjoy to be surrounded by clean atmospheres. Every place has its charm so go ahead and check them out when you visit Canada. And again, don’t hesitate to send me pictures, stories or share all the details about your visit. I’ll be waiting!
15. Chinatown: I actually was close to Chinatown but didn't’ want to walk around because thought it was going to be the same as everywhere. Now I realize that even if it’s similar, there are always big differences, interesting and hidden spots that are worth to sneak in like Sam Kee Building, the world’s narrowest building or the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Park.
16. Go star spotting: If you like movies and tv series, walk around Vancouver and have fun trying to spot some movie stars. You can check out this website to know where and when are going to be shooting or producing audiovisual projects around Vancouver.
Paid Options:
Capilano Suspension Bridge: I went to this place instead of Cypress Mountain and was disappointed. It’s too pricey, really small hike and too crowded. It was nice but I would’ve prefered to go to Lynn Canyon Park that has a free suspension bridge and it’s way bigger.
2. Take a seaplane tour: You can find a small office next to Canada Place to take this tour. I’m sure you can find other options for this. I thought it would be cool to watch Vancouver from above but I can’t stand heights and I know I wouldn’t enjoy it.
3. Museums: There are lots of museums around Vancouver you can visit such as Museum of Anthropology, Museum of Vancouver, Vancouver Maritime Museum, Science World (specially for kids), Burnaby Village Museum and the Biodiversity Museum.
4.Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Gardens: Don’t confuse this place with Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Park. In here you pay a small fee and have the opportunity to walk around some beautiful chinese gardens.
5. Attend to Events and Festivals: Check out some of the best festivals around Vancouver.
6. Go to the Aquariaum: I’m normally against aquariums and this kind of places but found out it’s actually a rescue center as well. They save lives of animals in danger and if it’s possible, return them to their wild habitat.

I had such an incredible time in Canada that want to return again in August. I’ll make sure to visit some other spots around Vancouver but will head North to discover Banff and Jasper. The world is to wide to live in just a single place.

Do you have any other places to recommend? How was your trip to Canada?


Photographer, aspiring film maker, dreamer, in love with the world!! Everything you want is on the other side of fear!!