Without a doubt, British Columbia is one of the most beautiful destinations to travel through. Not only are the locals friendly, but the scenery is incomparable.
Beyond the typical tourist spots in BC, there are hidden gems that the locals get to take advantage of. You too can travel through BC just like a local in the summer. Here are twelve things you can do in British Columbia this summer.
1.Explore Grouse Mountain
The Peak of Vancouver, Grouse Mountain is definitely one of the hottest tourist attractions in Vancouver. Outside the ski season, it is one of the most popular destinations for locals in the summer. Hiking the Grouse Grind trail up to the peak may be a tough workout, but there is no substitute for the views you get from the top. Many tourists give up on this trail because it is pretty intense, but if you are concerned, there is a tram that will take you back to the bottom when you are done.
2.Enjoy some science
Science World is a charitable organization designed to encourage people to be more inspired and engaged with science. From Canadian innovation to a gallery of human bodies, there is a lot to see and learn from a visit to Science World. It also has exhibitions directed at children if you have little ones traveling with you. If you get caught in a BC summer heatwave or rainstorm, heading indoors could not be more fun (or educational) than here.
3.Get out on the water
Deep Cove is a quick drive from Vancouver, but it will feel like you have traveled to another world. With its calm waters and breathtaking views, Deep Cove offers excellent kayaking, paddle boating, or canoeing. They have a rental shop there as well, making it easy to get a hold of some water equipment and get yourself out there.
4.Head to Horseshoe Bay
Another excellent option to get out onto the water is to head out to Howe Sound and Horseshoe Bay. There, you can look for bald eagles and harbor seals, or just rent a motor boat and get out onto the water. The possibility of seeing wildlife is infinitely better from the water instead of the shore. The boats usually fit up to 6 people as well, meaning most of your group, if not all, should be able to head out to the marine parks that are really only accessible from the water.
5.Experience a day at the races
Built in 1947, Hastings Park has been a Vancouver icon for decades. While it is best known for its horse races, you can also just enjoy the festival atmosphere and the gorgeous views. While you are there, you can throw down a dollar or two and cheer as the horses do their work.
6.Take in a ball game
Sure, British Columbia may not have a professional baseball team, but it is not lacking for entertainment. The minor league team the Vancouver Canadians play at a small, old-school stadium called Nat Bailey Stadium. There you can have some classic summer fun by enjoying a hot dog and routing for the home team. Even someone who is not an avid baseball fan can get in on the fun atmosphere.
7.Go whale watching
Take in some of the more wild scenery of BC by heading down to Steveston. Situated south of Vancouver, Steveston is where many whale watching tours take off from, letting you hopefully catch sight of the majestic Orcas as they make their way around the ocean. There is also the added perk of fresh fish and chips from the village, giving you an excellent meal following a morning on the water.
8. Find some sushi
Vancouver boasts some of the most delicious and economical sushi on the entire continent of North America. It is easy to find tasty sushi, lobster, oysters, and other fresh seafood with little effort on your part. Whether you are looking for a traditional experience or a more westernized meal, you have many seafood and sushi options all throughout Vancouver.
9.Trek through Stanley Park
Sure, you may be thinking that a walk through a park is no big deal. But Stanley Park is larger than New York’s Central Park. At an impressive 1,000 acres, Stanley Park is the largest urban park in all of North America. There, you will be able to take in waterfront views you can’t get anywhere else. Be warned, you will need good walking or hiking shoes to make it through.
You can really take in a bit of the local life of Vancouver by having brunch at Pan Pacific. The multi-course buffet is sure to take you quite away to make it through while you get to sip on champagne. While brunch is naturally going to be offered at various places throughout Vancouver, there are few offerings that are as impressive and tasty as you will find there. You can even head to Stepho’s which is located Davie street and it serves up the best lamb roast on the continent.
11.Enjoy high tea
A leftover relic from the time as a British colony, tea is still a common drink in British Columbia. You can take a rest during a traditional high tea, where you can enjoy delicious drinks and treats, but just also sit after a morning of hiking around. There are many places around Vancouver that offer a high tea, including Sutton Place Hotel, which offers both an English and Japanese tea service.
12.Hang out at the beach
While the beach is a popular spot in the heat of summer, that does not mean you should shy away from it. There is a nude beach in BC as well – Wreck beach – but you can easily skip that experience if you want to. Hanging out on a blanket is easy to do at English Bay, where you are still close to downtown. If you have the time, check out Lynn Canyon which is the free version of Capilano Bridge.
The bottom line with BC is that there are endless activities you can participate in that will not have you constantly thrown in with the rest of the tourists. If nothing else, just look at the breathtaking scenery, because BC has views like nowhere else. You will enjoy every minute of your stay there.
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