Visiting North Vancouver and Area

North Vancouver, more specifically Grouse Mountain, will be home to the first annual Artists for Conservation Festival from November 5 to 13.

The best approach for any visitor to North Vancouver has to be from the front row of the seabus. This 15 minute transit ride from downtown Vancouver to Lower Lonsdale allows its guests to see North Vancouver virtually in its entirety. Starting from the west, looking over your left shoulder Lions Gate Bridge stands proudly and as you pan right you'll see each of the North Shore mountains.

As you turn eastward, a cloud of determination nestles in above Grouse Mountain and when it clears you can see The Eye of the Wind Turbine. While fitness fanatics come from all over to stumble up the infamous Grouse Grind. In the winter months those people look like ants as they snowboard, ski or slide in some other manner down the slopes of the same mountain. Grouse Mountain is the Peak of Vancouver and a main tourist attraction, offering up everything from a visit with wolves and bears to fine dining with an unmatchable view of the city.

There are three other main tourist attractions conveniently located on your way to and from Grouse Mountain.

  1. The Cleveland Dam offers up a free stroll with a serene view of our future drinking water to the north. 
  2. To the south is the start of Capilano River, which plays home sweet home to the salmon released annually from The Hatchery a little further downstream. 
  3. Less than a few kilometers away, Capilano Suspension Bridge offers up a paid stroll over a wobbly bridge deck which emerges over the river, and a stroll through the canopy of the trees which cover over the looming bridge.

If you are looking for another beautiful attraction then you will most definitely be in for a treat at Lynn Canyon Park. The parking is free, the suspension bridge is free, and the hiking is free. But please, be aware. This park and the waters that swirl through have cost unwary visitors dearly for tempting fate with a cool swim in the creek or a daredevil leap from one of the many cliffs in the Canyon. Both are ill advised. A visit to the park, however, is not one to miss.

If you're visiting North Vancouver with kids (or even animal loving kids at heart), Maplewood Farm leaves every visitor with a smile on their face, a glow in their heart and maybe animal droppings on a shoe. Every farm animal imaginable is there waiting to be admired, petted and talked to. (Did I mention the parrot?)

In order to truly finish off a day in the life of a North Vancouverite there are two options, both of which are in Deep Cove, the westernmost point of the North Shore. The first option is to rent a kayak and then paddle away up Indian Arm, past the million dollar waterfront mansions or simply hang with the curious seals out in the Inlet. The second is Quarry Rock, a hike on the edge of Canada, which leads to the edge of a stunning view overlooking the kayakers and the rest of Burrard Inlet. Both options will leave you breathless. As will most of your visit to the place we call home, North Vancouver.

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