Vancouver, a bustling west coast seaport in British Columbia, is among Canada’s densest, most ethnically diverse cities. A popular filming location, with a mountainous backdrop allows it to be a hotspot for the movies and adventure seekers. Board on to a boat and watch the pods of Orcas swim in the bays, or in the winter take a gondola up Grouse Mountain and enjoy a day of skiing. In the north is Whistler, home of the Whistler and Blackcomb mountain ski resorts, revered as one of the best ski resorts in the world.


How to get to Vancouver

We flew in from Detroit as it was cheaper to drive out of Canada to USA and then fly to Vancouver than flying domestically in Canada.


From Vancouver international there are a few ways to get to Vancouver and its suburbs:


  • Taxi – use the taxi stand on level 2 of the terminal building, these are the official licenced airport taxis. The fair will depend on the destination

  • Uber – There is a very good uber network here. Uber allows you to pay via your Uber account so you don’t have to worry about getting your money out. Uber also gives you an estimate on the fare and it’s pretty accurate.

  • Car Rental – There a rental car companies in the arrivals terminal. Be sure to check if you can drive here prior to booking. You can also reserve a car online via Rentalcars


  • Sky Train – a monorail type system running around the city. Connects to parts of the city and surroundings like Richmond.



We arrived in Vancouver international airport via Detroit. It was a little warmer here but very cold. Again we had some family here so we headed over to Richmond which is only a short journey from the airport.

We have been to Canada in the summer before but this time made the trip there during their winter. Our aim was to see, Banff, Lake Louise, and Whistler while it was frozen over.


Where to stay in Vancouver


There are tonnes of places to stay in Vancouver, but just to make you aware, Vancouver is divided up into suburbs...


There are hotels and hostels all over the place, but they also have a big Airbnb scene.


Here is a brief break down of the areas


  • Downtown – downtown is very compact and most the building are high rises, but if you do stay here you will be very close and most likely in walking distance to the main shopping areas and also to Stanley Park and aquarium.


  • Yale town – it’s busy during the day tome but gets a bit quiet toward the evening.


  • Granville – this is the entertainment district. Has plenty of cheaper eateries and budget accommodation.


  • North Vancouver – quieter suburb across the water by see bus. More of a local feel, hotels and homes stays available. Easy access to Capilano suspension bridge and Grouse Mountain


  • Richmond – this has more of a local feel, it’s separated from Vancouver by Granville Bridge. This area has a massive Chinese population, so much so that they don’t even have English writing for the store names.


  • Burnaby – is a city in itself, there a lots of motels, hotels, B&Bs available as well as a wide variety of food choices for a cuisines.


Things to do in Vancouver with children

  • Stanley Park – This is a park the borders with downtown Vancouver. It has a path built all the way round for running and cycling. Many users come to the park for their daily exercise. The park holds the Vancouver aquarium and also a totem pole exhibition.


  • Vancouver Aquarium – The Vancouver aquarium hold dolphins as well as Beluga Whales, penguins, sting rays. They have an indoor and outdoor activities. Very good for rainy days in Vancouver


  • Canadian Rockies – The Canadian Rockies are a must if you visit Vancouver to Calgary. They are home to jasper and Banff national parks. These places have the best landscape no matter what time of the year you come. You can visit Banff, Lake Louise, glaciers, go skiing in many of the resorts.


  • Canada Place – Canadian convention centre


  • Science World - Dome shaped building houses a lot of interactive displays and film. This is suitable for children and teenagers.


  • Grouse Mountain – Grouse Mountain is one of the peaks on the north shore of Vancouver. It is popular for many reasons. You can ski up here day or night, there are bear enclosures at the top, and you can go for the cable car up to see the view of Vancouver and Stanley Park while having dinner. Then there is the grouse grind! A hike from the bottom to the top of the mountain, it is hard!!


  • Vancouver lookout – Board the glass elevator and view Vancouver from the 360 degree viewing deck.


  • Lions Gate Bridge – Landmark bridge connection Vancouver with the north shore.


  • China town – The largest China Town in British Columbia. It is located within walking distance of the Gas Town area of the city             


  • Water mania – A huge water park for toddlers to splash around and children to play with the water sprayers


  • Science World - Dome shaped building houses a load of interactive displays and film. This is suitable for children and teenagers.


  • Vancouver Zoo – See hundreds of animals in one place.

  • Whistler – Famed for being one of the best Skiing resorts in the world. Take a ride on the Peak2Peak, a gondola experience that connected the 2 mountains, Whistler and Blackcomb.




Take a look at our Canadian Rockies adventure, it was over 5 days

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