Guidebook for Vancouver

Brennan
Guidebook for Vancouver

Food Scene

Hands-down my all-time favourite restaurant in Vancouver. It's non-pretentious fine dining, great for brunch or for dinner. Amazing atmosphere in Gastown, with a great patio as well. If you go for brunch, the Fricassee is a must, and you can't go for dinner without getting some Mussels. Perfect for a date or a meal with friends.
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Chambar Restaurant
568 Beatty St
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Hands-down my all-time favourite restaurant in Vancouver. It's non-pretentious fine dining, great for brunch or for dinner. Amazing atmosphere in Gastown, with a great patio as well. If you go for brunch, the Fricassee is a must, and you can't go for dinner without getting some Mussels. Perfect for a date or a meal with friends.
Best sushi/Japanese food in the city, and just right around the corner from my place. If you feel like a change of scenery, you can skip over to Miku (sister restaurant to Minami) in Coal Harbour. Be sure to stop by the lobby bar of the Fairmont Pacific Rim before or after for a cocktail.
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Minami
1118 Mainland St
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Best sushi/Japanese food in the city, and just right around the corner from my place. If you feel like a change of scenery, you can skip over to Miku (sister restaurant to Minami) in Coal Harbour. Be sure to stop by the lobby bar of the Fairmont Pacific Rim before or after for a cocktail.
Another one of my favourite Vancouver restaurants. Great for brunch, lunch or dinner. Perfect for pork lovers... not so much for vegetarians. Be sure to get a side of brussel sprouts if you visit. And if you feel like a change of scenery, they have a Gastown location on Water Street.
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The Flying Pig Yaletown
1168 Hamilton St
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Another one of my favourite Vancouver restaurants. Great for brunch, lunch or dinner. Perfect for pork lovers... not so much for vegetarians. Be sure to get a side of brussel sprouts if you visit. And if you feel like a change of scenery, they have a Gastown location on Water Street.
Great modern Chinese restaurant that serves up great share plates an amazing cocktails in a trendy Chinatown atmosphere. Stop by Keefer Bar a couple doors down for a cocktail (or many) before or afterwards.
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Bao Bei
163 Keefer St
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Great modern Chinese restaurant that serves up great share plates an amazing cocktails in a trendy Chinatown atmosphere. Stop by Keefer Bar a couple doors down for a cocktail (or many) before or afterwards.
Beer lovers paradise with dozens on tap and an amazing menu. If you're with friends not as stoked on beer, they have delicious cocktails too. One of the best parts of this restaurant though is the atmosphere - it's in one of the oldest buildings in Vancouver, right on the outskirts of historic Gastown.
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Alibi Room
157 Alexander St
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Beer lovers paradise with dozens on tap and an amazing menu. If you're with friends not as stoked on beer, they have delicious cocktails too. One of the best parts of this restaurant though is the atmosphere - it's in one of the oldest buildings in Vancouver, right on the outskirts of historic Gastown.
Amazing food stand on the seawall, right outside of Granville Island. This hidden gem serves up the best fish and chips in the city, as well as a number of other great seafood items - caught fresh. Great stop for a casual lunch on the seawall.
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Go Fish
1505 W 1st Ave
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Amazing food stand on the seawall, right outside of Granville Island. This hidden gem serves up the best fish and chips in the city, as well as a number of other great seafood items - caught fresh. Great stop for a casual lunch on the seawall.
If you're out for a walk around the seawall, this restaurant makes for a great lunch stop or afternoon drinks and snacks. The patio is right on the seawall at English Bay beach, and makes for some great people watching.
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Cactus Club Cafe
1790 Beach Ave
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If you're out for a walk around the seawall, this restaurant makes for a great lunch stop or afternoon drinks and snacks. The patio is right on the seawall at English Bay beach, and makes for some great people watching.
Beautiful, rustic restaurant that's great for breakfast, lunch or dinner that specializes in upmarket rotisserie chicken and cocktails - if that's even a thing. Really great patio as well!
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Homer St. Cafe and Bar
898 Homer St
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Beautiful, rustic restaurant that's great for breakfast, lunch or dinner that specializes in upmarket rotisserie chicken and cocktails - if that's even a thing. Really great patio as well!
Great Italian x Japanese fusion restaurant just around the corner from my apartment and rated among Canada’s best restaurants. Very beautiful atmosphere if even just for a cocktail at the bar.
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Kissa Tanto
263 E Pender St
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Great Italian x Japanese fusion restaurant just around the corner from my apartment and rated among Canada’s best restaurants. Very beautiful atmosphere if even just for a cocktail at the bar.
One of my favourite restaurants in the city, just out of downtown. The chef’s tasting menu is the best way to do it at this Italian eatery.
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Osteria Savio Volpe
615 Kingsway
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One of my favourite restaurants in the city, just out of downtown. The chef’s tasting menu is the best way to do it at this Italian eatery.

Drinks & Nightlife

One of my favourite little spots in Vancouver, still a bit of a hidden gem. Beautiful small, dark bar with amazing cocktails (special mention for the Rosemary Gimlet) and a small patio. Good place to start or end your evening.
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The Keefer Bar
135 Keefer St
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One of my favourite little spots in Vancouver, still a bit of a hidden gem. Beautiful small, dark bar with amazing cocktails (special mention for the Rosemary Gimlet) and a small patio. Good place to start or end your evening.
If you're feeling in the mood for a Gastown night out, this bar serves up some really fantastic hand-crafted cocktails. If you check it out, you have to try the Apiary. Great at any time in the evening for a drink or many.
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Clough Club
212 Abbott St
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If you're feeling in the mood for a Gastown night out, this bar serves up some really fantastic hand-crafted cocktails. If you check it out, you have to try the Apiary. Great at any time in the evening for a drink or many.
If you're interested in a change of scenery, the lobby bar in the Fairmont Pacific Rim (in Coal Harbour) is a really great place to stop for some cocktails before or after dinner. And it's only about a block and a half away from Miku, sister restaurant to Minami (by the apartment) which serves up some of my favourite Japanese in the city - for a more fancy night out.
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Hotel Fairmont Pacific Rim
1038 Canada Pl
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If you're interested in a change of scenery, the lobby bar in the Fairmont Pacific Rim (in Coal Harbour) is a really great place to stop for some cocktails before or after dinner. And it's only about a block and a half away from Miku, sister restaurant to Minami (by the apartment) which serves up some of my favourite Japanese in the city - for a more fancy night out.
Great patio spot to relax in the afternoon with a drink and enjoy the people watching in the heart of gastown.
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LOCAL Public Eatery
3 Alexander St
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Great patio spot to relax in the afternoon with a drink and enjoy the people watching in the heart of gastown.

Entertainment & Activities

The best way to experience Vancouver is by bike around our seawall which wraps all the way around the city and Stanley Park. Stop by this bike store to rent one and hop straight on the seawall.
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Reckless the Bike Store
110 Davie St
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The best way to experience Vancouver is by bike around our seawall which wraps all the way around the city and Stanley Park. Stop by this bike store to rent one and hop straight on the seawall.

Sightseeing

Granville Island is full of local arts, restaurants and a large public market. You can easily access it by hopping on one of the Water Taxis which stop all around False Creek - cash only though. If you make the trip, I recommend stopping by Oyama in the market to pick up some of the best meats and cheeses in the city for later, and stopping by Go Fish, just 5 minute walk down the seawall for the best Fish and Chips you'll find - a hidden gem.
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Granville Island Public Market
1669 Johnston St
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Granville Island is full of local arts, restaurants and a large public market. You can easily access it by hopping on one of the Water Taxis which stop all around False Creek - cash only though. If you make the trip, I recommend stopping by Oyama in the market to pick up some of the best meats and cheeses in the city for later, and stopping by Go Fish, just 5 minute walk down the seawall for the best Fish and Chips you'll find - a hidden gem.
No trip to Vancouver is complete without a visit to Stanley Park. It's best experienced biking around it on the seawall, but if you've got a few hours it makes for a beautiful walk as well. You can get from Yaletown to the other side in about 3 hours.
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Stanley Park
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No trip to Vancouver is complete without a visit to Stanley Park. It's best experienced biking around it on the seawall, but if you've got a few hours it makes for a beautiful walk as well. You can get from Yaletown to the other side in about 3 hours.
It won't be lit, but here's the Olympic cauldron from Vancouver's 2010 Winter Olympics if you're interested in seeing it in person.
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Olympic Cauldron @ Jack Poole Plaza
1055 Canada Pl
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It won't be lit, but here's the Olympic cauldron from Vancouver's 2010 Winter Olympics if you're interested in seeing it in person.

Parks & Nature

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English Bay Beach
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Here's one of my favourite beach spots in the city to hang out in the summer, attracting a younger crowd (than Spanish Banks), who are more laid-back (than Kitsilano Beach), and few tourists (compared to English Bay). Pack some beers and either bike around the seawall to get there, walk, or even drive/take the bus. There's a concession stand for food, and as long as you're being subtle you shouldn't be bothered by any parks people or passing police (rare) about having booze... everyone else there will :)
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Third Beach
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Here's one of my favourite beach spots in the city to hang out in the summer, attracting a younger crowd (than Spanish Banks), who are more laid-back (than Kitsilano Beach), and few tourists (compared to English Bay). Pack some beers and either bike around the seawall to get there, walk, or even drive/take the bus. There's a concession stand for food, and as long as you're being subtle you shouldn't be bothered by any parks people or passing police (rare) about having booze... everyone else there will :)
The closest beach option. It's smaller than the rest but serves it's purpose if you don't have much time and want to get some sun.
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Sunset Beach Park
1204 Beach Ave
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The closest beach option. It's smaller than the rest but serves it's purpose if you don't have much time and want to get some sun.

Shopping

Robson Street between Granville Street and Bute Street is lined with clothing stores. Likely nothing you won't find anywhere else, but in case you need to pick something up. If you're looking for independent boutiques, Gastown will be more your scene (on Water Street and on Cordova Street). If you're interested in luxury, Alberni Street - which runs parallel to Robson Street and is between Burrard and Thurlow - is full of high end designer stores.
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Robson Street
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Robson Street between Granville Street and Bute Street is lined with clothing stores. Likely nothing you won't find anywhere else, but in case you need to pick something up. If you're looking for independent boutiques, Gastown will be more your scene (on Water Street and on Cordova Street). If you're interested in luxury, Alberni Street - which runs parallel to Robson Street and is between Burrard and Thurlow - is full of high end designer stores.
Big mall downtown, with some big department stores connected to it including Nordstrom, the Bay, and Holt Renfrew.
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CF Pacific Centre
701 W Georgia St
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Big mall downtown, with some big department stores connected to it including Nordstrom, the Bay, and Holt Renfrew.