The things you can explore in a leisurely stroll along downtown Vancouver’s waterfront: history, culture, art, nature and all sorts of oddities! Make sure you don’t miss Coal Harbour’s waterfront walkway.
My last Vancouver post focussed on First Nations art and history in Stanley Park. Today, let’s explore another treat of downtown Vancouver: the waterfront walkway leading from Canada Place to Stanley Park through the neighbourhood of Coal Harbour.
Downtown Vancouver is easily explored by foot, but you may also opt for renting bikes as there are excellent cycle routes in town, and especially through the most scenic spots. Start your Coal Harbour walk at Canada Place; this is where conventions are hosted, and it’s a perfect spot for watching some pretty huge cruise ships arrive.
As you walk on from Canada Place, you’ll find lots of interpretive panels along the walkway, explaining Vancouver’s maritime history, from ships to settlers to environmental issues. As you approach the waterfront, you get your first glimpse of North Vancouver and the mountains.
Coal Harbour is a prime real estate location. The area used to be industrial, but in the 1990s the City of Vancouver started to transform it into a residential neighbourhood with parks and recreational facilities. Who wouldn’t want to live in one of these stylish new high rises overlooking Stanley Park, the marina, Burrard Inlet and North Vancouver?
You’ll spot quite a few sea planes taking off from Vancouver’s Coal Harbour sea airport. Planes fly to quite a few destinations on Vancouver Island and to Whistler, just to mention a few. You can even take scenic “flightseeing” tours!
Further along the route, you’ll come across boats of all sorts – rather flashy big yachts, smaller speed boats and also the odd little houseboats:
There are further oddities along the way, such as the House on Stilts:
And once you’re at the end of the route, either head on to Stanley Park for some nature exploration or go on over to nearby Denman and Robson Streets to treat yourself to some shopping, or sit down for a nice coffee in one of the many cafes and eateries!
What’s your favourite walking route in downtown Vancouver?