Vancouver has been on my bucket list for quite awhile, so when my Alaska Seabourn cruise took me from Anchorage to Vancouver, I knew I had to stay a few extra days to explore the city. The last time I was in Vancouver, I was only 4 years old, so I was very excited to experience Vancouver for the first time as an adult. I’ve seen beautiful photos of Vancouver so much over the last few years on Instagram, so I knew I was in for a great trip! Check out this post for where to stay and what to do in Vancouver.
Where To Stay
Fairmont Pacific Rim
There’s a reason the Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel is often rated as one of the top luxury properties in Canada. It was definitely one of the most beautiful city hotels I’ve ever stayed in. From breakfast at The Botanist to the beautiful Willow Stream Spa to the large Japanese soaking tub in our Signature Ofuro Room, I always felt like I was in the pinnacle of luxury. It is also conveniently located nearby the cruise terminal in Vancouver, so it’s a perfect option for those cruising in and out of the city.
The Fairmont Waterfront hotel is located directly across from Canada Place in Vancouver, which is also where the cruise ships dock. It is the most convenient luxury hotel option for those arriving or leaving on a cruise - I literally just had to walk across the street from the terminal! The photos below showcase the wonderful view from the Fairmont Gold Lounge at the property.
One unique feature you can find at the Fairmont Waterfront is their beekeeping. They give daily free tours from May to September of the honey bees that live on their rooftop (and their lovely rooftop garden is accessible to guests), and you can find the bee theme throughout the hotel, like on the menu of the ARC Restaurant. They produce their own honey on property, and you can find honey-infused dishes throughout the menu.
Fairmont Vancouver Airport
If you’re looking for luxury and convenience when flying in and out of Vancouver, the Fairmont Vancouver Airport is the place to stay. The hotel is situated directly on top of the US Departures Terminal, so it’s only a quick stroll to check-in for your flight or arrive from baggage claim. The hotel offers day use rooms for those only looking for refresher while at the airport, or you can drop by for their Absolute Spa to recover from jetlag. The Jetside Bar features live music nightly and overlooks the YVR runway for a unique dining and cocktail experience. During our visit, we stayed in the Jade Executive Suite, the largest and most luxurious suite on property. With 1250 square feet of room to enjoy, a jetted soaker tub, living and dining rooms, and views overlooking the mountains and runway, the Jade Suite was best way to relax before our early morning flight.
Capilano Suspension Bridge Park
Capilano Suspension Bridge Park is easily one of the most popular attractions in Vancouver. The biggest bridge at the park hangs an impressive 450 feet across the Capilano River, but there’s much more to see than just that. Try the CLIFFWALK for stunning views over the river, or explore the treetops across a series of 7 elevated suspension bridges. This attraction gets crowded though, so I recommend getting there as early as possible, especially if you want better photo ops. If you’re staying at the Fairmont Pacific Rim or Fairmont Waterfront, there’s a convenient free shuttle that leaves from Canada Place to go to the park, so it’s easy to get there too!
Granville Island welcomes 10.5 million visitors each year and is one of Canada’s most popular tourist destinations. Most visitors head to the Public Market, where around 50 local vendors sell fresh produce, meat, cheese, and more. You can visit Granville Island Brewing Co. and take a tour of the brewery, try one of the many dining options, like Dockside Restaurant or Backstage Lounge, or watch the buskers perform on the street. For another fun experience, take the False Creek Ferries to get to the island!
Bike Around Stanley Park
A trip to Vancouver is not complete without a visit to Stanley Park. During our visit, we borrowed bikes for free as guests of the Fairmont Pacific Rim and completed a circuit from the hotel, all the way around the park’s bike trail, and back. This is a great way to get an Instagram snap of the Vancouver skyline from across the water, and Stanley Park has plenty to see and do beyond the views, from its beaches to the Brockton Point Totem Poles and the Vancouver Aquarium. Biking is the easiest way to get around the park!
Lynn Canyon Park
If you’re looking for something a little less crowded than Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, check out Lynn Canyon. The Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge is not nearly as well-known, so you’re way more likely to be able to get a photo by yourself on it. Best part is - this attraction is free! Once you’ve crossed the bridge, there are several trails you can go explore around the park, so plan to spend a few hours here. Also, bring your swimsuit and go swimming at the 30 Foot Pool, a natural swimming spot located inside Lynn Canyon Park.
Take The Ferry To North Vancouver
The SeaBus terminal was just a short walk from the Fairmont Pacific Rim, and we were able to easily take the ferry over to North Vancouver. There, you can check out Lonsdale Quay Market, with plenty of dining and shopping options. Just a short walk up the street and you can also find the colorful Fun Alley next to Buddha-Full juice bar and cafe. It’s a super Instagrammable spot!
Looking for fun places to bars and clubs in Vancouver? Check out this guide to the Vancouver nightlife scene!
Disclaimer: This post is in collaboration with Fairmont Hotels. As always, all opinions are my own.
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