Leave the Wallet at Home: Free Things to Do in Vancouver

It's no secret that Vancouver is an expensive city to call home, but one of the many perks this city has to offer is a long list of free things to do that can be enjoyed throughout the year. From hikes with stunning views to cultural experiences, this city's got you covered.

For a quintessential Vancouver experience, head to Stanley Park. It's here that you can spend an endless amount of time walking through the trails, biking along the Seawall, cooling off the kids in the free water park, hanging out at Third Beach, and exploring the different seasonal attractions and beautiful gardens. If the weather's nice, pack yourself a picnic and take it to the gardens or beach.

There are two suspension bridges in Vancouver and they both offer a totally different experience. Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge is the free version and it's here that you'll find hikes, the freshest of air, and beautiful scenery. If you're visiting in the hot summer months, there are a few different places where you can cool off by swimming.

If it's culture you're after, make your way to the Vancouver Art Gallery on a Tuesday night when admission is by donation. This art gallery houses incredible pieces of art and has a rotating exhibit that changes every couple of months.

HR MacMillan Space Center
Photo courtesy of Kenji Nagai


This fascinating space museum features a series of hi-tech learning systems and interactive exhibits that include Virtual Voyages and a flight simulator. The Cosmic Courtyard is an exciting exhibit about the solar system, and Ground Station...  Read More



Located within reach of Vancouver's Main Street, Equinox Gallery isn't your typical gallery; it is an enormous warehouse-like project space with nothing but bright white walls and high ceilings. This large space lends itself well to holding huge...  Read More

Granville Island


Once Vancouver's industrial manufacturing area, Granville Island is now home to many local artists, restaurants, theatres, a hotel, and the Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Granville Island has something for everyone; a children's...  Read More

English Bay Beach


This popular West End beach is a favorite spot where locals come to kick back, relax and enjoy swimming and soaking up some vitamin D. Located right at the end of Davie Street and Denman Street, English Bay Beach is easily accessible by bus,...  Read More



Kitsilano Beach is one of Vancouver's most popular beaches. It's close proximity to downtown Vancouver and easy accessibility by public transportation, car and bicycle make it easy to get to any time of day. There's plenty of sand to stretch out...  Read More

Vancouver Art Gallery


The Vancouver Art Gallery is the fifth largest art gallery in all of Canada. The VAG has rotating exhibitions, along with its permanent collection that boasts over 9,100 items. Art junkies will be impressed by the 200 major works by the Group of...  Read More



Stretching 5.5-miles (8.8km) around Stanley Park, this lovely jaunt is perfect on a sunny day to bike, walk, run and blade around. Going around the Seawall is best enjoyed with a few stops here and there, and fortunately for you, there are...  Read More

North Shore
Lighthouse Park
Photo courtesy of Natasha John


This rugged park is located along West Vancouver's Marine Drive and is about a 30-minute drive from downtown. It features several trails that lead to tidal pools and stunning views. The trail from the parking lot to the lighthouse viewpoint is...  Read More

Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge


A majestic and lush rainforest set in the heart of North Vancouver is calling. The park is loaded with hiking trails, natural swimming pools, an ecology centre, and a suspension bridge. And, the best part of it all is that everything is free....  Read More

Stanley Park
Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnny9s/2211725176/


Located in Downtown Vancouver, Stanley Park offers a green oasis to city dwellers that stretches over 1,000 acres of land, and has plenty of free things to do. Lord Stanley of Preston opened the park in 1888, and at the time it was a haven for...  Read More


Meet Natasha John

Natasha is not born and raised in Vancouver, but is pretty certain it's her spirit hometown. After jumping around Canada, Texas, Arkansas and the UK, she has her feet firmly planted in...  More About Natasha