Summer is in full swing and I am loving every minute of it. After the long winter and the buckets and buckets of rain we experienced, we deserve all the sunshine and amazing weather; it literally has been perfect.
Whenever you start seeing more tour/sightseeing buses, you know that it’s that time of year where Vancouver is filled with people from all over the world. You can just feel the excitement, the happiness and the positive energy throughout the city. Everyone is out and about and simply trying to absorb every last bit of warmth, sunshine, early mornings and long nights as possible. Summer is definitely quite an exciting time in Vancouver.
There are endless of things to do, places to go, sights to see, foods to eat. Over the years, I have come to greatly appreciate the summers in Vancouver. Many people tend to go away and travel elsewhere but Vancouver is honestly so beautiful in the summer.
The following is a list of things that I love to do during the summer. I hope this gives you some ideas if you are ever in the city and looking for some inspiration.
- Biking the seawall – The seawall actually stretches 28km! What I love about it is that the entire length is UNINTERRUPTED, meaning you won’t necessarily have to stop if you don’t want to. I love going extremely early in the morning when it is still calm and when everyone is still rolling out of bed. I personally have biked the entire seawall but my favourite part is just after the lions gate bridge, heading towards Second Beach and English Bay. It is so stunning, so peaceful and makes me fall in love with the city every time.
- Catching Sunsets – Beaches are beautiful and the easiest places to catch sunsets. My favourites in Vancouver include Spanish Banks, Wreck Beach, Kitsilano and Sunset Beach.
- Hiking – With many hikes that have short seasons, it is crucial to get out to the trails asap. There are still so many I have yet to attempt but my favourites at the moment include: Garibaldi Lake, Stawamus Chief, and Mount Seymour. Next on my list: Panorama Ridge, Joffre Lakes, and Wedgemount Lake. There is nothing like getting out of the city, into the woods and just breathing that fresh air.
- Berry Picking – I stock up enough to last me for the rest of the year, no joke. I am thankful to have a big enough freezer to freeze all the berries. If you have the time and motivation trying u-picking; it makes it even tastier knowing you put in all that work! Otherwise buy directly from the farmers, and buy in bulk. Buying flats or pre-picked is still usually cheaper than buying from the store. For the past few years I have been going to Emma Lea Farms stocking up on strawberries, raspberries and blueberries.
- Farmers’ Markets – Do I need to explain why this is on the list? I am all for supporting local farmers and local businesses. It is so important to contribute to the community. Additionally getting fresh, local, produce is the best thing. Not only are the produce more nutritious but it tastes much better as well. My favourite is the Trout Lake Market on Saturdays from 9am-2pm.
- Outdoor Movies – Free Tuesday nights? This outdoor movie event at Stanley Park screens family-friendly movies during July and August. Go check out the lineup for this year in the link. I definitely see a couple films that I would love to see.
- Playland/PNE – Growing up, I used to multiple times in the summer. Although I have not gone in a long time, it is still something worth checking out. There are rides, attractions, games, concerts, other live shows, and more.
- Honda Celebration of Light – Similar to Playland/PNE, this was what I looked forward to every summer. It was just something to do with friends, and it is free. It also is amazing to see so many people coming together to witness the same event. Although I do not appreciate this festival of fireworks as much as I used to, it is still an exciting thing to partake in and witness at least once.
- Earnest Ice Cream – Although they only have a few vegan flavours, the ice cream is quite delicious. The price is worth it… once in a while… to treat yourself, especially on a nice hot day.
- Acai bowls – Vancouver is only recently catching on to this popular treat and can be found throughout the city. For example you can find acai bowls at: Melu Juice, Victoria’s Health, Glory Juice, Indigo Age Cafe, Radicle Juice, and more recently, the newly opened Kokomo. I would also like to mention, all these places offer delicious juices and smoothies as well. I drink juices and smoothies all year but summer is definitely the best time in order to keep cool, refreshed and hydrated!
- SUMMER FRUITS – I know I mentioned berries already, but all the other fruits that are finally in season literally brings me so much happiness and joy. My favourites are definitely watermelon, berries, mango, stone fruits, and FIGS!
- SUMMER VEGGIES – I have to include vegetables as well, they deserve just as much attention. My favourite summer veggies are definitely: corn, okra, tomatoes (I know it’s technically a fruit but I’m still going to categorize it as a veggie), and collard greens!
Have you been to Vancouver during the summer? What are your favourite things to do or to see? Even though I grew up here and lived here pretty much all my life, there are still a surprising amount of things I have yet to experience and to explore. I very much look forward to all the upcoming adventures this summer!