If you have a car, or are willing to rent one:
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- Drive the spectacularly scenic Sea-to-Sky Highway between Horseshoe Bay towards Whistler. Even if you don’t have time to overnight in the famous mountain resort community, the photo ops alone are worth the trip.
- Pack a picnic lunch, a camera and pair of binoculars and savour the solitude of the Reifel Bird Sanctuary, one of Canada’s top migratory bird reserves in rural Ladner.
If you are relying on public transit:
- Take the Canada Line to the City of Richmond, beyond the Vancouver International Airport, and explore this suburban island’s watery charms: walk the Richmond Riviera–aka, the dyke; visit the top-flight Asian eateries in the centrally located Golden Village; enjoy a picnic lunch in Garry Point Park; shop at the Richmond Night Market; or wander the Gulf of Georgia Cannery national historic site.
- Pick up the #257 Horseshoe Bay Express bus from in front of The Bay in downtown Vancouver and ride to the end of the line: the BC Ferries terminal. Enjoy a 2o-minute crossing across North America’s southernmost fjord aboard the Queen of Capilano to the bucolic community of Bowen Island. Enjoy a day hiking, shopping, and dining before catching the last boat back to the mainland at 10 pm.
- Ride the Rocky Mountaineer’s train to Whistler. The luxurious trip is a favourite of locals and visitors alike and includes hotel transfers and a shuttle into Whistler Village.
- When time is short but you want to get beyond the central business district, spend a day exploring Vancouver‘s most interesting neighbourhoods by bike, bus or on foot: Chinatown; the West End, and Kitsilano.
>>Related link: Guide to Vancouver