When it comes to beaches, West Vancouver is home to plenty of hidden gems. From soft white sand to big beached logs, these lesser-known destinations will provide an excellent reprieve from the city’s busy hustle and bustle.
One of the most popular West Vancouver beaches is English Bay, a quick stroll north from Ambleside along the Centennial Seawalk into Stanley Park. It’s a great spot for joggers, walkers, and cyclists who want to take in the views of the city and Burrard Inlet.
English Bay Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Vancouver, especially in the summer. It’s a favourite spot for sunbathing and swimming, as well as watching the sunset. It also happens to be in a convenient location, right next to Stanley Park and the West End neighbourhood.
It’s also a popular destination for picnicking and enjoying the sunshine, with a floating slide for the kids. There’s also an on-site lifeguard station and public amenities including washrooms, a bandstand and cafes.
There are many things to do at English Bay Beach, and it’s worth exploring the area for a day trip or weekend. For example, walk or cycle along the seawall that goes all the way to Stanley Park in one direction and on to Point Grey via Science World, Granville Island and Kitsilano Beach in the other.
You can also go kayaking or stand up paddle boarding in the bay. There’s a Lifeguard Station here between May and September, and watersports fans can rent boards and kayaks from the nearby Vancouver Water Adventures store.
This pristine stretch of sand is a perfect spot to enjoy the views of Stanley Park, False Creek, and the city skyline. You can even take in a sunset with a picnic.
English Bay is also a major spot for some of the biggest Vancouver celebrations, such as the annual Celebration of Light International Fireworks Competition (held in late July and early August) and the New Year’s Day Vancouver Polar Bear Swim. These events are held on the beach each year, and a crowd of people is expected to attend.
A short walk along the seawall from English Bay Beach in the West End neighborhood of Vancouver, Second Beach is a busy family beach that’s easy to access and a great place for an afternoon swim or lay. It has a small concession stand, restrooms, and washroom facilities as well as lifeguards during the summer.
The water temperature is mild, and it’s best to go in the summer months. It’s also a good spot to take in the view of the city and North Shore Mountains.
This is the most centrally located beach in the city, and it’s a great place to spend an afternoon or morning soaking up the sun. It’s not as crowded as English Bay and Third Beach, but it still offers plenty of room to relax with friends or enjoy a quiet picnic.
It’s an ideal spot to watch the Celebration of Light fireworks in the evening, or just enjoy a nice, warm day. It’s also a good spot for swimming, with a shallow area that’s suited to young children.
Unlike English Bay, Second Beach isn’t as close to the action as it is to Third Beach and is less popular, but it has ample space to stretch out and enjoy the views of the ocean and the surrounding mountains. The sand is also pretty soft, which makes it a great place to relax and eat lunch or dinner.
The beach is surrounded by trees, so it’s a great place to enjoy a nice picnic. It’s also a perfect place to watch the sunset.
The people that frequent this beach are usually young people (between 20-30 years old) who like to get out and have fun in the sun. They may be locals, tourists, or international students who are studying English.
Located at Ferguson Point on the west side of Stanley Park, Third Beach is one of the most picturesque beaches in Vancouver. The wide sandy shoreline is pressed against the dense old-growth forest making it an idyllic setting for a walk or a day in the sun.
This secluded stretch of water is also a popular destination for watching the sunset as it faces west. Its tide pools and designated swimming areas make it a great place for families to swim in summer months.
The water is usually chilly, so it’s best to stay within the shoreline for swimming, although there is a lifeguard on duty during the summer. It is also important to check the water temperature before you head to the beach. The temperature can get extremely cold even in summer, so you don’t want to swim out too far from the shore or into very deep currents.
A secluded, quiet sanctuary just a few minutes from the downtown core, Third Beach is one of the most popular places to enjoy a dip and a picnic in West Vancouver. The sand is very soft and there are lots of big driftwood logs for sitting on and enjoying the view.
If you’re looking to watch a world-class sunset, it’s worth visiting this beach during the summer when the sky turns orange and pink as the sun sets. It’s also a popular location to participate in Brahms Tam Drum Circle, a weekly event that has been happening on Tuesday evenings between May and September for the past 17 years.
The drums are a fun way to spend a Tuesday night with friends and family during the summer. The drums and music are free to attend, and it’s a fantastic activity for everyone to enjoy.
Vancouver’s beaches offer a variety of ways to spend time by the sea. You can build sandcastles, go for a walk along a waterfront trail, swim, windsurf or just sit and watch the sun set over the water.
For a quiet, relaxing day at the beach, Locarno Beach is a great choice. You’ll find everything you need here, including a clean beach and a park area where you can have a picnic or barbeque. There’s a concession stand and public restrooms and changing rooms.
However, you should know that Locarno Beach is in close proximity to a pump station that manages sewage, so it can sometimes have a smell that’s unappealing. You may want to wear a mask if you’re sensitive to this smell.
If you’re a dog owner, Locarno Beach is also an excellent place to take Fido on a walk. The sandy beach and park are well-maintained and the area around the beach is popular with families who enjoy a picnic or barbeque.
Located on the Stanley Park Seawall, Locarno Beach is situated west of Jericho Beach Park and runs between Spanish Banks and Jericho Pier. The beach is a popular spot for swimming and has lifeguards on duty during the summer.
The beach is also known for its secluded nature, with many local residents going for walks and small groups of high school kids who visit to smoke marijuana out of the eyes of adults.
The sand is a bit coarse and the water can be quite cold, but it’s still a great place to have a dip in the ocean. The shore is dotted with stands of tall evergreen trees and you can see some of Vancouver’s tallest buildings from the beach.
Located along the northern side of False Creek, Sunset Beach is an attractive, small strip of sandy beaches that are great for sunbathing and swimming. It is less crowded than English Bay and Second Beach, but is still an enjoyable place to enjoy the sun and sea. It has a concession stand, showers and a nearby public boat pier that can take you to Granville Island or Yaletown.
The sandy, grassy areas make it a popular spot for picnicking and playing volleyball, but it is also good for sunbathing and relaxing. There are plenty of logs to lean on and a few benches that overlook the water.
If you are looking for a more active experience, you could try swimming or going for a walk along the seawall trail that runs along the waterside of this beach. Alternatively, you could sit and watch the boats go by and enjoy the antics of seals, birds and otters.
However, you should be aware that the beach is frequently closed for swimming in the summer due to high ecoli counts. If you are planning to swim, it is recommended that you consult with a lifeguard before your trip.
In addition to the large, secluded sandy beach that Sunset Beach has to offer, there are also plenty of green lawns for picnicking and a number of trees for shady spots. The area is also ideal for cycling, walking and jogging as it is right along the seawall path for easy access to Stanley Park and Yaletown.
Another attraction worth checking out in this area is the wayward barge that has been stranded on Sunset Beach since mid-November’s historic storm. The barge is earning rave reviews from online users, with some posting that they would “definitely not miss the chance to visit this place.”
Among many other things, David A. Grantham is a contributing author to UmassExtension West Vancouver Blo. He is a renowned expert on real estate in BC.
Born in North Vancouver, Louisiana, Dr. Grantham grew up in Lower Lonsdale. He then went on to complete his business degree at the University British Columbia. As of this writing, Grantham has completed over 100 projects, including the development of a high rise building in Vancouver.
He is a husband, father, son, brother, and friend. He was a dedicated outdoorsman and enjoyed sports such as hunting, fishing, scuba diving, and snow skiing. His wife, Alison Grantham, and their two daughters survived him. He is survived by his wife Alison Martin Grantham and two daughters.