Vancouver is a city of adventure. Tours, whether professionally-guided or a personal adventure, give visitors the chance to take advantage of the city’s downtown vitality and experience the areas natural beauty. The biggest problem is deciding how you’re going to take in all there is to see in this marvelous city.
For comfortable bus tours, there are several companies in the city, including Gray Lines and Pacific Coach Lines. Many of the bus tours offer comfortable, informed sightseeing that explores the highlights and main attractions of the city. If you’re looking for a smaller mini-van tour, then try Cityscape or Blue Mountain Tours. Many offer multilingual, narrated tours that can be customized to suit a large group.
With the fresh air and spectacular views, its easy to get caught up in the city’s healthy vibe. Urban Adventures and Velo-City Tours take you on guided cycle tours of the city and surrounding area. You’ll spend time in and around Granville Island, Vanier Park, Grouse Mountain and many other beautiful sites.
There are also several options for those looking for unusual excursions. At Stanley Park, Horse Drawn Tours take passengers on a pleasant old-world wagon ride through the amazing 1000-acre urban park. For something less equestrian, the Vancouver Trolley Company takes passengers on a turn-of-the-century trolley ride to view the city’s sites along various avenues and thoroughfares. You can view the city at your own pace, getting on or off at any of the 16 stops to visit attractions like the Vancouver Aquarium, Science World, Rose Garden and Library Square.
For a minivan tour customized to suit your own interests, try Captain Billy’s Magical Tours. Or see the city in style with Fridges Early Motion Tours, who not only personalize their excursions, but do it all in a 1930s Ford A. Both companies cater to personal itineraries and have knowledgeable guides to add to the experience.
To learn more about West Coast First Nations, several tour companies, including West Coast Nature and Sightseeing, Detours Excursions B.C., and LandSea Tours have special day trips that highlight the heritage, history, art, and importance of B.C.s native cultures. The modern and historical influences of these cultures are explored at various landmarks in and around the city.
For an extravagant and romantic tour, B.C. Rails Pacific Starlight Dinner Train runs from spring to autumn. A restored dining car provides exceptional cuisine and panoramic views as it glides through the fantastic scenery of North Vancouver, Howe Sound, and Porteau Cove. On special nights, there’s a murder mystery show presented by the Comedy Club.
Another opulent B.C. Rail excursion offers a combination voyage. Take the luxury steam locomotive Royal Hudson Steam Train to Squamish, passing along the spectacular coastline past West Vancouver and Horseshoe Bay. Once at Squamish, cruise home to Vancouver on the Harbour Cruises Britannia. This dual-experience trip is offered from June to mid-September.
Often referred to as the Hollywood of the North, Vancouver is the third largest film and TV shooting centre in North America, after L.A. and New York. The amazingly popular X-Files is one of the programs shot here for years. Hence the birth of the idolatrous X-Tours, which, among other unique experiences, offers chauffeured limousine tours of spots where infamous X-scenes and memorable film moments took place.