Along seawall near Third Beach and Siwash Rock, Stanley Park.

Stanley Park Seawall


Built between 1917 and 1980, the 8.8km seawall trail is Vancouver's favorite outdoor hangout. Encircling the whole of Stanley Park, it offers spectacular waterfront, mountain-fringed vistas on one side and dense forest canopy on the other. You can walk the whole thing in around three blister-triggering hours or rent a bike from the Denman St operators near the park entrance to cover the route faster. But what's the rush? Slow down and slide into the natural side of life instead.

Keep in mind that cyclists and rollerbladers must travel counterclockwise on the seawall, so there's no going back once you start rolling. Also consider dipping into the 24km of trails that crisscross the park's interior, including Siwash Rock Trail, Rawlings Trail and the popular Beaver Lake Trail (some trails are for jogging only). Keep your eyes peeled for critters; the park is home to raccoons, coyotes and a plethora of beady-eyed birdlife.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Vancouver attractions

1. Cricket Pavilion

0.14 MILES

Brockton Oval's historic cricket pavilion ensures this pocket of Stanley Park will forever feel like an English country village.

2. HMCS Discovery

0.22 MILES

The historic naval station located on Stanley Park's Deadman's Island (actually a peninsula) has a long history as both a First Nations' burial ground and…

3. Vancouver Aquarium

0.31 MILES

Stanley Park's biggest draw is home to 9000 critters – including sharks, wolf eels and a somewhat shy octopus. There's also a small, walk-through…

4. Totem Poles

0.31 MILES

This handsome collection of totem poles clustered at Brockton Point is one of Stanley Park's busiest visitor lures. Arrive early or late on summer days to…

5. Lumberman's Arch

0.39 MILES

A chunky wooden structure erected here in 1952 to recognize BC's logging industry; the nearby grassy swathe is an ideal spot for picnics.

6. Lord Stanley Statue

0.39 MILES

A 1960 bronze commemorating Sir Frederick Arthur Stanley, the man who gave his name to the park plus the National Hockey League's top trophy, the Stanley…

7. Waterpark

0.39 MILES

One of Stanley Park's biggest lures for kids, this free-use summer-long attraction is the perfect way to cool down on hot days. Jets and pools keep the…

8. Nine O'Clock Gun

0.44 MILES

An old British canon that was installed in Stanley Park to help locals keep time over a century ago, this near-legendary gun is still fired off at…