9 of the best beaches in and around Vancouver

lifeguard sitting on a wood stump at a beach beside lifeguard stand

Vancouver comes in on the Top 10 Best City Beaches in the World and it’s no surprise to us. The city is surrounded by mountains and ocean, a seawall and beautiful sandy beaches.  Safe to say, our beaches are the highlight of summers here. So to help you out, we broke each of the best ones down, whether you’re looking to chill, party, swim or tan sans tanlines.

9 Second Beach

Second Beach is one of 3 beaches around Stanley Park. It has an outdoor pool right on the ocean and a large park with kids playground, making this beach for the fam. There are always lots of kids and swimmers and it’s the perfect place for a quiet and chill BBQ, as there is always lots of space.

a shot of people at second beach in Vancouver
Photo Cred | @matchesgo

8 Third Beach

Almost as wild as Wreck Beach, but it’s clothed, for those wanting that. Third Beach is the chill spot for the young crew. It’s a tiny trek to get there either biking or driving as you have to go around to the edge of Stanley Park, but that just makes it exclusive. There are also not-so-secret drum circles every Tuesday at sunset.

Photo Cred | @thetheoryoflight

7 Jericho Beach

Jericho Beach is right next to Spanish Banks and is the ‘active’ beach with boat and paddle board rentals right on the beach. It isn’t necessarily the cool ‘populisty’ place, but it’s known for the Vancouver Folk Music Festival, so there are cool events during the summer.

Photo Cred | @janinejurji

6 Sunset Beach

You get one guess as to what the best part of Sunset Beach is. If you didn’t guess the sunsets, we can’t help you.  Sunset Beach is one of the most convenient beaches to get to in downtown and where a lot of events go down. It’s out in the open and the sand is too hard, so it’s really only good for sunsets and picnics.

Photo Cred | @legere_photos

5 Ambleside Beach

Ambleside Beach is the North Shore’s go-to spot. It’s the family-friendly vibes of West Vancouver and dog-friendly – which considering everyone in Vancouver has a dog, there aren’t a lot of doggo-welcoming spots. The best part of it, is the views of Stanley Park and the North Shore mountains.

Photo Cred | @ambleside.westvancouver

4 Spanish Banks

Spanish Banks is somewhere in under Wreck Beach, Third Beach and Kits Beach in terms of the ‘cool’ spot factor. It’s located in Vancouver’s upscale Point Grey neighbourhood and the largest beach in Vancouver, so ideal for any kind of fun-day activities. There’s a very low tide, so swimming isn’t super ideal, but skimboarding and kitesurfing are.

Photo Cred | @kimmybaggins

3 English Bay

English Bay (the 1st of the 3 Stanley Park beaches) is the most famous and popular beach in Vancouver, mostly because of tourists and the locals that live in the West End and aren’t too cool to go to the beach. The views are spectacular and the palm trees lining make it feel like you’re in Cali. There’s also a Cactus Club right on the beach, that’s perfect for afternoon drinks in the sun.

Photo Cred | @legere_photos

2 Kitsilano Beach

Probably the youngest and coolest beach in the city, ‘Kits Beach’ is full of activities and fun. From beach volleyball to basketball to picnics and swimming, Kits is the hot spot any day of summer. Kits Pool is also a hotspot in the hot summer days, with the largest open-air pool right beside the beach.

Photo Cred | @desirekokuvi

1 Wreck Beach

The most famous and popular with young locals, hippies and nudists because it’s a no-cop zone and anything goes, including clothing-optional. It’s a trek there to UBC and to get down the 400+ steps (or rather to go up), but worth it for the serenity from the city. Just don’t mind the mass amounts of penises and vaginas playing ping pong and selling edibles.

Photo Cred | @part_time_heroine89

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