Vancouver is abundant with opportunities for both the dedicated shopaholic and the casual window shopper. There are many areas in the city where the street is lined on both sides with a vast variety of unique shops and boutiques selling everything under the sun. In addition Metro Vancouver has many large malls and indoor shopping centres which are great places to hang out on a rainy day. Of course the larger malls often have the same national chains that you will find everywhere so, for some truly unique Vancouver shopping, we recommend exploring at least one or two of the Vancouver shopping districts listed below.
Make your way to any of these Vancouver neighbourhoods and start exploring the interesting shops and boutiques
- Chinatown: For inexpensive trinkets, bargains and Chinese merchandise check out the Vancouver's historic and colorful Chinatown.
- Fort Langley: The historic village of Fort Langley is full of boutique shops with all kinds of unique merchandise that you will not find in the malls. For the most part the prices are also very reasonable. Antiques are especially abundant here with several large antique stores boasting a vast selection of nostalgia items and collectibles. There are also plenty of great places to dine while you are there.
- Gastown: Historic Gastown is a great place to shop for souvenirs. It also boasts an abundance of unique and exclusive shops and services including fashion, jewellery, home furnishings and decor, unique gifts and more. You can find truly unique one of a kind items here.
- Granville Island: In addition to the fresh baked goods, meats and produce the Granville Island Public Market contains a number of stalls where day vendors show off their exclusive wares. These range from hand made arts and crafts, jewellery, pottery, photography, fashions and much more. On the streets surrounding the Public Market there are many more unique and interesting shops and boutiques carrying a wide range of goods waiting to be discovered. There is bound to be something here that catches your interest.
- Lonsdale Quay Public Market: In addition to the Public Market selling fresh foods of all sorts, Lonsdale Quay has a second level dedicated to exclusive shops carrying fashions, toys, hobbies and more.
- Robson Street: Every city has its premier shopping street and in Vancouver that would be Robson Street. In addition to flagship stores for some major Canadian chains you will find the streets lined with all kinds of unique shops and boutiques interspersed with restaurants and cafés.
These popular Vancouver shopping areas have an abundance of unique stores and services and are easy to get to on public transit
- South Granville: South Granville is another popular shopping area with a number of trendy and exclusive shops and services. Located just south of the Granville Street Bridge it is easily accessed from Waterfront or Granville Station in Downtown Vancouver by Bus #10 Granville, #14 UBC or #16 Arbutus going south on Granville Street. Exit the bus at the corner of Granville and Broadway.
- Kitsilano: Just up the hill from Kitsilano beach on West 4th Avenue you will find a five block stretch of unique and interesting shops and restaurants. This area is best reached from Downtown Vancouver on Bus #44 UBC from Waterfront or Burrard Skytrain Station or Bus #4 UBC from Granville Station.
- West Broadway: West Broadway is another area with a huge concentration of shops and services of every kind imaginable. Lining both sides of Broadway between Larch and Alma you will find an abundance of unique and interesting shops, not to mention all kinds of popular Vancouver restaurants. This area is easily reached from Downtown via Bus #22 MacDonald from Burrard Station or by bus #9 or #99 UBC from Commercial/Broadway Station. Get off either bus at the corner of Broadway and MacDonald.
For information on larger Vancouver malls and shopping centres close to Skytrain stations check out the following links
- Aberdeen Centre--(Richmond)
- Brentwood Town Centre--(Burnaby)
- Central City Shopping Centre --(Surrey)
- Crystal Mall--(Burnaby)
- Lansdowne Centre--(Richmond)
- Lougheed Town Centre--(Burnaby)
- Metropolis at Metrotown--(Burnaby)
- Pacific Centre--(Downtown Vancouver)
- Richmond Center
- Sinclair Centre--(Downtown Vancouver)