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Hidden Vancouver: Lesser Known Gems To Explore Across The City

gems in vancouver

Photo: Shantel Jang / Flickr

Editor’s note: Our goal with all content is to help you spark ideas for future adventures. We urge you to follow all provincial guidelines and limit non-essential travel outside of your health authority. For the latest information on BC’s response to COVID-19, click here.

Our city has a plethora of beautiful places to explore, including some that are a little more off the radar.

Check out some of the hidden gems in Vancouver we’ve listed below and see if you’ve seen them all.

Related: Secret (And Not So Secret) Metro Vancouver Gardens To Explore This Spring

Lesser Known Gems In Vancouver

Sam Kee Building


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While it may seem simple enough, the Sam Kee building has actually made it into the book of Guinness World Records. Also known as the Jack Chow building, it became known as being the thinnest freestanding office building in the entire world. It’s only six feet and two inches in depth. The unique building can be found in Vancouver’s Chinatown neighbourhood.

Pink Alley

This alley was made for Instagram. The City of Vancouver brought the vibrant splash of colour to what once was a boring alleyway in 2016. Now, people tend to flock there to get some bright photos for their Instagram feeds. You can find it between Granville and Seymour streets, just south of where they both meet at West Hastings.

The Waterfall Building


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Bring some calmness to your day at this unique architectural landmark in Kitsilano. You’ll hear the gentle but cascading sounds of a waterfall, right in the middle of the city. Designed by world-renowned architect Arthur Erickson, the building has a glass-focused design.

Habitat Island


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While this gem is known as Habitat Island, it’s also called “Beer Island” as it’s a spot where many locals go to crack open a cold one. You can find it right along the sea wall in Olympic Village, near Science World.

Greenheart TreeWalk

Think the Treetops Adventure at Capilano Suspension Bridge, but on a smaller scale. This attraction can be found at the UBC Botanical Gardens and it offers a series of suspended walkways perched among the lush trees.

Secret Swing at Kitsilano Beach

Located on the side shore of Kitsilano Beach, there is a secret spot with a swing. For those who finds it, they are awarded with an amazing view of the sea and the mountains. The exact location remains a secret, a part of the fun is discovering exactly where it is.


For more places in beautiful BC, check out our Travel & Outdoors section.

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