20 Interesting And Fun Facts About Vancouver

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Vancouver is a major Canadian city known for its perfect blend of modern urban features and the natural setting. With amazing attractions and exceptional waterfront landmarks, there are many fun facts about Vancouver that is worth knowing before visiting.

Common Facts About Vancouver

Vancouver is the 3rd largest city in Canada and it is around 130 years. Some of the affectionate nicknames of the city are “The Couve” or “Hollywood of the North”. It is known for its ancient forest, seawall, and its world-famous surfing, swimming, and hiking along the pacific ocean.

Historical Facts on Vancouver

Here are other interesting historical facts about Vancouver that you may not know about.

Vancouver Was Formerly Called Gastown

Vancouver was formerly called Gastown. It was called Granville after that. Before it was later named after an English explorer called Captain George Vancouver. George explored the inner harbor of Burrard Inlet in 1792 he gave many places English names at the time.

Gastown is now one of the famous historic districts that Vancouver is known for.

Vancouver Is Above 1000 Years

1000+ years seems like a cliche but that is one interesting fact about Vancouver. Officially the beautiful city from the north is known to be 130 years. However, this city has existed long before then.

Before the European arrived in the area, people were already inhabiting the area. Archaeologist claim that there were living civilizations here since 8000-10000 years ago

North Vancouver Was Formerly Called Moodyville

Before it was called North Vancouver. It was initially called Moodyville. It was named after the man who first opened a sawmill on the North shore. Though in the 1900s the name was later changed to North Vancouver.

The Oldest Standing Building In Vancouver Is The Hastings Mill Store

Another lesser-known fact about Vancouver is that the oldest standing building in the city is over 157 years.

The Hastings Mill Store was built in 1865. It was dedicated to Captain Edward Stamp. It was used as a sawmill company under his Stamp control.

For another 60 years after it was built the mill remained in the same location. A new mill was built in 1887 and the original building was used as storage. Later in 1930 the building was renovated and converted into a Museum. “Museum of B.C. Historical Relics” in memory of the founders.

The Whole City Of Vancouver Burned Down

Here’s another fact about Vancouver that may be hard to imagine considering the metropolitan city today.

In 1886, the Great Vancouver Fire burned down the whole city. This happened shortly after Granville was incorporated into the city of Vancouver.

The fire was started as a means to clear land near the main street for the roundhouse of the terminus of the Canadian Pacific railway. But this fire ended up destroying almost everything in front of it approximately 600-1000 buildings were destroyed.

Facts About Vancouver For Tourists

Vancouver’s Stanley Park Is Bigger Than Central Park


When people think of big urban parks, the first that comes to mind is Central Park in New York City. However, an interesting fact about Vancouver is that the city’s proud Stanley park is actually one-fifth larger than Central Park. It is also almost half the size of London’s Richmond Park. Great topic for a Vancouver trivia quiz.

Vancouver Is Not The Capital Of Canada Or British Columbia


Vancouver is the province of British Columbia and the largest city in western Canada. A stunning fact about Vancouver is that 14 of the 30 largest cities in British Columbia are situated in Metro Vancouver.

That is why it comes as no surprise that Vancouver is often mistaken as the capital. Neither Toronto nor Vancouver is the capital of Canada. That title belongs to Ottawa.

Another important Vancouver fact to know is that the city is also not the capital of British Columbia, that would be Victoria. Nonetheless, there are tons of exciting things to do in Vancouver.

Vancouver Island Is Not Vancouver Metro

It’s common to confuse Vancouver Island with the city of Vancouver, especially for those not native to Canada. These are however referring to different areas.

One fact about Vancouver Island is that it has one of the largest cities in British Columbia “Victoria”. Victoria is the capital city of British Columbia.

In the 19th century, Victoria was the leader in trade and commerce in the region. But when the transcontinental railroad in Vancouver was constructed, the city evolved to become the largest west coast port and ultimately the largest city in the province.

In the 20th century, Victoria became a tourist attraction and a government city. It is one of the most famous landmarks in the Vancouver area.

Vancouver Have The Tallest Waterfall In Canada


Another interesting fact about Vancouver island is that it houses the tallest waterfall in Canada. Della Falls stands at 440 meters and is situated in Strathcona Provincial park.

Getting there can take multi-day hiking and canoe trips, but the fall is an amazing sight to behold. It represents some of the natural beauty of Vancouver Island.

The Marine Building In Vancouver

One fact about Vancouver you probably didn’t know was that Vancouver had the tallest building in the British Empire at a point in time. The Marine Building was situated at Burrard street in Downtown Vancouver. It was the tallest building with a height of 321 feet.

Cultural Facts on Vancouver

Many Languages Are Spoken In Vancouver


Like Toronto, Vancouver is a multicultural city. Residents of the city are called Vancouverites, sounds cheeky right?

One amazing Vancouver fact is that over 50% of Vancouverites are a visible minority. The Chinese form about 27% of that. Also, over 50% are non-native English speakers.

Vancouver All Season Festival And Events


Vancouver is a city of entertainment. One Vancouver trivia is that, throughout the 12 months and all seasons of the year, Vancouver celebrates one festival/event or another.

From performing arts to culinary, film, and culture there’s always an event worth celebrating. It does not matter where your interest lies there’s a festival that puts your interest under the spotlight. Certainly one of the literal fun facts about Vancouver.

Vancouver Is a City Of Entertainment,


Proudly referred to as “The Hollywood of the North”, Vancouver is an entertainment center. Some of the biggest blockbuster movies and TV series to grace our screens like Deadpool, Arrow, and Godzilla were all shot in Vancouver. No wonder it has earned the reputation of Hollywood North.

The Vancouver Pride Parade


The Vancouver Pride Parade is one of the biggest festivals in Vancouver with over 400,000 participants yearly. It is an annual event for the LGBT. The parade is designed to celebrate people and their difference. Lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender, and their allies.

The colorful parade usually comes up around the end of July or the start of August yearly. The festival last about a week, that week is called pride week.

Ethnic Districts In Vancouver

Another interesting Vancouver fact is that the city also has ethnic regions much like Chinatown in the US. Vancouver features areas such as Little India, Greektown, and Japantown. Although during World War 2, some of these towns’ residents faced forceful removal.

Random Facts About Vancouver

Vancouver The Greenest City In The World


Vancouver plans to become the greenest city in the world. Yes! You heard right. With the GCAP (Greenest City Action Plan) it has already achieved over 80% of its goal. This is one of the amazing facts about Vancouver.

Currently, Vancouver ranks as the 3rd greenest city in the world. The first two are Copenhagen and Stockholm respectively.

Vancouver a Top City To Live In


Vancouver is a choice for many as a place to live in. One interesting fact about Vancouver that you may not know, is that the city has an ambitious goal of becoming the top #1 destination in the world to live in. 

On EUI’s global livability ranking Vancouver has remained top spot from 2002 to 2010. However from a recent ranking in 2021 Vancouver ranks #10.

The Vancouverism Plan


Vancouver has its urban planning and an architectural concept called Vancouverism. It’s a fun Vancouver fact many visitors will not be aware of yet explains the surroundings.

It is primarily a concept that centers around high-rise residential towers. At the base of these buildings will be commercial sites. Public transport and green spaces, and view corridors are some of the highlights.

Second Largest Port In North America


In both size and tonnage, Vancouver ranks second only behind New York as the largest port in North America

Vancouver Capilano Suspension Bridge


The Capilano suspension bridge in North Vancouver is the most popular attraction in the city. One proud fact about Vancouver’s Capilano Bridge is that it welcomes over 1 million visitors yearly. It is a famous Canadian landmark as it has been featured in many movies including Psych.

Discovering More Fun Facts About Vancouver

There are plenty of interesting things to discover about Vancouver – from its diverse range of festivals and events to its unique ethnic districts. And that’s just scratching the surface!

There are many more interesting facts about Vancouver to discover for yourself. If you’re looking for a city that offers endless entertainment and surprises, Vancouver is definitely worth considering.

=> In addition, Vancouver is an excellent city for travelers. It’s well-connected with airports serviced by major airlines, it has a wide variety of accommodation options to suit all budgets, and it’s home to some of the most beautiful landscapes in Canada. So whether you’re planning a trip to Canada or you’re already in North America and looking for somewhere new to explore, be sure to add Vancouver to your list!



Book Your Flight

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Find Your Accommodation

Booking.com is my usual platform for finding accommodation options as they have one of the largest selections. Hostelworld is great for booking hostels. For more private or long term accommodation, Airbnb is my go-to platform.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is important for to protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances. I usually look at a few insurance companies depending on my travel needs.
  • SafetyWings for Travel Health Insurance
  • IMG Global for added Insurance when doing activities outside of usual coverage
Packing for your trip? Check out the packing list for ideas on what to bring

For more travel resources, check out my resources page for best platforms and companies to use when you travel.

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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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