Did you know that Vancouver ranked as the sixth most livable city in the world, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Livability Report for 2019? If you’re looking to settle down in some of Vancouver neighborhoods, keep in mind that these residential areas have plenty to offer in terms of quality of life, diversity, and job opportunities.
Stability, healthcare, culture, environment, education, and infrastructure are considered crucial factors when it comes to living conditions. With an overall score of 97.3 in the abovementioned report, Vancouver can be proud of its position among cities such as Vienna, Osaka, Melbourne, and Copenhagen. In other words, if you’re moving to this buzzing city, also known as “Lotusland,” “City of Glass” and “Hollywood North,” you can rest assured that moving to Canada and living in this bustling metropolis will improve the quality of your life and your family.
We’ve narrowed down a list of neighborhoods to provide you with handy information and help you choose the perfect district for your future home. Whether you wish to live in one of the oldest commercial streets, such as Robson Street, or in a place which is Vancouver’s version of New York’s Brooklyn – South Main, we’ve got you covered. Thanks to our guide, you will quickly get a bigger picture and be able to immerse yourself in all the benefits of living in Lotusland.
Vancouver Neighborhoods Are a Reflection of the City’s Ethnic Diversity
You’ve probably heard many times that the most famous coastal seaport in western Canada is one of its most ethnically diverse cities, with half of the population being a visible minority. That’s precisely why it’s so appealing for tourists, immigrants, and expats all over the world. Once they come, they usually decide to stay for good.
Whether your plans are related to starting a family, career opportunities, or you just need a change, this is the place to be. Hollywood North has something for everyone, from outdoor sports events and adventure to culture and a lively music scene. Furthermore, if you have children, personal safety is extremely high in this Canadian metropolis.
It’s great to know that your prospective homeland is almost perfect, but the hardest part is yet to come. How does one choose the most suitable neighborhood to live in a city with nearly 700,000 residents, excluding the broader metropolitan area? We’ve conducted a bit of research and prepared for you some of the most exciting details about Vancouver’s districts, lifestyle, landmarks, and nooks and crannies that make life here happier than in other places in the world.
Meet Some of the Priciest Downtown Areas – Gastown, Yaletown, and Coal Harbour
Downtown usually showcases all the hustle and bustle of the big city, with business districts, entertainment, and sports venues, as well as top-notch restaurants. We could say the same about Lotusland’s downtown – it’s captivating, vibrant, and pricey.
Probably one of the most beloved neighborhoods of Vancouverites is Gastown. As the oldest one, it grew for a single tavern, and today is home to amazing Victorian architecture, a thriving fashion scene, cultural spots, and exquisite cuisine. You can find lots of fun, walking routes, and areas to explore further. Gastown’s charm can be described as the fusion of old and new, history and modern ages.
Thanks to Yaletown, Vancouver earned its famous nickname – City of Glass. Many large glass towers are situated right here, and, above anything else, this neighborhood boasts plenty of modern parks, expensive restaurants, and brand-name shops. The best thing about Yaletown is that it was once a warehouse district. Today, it is home to many creative enterprises, a large number of medical and dental offices, and plenty of foodie spots and shops. Although living here has its benefits (one of them is that you can take a walk to work and anywhere else), high living costs are a stumbling block for many people – housing expenses are about $2,200 per month.
If your monthly income just can’t cover these monthly expenses, you should think about other amenities of these neighborhoods, such as laid-back strolling on the street, sipping a drink, or enjoying the view of the ocean. The perfect place for that might be Coal Harbour.
Coal Harbour Is a Beacon of Hope for a Coffee Aficionado
This picturesque residential area boasts excellent living standards and must-see attractions. Besides a plethora of tourist and cultural sites (Convention Centre, Public Art Installations), you can enjoy some of the best coffee in whole of British Columbia – it’s world-class here. After a long and tiring walk, take a break and choose where to sit down. You can’t go wrong whatever you pick:
- Cafe Villagio
- 6 Degrees Eatery
- Take Five
- Caffe Artigiano
Commercial Drive – Diverse and Affordable
Dubbed Little Italy, this east-side neighborhood is unmatched for its diversity, easygoing atmosphere, and reasonable prices. If you’re not a fan of the hustle and bustle of downtown, Commercial Drive might be just what you’ve been yearning for. Yes, it has boutiques, cafes, fantastic restaurants, but without too many tourists and crowded streets.
So, what spots with a local feel should be highlighted in Commercial Drive? We’ve made a selection of several things you should take into consideration if you prefer the easygoing lifestyle:
- 27-hectare John Hendry Park
- Trout Lake Farmer’s Market
- Rio Theatre on Broadway
- Theatre the Cultch (a former church turned into a theater)
- York Theatre
- The Lebanese restaurant Jamjar
- Cannibal Cafe
- The Mexican eatery La Mezcaleria
One more handy tip – this east part of the city is a perfect spot for beer lovers. You can find tap houses specializing in brews, local pubs, and plenty of craft breweries.
Granville Island – Perfect for Food Lovers
Are you looking for more of what Hollywood North has to offer? If so, on Granville Island, you’ll get experiences you won’t find anywhere else.
Have you ever tried artisan-crafted and certified organic bread and baked goods made by locals? Some of the finest bakeries are located here, where everything’s made by hand. Speaking of food, this is the place where farmworkers come from all around the country to sell their wares. Everything is fresh, hand-made, and delicious. And who can imagine tasty bites without drinks? Taste the perfect beer in Granville Island Brewing Co. – it was the first cottage brewery in British Columbia.
If you are moving with kids, this is the neighborhood you should be in. With Kids Market, your toddlers will enjoy watching shows, juggling, many attractions, and playing with animals in Water Park. In case you prefer cultural events and outdoor activities, festivals take place all year round here. Try strolling the Seawalk – it might be one of the most enchanting activities you’ve had.
South Vancouver’s Marpole – for Family People
Family people like this region due to its affordability in terms of rent and condo prices, but don’t fall into the trap of buying a single-family home – the price may reach millions. That being said, this is the perfect area for people with children. It boasts 11 parks, a popular chain of hamburger restaurants (White Spot), and excellent public transportation. Also, the area could be an excellent choice if you have preschool kids since there are six elementary schools. Within its boundaries, there are no high schools, but the proximity to Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School makes up for this – it serves the majority of the neighborhoods around.
A Bustling Gateway to Vancouver From the South and the Airport
About 24,000 residents live in Marpole, which is the entrance into Vancouver for all visitors and future inhabitants coming from the direction of the airport. The neighborhood sits directly across from the International Airport located in Richmond, Canada’s second busiest. The distance between this community and the airport is just about 2.5 miles.
Davie Village/West End – a Lively LGBT Hub
When talking about West End, one must take into consideration Davie Village, as its central part. Besides the LQBTQ community, this is the district where you can find different kinds of entertainment. English Bay Beach might be your mecca for tranquil moments, and if you need some exciting evening activities, there’s plenty of nightclubs.
Explore Downtown Vancouver and Live Life as Vancouverites Do
As an entry point to Stanley Park, Davie Village is the posh neighborhood of the city. Here, you will find heritage homes and high-rise apartments, ramen shops, and seafood grills. Some of the most famous shows and festivals take place here, such as:
- Honda Celebration of Lights (Fireworks)
- Gay Pride Parade and Festival
- Ecomarine Ocean Kayaking
Take Some Time off in the West End
The West End is surrounded by water on three sides: English Bay, Coal Harbour, and Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park. Riding a bike through this greenery could be the perfect way for you to let off some steam. You can spend your afternoon or weekends visiting the Vogue Theatre, a beautiful building in Art Deco style, where jazz and international film festivals take place regularly. If you prefer local specialties and want to try some of the most popular bites, head to Fritz, which serves poutine even in the middle of the night.
Kitsilano – the Favorite of Young Families and Students
Called “Kits” by the locals, this beachside district offers an array of attractions, beaches, and parks, making it especially suitable for younger generations. This area is packed with museums, so if you prefer art and science, we recommend that you visit the City’s Museum and Maritime Museum and enjoy dozens of model ships. Kitsilano and Jericho Beach will provide you with plenty of water activities and beautiful sandy shores. Your kids will be fascinated with the Kitsilano Pool, which is one of the largest outdoor pools with salt water. Being a child in a heated 450-foot- long pool could be so exciting.
The Best Family-Friendly Area in West Vancouver
Kitsilano could be precisely what you and your family need. It is home to some of Lotusland’s best family-friendly attractions, such as:
- H.R. MacMillan Space Centre
- Bard on the Beach Festival
- Kitsilano Family Day Celebration
- Farmers Market
Parents will be glad to hear that three elementary schools and one secondary are in Kits. You can rest assured that your children will be part of an excellent schooling system. Of course, if you want something more specialized, try private and independent schools. In Kitsilano, students with special needs also can find the right educational institutions, such as Fraser Academy.
One of the Best Vancouver Suburbs – North Vancouver
North Vancouver is made up of two separate metropolitan areas: the City of North Vancouver and the District of North Vancouver. The area is situated at the foot of the North Shore mountains and features some of the most extreme mountain hiking and biking trails on the globe. Many people working in the local mountains lean toward North Vancouver neighborhoods.
If you like nature and outdoor activities, then you’ll love North Vancouver, too. Some of the most popular places and attractions to visit are:
- Baden Powell Trail
- Capilano River Regional Park
- Cates Park
- Deep Cove
- Lonsdale Quay
- Maplewood Farm
You Won’t Regret Moving to Hollywood North
You should always choose an appropriate home and environment depending on your life goals and wishes. But, when moving across the border, that might be challenging and tricky, even when you don’t have to break the language barrier or learn a new language. Every relocation requires a period of adjustment, which sometimes turns into a rollercoaster of emotions. If you’re thinking about moving to Canada and are not sure which Vancouver neighborhoods could be the ideal place for you, we hope we helped you a bit with our guide.
Lotusland has much to contribute to your current lifestyle. Whether you’re aiming to find work in Vancouver, a healthier way of living, or wish to give the best housing and educational options to your children, this place has it all. So choose your favorite area, pack your possessions, hire reliable international moving services and get down to business – hit the road, and enjoy your fresh start in Hollywood North!