Vancouver BC - what to do for a few days?

Spring break is coming up for the kiddies, and I’ve also got my Chinese mother-in-law and sister-in-law in town. Kids are 10, 6 and 6 (with autism). We are thinking of driving, spending 2-3 nights in Vancouver, hitting a lot of good Chinese restaurants and doing lazy kiddie stuff.

I’ve been to Hongcouver several times on business trips. Eg, taken the gondola to Whistler and had an event at the aquarium. Stayed in a downtown business hotel and walked around downtown.

So, recommendations for a family/clan friendly hotel?

Recommedations for kids stuff in early April?

Recommendations for “real” Chinese restaurants?

Go to Richmond and toss a pebble in any direction… any place you hit will surely be an authentic Chinese restaurant! :smiley: If you do make your way to Richmond, try Aberdeen Center. The shops are sort of “Hong Kongy”, there’s a play area for kids, and people are always raving about the $2 items at Daiso.

I’d also recommend you take a look at Main Street, going up from about 49th Ave all the way out to Broadway or so (Broadway is essentially 9th Ave). It’s adopted the nickname “Little India”, so if you’re looking for something a little more multicultural, it’s a good area to take a stroll. I’d also recommend Commercial Drive for the same change-of-scenery experience, BUT Commercial Drive isn’t all that kid friendly.

If your family isn’t into too much shopping, try taking them to The Hillcrest Pool. It’s basically an indoor water park for the kids (and adults!) to play around in. It was the curling rink during the Olympics that they converted into a pool. Pretty cool to check out just for the history factor.

If you have the time and the kids are okay with it, try visiting the Capilano Suspension Bridge. It’d be a great experience for your 10 year old. ETA, the Lynn Valley bridges are also pretty awesome, but it’s a little more complicated to figure out how to get to, especially if you’re not familiar with the area.

For something a little more bland, do a picnic at Stanley Park. It’s where the aquarium is, and it’s quite a big park, so you can actually make a day of it. If you go there, take a look at the totem poles… apparently, that’s what all the tourists end up doing!

Go up to Whistler and do the ZipTrek tour. Kids will love it.

I’ve never stayed here (no need :D) but for location, the Coast Hotel on Denman Street can’t be beat. It’s about two blocks from the beach at English Bay, two or so blocks the other way from Stanley Park, is on a street chock full of small, cheap and good nonchain restaurants(and a Dairy Queen and Fatburger for tyke chow emergencies), and the place has suites with kitchenettes. There’s a Safeway around the corner on Davie Street.

For Chinese food in Vancouver itself, I have no idea what variant you’d be interested in, so have a gawk at the Urbanspoon listings and the Chinese restaurant awards. Legendary Noodles is on Denman, and I like their dumplings. I gotta go there soon…

Thanks for this recommendation, Annie. A couple of weeks ago we booked my mom into this hotel for a visit next month and it’s nice to see it comes Doper-recommended. There is a Safeway close as you mentioned, but there’s also a grocery store in the mini-mall beneath it.

I’ve nothing to contribute as its a few years since I was there but I loved the place.

I noticed a Peruvian Pan Pipe group busking there, I’m sure its the same group stalking me all around the world.

Granville Island market is fun - especially the Kids market. Toy stores galore, baby!