Photo credit: Destination BC
Air and Boat Trips
Surrounded by nature - the ocean, mountains and beautiful parklands - Vancouver is truly spectacular! A fantastic way to see this wonderful city is by air and by water!
A number of air transportation companies offer both scheduled flights to other parts of British Columbia, as well as spectacular “flightseeing” sightseeing tours. Soar over downtown Vancouver, mountains and water for the view of a lifetime, or take a quick, convenient hop over to destinations like Victoria, Nanaimo, Tofino and Whistler for a day or two exploring British Columbia. Both floatplane and helicopter services offer flights from downtown Vancouver, right on the harbour, as well as from Richmond by Vancouver International Airport.
Taking to the water in Vancouver is a must! Depending on the mode you choose, you can enjoy a relaxing cruise, an energizing paddle, or simply a great way to get from place to place while you’re sightseeing.
For those that want to combine some outdoor adventure with sightseeing, consider a sea-kayak lesson, stand-up paddleboarding, or even learning how to windsurf!
Read our article 5 Ways of Getting Out on the Water
For those who want to enjoy the water without getting wet, there are dinner cruises, fishing charters, motorboat rentals, and authentic Native cedar canoes complete with guides offering narrative and traditional songs. Or for a low cost, fun transit option, jump on the SeaBus or one of the small ferries that cross False Creek as part of Vancouver's unique public transportation.
BC Ferries has two Vancouver ferry terminals, Tsawwassen and Horseshoe Bay, which provide access to Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and the Sunshine Coast.
Tsawwassen, approximately 45 minutes south of downtown Vancouver, provides services to Victoria (90 minutes), Nanaimo (2 hours) and the Southern Gulf Islands (55 minutes – 3 hours).
Horseshoe Bay, about 45 minutes north of Vancouver, offers services to Nanaimo (100 minutes), Bowen Island (20 minutes) and the Sunshine Coast (40 minutes).
During peak months, ferries run every one to two hours, but schedules change dependant on the season. Reservations are available on some routes, and are recommended, especially during peak season and holiday periods. Visit the BC Ferries website for current schedules, fares and reservations, or call 1.888.223.3779 (in North America) or +1 250.386.3431 (international).
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