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Vancouver's mild climate allows for many outdoor activities.
You can discuss Vancouver activities with other travelers and locals on the official Vancouver Facebook fan page, operated by Tourism Vancouver: www.facebook.com/insidevancouver.
The Stanley Park seawall is one of the most popular stretches for cycling, jogging, walking and in-line skating. The seawall makes up one part of the Vancouver Greenway system’s Seaside Route , which runs along the shoreline for 20 km (12.5 miles) from Spanish Banks , around False Creek and English Bay to Coal Harbour, passing some interesting animal habitats, marshes and forests along the way. Since Vancouver’s winters tend to be mild, you will find walkers, sightseers, beachcombers, joggers, cyclists and rollerbladers on the Seaside Route year round. However, this route is most exciting in summer when the city’s many festivals and events bring vibrant crowds to the area.
Cycling is one of the most exciting ways to tour Vancouver. Extensive bike routes cover the city, and rental bicycles, helmets and locks are available at various locations. Route maps are also available at bike rental and retail locations. Cycle enthusiasts will also enjoy the Tour de Gastown , where the streets are closed and cyclists race through historic Gastown in mid-July. Just outside Vancouver on Grouse Mountain, there are some excellent cycling trails for serious mountain bikers.
Stretching for 10km (6.2mi) through dense, lush forest in the Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve ( LSCR ) in North Vancouver lies a paved trailway that is popular with cyclists, joggers, stroller-pushers and in-line skaters. The parking lot also serves as the starting point for many hiking trails leading down to and along the Seymour River or connecting to Lynn Canyon , Lynn Headwaters Park and the Baden Powell Trail .
If you are a runner, consider seeing the city by running. Runners can find lovely paths around Lost Lagoon and Beaver Lake , or along the seashore at Kitsilano Beach , Spanish Banks and Jericho Beach . Running Room offers a free run club on Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings. Alternatively, there is at least one road race in and around Vancouver every month. If there is a shirt that comes with the race package, that makes a great souvenir. One race of particular interest is the Vancouver Sun Run in April. It is the second largest 10km race in North America hitting a milestone 50,000 participants in 2006.
Skate for free at the Robson Square outdoor ice rink open 9:00 to 21:00. Skate rental is available.
Dance into the night for free. Robson Square is an open air/underground venue between the Vancouver Art Gallery and the law courts. Every summer you are welcome to dance to your heart's contents on Friday nights. They also offer ballroom dancing demonstrations so you are welcome to pick up a few steps or just watch people of all ages having a great time. Don't be taken aback if you are literally swept off your feet to participate in a dance by a total stranger. Another indication that the Latin community is alive and well in Vancouver, Latin dancing is now offered at Robson Square on Sunday afternoons but if you want an evening venue, Mesluna on West Broadway is a fun place for dinner, live Latin music, and dancing. They offer simple lessons in salsa dancing from the friendly Latin community in Vancouver.
Don't blink or you'll miss the skateboarding parks. There is a popular skateboarding park under the Skytrain tracks just off Pacific Boulevard. It's in an obscure location between GM Place and Chinatown. About five minutes east by car there is another skate park on Venables very close to the famous La Casa Gelato, well known for their elaborate and daring variety of ice cream.
Be blown away. Vanier Park is a popular location for all ages to fly kites.
For those who enjoy watersports, there are numerous places to rent kayaks and canoes. Ecomarine offers 2 for 1 rentals of kayaks on Tuesdays at Jericho Beach, English Bay, and Granville Island. If you are flexible on time consider taking a sailing or windsurfing lesson at Jericho Beach .
If being "in" the water is your thing, Kits Beach and Second Beach in Stanley Park have lovely outdoor pools with great views of the northshore mountains. The 2 most convenient indoor lap pools are at the YWCA at 535 Hornby St and at the Vancouver Aquatic Center at 1050 Beach Av, beneath the Burrard St Bridge.
Those more interested in winter sports will find a number of skiing destinations in and around Vancouver. Grouse Mountain , Cypress Mountain and Mount Seymour are all local hills for skiing and snowboarding, cross country skiing and tubing opportunities in addition to downhill. Snowshoeing tours are also available. Most of the tours end with a cup of hot chocolate or chocolate fondue for those chocolate lovers. For those extreme snowshoers, consider entering a Yeti Race. Whistler Blackcomb Resort is just a short drive away and makes a very popular skiing destination.
For those looking to take in some spectator sports, Vancouver hosts a number of exciting events. Take in a hockey game watching the minor league Vancouver Giants with their blossoming NHL contenders the Coliseum on the PNE grounds or the real NHL Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena. Watch the B.C. Lions of the Canadian Football League score some touchdowns at B.C. Place Stadium . If soccer is your pleasure, you can see the MLS Vancouver Whitecaps at BC Place . Or if you like the ponies, check out the thoroughbreds at Hastings Park Racecourse between April and October. Yes, Vancouver has a baseball team too. The Vancouver Canadians are a minor league team that plays out of the charming Nat Bailey Stadium. If you are here on business and love baseball, consider taking your laptop to one of their weekday noon games. They recently made wireless internet available to those who can work away from the office.