Parks seem like refuges when they are surrounded by a large city. Get immersed in nature in this special spot near tall buildings.
Ambleside Park in Vancouver’s western segment offers a scenic view that represents the area well. Look out over the harbor entrance to the opposite shore to view Vancouver’s landmark green space, Stanley Park. High-rise buildings marking the downtown core poke above the trees, and Lions Gate Bridge is evident spanning the two shores. Watch ship traffic from the shore, a relaxing pastime on a pleasant afternoon.
The 59 acres (24 hectares) of Ambleside Park have all the ingredients for a fun-filled day outside. Relax on the 2,000-foot-long (600-meter) sandy beach where there’s always something to watch on Burrard Inlet. Let your family swim and play safely on this lifeguard-monitored beach. Include a game of volleyball using the fixed nets.
The park has three tennis courts, three basketball courts, two baseball diamonds and a skateboard park. Walk on paved trails and the 0.75-mile (1.2-kilometer) Seawalk to experience why locals and visitors regard this area as being very special. Golf at the 18-hole Ambleside Par 3 course with a beautiful waterfront location. It is open to the public, including families, from March to October.
Look for the rare green heron bird that uses the park as a nesting site in the spring and summer. You may also be fortunate enough to spot marine life, such as sea otters and elephant seals. Picnic benches are located throughout the park so you can bring a meal or buy something from the food trucks parked nearby. Alternatively, eat at one of the restaurants in the vicinity.
Let your kids have a good time at the well-equipped children’s section. For pet owners, many of British Columbia’s parks are dog friendly. Ambleside Park has over 8 acres (3.5 hectares) of grassy land and beach designated as an off-leash area.
Reach the park from downtown Vancouver in about 10 minutes by driving north through Stanley Park and crossing Lions Gate Bridge. Public transit to the area is frequent.