Friday, 4 October 2019

 

Exploring Vancouver's Best Parks: Capilano Suspension Bridge Park


Vancouver is one of the busiest cities in Canada. It's bustling with sport and music events, has museums and galleries galore, and whether you're a foodie or shopaholic, you're never far away from new places to discover. However, sometimes you want to get away from the business to enjoy a quieter time and surround yourself with snow-capped mountains and trees as far as the eye can see. British Colombia has an incredible array of green spaces right on Vancouver's doorstep that are quick and easy to get to. In this new series I'll take you along to a few of my favourite scenic outings. First up: Capilano Suspension Bridge Park.



What started off as a 135m long suspension bridge a staggering 70 metres above the Capilano River all the way back in 1889, has transformed into a full-fledged attraction with a treetop adventure, cliff walk, totem park, and one of the best shops in the Vancouver area to pick up on all your Canadiana (the maple saltwater taffy is *so* good I ended up seriously stocking up on my last visit).






I first had the pleasure of visiting the park nearly 15 years ago, and remember being so in awe with the bridge and the lush treetop walk on the other side that I ended up converting my day ticket to an annual pass there and then. And the park has only grown bigger an better since. This does mean that more people visit than ever before, and it can get busy. For the most unobstructed views, I recommend visiting a weekday – perhaps a bit of a gloomy day – and arrive when the doors open. You want to spend a good few hours in the park anyway, so the earlier you go, the more time you have to explore at a leisurely pace.






Since my first visit, the park has not only grown more popular, but they've also expanded the number of activities. Most notably, there is now a staggering clifftop walk. How they build the metal contraption on the side of the high-up cliff is beyond me, but if you don't suffer from vertigo then this is an absolute must-do. Surrounded by staggering-high rain forest and with the iconic suspension bridge behind you, you will be rewarded with breathtaking views from high above the Capilano River.






Every time I go back to Vancouver I make it a mission to visit this wonderful park. While it may be named for its famous suspension bridge, for me it's the variety of scenic attractions, re-energising rainforest surroundings and, not gonna lie, the excellent gift shop, that make this a must every time I'm in the country. I am also hoping to in the future visit during the darker winter months, when the bridge and treetop walk are covered in fairy lights. It looks magical.




And, bonus, while some of BC's most wonderful outdoor adventures are a car drive away, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park has a year-round free shuttle running from central Vancouver. Not everyone drives or has a car (myself included), so transport accessibility features like these always get a big thumbs up in my book. For more helpful information, including opening times and ticket pricing, check out the official Capilano Suspension Bridge Park website.




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