Inspired by summer-like weather we have just taken our bikes into get tuned up so we can hit the roads and trails safely this summer. While many may complain about Vancouver’s bike lanes disrupting their commutes, we think it’s great that our city celebrates cycling and embraces this green means of transport no matter what the weather. There are lots of bike rental spots should you need to rent, and many events even have free bike lock up.
Throw on a pair of sporty sandals, I’ve just found some lovelies, from Keen UNEEK Foot Wear, and they’re perfect for going from cycle to patio. Where to go when you feel like spinning your wheels? We’ve got a few suggestions.
Kits Beach to Jericho and Spanish Banks
If you are downtown the bike lanes on Burrard Street Bridge make getting from downtown to Kits Beach very simple. Cross the bridge, bike through Kits Beach, head out on Cornwall, and you’ll bike right into Jericho Beach. Stop in for some nachos and a beer at the Jericho Sailing Club and the patio and window seating provides views to the North Shore. The only problem is the envy you may feel for those out in the many boats coming and going from the club and nearby Vancouver Royal Van Yacht Club, but perhaps this is the summer you learn to sail.
Kits Beach to Stanley Park
One of our favourite summer rides takes us out from our Kitsilano home base down to Kits Beach, through to Granville Island and along the seawall past Science World onward just to the entry of Stanley Park. This part of the seawall is far less busy, even on the weekends, and we usually add a stop in at Olympic Village for a bevvy and bite at Tap and Barrel, or pack a picnic and enjoy it midway. On the way home a stop in Granville Island provides us with BBQ provisions.
Not recommended on busy summer weekends during prime time, but if you get up early or cycle after dinner, the paths are far less crowded. Be sure to stay in the bike lanes on the seawall, and for an extra adventure head to the Vancouver Aquarium for a mid-cycle break, they are currently showcasing a Sea Monsters revealed exhibit. If you’re a trail lover there are bike trails through the park. Be sure to check out the rose garden and Lost Lake Lagoon for turtle and other wildlife spotting.
UBC’s Pacific Spirit Park
There’s lots of hiking and biking trails throughout the Pacific Spirit Regional Park, an awesome urban forest not far from the city’s hustle. If you’re up to it, bike out to UBC through Jericho Beach and Spanish Banks, if not, throw your bike on the bus and you’re set. Forage for mushrooms, and head into the campus for a post ride snack from one of the food trucks.
Queen Elizabeth Park
Why not grab your backpack, head to the Vancouver Farmers Market at Nat Bailey for some goodies and then spend the afternoon cycling and hanging out in Queen Elizabeth Park. The Ontario Street bike route gets you there and you can stop for a rest at the Bloedel Floral Conservatory or a bite to eat at Seasons in the Park. Be sure to check out the views as at 152 meters above sea level, it’s the highest point in the city.
Central Valley Greenway
Crazily enough I once ran the Central Valley Greenway out from Vancouver to New Westminster, but cycling it is way easier! It forms the spine of Metro Vancouver’s cycling network and roughly parallels the Millennium SkyTrain Line, starting in downtown Vancouver at Science World and traveling through Burnaby and New Westminster. Along the way you can stop on Commercial Drive, Trout Lake or Burnaby Lake and at the end you can celebrate with a stop at New Westminster’s River Market at Westminster Quay. Also along the route you’ll find Steel Oak Brewing. Need we say more?
This post has been brought to you by KEEN UNEEK Shoes.