Vancouver running advice (Read 1540 times)


    Hi everyone,

    Could someone please give me some insider advice on running in Vancouver? Are there places that are not safe for lone runners? Are there places that are especially nice? Anything particular I should pay attention to (as in do not do that)?

    I have no idea where will I be staying exactly, but it will be either close to downtown (hopefully close to Stanley Park) or close to the UBC campus. 

    Thanks in advance.


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      I recommend adopting a Canadian running stride.


      Other than that, I got nuthin.

      It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

        Lynx, was just there on business. What an awesome, inspiring city to run in! Beautiful, even in the drizzle.


        You can check my log (may 16 and 17)  for the two routes I ran - they are the same two basic routes "everyone" seems to run, Stanley Park and False Creek. Both were very safe, very active (runners, bikers, walkers with you the whole time). I loved running there for the scenery, the company and the endless places to get good beer and fresh fish afterwards. Have fun.

        Come all you no-hopers, you jokers and rogues
        We're on the road to nowhere, let's find out where it goes

          The city is very "runable".  I feel safe everywhere in the daylight.  The Downtown East Side is really the only are you should avoid.


          All of the perimeter of the water has great running trails- from UBC, over the Burrard St. Bridge and as the previous poster mentioned, False Creek and Stanley Park.  You will get the use of restrooms and water fountains enroute, too.


          Another place worth checking out are the Endowment Lands which are miles of trails out at UBC.  You should have someone else run with you here. 


          You might want to Google the Running Room.  Each location has two organized runs per week.  The location at Denman and Davie goes through Stanley Park and will get you on some trails you probably would not find on your own.  



          Goals: Marathon: break 3:40 Half marathon: break 1:42 10K: break 45:00 8 K: break 37:30

            Another place worth checking out are the Endowment Lands which are miles of trails out at UBC.  You should have someone else run with you here. 


            I run on the endowment lands (aka Pacific Spirit Park) every day. I feel incredibly spoiled to have this resource available -- half a block and I'm in the park. The park is huge; there are miles and miles and miles of trails, from flat to fairly hilly. If you are a woman, you might or might not want to run there alone. My wife does. I know women who don't. There was no issue at all until a woman was killed in the park a couple of years ago. Generally speaking, this is a very safe part of town. 


            Also the park connects to the beach.


              Thanks for the advice everyone.

              I'll be checking any available tracks you have posted (esp. h2bubbles, since you invited me ;-) ),

              @ workn2bfaster- that is a great idea.

              bhearn- thanks for the map!


              Looking forward to my visit already.


              p.s. Amores, WTH is a canadian running stride? <Lynx scratches head>


                Wear a Bruins jersey when you run and write "you suck" on the back of it.  It should help in maintaining pace.



                  p.s. Amores, WTH is a canadian running stride? <Lynx scratches head>



                  It is a reserved, insecure, outwardly courteous but inwardly passive-aggressive version of the US stride.  Canadians are prone to exaggerating the differences.  To most outsiders it is indistinguishable from the US stride, but Canadians insist (against the evidence) that the differences are there and are profound.


                  Here is some travel writing to acclimate you:


                  "After the North American Beer Festival, all the brewery presidents decided to go out for a beer.

                  The guy from Corona sits down and says, 'Hey Senor, I would like the world's best beer, a Corona .' The bartender dusts off a bottle from the shelf and gives it to him.  The guy from Budweiser says, 'I'd like the best beer in the world, give me 'The King Of Beers', a Budweiser.' The bartender gives him one.  The guy from Coors says, 'I'd like the only beer made with Rocky Mountain spring water, give me a Coors.' He gets it.

                   The guy from Labatts sits down and says, 'Give me a Coke.' The bartender is a little taken aback, but gives him what he ordered.

                   The other brewery presidents look over at him and ask, 'Why aren't you drinking a Labatt's?'

                  The Labatts president replies, 'Well, I figured if you guys aren't drinking beer, neither would I.'"




                  "An American, a Scot and a Canadian were in a terrible car accident. They were all brought to the same emergency room, but all three of them died before they arrived. Just as they were about to put the toe tag on the American, he stirred and opened his eyes. Astonished, the doctors and nurses present asked him what happened.

                  'Well,' said the American, 'I remember the crash, and then there was a beautiful light, and then the Canadian and the Scot and I were standing at the gates of heaven. St.Peter approached us and said that we were all too young to die, and said that for a donation of $50, we could return to earth. So of course I pulled out my wallet and gave him the $50, and the next thing I knew I was back here.'

                  'That's amazing!' said the one of the doctors, 'But what happened to the other two?'

                  'Last I saw them,' replied the American, 'the Scot was haggling over the price and the Canadian was waiting for the government to pay his.' "

                    We leave for Vancouver in one week.  We are staying just outside of Stanley Park.

                    We can't wait!!!!!

                    - Anya


                      We leave for Vancouver in one week.  We are staying just outside of Stanley Park.

                      We can't wait!!!!!


                      A lot has changed in 2 years.  Grizzly bears have taken over Stanley Park, the UBC campus grounds are now used to raise banana slugs and the Granville Market has been converted to low income housing.


                        I live in Toronto now, but grew up in Vancouver. I would recommend running around the Seawall at Stanley Park. I beleive the seawall continues around the other side of Coal harbour now and you can follow it all the way  to Canada Place.  But I haven't been home in 6 years so I am not quite sure...





                          I think Vancouver is an exceptionally safe running city. That said, people have been attacked and seriously injured or even killed running in some popular running spots (Stanley Park and Pacific Spirit Park, namely). I used to run regularly in Pacific Spirit when I was a student at UBC, however, I would always run with a friend. The Sea Wall is very public and open, which I highly recommend. If you want to run the trails in Stanley Park, maybe take a friend or else be sure to run day light hours and no head phones. There are some weirdos in the bushes. And some vicious racoons.


                          If you can swing it, I recommend checking out the trails in North Vancouver. You can get to Lynn Canyon Park easily by Sea Bus and bus from downtown. One of my favorites is Lynn Loop in Lynn Headwaters Regional Park. Lynn Canyon suspension bridge leads over to some super nice running trails with a few butt kicker hills, too.


                          Aaaaand... I just wrote all this and realized the OP is from over two years ago. Well, something good for the database I guess! Happy Vancouver running Smile

                            You really can't go wrong with Stanley Park (either the sea wall or any of the paths through the park to see things like Lost Lagoon and the flower gardens).


                            Or, you can cross over the Burrard Street bridge and check out Granville Island and a longer loop around Kits and UBC.


                            I did the half marathon there this year and the full marathon last year (both early may).  Feel free to check the logs to see the routes.  The marathon especially was an incredible route.  The half was more through the city.

                            2018 Goals

                            Figure out the achilles thing...... and THEN try to get running regularly again.

                            No racing goals 



                              I know that this is an old thread but I ran at Stanley Park 2 weeks ago. It was the best place that I have ever run!! Ocean, and a mountain view plus a great running path. We rented bikes there also. It gets crowded during the afternoon in the beech spots.

                                I used to live in the Dunbar neighborhood and run through Pacific Spirit park and around the UBC campus.  Really nice.


                                Totally unrelated because you shouldn't have to worry about it this time of year, but in Pacific Spirit park, an owl swooped me and stole my stocking cap!  Totally silent and freaky as sh#!  I had no idea what had happened, thought maybe teenagers playing a prank or something...but doubled back and the bastard snatched a few hairs off my head!  I yelled and then saw the owl perched on a dead tree.  It did the head swivel thing and just followed me with those huge, sinister eyes...


                                anyway, have a great time!