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Vancouver's Granville Island

You'll find Northwest Indian art, silk clothing, puppets, brewed lagers and ales, and good eating on Granville Island near downtown Vancouver, B.C.

bartender at Granville Island Brewery, image
Photo caption
A cheerful bartender pulls a pint at Granville Island Brewery.

Once a hub of grimy waterfront industries such as anvil casting and cement making, Granville Island, on False Creek near downtown Vancouver, B.C., has become a vibrant gathering place. Open every day, the island’s Public Market ( overflows with Northwest produce, flowers, salmon, and prawns, with all the accompanying colors and smells. Area code is 604.

  • Browse museum-quality artworks by Northwest Indians at Eagle Spirit Gallery. You’ll need nearly $10,000 to capture a carving of giantess Zunukwis being embraced by an octopus, but unlimited ogling is free. 1803 Maritime Mews, 801-5277,
  • Surprisingly small silkworms spin raw material in a terrarium near a busy loom at Silk Weaving Studio. Find scarves, shawls, dresses, and ties. 1531 Johnston St., 687-7455,
  • Kites, puppets, costumes, ice cream, a video arcade, and an indoor playland attract large (but short) crowds to Kids Market. 1496 Cartwright St., 689-8447,
  • Chefs in training create fully formed masterworks at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts. Try line-caught Pacific cod wrapped in nori and topped with a tart blackberry sauce. 1505 W. Second Ave., 734-4488,
  • Fine-food emporium Oyama Sausage generates some of the market’s boldest flavors to go: cave-aged Gruyère cheese, duck prosciutto, wild boar sausage. 1689 Johnston St., 327-7407,
  • Climb a long flight of stairs at the Sandbar Restaurant for a fresh seafood meal and a lofty view of the water. 1535 Johnston St., 669-9030.
  • At Granville Island Brewing, a glass of honey lager or maple cream ale—more smooth than syrupy—tops the day with a flourish. 1441 Cartwright St., 687-2739,

Photography by Graeme Teague

This article was first published in January 2012. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.