The coastal city of Richmond is part of Metro Vancouver, although it’s an interesting place in its own right. Made up of four separate islands, the city is full of history and culture and is an overall beautiful place.
Farmland, parks and green spaces are part of Richmond’s terrain, which is also mixed with modern high-rises, shopping malls and other new buildings. Still, it has some fishing village charm.
In the past, Richmond was often overlooked by tourists, but today tourism plays an important role in the economy. It shows. The city has really adapted to this, and there’s a lot to see and do here.
Let’s explore the best things to do in Richmond:
1. Visit a cannery
The Georgian Bay Cannery, established in 1894, was once the province’s leading producer of canned salmon. Today, it is a National Historic Site and Museum.
The cannery is located in the village of Steveston at the mouth of the Fraser River. Visit the cannery and learn about its history and its importance to the province.
Guided tours of the Georgian Bay Cannery are offered daily from 10am to 4pm. There are a variety of exhibits including Canning Line, Herring Reduction Line and Net Pull: Commercial Fishing in Canada.
2. Worship Buddha
You can also take a stroll around the International Buddhist Temple and its picturesque grounds. This is the largest authentic Chinese Buddhist temple in North America.
People of all religions can visit the temple and admire its magnificent architecture. The traditional Chinese royal style temple is designed to resemble the Forbidden City in Beijing.
Other features of the International Buddhist Temple include classical Chinese gardens, the magnificent Shakyamuni Pond and its five Buddha and Bodhisattva statues. After wandering around the temple, you can shop at the gift shop or have a vegetarian lunch at the café.
3. Hike through the forest
Richmond Nature Park is an 81-hectare swamp forest dominated by moss, shrubby trees and heath shrubs. Hike through the forest and admire the flora and fauna.
There are 4 main trails in the nature park, ranging in length from 1.8 km to 0.35 km. On your hike, you may see coyotes, Douglas squirrels, mule deer, hawks, owls and garter snakes.
All trails in Richmond Natural Park are wheelchair and stroller accessible, so anyone can spend an afternoon here. There is no place to buy food on site, but there are picnic areas, restrooms and playgrounds.
4. Wine tasting
British Columbia is famous for its wines, and three of its producers are in Richmond. Visit any of these vineyards and enjoy a taste of British Columbia wine.
Of the three, Lulu Island Winery (formerly known as Blossom Winery) is the most famous, especially for its icewine. Sanduz Estate Winery has an extensive wine list and has a spacious tasting room for you to enjoy.
Isabella Winery specializes in Old World style wines. Visit any of these wineries and taste their wonderful selection. Then buy your favorite bottle at the winery’s store.
5. Drink enough tea
Historic London Heritage Farm is an 1880s family farmhouse overlooking the Fraser River. The farmhouse has a lovely tea room where you can enjoy fine bone china tea.
In addition to drinking tea, you can stroll through the beautiful gardens with berries, herbs, perennials, annuals, bulbs and vines. There is also a rose garden, planted in honor of the original farm owner; The Londoner.
The farmhouse itself is now a museum, and the rooms are furnished as they were between 1880 and 1940. The room has a bedroom, hallway, baby room and weaver’s room.
6. Go to the market
The Richmond Night Market is open from May to October each year. This is a famous market that attracts people from all over the world and has become one of the must-see attractions in the city.
It’s not just a market because it has food, rides, games, and more. Excite your taste buds by tasting a wide variety of food while watching live entertainment.
Explore the amazing Dinosaur Park, where 18 dinosaurs roar as you walk around. Finally, go on a thrilling ride or play an arcade game.
7. Play at the casino
The River Rock Casino Resort is British Columbia’s largest and most popular casino. In fact, an average of 10,000 people visit the casino every day.
Poker, slot machines, roulette, blackjack, craps and baccarat can all be played here. There are even high stakes tables for the elite.
It is also possible to bet on horse racing in the casino’s 55 racebooks. The game is displayed on the screen, while food and drinks are provided.
8. Spend time in the park
Not just any park, but Nim Park, which sits on an old airstrip and racetrack. Today, the park is a major center of culture and community.
Minoru Park is more than just a park. It is also an aquatic centre, a cultural centre, a library and an arena. It also has two large tracks.
The park portion of the “park” features a soccer field and tennis courts. It’s easy to pass the time at this park, go swimming, skating, soaking in the hot tub or playing tennis.
9. Watch the plane take off
Vancouver International Airport – Canada’s second largest airport – is actually located in Richmond. If you fly in and out of this busy airport, you can certainly watch the planes take off.
Also watch planes take off from [email protected] and Jetside Bar. Both hotels are located at the luxurious Fairmont Vancouver Airport.
You don’t have to be a guest of the hotel to dine at its award-winning restaurant or enjoy a cocktail at its sports bar. You can go there and enjoy what they have to offer while enjoying the view of the runway.
10. Go for a walk
As a city surrounded by water, it’s no surprise that Richmond has several great places for a stroll. Especially on the waterfront.
There are seven city-maintained waterfront trails for walking or biking. It is even possible to ride a horse and enjoy the stunning views over the water.
The trails range from 6km to 43.5km and vary in difficulty. There are also some parks and viewpoints along the way.
11. Go to the beach
Iona Island is nothing but Iona Beach. The beach is part of the Iona Beach Regional Park and is located at the mouth of the Fraser River.
Iona Beach is known for its rare dune flora. It is also a sanctuary for migratory birds. In fact, there are more than 300 of them.
The beach itself is long and a great place to spend a sunny day. Hiking, horse riding and cycling are also possible here.
12. Visit a bird sanctuary
If you really love birds, visit the George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary. The bird sanctuary is located in the delta, just on the other side of the Fraser River.
The George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary has been designated a Hemispheric Important Site. More than 250 species of birds live in the 300-hectare reserve.
Bald eagles, sandhill cranes, spotted snow geese and lesser snow geese all inhabit the reserve, as do many other animals. There are also walking trials and lookouts on site, as well as a nice little gift shop.
13. Explore fishing villages
Steveston was once a small fishing village on the southwest corner of Lulu Island. Today, it’s a historic area of Richmond with a lot to see and do.
In addition to being home to the Georgian Bay Cannery, Steveston is also home to Fisherman’s Wharf, parks, and some historic buildings. Explore this part of the city and learn about its history.
The Steveston Museum is a must, it tells the story of the village’s history. It’s also worth heading to the marina to watch the boats come and go.
14. Discover diversity
Richmond is a multicultural city with so much diversity. You can clearly see this if you walk along the 5th road.
The road has many religious shrines that showcase the city’s multiculturalism. It is home to the International Buddhist Temple as well as the Vedic Hindu Society, the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple, the Jama Masjid and the Cornerstone Evangelical Baptist Church.
There is also a Buddhist center, an Indian cultural center and a Jewish day school along the strip. Walk along Route 5 and get a real feel of the different cultures and religions that live together peacefully.
15. See Shiraishi
This 400-ton rock is located in the middle of the beach in the community of the same name. The entire White Rock community is named after the rock, which is the main attraction for the small village.
White Rock is approximately a 20-30 minute drive from Richmond. In addition to the rocks, it also has a large beach that is perfect for picnicking and playing Frisbee.
The village is also famous for its marina, 500 meters from the coast. Stroll along the marina, relax on the beach, and enjoy a meal at one of the oceanfront restaurants. And don’t forget to actually see the white rock.
Where to Stay: The Best Hotels in Richmond, Canada
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