Long gone are the days when Vancouver was teased as a "no-fun city" for its lackluster nightlife. Older neighbourhoods are now bustling with new energy and trendy new districts keep the party going long into the night. Here's a quick neighbourhood guide:
- Mingle with the Beautiful People in Yaletown
This former downtown warehouse district is now the epicenter of the city's most sophisticated nightlife scene. Trendy bars and exclusive clubs cater to a well-dressed clientele out to see and be seen.
If you go: Consider starting your evening at Yaletown Brewing: Vancouver's original brewpub has a sports bar vibe and heats up after dark. Then head a few blocks down for a nightcap at Society Dining Lounge, a sultry bar with pumping house music and creative cocktails.
- Dance ‘til You Drop on Granville Street
Think of Granville Street as Vancouver's equivalent of the Vegas Strip: a neon-lit drag packed with people, energy and plenty of bars and clubs that stay open until the wee hours.
If you go: Stop by Doolin's for a pint or two in one of Vancouver's oldest Irish pubs. Afterwards, catch a live show at the historic Commodore Ballroom, which has hosted acts ranging from the Talking Heads to Snoop Dog over the years.
- Sip in Style in Gastown
Vancouver's oldest neighbourhood, Gastown has been reborn in recent years as a home for edgy and adventurous new bars. After dark, its cobblestone streets and Victorian buildings fill with revelers in search of atmospheric venues, progressive menus and inventive cocktails.
If you go: Grab a bite to eat at Salt Tasting Room, a minimalist space specializing in plates of cured meats and cheeses paired with an exceptional wine list. Then make your way along Gastown's historic streets to the Irish Heather, where you can sample from an extensive selection of rare and imported whiskies.
- Kick Back in Kitsilano
This former hippie hangout on the western edge of the city has matured into an upscale neighbourhood of ethnic restaurants, boutiques and funky bars and cafes.
If you go: For a taste of Kitsilano's counterculture roots, stop by Local, a pub across Kitsilano Beach with a selection of beer. Or check out a local favourite, the Celtic-themed Wolf & Hound, for a pint and some homemade pub food.
- Get Down on Davie Street
Locally known as Davie Village, this gay-friendly neighbourhood has a "come-as-you-are" vibe and diverse selection of bars whose appeal transcends the LGBT community. Offerings range from intimate, candle-lit venues to hot and sweaty clubs and ultra-stylish lounges.
If you go: Begin your night with a glass of wine on the deck of The Boathouse, which offers gorgeous views of Vancouver's English Bay. Afterwards, dance the night away at Celebrities nightclub, which holds themed parties aimed at a gay and mixed audience throughout the week.
The fun doesn't stop at Vancouver's city limits. Across the water in North Vancouver, bars are clustered around the Park Royal Mall and along Lonsdale Avenue. Check out Ocean Club in Park Royal for drinks and dancing in a classy, urban setting. Meanwhile, the suburb of Richmond is home to an eclectic selection of bars and pubs, as well as the can't-miss River Rock Casino Resort, whose theatre has hosted everyone from Bill Cosby to Michael Bolton.
- Further Afield