Connecting downtown to beaches, seaside restaurants, gourmet markets, and parks, Vancouver’s seaside greenway, dubbed “the seawall” by locals, offers some of the best views of the city’s cosmopolitan coastline. 

As a born and bred Vancouverite, I’ve been walking, running, rollerblading, and cycling the seaside path since I was old enough to ride my first bike sans training wheels. Today—30 years later—I still do the seawall regularly; most recently on “Phyllis,” my vintage ride, to showcase a portion of the world’s longest uninterrupted waterfront path in the video below. 

With multiple entry and exit points rimming the city, the paved pathway is also one of the most wallet-friendly ways to see Canada’s West Coast metropolis. Walking it is free. If you want to cover more ground, rent a bike from shops such as Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness in the Vancouver Convention Centre (West Building) or Spokes Bicycle Rentals at the foot of Stanley Park, and do as the locals do: Bring a backpack with a beach towel and stop at one of the many beaches along the way. 

Top off the experience with a sustainable lingcod fish taco from Cactus Club Cafe in Coal Harbour or English Bay, or a craft brew from Tap & Barrel in Olympic Village (North America’s greenest community and once home to the world’s best athletes during Vancouver’s 2010 Olympic Games) and toast to your urban adventure.

What’s your favorite way to explore a new city?