Although Steveston feels like a separate city, it's actually part of Richmond. This is by far the most beautiful, and most interesting area of the city.
The oldest area in Richmond, Steveston was founded in 1880, by William Herbert Steves, as a small fishing village. As it grew, it was slowly incorporated into the city of Richmond.
Situated at the mouth of the Frasier River, the city has always been a historic salmon center, even hosting a salmon festival each Canada Day.
Today, the city still maintains the character of a quaint, historic fishing village, and his home to the largest commercial fishing fleet in Canada, with over 600 boats mooring their anchors in Steveston harbor, each day.
The town has also been the filming location of several TV shows, including, X-Files, Once Upon A Time, and Stargate SG1.
Though the town still maintains, a nice coastal charm, and atmosphere, the era of a quiet fishing village is long gone. High class houses, high rise apartments, and restaurants, have taken over most of the city, which over the years, has become popular with tourists. Thankfully, Steveston was able to preserve some of its history, so visitors can still experience the same charm, they would've experienced 100 years ago.
The city's main attractions are the London Farm, Brittania Shipyard, Gulf of Georgia Cannery, and the Wharf. The city is also known for its whale watching tours.
There are also several restaurants, and stores, where tourists can shop and eat. In fact, Steveston is known for its fish and chips, which are said to be some of the freshest, and most delicious, in all of Canada.
There is no sky train that goes to Steveston. The town is small, so it's best to drive, and then walk. We parked at the Brittania Shipyard, and explored the city on foot.
We were there on Canada Day weekend, and there were some ships from the Canadian Navy, docked at the harbor, and the sailors were giving tours.Related to:
- Historical Travel
Guan Yin Si Buddhist Temple
The Guan Yin Si Temple, also called the International Buddhist Temple, is the largest Chinese temple, in North America, and is still being expanded. This incredible structure was built to resemble the Forbidden City, in Beijing. Construction of the temple began in 1979, when two Buddhists from Hong Kong, donated money, for its construction. The temple opened to the public in 1983. It is still a functioning Buddhist Temple, run by the International Buddhist Society. Although the Society officially practices Mahayana Buddhism, the temple is open to Theravada Buddhists, as well as people from all cultures and religions, who simply want to come, to marvel at the magnificent architecture.
Worshipers believe that water from the Wisdom Fountain, has cleansing properties, and other benefits.
I always thought I have to go to Southeast Asia to see stuff like this, so I was extremely shocked to see a temple like this, in Canada, especially in a town, like Richmond. All I can say is, "WOW!" This is the most incredible building I've ever seen! I don't even think there is a word to describe, how beautiful this place was.
The golden Buddhas were my favorite. I've never seen anything like it before! I took some pictures of them, before I saw the sign that you can't take pictures, but they're so beautiful, that it's impossible not to.
It felt kind of awkward to be there as a tourist, while people were praying, and monks walking around, but they didn't really seem to mind. It's sort of become a tourist attraction anyways. They even have a very expensive, souvenir shop.
This was one of my favorite spots, on the entire trip. We visited the Dr. Sun Yat Sen Gardens in Chinatown, the next day, and I wasn't impressed. It is an eye sore, compared to this. Instead of paying $14, to visit the gardens in Chinatown, visit this temple instead. You can see much more spectacular stuff, for free. Really, after you've seen this temple, nothing in Chinatown will impress you. If you're just interested in Chinese architecture and gardens, just skip Chinatown, and come here. It's more spectacular, and much quieter. And, it's FREE!Related to:
- Arts and Culture
- Religious Travel
Visit Richmond Night Market
The Richmond Night Market runs from May - October and is open only Friday - Sunday and Stat holidays - so of course it will always be busy, but it's well worth the visit. When we went we opted to eat first (since we had a 1 year old at the time) and we were disappointed that we decided to do that. The variety of food trucks there is fantastic and everything looks and smells delicious. We loved walking around checking out all the different offerings, as well as all of the little booths to shop. Of course there is some cheesy and cheap stuff, but there is definitely a lot of really cute and neat things. There is also an abundance of tech related stuff if you are into that sort of thing.
Check the calendar before you visit as the stage will often host a variety of events, so its good to know what to expect!
We actually heard about it through a list of 100 BC Moments to experience and we were glad we went. We haven't been since the summer of 2012, only because we were so busy during the summer of 2013 we never had the chance to return. I'd definitely make a trip back if we had the chance, and next time I would be sure to go on an empty stomach!Related to:
- Family Travel
- Budget Travel
Steveston is an old fishing village located in southwest Richmond! It's a great place to visit with a ton of great restaurants, coffee shops and little shops for visiting! It's one of our favourite places to go for dinner when we are near the city. We always try something new and enjoy a walk by the water afterwards!
It's not necessarily a day trip, but if you are exploring Richmond it may be a good spot to end your day! Start with a stroll around some of the local shops, find a yummy spot for dinner and when you are done grab a coffee at one of the local coffee shops and maybe walk off dinner if you are there on a nice evening! It's usually how we enjoy our time in the area.
If you are staying somewhere that has a kitchen, we recommend stopping by here during the day to visit the fishing boats that line up along the docks. You can go boat by boat to buy fish right from the source. Most of the fish is flash frozen at sea and we've got some really great meals from our trips there. We usually bring our family by here when they come out to visit and pick out a fish together that we can bring home and cook up for dinner! Our daughter loves it here to with so much room to walk and explore and so many new things to see! I definitely recommend making some time to visit Steveston Village if you have a chance... especially if you love fish!Related to:
- Family Travel
Hop-on Hop-off Tour
Get your ticket at YVR's Tourist Information counter as you exit the departure hall, not downtown! It's only $34 for 2 days, with a one way Falls Creek boat trip to/from Granville Island thrown in! If you buy the Hop-on Hop-off ticket at Canada Place, it will cost you $38 per day or $45 for 2days! Worth the savings, for even if you decide to use it for one day, you save $4!
I suggest you go for the Trolley Hop-on Hop-off tour, which was what I paid for, as described above , with life narration, unlike the double-decker Hop-on Hop-off tour with prerecorded narration (I was never a Walk Man or even now an I-pod person - hate things sticking in my ears!)
Both the Red and Blue tour routes are great! But especially (for me) the Red which goes through Stanley Park! I did it twice since I was falling asleep on it the first time, from having missed one night's sleep and arriving at YVR at 2.05am MY time (10.05am BC time!). The view of the Bridge a short walk from from Prospect Point was worth the second trip! And, from the first trip, I knew which side of the trolley to be on the second time round! ;-) The right side, which allows photography of many of the most interesting points/views!
For the Blue loop, the boat ride from Granville Island to Falls Creek (to catch the trolley form the Red loop) was simply worth the free ticket! It was lovely to see Vancouver from the waters!
Richmond Night Market
If you want to feel like you've stepped out of North America and onto the Asian continent, the Richmond Night Market is your place. While it only occurs during the summer months (from June up until the end of September), this is definitely a must see for local Asian culture.
The Richmond Night Market is a collaboration of 100+ vendors selling all kinds of odds and ends - clothing, shoes, jewellery, stationary, plants, pet accesories, toys, CDs, DVDs, used video games, and much more. While it's not a high end shopping experience, it's a fun, energetic atmosphere and you can usually haggle the price.
The best part to the Richmond Night Market, in my opinion, is the food fair. It's not fine dining, but offers a great selection of Asian street food. While BBQ meat/seafood on bamboo skewers is the most common, you'll find a variety of sweet and savoury dishes - bubble tea, red bean cakes, Korean sweet rice pancakes, dragon's beard candy, shaved ice desserts, fresh fruit smoothies, bubble waffles, corn on the cob, mini donuts, hot dogs, crepes, BBQ pork buns, gyoza, okonomikayi, Vietnamese salad rolls, wontons, Chinese dumplings, curries, soups, and more.
The Richmond Night Market is only open on Fridays (7pm-midnight), Saturdays (7pm-midnight) and Sundays (7pm-11pm). The easiest way to get to the Richmond Night Market is by car, although you can reach it by bus as well. Maps and directions are located on the official website.Related to:
- Arts and Culture
- Family Travel
- Food and Dining
London Heritage Farm
The London Heritage Farm (locally called "London Farm" or sometimes "London Farm House") is possibly the oldest farm in Richmond standing. It was first built in the 1880's by the London family. The Londons were one of the first pioneers to establish a permanent residence in Richmond.
The Londons took what was essentially swampy tidal flats along the river, built dykes to prevent flooding, and then established a farm site. They also built a house, and that is the very house that still stands.
The house and barn (with heritage farm equipment) are maintained as a museum that you can tour on your own or with a guide. It has a functioning tea room and a gift shop as well. Every room in the house (the kitchen, the drawing room, the bedrooms, etc) is designed to represent the 1880s. Thus, it is a Victorian farm house.
Occasionally the Farm House will hold special community events several times throughout the year. The land surrounding is still used for agricultural purposes, as it is saved in the Agricultural Land Reserve. There are also beautiful flowers gardens, a public community garden, beehives, and picnic tables. An extra bonus is that Gilbert Beach - a sandy beach on the Fraser River- is located across the street.
Richmond has a rich agricultural history that you don't quite experience in Steveston, or in the urbanized part of Richmond (like the north end of No 3 Road where all the malls are). If you enjoy history, the Victorian period, or just want something different to do, it's definitely worth a visit.
Admission is by donation.Related to:
- Museum Visits
- Historical Travel
- Family Travel
Hidden behind the Richmond General Hospital and the Gateway Theatre lies a tranquil garden which has existed in Richmond for generations. Minoru Park is an urban park that combines recreational green spaces (a fitness park, a soccer field, and a racing oval) with traditional manicured gardens. The gardens have many walking trails which take visitors around two fish ponds. There are also lawn bowling greens on the east side of the park which are very popular with the senior citizens that live nearby.
A famous historical landmark, the Minoru Chapel, is located within Minoru Park. This chapel was built in 1891 as a Methodist church and is definitely one of the oldest structures still standing in Richmond. It has since been restored and has been protected as a heritage site for use of all denominations.
Located next to the landscape Pierrefonds Gardens (a garden whose name comes from Richmond's sister city, Pierrefonds, Québec), the chapel is a small-scale white structure with beautiful stained glass windows. One of the stained glass windows is dedicated to my paternal grandfather, Carl Hanson. The chapel is a very popular wedding location as it's a beautiful spot for photos. In addition, most Richmond high school students will come to the Minoru Chapel to get their high school graduation photos taken - mine included!
While I would not travel miles out of the way to visit Minoru Park, if you are in the area (shopping at Richmond Centre, for example, or visiting the Richmond Art Gallery, visiting the Richmond Public Library or attending a show at the Gateway Theatre), it would be worth the short detour if you're looking for a place to unwind.Related to:
- Historical Travel
Richmond Nature Park
Richmond Nature Park is a preserved bog ecosystem in the centre of Richmond. Originally, before European settlement, the majority of Richmond was a bog. Nowadays, while most of Richmond has been turned into an urban environment, the Richmond Nature Park offers a glimpse into Richmond's ecological past.Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Family Travel
Aberdeen Centre was the first enclosed Asian mall in Richmond and all of Greater Vancouver. Originally it was a tiny shopping centre consisting of a handful of grocery stores, retail stores, tea merchants, a bowling alley and a movie theatre showcasing Asian films. It was more or less a local generic-looking strip mall catering to the Asian community.
After opening in 1989, Aberdeen's concept grew in popularity throughout Richmond. This is no surprise, as tens of thousands of wealthy immigrants, mostly from Hong Kong, were choosing Richmond as their new Canadian home.
Soon newer and larger Asian shopping centres were being built in the nearby areas along No 3 Road. Parker Place, President Plaza and Yaohan Centre were only the first of the many Asian shopping centres to arrive in central Richmond, turning the once sleepy town into the hub city of Asian culture in Greater Vancouver. Aberdeen Centre was eventually overshadowed by these malls.
However, in 2002 Aberdeen Centre was demolished for the sole purpose of building a larger and improved version. They brought in some of the city's top architects and constructed one of the most impressive malls in the entire country.
In 2003, the new Aberdeen Centre opened. It still blows my mind to this day. The new Aberdeen looks like something out of a futuristic Japanese sci-fi comic. Sleek curves, opaque, colourful glass, wide open spaces and feng shui modeled architecture is what dominates. Everything is spacious and high tech.
Aberdeen now has some of Richmond's coolest shops. There are trendy Hong Kong and Japanese clothing boutiques. There's Daiso, the giant Japanese import store where everthing is sold for $2. If you like beautifully crafted Japanese tea and dish sets, or traditional Chinese ginseng, you will also find it at Aberdeen. The store that always makes me smirk is the "BMW Lifestyle" store, where you can purchase merchandise bearing the BMW logo for a price which is certainly more than what it's worth!Related to:
- Food and Dining
- Luxury Travel
- Arts and Culture
Steveston Village had the largest commercial fishing harbour in Canada.
Since then, the village, with its ambient fishing village atmosphere, comes to life each summer, with plenty for visitors to see and do-heritage sites and parks, fresh seafood, great local restaurants, colourful gift shops and markets.
Fantasy Garden World
This attraction is a theme park modeled after Coeverden, Holland (which was home to Captain George Vancouver's ancestors). It includes flower gardens, rides, a miniature train, an Olde World Village, a windmill, a carillon bell tower, and a castle. At Christmas, there is a spectacular light show with over 75,000 lights. You can also enjoy Sunday brunch in the Glass Conservatory.Related to:
- Family Travel
Richmond Public Market
it is close to No. 3 Road, u can find :- gift shops, Fung Shui products, antiques, florists. if you are hungry, you can even have chinese roasted goose/ ducks/ pork with noodles or rice.
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