New Westminster, Vancouver
Are you looking for a good place to browse a lot of antique shops all in one go? Have you been to Main Street in Vancouver but felt overwhelmed by the large spaces between the shops and underwhelmed by the seeming lack of antique shop community?
Perhaps Antique Alley is the next step.
I like coming here ever so often (ie: once every second year) to browse the antique shops. I take a skytrain from downtown Vancouver to New Westminster station and walk down to the New West waterfront to Front Street. There are usually signs pointing to Antique Alley, this dozen or so collection of shops that specialize in antiques and collectibles.
The beauty of these shops are their variations. You'll find everything from retro furniture to sports memorabilia and toys from the 1960's. There are about 12-15 antique/collectable shops in the area, and they are all next-door to eachother. If you're looking for somewhere to explore that's a little bit different than Vancouver, Antique Alley makes an ideal daytrip. Not only that, but the skytrain out to New Westminster will give you a bird's eye view of Greater Vancouver, and a greater apprecition for the size of BC's largest metropolis.
Westminster Quay is a little public market located on the north bank of the Fraser River in the city of New Wesminster.
If you're going to be spending a bit of time in Vancouver (ie: more than 3 days), and you feel you want a change of scenery without leaving Greater Vancouver, New Westminster is probably just the place. You can take the skytrain eastbound out to New Westminster and get off at the New Westminster or the Columbia skytrain stations. Westminster Quay is located on the waterfront.
While not as hectic as Granville Island Public Market, Westminster Quay seems to attract more locals to its fruit and vegetable vendors, bakeries, ice cream shops, butcher shops, fresh fish shops, wine shops, and restaurants.
What's also great about Westminster Quay is that Antique Alley is located right across the street, so you can do some window shopping at the many second hand and antique stores when you want something else to do.