A fun way to travel between North Van and downtown Vancouver is to take the SeaBus. This is a double ended catamaran passenger ferry that zips back and forth between Waterfront Station downtown and Lonsdale Quay in North Van every 20 minutes. It can carry 400 passengers at one time.
The SeaBus is a part of Translink, the local transit system around Vancouver, and you treat the SeaBus the same way as you would the Skytrain or the local buses.
Because going from downtown Vancouver to North Van is considered a two zone fare, it costs $3.50 on weekdays before 6:30pm, $2.50 after 6:30pm, and $2.50 all day on weekends and holidays.
Once you purchase your fare, you can use it as many times as you want within a 90 minute period. This allows you to ride not only the SeaBus, but the buses and the Skytrain. And no, it doesn't matter what direction you travel in, but after 90 minutes, your fare expires and you'd have to purchase a new one.
There are fare dispenser machines at both SeaBus terminals where you can use cash, debit, or credit card to purchase your fare. The SeaBus is based on the honour system, so they don't have people checking for fares all the time. However, during the occasion when they do check fares, if you don't have it, you'll be fined big money!
The SeaBus has its first departure at 6-6:15am Monday to Saturday and at 8-8:15am on Sundays and holidays. It runs every 20 minutes until its last departure, which is at 1-1:22am Monday to Saturday and at 11-11:15pm on Sundays and holidays. I would still recommend looking at its schedule to confirm exact times.
An excellent ferry service is provided from the terminal located 300 metres to the east of the Canada Place Cruise Terminal, close to the corner of Burrard and Cordova Streets. We purchased a day pass which entitled free travel on the local ferries and buses. On arrival at North Vancouver the bus terminal is located opposite the ferry terminal and this makes it very easy to travel to attractions like Grouse Mountain, Lynn Canyon and Capilano Suspension Bridge.
Ferries run this route every 15 minutes.
SeaBus is the name of the commuter ferry that crosses Burrard Inlet between Vancouver and North Vancouver. It's a short run, taking less than 10 minutes. And because it's designed as a high capacity commuter system, it's nothing like BC Ferries or the Washington State ferries. For one thing, there's no outside seating or viewing. You enter on one side, sit on a plastic seat with the commuters, and exit the other side 10 minutes later.
That said, it's still a fun experience for a tourist. The Seabus Terminal is adjacent to the Waterfront Station on SkyTrain. As you enter the waiting area, turn right and board Seabus on the furthest right set of doors. At the rear of the ferry is a row of seats that will have an excellent view of the Vancouver skyline as you leave the Terminal. About halfway across look out the doors to the left and you'll have a nice view of the Lions Gate Bridge and Stanley Park.
When you arrive at North Vancouver, Lonsdale Quay is immediately to your right as you exit the Terminal. It's a nice place to explore, with a Public Market, Food Court, and wonderful views across Burrard Inlet to Downtown Vancouver. There is also a bus transfer station if you wish to explore the North Shore a little further. I would recommend taking the bus to Lynn Canyon Park.
We used the SeaBus to get over to Grouse Mountain and again to go to the suspension bridge at Lynn Canyon. The fare to use the SeaBus is $2.25 each way and the ticket is good for 90 minutes so you can also use it on the bus to get to Grouse Mountain, Lynn Canyon, etc. If you are planning on doing a lot of travel, you can purchase a 10 ticket booklet for $18 and individual rides cost $1.80 or you can get a day pass for $8 which is also good on the SeaBus.
The SeaBus leaves every 15 minutes during peak hours and every 30 minutes during non Peak hours. There is a digital clock at the entrance that tells you how long you have to make it through the terminal.
While I do not like Translink because it is, as I previously mentioned, slow and there are not enoguh buses on the lines, I quite enjoy taking the Sea Bus. I find this a quick way to get to North Vancouver and it is very beautiful for Tourists. The Sea Bus departs from Waterfront station (the final stop for the skytrain also) in downtown vancouver and travels to North Vancouver. Usually on this sea bus you see rich commuters traveling into work (North Vancouver is a very expensive community) or in the winter you see lots of students and young adults with Snowboards and ski equipment. From North vancouver you can take a short bus ride to the mountains of Cyprus and Grouse mountain. The view on the sea bus is amazing. You can get great pictures of downtown and it is very relaxing. Highly recommended.
Crosses Burrard bay from downtown to North Vancouver. Runs about once every half-an-hour. Offers great views of downtown. You pay $3.25, and that's good for transfer to another mode of transportation. Ticket purchase is on an honor system, since nobody is checking the tickets regularly.
The Seabus is a ferry system that run across Burrard Inlet between North Vancouver and dwntown Vancouver. The ferries dock in Vancouver near Canada Place. The Seabus feeds into the Skytrain system, making for easy commutes.
From the Waterfront Station in Downtown Vancouver, you can take the Seabus ferry to Lonsdale Quay (in North Vancouver) and back for only C$3.
Seabus has a two-zone fare which equals to C$3. Your ticket is valid for 90 minutes. This should give you enough to cross Burrard Inlet (the body of water separating Vancouver from North Vancouver), look around and shop at Lonsdale Quay Market, and return to the Waterfront Station.
Just make sure that when you make the trip back that your ticket is still valid. The expiry time is printed on your ticket.
Sea Bus is an integral part of Vancouver's Translink system. It moves people between downtown and North Vancouver, relieving the traffic load on Lions Gate Bridge. What I liked about Translink is the 50 min transfer. You can ride any Translink vehicles (bus, Skytrain, or Sea Bus) as many times as you like within 50 min from purchase. I paid $2 for my ticket (weekend price), and used it for local buses and the Sea Bus to Lonsdale Quay and back. The photo shows downtown Vancouver viewed from north bound Sea Bus while crossing Burrard Inlet.
Sea Bus The two double ended catamaran ferries, Burrard Beaver and Burrard Otter, can seat up to 400 passengers at a time. There are two terminals: Waterfront in downtown Vancouver, which connects with buses, SkyTrain and West Coast Express; and Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver, which connects with an extensive network of North Shore buses. SeaBus is exceptionally reliable and since its inception, it has operated even during weather conditions that have made the bridges and roads impassable.
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