Vancouver is a super unique place, and we’ve got the facts to back it up. There are so many things that make our city amazing, from its wild history to its happening present and all those interesting tidbits in between. So, we’ve put together a list of facts about Vancouver, to try and sum it up. It’s not everything, but take a scroll and have your mind blown at how crazy, interesting, and fun this city is.
Here are 20 interesting facts about Vancouver.
1. Greenpeace started in Vancouver. Their first mission, all the way back in 1971? Find a boat and go sailing to Alaskan waters, so they could witness the nuclear bomb testing going on then. Joni Mitchell even played a fundraiser concert to help out.
2. As did Adbusters, for that matter. If you’re wondering why Vancouverites are so open when it comes to criticizing the advertising world (fair enough), this is probably a good starting point.
3. The Port of Vancouver is the largest in Canada and the largest export port in North America. Each year, it trades roughly $170 billion with more than 170 economies. Fun fact- it’s actually bigger than Canada’s next five largest, combined.
4. The Lions Gate Bridge was originally built by the Guinness Family to access their development, the British Properties. And in those early years, the area also had a racist “whites-only” policy. Luckily, that policy died.
5. Vancouver is the third-largest TV and movie production city in North America, too. We’re right behind LA and New York. Of course, we wouldn’t expect anything less from a city that can basically be any other city.
6. The area known as Vancouver is the ancestral and unceded lands of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh people. All of which have really rich and fascinating cultures. And in contrast to the whole British Properties debacle, recognition of this fact has only grown.
7. Vancouver is home to North America’s first supervised injection site, Insite, making us a leader in harm reduction strategies.
8. Stanley Park is bigger than New York’s Central Park and took home TripAdvisor’s Best Park in the World back in 2014.
9. Ouch! Vancouver has not won a Stanley Cup in over a century when the Vancouver Millionaires beat the Ottawa Senators in 1915.
10. The Eye of The Wind is the world’s only wind turbine that is both operational and has a viewing platform. Definitely worth the visit to Grouse Mountain.
11. Vancouver as a city is quite young, having been incorporated the same year as Coca-Cola (1886).
12. Vancouver has its own type of house named after it. The Vancouver Special is a type of house built in the 1960s to 1980s that you see all around the city. You know the one.
13. Vancouver is the hometown to a whole bunch of awesome people like Rick Hansen, Michael J. Fox, Ryan Reynolds and many more.
14. Our very own Chinatown is the third-largest one in North America (and in our opinion one of the best).
15. A big portion of Downtown Vancouver was going to be bulldozed to make way for a freeway, but a massive anti-freeway movement put a stop to that in the 1960s.
16. Famous magician Harry Houdini suspended himself from the top of the Sun Tower (128 West Pender) as part of a trick. Why that tower? It’s where the newspaper was of course.
17. Vancouver is still one of the best cities in the world for living healthy. In 2021, a global report named us the healthiest city in Canada, and the 10th healthiest city in the world.
18. That does come at a cost though, since Vancouver is still one of the least affordable cities in the world, right behind Hong Kong.
20. Because of all of this (and more), Vancouver consistently ranks as one of the best cities in the world to live in.
Well, there are 20 facts to show you how unique and interesting this city is. Memorize these and bust them out at your next social gathering, you’ll seem like the Vancouver genius!