Heads up, beach lovers! If you’re looking for a handful of spontaneous day trip destinations to work your way through this summer, consider this list a great place to start. Here are 14 beautiful beaches to visit near Vancouver this summer.

Sandy Cove Park

We’ll start with a couple of the closest beaches to Vancouver in West Van, the first being Sandy Cove Park. The quaint beach is tucked away between two rock headlands, perfect for stopping by for an afternoon of sunbathing or leisurely book reading.

Where: 3966 Marine Drive, West Vancouver

Ambleside Beach 

As West Vancouver’s gateway park, Ambleside is well-used by both West Vancouver residents and visitors. Enjoy spectacular views of Stanley Park and downtown Vancouver.

Where: 1150 Marine Drive, West Vancouver

Dundarave Park 

A popular spot for summer strolls and swims, Dundarave Park offers visitors more than 50 metres of ‘wide sandy beach’ to explore, and nearly a hectare of waterfront access – making it one of the most scenic spots around.

For those looking to do a bit of swimming, there’s a floating dock that will be ready for use by the end of June, according to the District of West Vancouver.

Where: 25th Street, West Vancouver

Porteau Cove Park

Porteau Cove is a quintessential day trip spot, and it’s not far from Vancouver! Situated along the Sea to Sky Highway just minutes away from Squamish, the popular BC park is renowned for its windsurfing, hiking, and fishing options. Its crystal blue waters and pebble beach make for the perfect place to take a dip at during the summer months.

Where: Squamish-Lillooet

Təmtəmíxʷtən/Belcarra Regional Park

This beach (formerly called “Jug Island Beach”) is another rocky but beautiful spot – definitely worth the trek from the parking lot to the northern tip of təmtəmíxʷtən/Belcarra Regional Park. Although Jug Island itself is not accessible to the public, the beach faces the island and offers sweeping views of the Indian Arm.

Keep your eye out for eagles and starfish!

Where: Belcarra, BC

Kelvin Grove Beach & Marine Park

The Kelvin Grove Beach Park is the southernmost beach in the Village of Lions Bay – accessible via the Kelvin Grove exit from the Sea to Sky Highway. The beach park has an off-leash dog area with a trail that leads to natural beaches, a community garden, and a picnic area. Plus, there are washrooms, pet waste bags, and garbage/recycling – making it a great spontaneous pick.

Drop by for golden hour or a sunset dive – Kelvin Grove offers deep-sea diving for all skill levels! Underwater features to look out for include rocky coral reefs, starfish, urchins, and a sandy ledge perfect for taking a diving break.

Where: Tidewater Way, Lions Bay

Recent Posts:
Here’s when BC’s iconic fireworks show will light up Vancouver skies
From parks to a pool party: This outdoor music series in Vancouver kicks off next month

Alouette Lake

And now, we come to a beautiful lakeside beach. Situated in Maple Ridge at Golden Ears, Alouette Lake is the perfect day trip spot for an afternoon of swimming and paddling. And since no motorized vehicles are allowed in the water, you’re guaranteed a relaxing day on the water here.

Where: Unnamed Road, Maple Ridge

Cultus Lake Park 

beaches near vancouver
Photo via BC Parks

Cultus Lake Park offers one of the most accessible lake days near Vancouver, just an hour and a half’s drive from the city. With crystal-clear waters, sandy beaches, and almost 300 front-country campsites to choose from, there’s plenty of fun to be had here.

Where: Chilliwack

Three Mile Beach

A scenic mix of sandy and rocky beaches, Three Mile Beach is located on Okanagan Lake between Penticton and Naramata. A small peninsula juts out into the lake with two distinct beaches on either side – a beach with fine sand (and clothing-optional), and a rockier, non-clothing-optional beach on the other side, facing Penticton. So if you’re looking for somewhere comfy to lounge, pick the former!

Where: Three Mile Road, Penticton

Cates Bay Beach

This beautiful island is just a 20-minute ferry ride from Horseshoe Bay. Go on a hike through the Mount Gardner Loop trail, walk through the Ecological Reserve, or simply load up on ice cream from Earnest in Snug Cove. And once you’re ready to cool off with a dip, check out Cates Bay!

Where: Bowen Island

Sun-Oka Beach Park 

The park boasts stunning stretches of sand, clear water, and sweeping views down Okanagan Lake. Plus, there are more than enough picnic spots to go around – and a park-operated concession area during the warmer months. Rally your friends together for a BBQ by the lake, or enjoy a scenic paddle through its crystal blue waters. Or do both!

Where: Okanagan Valley

Rathtrevor Beach Park

With its expansive sandy shores, old-growth forests, and captivating tide pools, Rathtrevor Beach Park is the ultimate getaway from the city. At low tide, the ocean can recede up to 1 km, leaving stretches of sand, sea critters, and treasures to explore. Best of all? When the sand becomes hot and the tide rises again, the waters warm to the perfect swimming temperature!

Where: Central Vancouver Island

Bear Creek Park 

If you enjoy lounging on long stretches of sandy beaches, we’ve got an amazing day trip idea to toss your way. Nestled in Central Okanagan west of Kelowna is Bear Creek Provincial Park – a picturesque spot for beachgoers, campers, and hikers alike.

Where: 107 Westside Road, West Kelowna

So there you have it, beach lovers! Consider this list of beaches near Vancouver a great place to start your many summer adventures this year.