It is no secret that the Lower Mainland, though lovely, is pricey. From home prices, filling up the car with gas, to buying a 4L of milk…our wallets take more of a hit than most! Just because some things are in fact pricey…does not mean you can’t have fun in Vancouver, or the surrounding area, for little to no cost! Here are some of my favorite things to do, with little ones in mind.
Ever wanted to walk on water? Well, you can! OK, not really…but almost! Located near Vancouver International, Iona Spit is a loooooong straight piece of land that juts right out into the beautiful ocean. Once you come to the end, snap some photos of the glorious views in front of you. Be sure to bundle up, as it can get windy! And be prepared for the littles ones to want to race, and it is ok to let them win.
White Rock Beach
I scream, you scream, we all scream for gelato! Wait, that isn’t right…but I do still love gelato! White Rock Beach has more than enough of that to go around too. A 45 minute drive from Vancouver, White Rock transports you to a teeny oceanside town in under an hour. You and your little ones can walk the pier, play in the water should the weather allow, and of course, eat some gelato! My favorite is Dolce Vita, which is run by an Italian family who knows how it’s done! I love them because the have hands down the best flavors. Hello salted caramel. Yum.
If your little prince or princess like the show “Once Upon a Time,” then you just must take them on a day trip to Steveston Village, aka Storybrooke! That is right, this little part of Richmond serves as the backdrop in ABC’s hit TV show. You can stroll by Mr. Gold’s Pawn Shop, the Ice Queen’s Any Given Sundae ice cream shop, and even the Storybrooke Library! Maybe if you are really lucky, you will catch the town on a filming day. Prepare to see Snow White and Prince Charming, and even the not so Evil Queen Regina in that case. Stop at Pajo’s for fish and chips, or a hot dog, and enjoy the views of this darling fairy tale like village. An added bonus is even without Stroybrooke, Steveston is just adorable. Check out the London Heritage House to be truly transported to another time. Entrance to the farmhouse is by donation.
The Old Spaghetti Factory
I loved this place when I was younger. Something about the decor really takes a child back to another era entirely! Children under 12 can eat for under $7.00, and boy can they eat! The children’s menu consists of a pasta dish, soup or salad, their famous bread, and a drink! Now that is what I call a happy meal. With two locations in equally as historic spots, Gastown and the New West Quay, you can even turn lunch into a mini history lesson! Though there might be giggles with the mention of Gastown’s founding father, Gassy Jack Deighton. (There are Gluten Free options, be sure to let your waiter know if you have an allergy as they will do their best to accommodate.
What are your favourite things to do in the Lower Mainland?
By Alex Draper:
Originally from Denver, Colorado Alexandra has lived in Vancouver since 2006. She joined Nannies on Call in the fall of 2014, bringing with her a wealth of customer service and administrative experience. Alexandra has also worked as an Au Pair in Italy, Switzerland, and the Turks and Caicos Islands. When she is not recruiting awesome nannies for Vancouver, she can be found reading, writing, and practicing yoga (emphasis on the practicing.)