Point Grey

Spanish Banks at low tide.
Spanish Banks at low tide.
Point Grey is the largely residential peninsula south of downtown Vancouver. At the tip of it is the University of British Columbia, the Museum of Anthropology, and Wreck Beach. On the other side of Point Grey is a branch of the mouth of the Fraser River – the North Arm).

Within Point Grey we have Kitsilano, the beaches, and the University of British Columbia at the tip of the point – and Wreck Beach:

Point Grey includes the following features and attractions:

  • Burrard Bridge,
  • Vanier Park,
  • Bard on the Beach (Summer Shakespeare),
  • Maritime Museum,
  • Vancouver Museum/Space Centre,
  • Kitsilano Beach,
  • Jericho Beach,
  • Summer Folk Festival at Jericho Beach,
  • Spanish Banks and Locarno Beaches,
  • University of British Columbia,
  • University Endowment Lands – Pacific Spirit Park,
  • Museum of Anthropology,
  • UBC Botanical Gardens.

Point Grey offers a generally less-crowded beach-side ride that includes blocks of quiet, older residential area with one several-block stretch past Kits Beach of safe bike path beside a busy roadway.

Point Grey (total about 11.6 km or 7.2 mi) (orange & light green lines):

It’s all beaches and parkland to the west – Jericho Beach, Locarno Beach, Spanish Banks East, Spanish Banks West, and the Spanish Banks Extension beaches.

North Vancouver from Spanish Banks.
North Vancouver from Spanish Banks.
In fact, apart from the beach concessions, there’s nothing else here – no shops, restaurants, or repair shops. Inland is a very steep hill full of residential streets with at least ten blocks before you hit any retail or commercial area directly south (10th Avenue). To the southwest you hit UBC grounds and Pacific Spirit Park.

Still, you’re only fifteen minutes from repairs or replenishment. It’s not like you’re isolated, but at least you’re getting close!

The beaches section of pathway is largely along beach and picnic areas on gravel paths not suited to inline skates. In line skaters have to divert up to fast and busy West 4th, go around Jericho, descend down a long and fast North West Marine Drive, and then be relegated to stay on N. W. Marine Drive all the way west (and then go up University Hill!) It’s not great and that’s why you won’t see many inline skaters here.

For cyclists, though, it’s all good.

Riding On: Adjoining Seaside Routes

East: From Kitsilano under the Burrard Bridge into False Creek in the neighbourhood of Fairview and Granville Island.

West: Up a big hill (University Hill) to UBC and Wreck Beach among other possible destinations – the Museum of Anthropology, UBC Gardens, a cycle around Point Grey to 41st Avenue – or take a short ride up to Acadia Beach not 300 metres along, lock up your bike and walk along the rocky shore.

Local Weather

In the winter months, January particularly, the last two kilometers of Spanish Banks west can be impassible because of ice, mud, and water. You can take the road, instead.