16 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Vancouver

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Vancouver Autumn Skyline

Vancouver is a pretty cool place. We’ve got mountains, ocean and some other pretty fab things going on. But behind a beautiful (when it’s sunny) facade, we bet there are some things you didn’t know. Read on curious one and let us know what other quirky facts you’ve heard about Vancouver.


16 Things You Might Not Know About Vancouver

By Vancity Buzz

Vancouver is a pretty cool place. We’ve got mountains, ocean and some other pretty fab things going on. But behind a beautiful (when it’s sunny) facade, we bet there are some things you don’t know.

  • The First McDonalds in Canada

    By Vancity Buzz

    Would you like fries with that? The first time McNuggets were made on Canadian soil was in Richmond in 1967.

  • The Marine Building was the Tallest Building

    By Vancity Buzz

    At one time, this famed Vancouver Art Deco building was the tallest in the British Empire.

  • North Vancouver Had a Different Name

    By Vancity Buzz

    Formally a logging settlement on the Burrard Inlet, what now is the City of North Vancouver was once called Moodyville, named after Sewell Moody who set up a sawmill. There’s now a park there.

  • The Lions Gate Bridge Was Built With Beer Money

    By Vancity Buzz

    The bridge connecting downtown Vancouver with West Vancouver was originally built by the Guiness Beer Company to provide access to a residential development, the British Properties.

  • The Whole City Burned Down

    By Vancity Buzz

    In 1886, most of the newly incorporated city was burnt to the ground by the Great Vancouver Fire. Originally started to clear land near Main Street, this fire destroyed all but a few structures.

  • Second Largest Port in North America

    By Vancity Buzz

    Coming second to New York, Vancouver is the largest port of North-America, in both tonnage & physical size. Also, we boast one of the major cruise ship ports in not just North America, but the world.

  • Sister Cities

    By Vancity Buzz

    Many cities in the GVRD have sister cities worldwide. Burnaby’s is Kushiro, Hokkaidō, Japan which donated the totem poles on Burnaby Mountain. Vancouver has six including Los Angeles and Edinburg.

  • British Passports Named the British Properties

    By Vancity Buzz

    The British Properties originally required you to have a British Passport to live there and many groups of people were excluded from this residential settlement.

  • Largest Retractable Roof in the World

    By Vancity Buzz

    At BC Place, Vancouver has a one-of-a-kind retractable roof, which just so happens to be the largest in the world. It reveals over 7,500 square metres of sky.

  • Largest LGBTQ+ Community in Western Canada

    By Vancity Buzz

    Our Pride Parade is 1 of the largest in the world & attracts over 500,000 people. Davie Street & the West End is a hub for the LGBTQ+ Community with inclusive night clubs, events, festivities & more.

  • Longest Pool in Canada

    By Vancity Buzz

    Kitsilano’s salt water pool is 137.5 meters (451 ft) which is about the size of 3 Olympic pools. This outdoor pool has a temperature of 25C (77F) so you will always be warm, regardless of the weather!

  • Stanley Park is Bigger than Central Park

    By Vancity Buzz

    Vancouver’s largest (and most popular) public park is 1001 acres, making it 10% bigger than New York City’s Central Park. If you haven’t heard, it recently won an award too!

  • Vancouver Chef Invented the California Roll

    By Vancity Buzz

    Hidekazu Tojo, a British Columbian Hall of Fame Chef, just so happens to be the inventor of the California roll. You can still go to his restaurant, Tojo’s, at 1133 West Broadway.

  • Worlds Longest Cable-Supported Transit-Only Bridge

    By Vancity Buzz

    When you are riding the SkyTrain and cross the Fraser River, you are utilizing the world’s longest cable-supported transit-only bridge, the Skybridge.

  • Home of Green Peace

    By Vancity Buzz

    A group of activists from Vancouver came together to try & stop nuclear bomb testing in Alaska. While their mission was unsuccessful, Greenpeace is the world’s most visible environmental organization.

  • No Freeways Downtown

    By Vancity Buzz

    Although it can be frustrating as a driver, it’s fantastic when you live here. Vancouver is one of the few North American cities with no freeways in the city.

Vancouver via Shutterstock/ Max Lindenthaler

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