Stanley Park is one of the most spectacular urban parks in the world. At more than 1,000 acres and surrounded by the waters of Vancouver Harbour and English Bay, the park is running heaven — and easily reachable from downtown hotels. There are rain forest trails, bucolic gardens, and a 5+ mile seawall trail with great views of the water, mountains, and downtown’s burgeoning skyline. Since there are so many options, it’s hard to recommend a specific running route in Stanley Park, so here are some highlights:
- Seawall Loop. 5.8 miles, MAP. Vancouver’s seawall extends 20+miles, but there is great 6 mile seawall loop specifically in the park. Flat, with great views of the water, Lion’s Gate bridge, mountains, and skyline. Starting at the Vancouver Rowing Club, just past the bridge, highlights include Hallelujah Point, Brockton Point Lighthouse (1.2m), Siwash Rock (3.65m), passing under Lion’s Gate Bridge (2.7m), Third Beach, and lost Lagoon. The full loop is 5.8m but one can continue south and west another 0.7m to English Bay Beach and 1.8m to the Burrard St. Bridge, over to Kitsilano.
- Forest trails. The inland parts of the park feature 17 miles of Western Rainforest Trails through lush red cedar, hemlock, and douglas fir trees. See the trail map.
- ‘Round the Lakes. It is 0.6 miles around Beaver Lake, ~1 mile around Lost Lagoon, and ~0.6 miles between the two.