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An Easy Hike In Lighthouse Park, Vancouver

An Easy Hike in Lighthouse Park, Vancouver

If you want an easy hike check out the trails in Lighthouse Park in West Vancouver. Lighthouse Park is only about 75 hectares in size but it packs a lot into that acreage.

If you want a taste of old growth rainforest this is a great place to visit. There are massive Douglas fir, western hemlock and western red cedar trees in here along with lots of moss, lichens and woodland flowers.

There are roughly ten kilometres of trails with most taking you through the forest while some including the Juniper Point Trail take you right to the water’s edge.

"My niece is dwarfed by a tree in Lighthouse Park"

My niece is dwarfed by a tree in Lighthouse Park

Why you’ll want to go to Lighthouse Park West Vancouver

The real purpose of our outing wasn’t a hike but to get some photographs at sunset. My niece has dreams of winning an Ipad Mini but she needed a photograph from the north shore of Vancouver with the caption – the right time at the right place. I figured the magic hour around sunset might give her a chance to get a winning shot.

We were late getting to Lighthouse Park. The light was already fading in the woods – and these woods are dark at the best of times. But once we hit the coast it was still bright and sunny. It was such a warm, beautiful night that we weren’t alone; a group of twenty somethings were enjoying sundowners on the rocks.

"Beautiful lighting at about 8 pm in early May"

Sun just starting to set at about 8 pm in late April

"Arbutus tree in evening light"

Beautiful light on this arbutus tree (Madrona tree to my American readers)

"Lone pine beside the Pacific Ocean"

Lone pine beside the Pacific Ocean

"BBQ on the rocks"

Australians enjoying a “barbie” on the rocks

"Sunset over the Sunshine Coast"

Sunset over the Sunshine Coast

"Fading light over Texada Island"

Fading light over Texada Island

A lot of people come to the park to see the lighthouse, located at the point where Burrard Inlet meets Howe Sound. I knew there was no way we could get to it before dark set in. 

But a few years ago I took the two hour Sewell’s Seafari and had a chance to get some shots of the lighthouse from the water. There wasn’t a chance the time I was in my kayak as I was doing my best just to stay upright as the waters around the point can get really gnarly, really fast with wild currents. If you’re thinking about cliff jumping here, never do it a the point.

"The view of Lighthouse Park from the water"

The view of Lighthouse Park from the water

You can visit Lighthouse Park during daylight hours. There is no overnight camping. Dogs are allowed and there is lots of free parking. It’s also very accessible from downtown Vancouver via public transit. You’ll just have to walk a short distance along a residential road in from Marine Drive.

Further reading on things to do in British Columbia

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An Easy Hike in Lighthouse Park, Vancouver



Leigh McAdam is a Calgary based writer, author, photographer and social media enthusiast with over 57,000 followers. Her blog: HikeBikeTravel is frequently cited as one of the top travel and outdoor adventure blogs in Canada.

Author of Discover Canada: 100 Inspiring Outdoor Adventures
Co-author of 125 Nature Hot Spots in Alberta

This Post Has 38 Comments
  1. So glad you enjoyed your walk through Lighthouse Park! (right in our backyard, almost :-). West Vancouver, where we live, has many wonderful forest trails, but you found one of the most delightful spots.

    1. @SandInMySuitcase I used to stop in at Lighthouse Park every Monday AM when there was not a soul around – after dropping my husband downtown for early AM flights – as we too lived in West Van for almost 10 years.

  2. I was there last Saturday (4th May) as well hiking most of the trails – I was geo caching. Not much luck in finding the caches – but did cover a lot of area at Lighthouse Park

  3. I love the Arbutus tree. I have only seen one other and it was in front of an iconic hotel in Victoria on Vancouver Island. Fingers crossed for the competition.

    1. @Jan The arbutus trees have a very narrow range of where they can grow. They are also incredibly hard to transplant as they have one very long tap root. I love the feel of the bark and the look of the tree.

    1. @Salika I like the silhouetted Aussies too – not perfect but they weren’t the most cooperative subjects – probably because they didn’t know they were being photographed.

    1. @Marcia Hopefully all the positive thoughts of my readers will put an Ipad Mini in mu niece’s hands. I’d be very happy if she developed a love for photography as it increases your sensitivity to your surroundings.

  4. Love the sunset pics… and lighthouses? There’s something completely charming, old-school, and just adorable about them.

  5. I hadn’t heard of Lighthouse Park before but it looks a beautiful place for a hike. I need to get my kids back out there to see the trees – Emma had just turned 4 the last time that we were in Vancouver and it was only for a day so she doesn’t remember much of it. The sunset photos are incredibly beautiful – if your niece’s are anything like yours then she should stand a good chance of winning!

    1. @Lisa Stanley Park has some real beauties as far as trees go but I have always enjoyed Lighthouse Park because it’s easy to get around and I would say more ruggedly beautiful than Stanley Park. Emma I’m sure would love the place.

  6. What a beautiful park! I admit I only know Stanley park in Vancouver so I love seeing Lighthouse Park. There’s something about this coast that reminds me of Northern California. Those sunset shots are stunning and I hope she got some great ones too. Good luck to your niece and I hope she wins.

    1. @Mary I agree that there is a resemblance to northern California. Love the park for its fantastic sunsets & sunrises as it’s out on a peninsula so you can get both. I’m hoping my niece wins too.

  7. Your shots are beautiful, Leigh. Love those sky colors. I hope you niece got her shot, and wins the contest! I’ll be in Vancouver in June before heading to Nova Scotia. I’ll have to try and get to this park.

  8. I love Lighthouse Park. Cannot recommend walking and lingering there enough. offers super convenient bus service to the park from downtown Vancouver. Via a pleasant route too. And for those driving, it’s just off the route to Whistler.

  9. A beautiful photo series, Leigh. I love lighthouses, and that’s a great shot. I spent a few days in Vancouver in 2011, and it was delightful in every way, so I really want to get back there in the future and explore further afield. This lighthouse hike is now on the list, so thanks for the post.

    All the best to your niece with her photo venture. (Nice for me to see the Aussies, if only in silhouette!)

    1. @Andrew This is definitely one of the lighthouses worth visiting if you go to Vancouver. It’s an easy ride by public transit from downtown as well – and interesting to see from the water.

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