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Spring break April 2018

new jersey
Level Contributor
627 posts
Spring break April 2018

Hi there,

We are considering a spring break vacation in Vancouver for 1 week (week of easter till following week) with two young 8 and 6 year old kids (prefer daytrip out of Vancouver than changing hotels) . I read there are lots to do for Vancouver for kids our age like Stanley, biking, beahes, suspension bridge, science museum , acquairum....daytrip to grouse mountain ,, I assume whistler is too far

My question is that on internet is spring break for Canadaian elementary schools mid-March? Ours in the US is last week March to April 7. Do Canadian children get Good Friday and easter Monday off...I am trying to gauge how busy it is and may plan other activities those days.

Are cherry blossoms sort of in bloom then? IS there a lot of cherry trees?

I understand that best Chinese food is in Richmond but its more convenient to stay downtown Vancouver...and I read the Chinese food is not so good in Vancouver Chinatown..so are there places near downtown that's authentic Chinese (preferably Cantonese and Shanghainese)? I looked on the Richmond site and most are in Richmond and the night market isn't open till May.

I assume most convenient place is staying in downtown? The ymca is booked but the Sutton place is open..althoguht a tad expensive for our budget...just want a good place with swimming pool..

Thanks so much for help!

Also flights are cheaper to Seattle (only $315) but it seems such a pain to have to go get rental car and then drive the 3 hours...plus i am not sure how much rental cost and dropoff charge (I assume dont' want to have car the whole week)...is Amtrak faster?

12 replies to this topic
new jersey
Level Contributor
627 posts
1. Re: Spring break April 2018

of course we also thought of going to Calgary to Banff (if less busy) cause we love hotsprings...but thought it may be too cold and snowy (dangerous for driving) in April?

new jersey
Level Contributor
627 posts
2. Re: Spring break April 2018

never mind post on calgary

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
5,078 posts
432 reviews
3. Re: Spring break April 2018

Good Friday and Easter Mondays are holidays in Canada. Mostly for Government offices and schools. Most stores, malls etc will be open.

Port Moody, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver, British Columbia
Level Contributor
13,724 posts
152 reviews
4. Re: Spring break April 2018

Spring Break for BC schools is mid-March until Easter Monday..back on the Tuesday so quieter that week.

Whistler is an easy day trip from Vancouver with various stops along the way...or do an overnight for a more liesurely trip.

The drive from Seattle is about 2.5-3 hours PLUS border wait times...which can be 2+ hours on holiday weekends. Amtrak is a nice direct ride along the water for a good part of the way...morning train or evening train..the others are bus so be sure to check that if booking amtrak.Train is 4 hours so longer than driving but no pesky border wait :)

Sutton is a great location. Join their program for possible discounts. Cherry trees abound downtown and many other spots..may be in bloom..no way to know for sure till spring arrives.

Personally I'd bite the bullet and fly into YVR unless it's exhorbitantly more...if you haven't been to Seattle it's a great city as well. Possibly look at flyinginto YVR spend 4 days then amtrak to Seattle spend 3 days then fly home.

North Vancouver...
Level Contributor
174 posts
5. Re: Spring break April 2018

Hello from the North Vancouver Tourism Visitor Centre!

I may be able to answer some of your questions:

There are a number of Cherry Blossom Trees in Vancouver - the bloom depends on how warm or cold it is, but generally around Easter, you will see some magnificent displays. If you are staying in Downtown, simply take a walk through the West End towards Stanley Park! There are also gardens and trees at Bloedel Floral Conservatory, Queen Elizabeth Park and the UBC Botanical Garden - all within easy distance by skytrain or bus from the city centre.

Regarding a flight into Seattle and then the best way to get to Vancouver: Yes, Amtrak is definitely the way to go! There are 2 trains which leave from Seattle, 6:30 am and 6 pm, and the trip up the coast along Puget Sound is full of stunning scenery as you wind along past old growth forest and the Gulf Islands in the distance! The train arrives at Pacific Central Station in Vancouver - just a short taxi ride to your hotel.

Regarding hotels, follow this link for the Top 10 Vancouver Hotels with a pool: https://www.tripadvisor.ca/Hotels-g154943-zf…

If food is your passion, follow this link for the Top 10 Chinese Restaurants in Vancouver: https://www.tripadvisor.ca/Restaurants-g1549…

You also mentioned activities to do with your kids - Science World is always a great attraction for both young and adults, with interactive displays and activities!

If you are interested in Tourism Attractions - here on The North Shore of Vancouver - we have the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park - as well as Grouse Mountain! To get to North Vancouver, there is a 12 minute Seabus ride from Downtown, and when you disembark at Lonsdale Quay Market, there are frequent buses which will take you to both attractions.

For more information:

Capilnao Suspension Bridge Park: https://www.capbridge.com/

Grouse Mountain: https://www.grousemountain.com/

If you have any other questions, feel free to get back to me!

Erik L. Tourism Visitor Information Councellor, North Vancouver Tourism Visitor Centre.

new jersey
Level Contributor
627 posts
6. Re: Spring break April 2018

Thank you so much!

Is there a metro in Vancouver? Is the skyway Canadian line above or below ground to get to and from Richmond?..

Hubby is Asian and loves Chinese food and wants to staying Richmond but I feel that just add 30 plus minutes to commuting to all the different sights....I think not practical....

How do most people commute to different tourist sites like from downtown to Chinatown or Stanley...by take Ng bus metro?

Vancouver BC
Destination Expert
for Vancouver
Level Contributor
10,801 posts
213 reviews
7. Re: Spring break April 2018

Canada Line to Richmond is underground downtown then above into Richmond or the airport. Stay at Sutton. You'll like it. Close to Sutton is the upscale Chinese http://www.kirinrestaurants.com on Alberni Street.

Rockies BC
Level Contributor
1,396 posts
8 reviews
8. Re: Spring break April 2018

Just to let you know we don’t refer to it as “Stanley” but by its full name, Stanley Park. (Conversely it’s quite common to refer to Grouse Mountain simply as “Grouse.”). You might get some strange looks if you are asking for directions to, or asking questions about, “Stanley.” People might think you are referring to the Stanley theatre (live theatre, on Granville Street).

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
954 posts
16 reviews
9. Re: Spring break April 2018

Not posh, but a reasonably priced suite hotel located near downtown is Rosedale on Robson.

Family members stayed there, and considered it good, considering that they wanted to be able to prepare some of their own meals. There are several grocery stores nearby (5-10 minute walk).

No matter where you decide to stay, you might consider purchasing transit Day Passes for the days you are out and about. Easier than carrying pockets full of coins. Just don't buy at the airport, as there is an uncharge for ticket purchases at YVR. Take a taxi to your downtown hotel, and then purchase Day Passes from a kiosk at the SkyTrain/CanadaLine stations.

Edited: 07 February 2018, 18:41
North Vancouver...
Level Contributor
174 posts
10. Re: Spring break April 2018

Hello @parissian

This is Erik at the North Vancouver Visitor Centre.

I found some information on the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival - which takes place in April of 2018!


I hope that you enjoy the festivities and see lots of our beautiful Cherry Trees!

Erik L.

Tourism Visitor Information Councellor

North Vancouver Tourism Visitor Centre

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