Destination: Patio, Vancouver

Whether you’re seeking a view of the Pacific, the North Shore Mountains or women in sundresses, Vancouver has a patio for you. If it’s a sunny weekend in the city, why not drown a few pitchers with the boys on a rooftop on Friday night, dine al fresco with a date on the waterfront on Saturday night and linger over Sunday brunch with some pals in the park. From classy courtyards to rowdy terraces, don’t miss out on patio season in Vancouver.

The Fish House in Stanley Park
Nestled in Stanley Park, this is the perfect place to relax after a tour around the seawall, a round of pitch and putt, or a game of tennis on the neighbouring courts. The heritage house conversion features two sunny patios: one overlooking the courts and the other offering views of the park. The scenery calls for a glass of wine and the restaurant boasts an award-winning list with a focus on bottles produced sustainably. Stop by any time of day; the restaurant serves brunch, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner.

This bustling all-seasons patio on eclectic Commercial Drive offers prime people watching. Watch the action across the street in Grandview Park or enjoy the view of the city skyline against the backdrop of the mountains. There isn’t a bad seat in the house, though it can be tough to get a seat so be prepared to wait. If you are forced to wait, the good news is there’s a contemporary gallery in the restaurant that’s known for showcasing thought provoking pieces in a variety of media. Or you could study the Nuevo Latino menu. Once you’ve secured your spot on the terrace, you face a difficult decision: a pitcher of sangria or mojito?

If you don’t know somebody who knows somebody who can get you invited to happy hour on a private yacht docked in Coal Harbour, this is the next best thing. Sitting above the water in the quay, Cardero’s offers an authentic West Coast experience. You’ll enjoy views of the mountains and Stanley Park, and breath in that fresh Pacific air while tucking into some spectacular seafood and sipping a glass of wine.

After a day of shopping on Granville Island, head for the yellow umbrellas of Bridges. This Vancouver landmark offers a lively, laidback atmosphere in the bistro, and a more formal setting upstairs. You’ll enjoy views of the mountains and the city centre, and be able to watch all the action in False Creek from party boats to serene kayakers. Pair a Granville Island beer with a crab and halibut cake burger and complete the quintessential Vancouver experience by taking the Aquabus home.

Joe Fortes
A rooftop oasis in the heart of the city, this is the perfect escape for a Friday afternoon lunch. Unique in the city, the patio features a lush green wall and roof, an outdoor fireplace and a dedicated bar to serve patio people. Sunny lunches often extend into happy hour, which features tasty $5 small plates like fish tacos and truffle Parmesan frites. Joe Fortes also offers an impressive roster of Ocean Wise oysters and oyster-friendly whites.

Image courtesy of MizterForbz.

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