Moving to Vancouver: 11 Reasons to Love Living in Vancouver 
Are you considering a move to Vancouver, British Columbia? As it's one of Canada's most livable and desirable places, you'll encounter beautiful settings and a mild climate. Surrounded by the sea and mountains and close to the United States, Vancouver residents have the best of both worlds. With so much to do and see, this major urban setting is a continuously growing metropolis.
So, is Vancouver a great place to live? Are you already thinking of moving to Vancouver? From the cost of living to area schools, here's what to know about moving to Vancouver and what life in Vancouver is like for locals.
10 Reasons to Live in Vancouver
- Stunning natural scenery with mountains and ocean
- Thriving arts and cultural scene
- Diverse and vibrant food culture
- Mild climate with relatively mild winters
- Abundant outdoor activities
- Access to world-class hiking and skiing destinations
- Multicultural city with a rich tapestry of communities
- Proximity to beautiful Vancouver Island and other nearby islands
- Opportunities for career growth in various industries
- Excellent healthcare and education systems
Cost of Living in Vancouver
One of the most significant considerations for those moving to another city is the cost of living. As a major metropolitan city and Canada's third largest, the cost of living correlates with this designation. Depending on where you live and your chosen property, rent in Vancouver ranges from $1,900 to $6,000. The average price of homes for sale in Vancouver is approximately $1.6 million.
One person's monthly rent and expenses in Vancouver total approximately $2,300 per month, while a household of four is closer to $5,350. Without rent, those costs are roughly $900 or $2,900. Electricity is relatively affordable at 12.4 cents per kWh, and phone plans are about $75 per month. Grocery prices fluctuate, but average household items and food totals $300 per month per person.
- The South Granville community
- Downtown areas like the Yaletown neighbourhood, the West End community, Gastown, and the Coal Harbour neighbourhood
- The city of Burnaby
- The Kitsilano neighbourhood
- East Vancouver
- North Vancouver
- The Kerrisdale community
- South Vancouver
- University of British Columbia
More information about cost of living in Vancouver:
Vancouver Job Market
The average salary in Vancouver is about $56,600 per year and approximately $21 an hour in the metro area. An average monthly salary after tax is about $3,800. Popular industries are film and television, producing and processing aluminum, oil and gas, mining, tourism, agriculture, technology, and education.
Over one million new jobs are expected by 2031. Many companies are looking for employees with experience in natural resources, the film industry, digital media, green tech, life sciences, and service industries.
More information about finding a job in Vancouver:
Things to Do in Vancouver
The iconic Vancouver lifestyle offers many things for its residents and visitors to do throughout the year. Scenic during summer and winter, anytime is a good time to move to the area.
Outdoor activities in Vancouver adapt to the time of the year. One of the most popular things to do during winter is skiing or snowboarding at Cypress Mountain in Cypress Provincial Park, one of the major ski resorts, or ice skating at Grouse Mountain. Many people skate, snowboard, ski, snowshoe, zipline, or relax on the Skyride while appreciating the beautiful views.
During spring, boating is a huge pastime, where people can see humpback whales, killer whales, and porpoises. Vancouver's many parks have blooming flowers creating gorgeous backdrops of colour with the native ecology. Another popular adventure is the Capilano Suspension Bridge, suspended 230 feet in the air and 460 feet across.
In the summer, many people kayak at Deep Cove in North Vancouver, mountain bike on one of the trails at Mount Fromme on the North Shore or the Fromme Ascent grind, swim at Kitsilano Beach or in the city's largest pool, or whitewater raft through the Coast Mountains down Squamish River.
Fall is bursting with colour as people walk through the nature trails of Stanley Park or visit the VanDusen Botanical Garden. Visitors can also paddleboard or hike around Bunsen Lake.
- The 2,500-square-foot Pacific Arts Market is a bustling gallery space to find handmade crafts like jewelry, paintings, candles, teas, and other budget-friendly items from local artists.
- The Richmond Night Market is also popular while operating from May through October. Open on weekends and evenings during the holiday season, find food, gifts, and other items while enjoying live music and entertainment.
- The Museum of Anthropology is another huge draw, with thousands of artifacts and art. This is also one of Canada's largest teaching museums.
- Mr. Bannock's food truck uses fresh, local ingredients of wild meats, salmon, mushrooms, and juniper berries to create delicious cuisine.
- Hockey fans can attend Vancouver Canucks games at Rogers Arena. If not hockey, check out a concert or other events coming through town.
- The Sea to Sky Gondola is a 10-minute gondola ride 2,800 feet past Shannon Falls in the air.
- The Vancouver Aquarium is another local charm located at Stanley Park and focuses on conservation and sustainability.
- Spanish Banks provides visitors with a day full of fun.
Another local attraction is Vancouver's various street food. Popular options are Tacofino, Arturo's Mexico to Go, Dim Sum Express, Re-Up BBQ, Ragazzi Pizza, and more.
Restaurants & Nightlife
Food and fun for a great time—that's what you'll find when stepping out for a night on the town in Vancouver! Known to have some of the best nightlife destinations in all of Canada, there are many entertainment options, from live music, comedy, nightclubs, or bars.
The Granville Entertainment District is first on the list, with seven blocks of restaurants, bars, and clubs that stretch from one to the other. The Roxy and Belmont Bar are two popular destinations. You'll also have fun in Gastown by visiting Guilt & Co., an underground lounge with great food and local bands. The Narrow Lounge is a speakeasy underneath a furniture store on Main Street, while Fortune Sound Club in Chinatown is ready to help you dance the night away.
Knowing some of the best places to eat is essential when moving to Vancouver. Here are some excellent restaurants to add to your list:
- Marutama Ra-men Canada
- Guu with Garlic
- Joe Fortes Seafood & Chop House
- Bread x Butter Café
- Odd Society Spirits
- Juice Bar
- Hawksworth Restaurant
- St. Lawrence Restaurant
- The Mackenzie Room
- Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar
- Top Rope Birria
- Pidgin Restaurant
Vancouver is one of those places where someone can experience all four seasons. It doesn't rain much during summer, and it isn't so hot that it's uncomfortable getting out and doing things.
The rainy season is from November to March. This is also when snow falls, so for skiing or participating in winter activities, this is the time to visit. April through October are relatively dry and sunny.
More information about the climate in Vancouver:
Traffic in Vancouver
Traffic in Vancouver can be a challenge, especially around the downtown area. However, the city's public transportation services are some of the easiest ways to get around. Translink is Vancouver's main public transportation service, with buses, the SkyTrain (rapid transit trains), the West Coast Express (commuter rail), and the SeaBus (sea ferry). These options take residents and visitors between Vancouver and North Vancouver. Those needing different modes of transportation can start on a bus and finish their trip on the SkyTrain if it's within the 90-minute usage period.
Compass Card is a reloadable pass used for the SkyTrain, bus, and SeaBus. Monthly passes can be reloaded by vending machine, at the transit station, or at a convenience store.
Many people bike in Vancouver and use the city's dedicated bike lanes and directional paths. Cyclists must wear a helmet on the road and have a bell on their bicycles. Biking is so prevalent in Vancouver that the bike-share Mobi is an option. Taxis, Uber, and Lyft services are also available in Vancouver.
More information about traffic in Vancouver:
The Vancouver School Board has two levels: elementary (K-7) and secondary (8-12). From age five to 16, children must attend school. There are eleven school districts in metro Vancouver for students to attend based on where they live.
Private schools in Vancouver have their own curriculum to follow, though they must follow the British Columbia Ministry of Education requirements.
There are also a few international schools in the area, including Abbotsford Secondary School and Meadowridge School. Higher education options in Vancouver include the University of British Columbia and the Vancouver Film School.
Ready to Move to Vancouver?
There are many benefits to calling Vancouver home. With the job market and salaries comparable to the cost of living, the schools, and the breathtaking views, it should be one of the top places on anyone's list. Don't forget about the seasonable weather that lets you enjoy all the city's things to do year-round!