Wildlife in Vancouver

Spotting wildlife in Vancouver is actually pretty easy. Stanley Park hosts more than 500 different species for example. We have selected five species that you can easily see in the city and its surroundings.


Bears are all over the state of British Columbia, including areas around Vancouver. If you want to view bears, you may get a chance to see one around the slopes of Cypress Mountain, a ski resort just thirty minutes away from Vancouver downtown.
It is best to view bears from a safe distance so if you would rather see them from behind a fence, Grouse Mountain in North Vancouver will be a good option to get safely close to grizzly bears.


Seals are a common sight in Vancouver so there’s a good chance you will spot one during your stay. Keep looking for a black shiny head poking out of the water around the seawall in Stanley Park or while spending time in Granville Island.


Stanley Park’s Beaver Lake ironically did not host any beaver until 2008. Now up to five beavers can be seen at work in the lake. The best times to observe them are at dawn and dusk.


Mid-September is the best season to see salmon spawning, but in October there are still a few species around the shoreline of West Vancouver, waiting to complete their migration to the nearby rivers.
One of the best places to observe their spawning process is at the Capilano Fish Hatchery, a fifteen-minute drive from Vancouver city centre.

Great blue herons

Stanley Park is home to one of the largest urban colonies of great blue herons in North America. They have been nesting near the pitch n’putt and the nearby tennis courts since 2001.
Usually they are also visible on beaches in early mornings or late evenings while fishing silently.
During the spring, you can also watch them on Vancouver’s Heron Cam from mid-April, when the first chicks hatch.