Vancouver is praised by hikers for its soaring mountains, high-alpine turquoise lakes and thundering waterfalls. But all of Mother Nature's epic elements don’t always mix well with families and small children.

Looking for some more relaxed hikes so you can still hit the trail, toddler and teenager in tow? Here are 15 treks that are doable for most ages:

 

1. Cascade Falls
Mission

photoAlison Karlene Hodgins

Length: 0.75 km

Not all waterfalls are out of reach! If you find yourself in the Mission area, take the time to check out Cascade Falls. The suspension bridge offers a gorgeous view of this waterfall in the forest. Keep your family safe by sticking to the path and holding hands.

Read more: outdoorvancouver.ca

 

2. Shoreline Trail
Port Moody

photoAlison Karlene Hodgins

Length: 2.3 km
Elevation Gain: Minimal

Starting in Rocky Point Park, dip into the tree-covered dirt trail that passes the ocean. Punctuated by wooden benches, this easy jaunt is perfect for those who might need a little extra time to rest. Parents with strollers can stick to the parallel bike path. Keep an eye out for unique birds and plants as you walk this section of the Trans Canada Trail.

Read more: portmoody.ca

 

3. Lighthouse Park
West Vancouver

photoAlison Karlene Hodgins

Length: Varies

Hike a little or a lot in this beautiful ocean-side area. Here, you’ll find coastal forest, cabins and a lighthouse. Take a large blanket, picnic and a good book and stay awhile on the rocks overlooking Howe Sound.

Read more: westvancouver.ca

4. Deer Lake
Burnaby

photoAlison Karlene Hodgins

Length: 5 km
Elevation Gain: Minimal

Watch for ducks, geese and other wildlife at Deer Lake Park. This flat, easy loop trail circles the lake, offering good views and virtually zero incline. Plus, there’s a playground at the beach/parking lot that young and old will love.

Read more: burnaby.ca

 

5. Buntzen Lake Loop
Bellcara

photoAlison Karlene Hodgins

Length: 9.8 km
Elevation Gain: 90 m

You can spend a full day at Buntzen picnicking on the beach. Or, you can hit the trail! While the Diez Vista Trail might be too advanced for your family, moderate hikers should be able to complete this trail in about three hours.

Read more: buntzenlake.ca

 

6. Lynn Canyon Loop
North Shore

photoDavid Webb

Length: 5.1 km
Elevation gain: 160 m

Trek beneath Cedar and Hemlock trees towards Lynn Creek. Spend some time soaking up the sun or swimming in the 30-foot pool. The suspension bridge is a classic photo-opt—and it’s free!

Read more: lynncanyon.ca

 

7. Lost Lagoon
Stanley Park

photoDavid Webb

Length: 1.8 km
Elevation Gain: Minimal

Escape the city in the city on this short hike in Stanley Park. Depending on your family’s level, it should only take about half an hour to complete. For a longer adventure, trek the 10-kilometre Seawall around Stanley Park. Reward yourselves and cool off with an ice cream from the concession near Third Beach.

Read more: vancouver.ca

 

8. Pacific Spirit Regional Park
Metro Vancouver

photo

Length: from 1.5 km to 8 km

Choose your own adventure right in the city: from the Forest Discovery Interpretive Trail’s flat, wheelchair-accessible route to the challenging sections along the Beach Walk and the longer but level Iva Mann Loop Walk, families will delight in these natural areas that surround UBC.

Read more: metrovancouver.org

 

9. Barnet Marine Park
Burnaby

photoAlison Karlene HodginsLength: 1.3 km
Elevation Gain: Minimal

Paved and dirt trails make this enjoyable walk along the Burrard Inlet accessible for the whole family. Bring a picnic and snag a table, a blanket and lie on the grass overlooking the old pier or take your time exploring the ruins of the park’s pioneering history. This park is especially spectacular at sunset.

Read more: burnaby.ca

 

10. Pitt Wildlife Loop
Pitt Meadows

photoDavid Webb

Length: 7 km
Elevation Gain: 150 m

Aptly named, watch for birds and animals as you wander this trail. If the first loop isn’t enough, continue towards Mountain Dike. As this trail isn’t as well-used, you might find yourself walking through tall grass and marshland—so come prepared.

Read more: vancouvertrails.com

 

11. Quarry Rock
Deep Cove

photoAlison Karlene Hodgins

Length: 3.8 km
Elevation Gain: 100 m

This trail is a little trickier, but I’ve had 10-year-olds and 80-year-olds gallop past me. Tangled roots, wooden steps, dirt and rock make it a bit more technical, so if some family members are unsure on their feet, they may want to wait at Panorama Park with a bag of local Honey’s Doughnuts. Maybe they’ll even save you one for when you’re back.

Read more: explore-mag.com/Quarry-Rock-Trail 

12. Tynehead Perimeter Trail
Surrey

photowaferboard Flickr cc by 2.0

Length: 4.5 km
Elevation Gain: 50 m

This paved loop trail is stroller-friendly, so parents and children of all ages and abilities can enjoy the park’s features. This is also a great option for kids who like to bicycle. More natural trails criss-cross through the park. There’s also an area where dogs can roam off-leash.

Read more: walkbc.ca

13. Capilano Canyon
North Shore

photoDavid Webb

Length: 2.6 km
Elevation Gain: 100 m

Get close to water on this short but enjoyable forested trail. The dirt path leads through moss-covered tall trees and alongside gurgling streams. Cross Pipe Bridge, pass a Salmon Hatchery and view Cleveland Dam on this interesting trek.

Read more: vancouvertrails.com

 

14. Cheakamus Lake
Garibaldi Provincial Park

photoDavid Webb

Length: 3 km
Elevation gain: 70 m

Head up to Whistler for this moderate trail. After the first three kilometres, you have the option to continue for another seven. Or, simply sit and enjoy the lake view. Bring your fishing rod, as you might get lucky and catch lunch.

Read more: whistlerhiatus.com

 

15. Othello Tunnels
Hope

photoAlison Karlene Hodgins

Length: 3.5 km
Elevation Gain: Minimal

Whether you’re heading to the interior for an adventure or on your way back from an epic roadtrip, take some time to stretch your legs and explore the Othello Tunnels. These historic train tunnels have been transformed into a multi-use pathway. The rushing water, sharp cliffs and scenic mountains would’ve made quite the journey by rail—and now you and the whole family can enjoy it on foot.

Read more: env.gov.bc.ca

    

Have you hiked these trails with your family?

Which was your favourite?

Tell us about it in the comments below!

    

More Vancouver Adventures: