Where to Watch and Play Sports in Vancouver
Years after the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, the city is still peppered with items that bring back fond memories, including the Olympic torch, a very popular tourist stop along the waterfront. Vancouver contains over 50 area golf courses, plenty of mountains for skiing and snowboarding and lots of trails for hiking and exploring. On top of that, some of the best athletes in the world have made their mark here.
When it comes to sports franchises, the first and most important in the city is without a doubt the Vancouver Canucks. Their run to the Stanley Cup finals in 2011 was well-documented and their recent form, which included back-to-back President’s Trophy titles, makes them a hot-ticket item. The Canucks play their games in the Rogers Centre, located near Chinatown in downtown. (Ticket Info)
Future NHL superstars can be found playing for the Vancouver Giants of the Western Hockey League. The team was founded in 2001, won the WHL title in 2007, and followed that up by winning the Memorial Cup, Canadian Major-Junior Ice Hockey’s grand prize a few weeks later. The Giants call the Pacific Coliseum home and the arena is located on the east side of the city. (Ticket Info)
Soccer has increased in popularity immensely over the years in the area. The Vancouver Whitecaps have been a staple of the city since the 70s but their recent expansion into MLS has turned the city into a soccer-loving hotspot. The atmosphere at BC Place closely resembles a European fixture, thanks in large part to the club’s main supporter group, The Southsiders. The Whitecaps managed to reach the playoffs in only their second season and look to improve upon that performance moving forward. (Ticket Info)
Canadian Football is also quite popular, as the BC Lions have been an important member of the CFL since 1954. They too play their matches in BC Place, meaning that during the summer months, you can usually find a sporting event at the stadium on just about any weekend. The team has won the Grey Cup a total of six times, most recently in 2011. (Ticket Info)
Fans of baseball can watch the Vancouver Canadians play at the cozy Nat Bailey Stadium in the south-side of the city. The Canadians have been in existence since 2000 and serve as the Short-Season “A” affiliates of the Toronto Blue Jays. (Ticket Info)
For those interested in recreational sports, there are numerous options available. Leagues are scattered around the Lower Mainland with the 8 Rinks in Burnaby a popular spot for Ice Hockey lovers. For soccer fans, a few leagues play on the neighboring Burnaby Lake Sports Complex. Andy Livingstone Park, which is located in Chinatown, offers another popular destination for pick-up games. If you’re located in the city’s west-side, you are bound to find a game in and around the University of British Columbia Campus. (8 Rinks Info)