We independently select all products and services. This article was written by a third-party company. If you click through links we provide, The Georgia Straight may earn a commission. Learn more

Best Bars in Vancouver BC: A Guide to the City’s Top Drinking Spots

Vancouver, situated in British Columbia, is renowned for its vibrant nightlife. This bustling city offers an array of bars and clubs for your enjoyment – from intimate lounges perfect for cocktail sipping to rooftop bars that provide breathtaking views. Utilize this post as your handbook to some of the top-notch bars in Vancouver, BC, which are worth considering for your forthcoming evening out.

One of the top spots on our list is The Narrow Lounge, a prohibition-style bar located on trendy Main Street. With its vintage decor and creative cocktail menu, The Narrow Lounge offers a unique and intimate atmosphere that’s perfect for a date night or a night out with friends. Another must-visit bar is The Shameful Tiki Room, a tiki-themed bar in Riley Park that serves up tropical drinks and Polynesian-inspired bites. With its fun and kitschy decor, The Shameful Tiki Room is a great spot to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and enjoy a laid-back evening with friends.

If you’re a beer lover, then The Alibi Room is a must-visit destination. Located in Gastown, Steamworks has been a staple on the Vancouver beer scene since the 1990s. With its extensive beer menu and cozy pub atmosphere, Steamworks is the perfect spot to grab a pint and catch up with friends. Whether you’re a local or just visiting, these bars offer a unique and memorable experience that’s sure to make your night out in Vancouver one to remember.

Historical Bars in Vancouver BC

Vancouver has a rich history of bars and clubs, with some establishments dating back to the early 1900s. Here are a few historical bars in Vancouver BC that are still operating today:

The Alibi Room

The Alibi Room, located in Gastown, has been serving drinks since 2006. While it may not be as old as some of the other bars on this list, the Alibi Room is known for its extensive beer list and commitment to local craft breweries. The bar is housed in a historic building and has a cozy, rustic atmosphere.

The Lamplighter Public House

The Lamplighter Public House, located in Gastown, has been serving drinks since 1925. Originally a hotel, the building was converted into a bar in the 1940s. The Lamplighter is known for its live music and lively atmosphere, making it a popular spot for locals and tourists alike.

The Sylvia Hotel

The Sylvia Hotel, located in English Bay, has been a Vancouver landmark since 1912. The hotel’s bar, which overlooks the beach, has a cozy atmosphere and is a great place to grab a drink after a day at the beach.

The Cambie Bar & Grill

The Cambie Bar & Grill, located in Gastown, has been serving drinks since 1897. Originally a hotel, the building was converted into a bar in the 1980s. The Cambie is known for its cheap drinks and hostel upstairs, making it a popular spot for backpackers.

Hy’s Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar

Hy’s Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar, located downtown, has been serving drinks since 1955. The bar has a classic, upscale atmosphere and is known for its martinis and steak.

Overall, Vancouver has a great selection of historical bars that are still operating today. Whether you’re looking for a classic cocktail or a cheap beer, there’s a bar in Vancouver that will suit your needs.

Craft Beer Bars in Vancouver BC

Vancouver is known for its thriving craft beer scene, with a plethora of bars and breweries to choose from. Here are some of the best craft beer bars in Vancouver BC, divided by district.

Gastown District

Located in the heart of Vancouver, Gastown is a popular tourist destination with plenty of bars and restaurants to choose from. Here are some of the best craft beer bars in the area:

  • Alibi Room: This popular spot boasts an impressive selection of local Vancouver craft beers. The atmosphere is cozy and rustic, with exposed brick walls and wooden tables. The food menu is also noteworthy, featuring locally sourced ingredients and creative dishes.
  • Steamworks Brew Pub: A Vancouver classic, Steamworks has been serving up tasty brews since 1995. The brew pub is located in a historic building and features a spacious patio with great views of the city. The beer menu is extensive, with something for everyone.
  • The Flying Pig: This gastropub offers a rotating selection of craft beers on tap, as well as a great food menu featuring comfort food with a modern twist. The atmosphere is lively and casual, making it a great spot for a night out with friends.

Mount Pleasant District

Located just east of downtown Vancouver, Mount Pleasant is a trendy neighborhood with plenty of bars and restaurants to explore. Here are some of the best craft beer bars in the area:

  • CRAFT Beer Market: This spacious bar features over 100 beers on tap, including a great selection of local craft beers. The food menu is also extensive, with plenty of options for sharing. The atmosphere is lively and energetic, making it a great spot for a night out with friends.
  • 33 Acres Brewing Company: This brewery and tasting room offers a rotating selection of craft beers, as well as a small food menu featuring sandwiches and snacks. The atmosphere is laid-back and casual, with communal tables and a friendly vibe.
  • Brassneck Brewery: This popular brewery and tasting room offers a wide variety of craft beers, from IPAs to stouts to sours. The atmosphere is cozy and inviting, with plenty of seating and a friendly staff.

Whether you’re a local or a tourist, Vancouver’s craft beer scene has something for everyone. Check out these great craft beer bars in Gastown and Mount Pleasant for a taste of what the city has to offer.

Wine Bars in Vancouver BC

Vancouver is a city that is known for its diverse nightlife, and wine bars are no exception. With so many options to choose from, it can be overwhelming to decide where to go for a glass of wine. Here are two districts in Vancouver that offer some of the best wine bars in the city:

Yaletown District

Yaletown is a trendy district located in downtown Vancouver, and it is home to some of the best wine bars in the city. Here are a few notable options:

  • Uva Wine & Cocktail Bar: This bar is known for its extensive wine list, which features a variety of local and international wines. They also offer a selection of cocktails and small plates to pair with your wine.
  • Grapes & Soda: This bar offers a unique experience, as they specialize in natural wines and house-made sodas. They also offer a rotating selection of small plates to pair with your wine.

Downtown District

Downtown Vancouver is the heart of the city, and it is home to many of Vancouver’s best wine bars. Here are a few notable options:

  • Brix & Mortar: This bar is located in a historic brick building and offers a cozy atmosphere for enjoying a glass of wine. They offer a selection of local and international wines, as well as a menu of upscale comfort food.
  • TWB The Wine Bar: This bar is known for its extensive selection of wines, which includes over 100 wines by the glass. They also offer a menu of small plates and charcuterie to pair with your wine.

Overall, Vancouver offers a variety of wine bars to suit any taste. Whether you’re looking for a cozy atmosphere or an extensive wine list, there is a wine bar in Vancouver that is perfect for you.

Cocktail Bars in Vancouver BC

Vancouver is home to some of the best cocktail bars in Canada. From classic cocktails to innovative creations, the city has a lot to offer. Here are some of the best cocktail bars in Vancouver BC.

Kitsilano District

  • The Shameful Tiki Room: This bar is a Polynesian-themed cocktail bar that serves up some of the best tiki drinks in the city. The decor is kitschy and fun, and the drinks are strong and delicious. This is a great spot for a night out with friends.
  • The Oakwood Canadian Bistro: This bar is known for its creative cocktails and delicious food. The decor is cozy and rustic, and the atmosphere is welcoming. This is a great spot for a date night or a night out with friends.

West End District

  • The Keefer Bar: This bar is an apothecary-themed cocktail bar located in the heart of Chinatown. The bar has been noticed as one of North America’s best bars, offering over 25 unique cocktails in a dark and moody atmosphere.
  • The Diamond: This bar is a chic and sophisticated cocktail bar with a focus on classic cocktails. The decor is elegant and modern, and the atmosphere is upscale. This is a great spot for a special occasion or a night out with friends.

Overall, Vancouver has a lot to offer when it comes to cocktail bars. Whether you’re looking for a cozy spot to enjoy a drink with friends or a chic and sophisticated bar for a special occasion, Vancouver has it all.

Rooftop Bars in Vancouver BC

Vancouver is known for its stunning views, and what better way to enjoy them than from a rooftop bar? Here are some of the best rooftop bars in Vancouver BC:

  • The Keg Steakhouse + Bar (Yaletown): This year-round rooftop terrace offers great views of the city and is a perfect spot for sunny summer drinks. Heaters keep the terrace warm and inviting even in the colder months.
  • Black + Blue Steakhouse: This 3-level restaurant boasts luxury decor and rare cuts of beef. The rooftop dining area offers panoramic views of the city and is a great place to enjoy a drink or meal.
  • Reflections Winter Terrace – Rosewood Hotel: This rooftop bar is transformed into a winter wonderland during the colder months, offering cozy blankets, warm drinks, and a festive atmosphere. In the summer, it’s a great spot to enjoy a refreshing cocktail and take in the views.
  • LIFT Bar Grill View: Located in Coal Harbour, this rooftop bar offers picturesque views of the water and the North Shore Mountains. The menu features a variety of cocktails, wines, and beers, as well as delicious food options.
  • The Vancouver Club: This private members club offers a rooftop terrace with stunning views of the city skyline. Non-members can access the rooftop bar by making a reservation at one of the club’s restaurants.

Whether you’re looking for a romantic spot for a date or a place to enjoy drinks with friends, these rooftop bars in Vancouver BC are sure to impress.

Bar Hopping Routes in Vancouver BC

Vancouver BC is a city with a vibrant nightlife scene, with a variety of bars and pubs to choose from. For those looking to bar hop, there are two main routes to consider: the Granville Street Route and the Main Street Route.

Granville Street Route

Granville Street is a popular destination for bar hopping in Vancouver BC, with a range of bars and clubs to choose from. Here are a few highlights of the Granville Street Route:

  • The Roxy Cabaret: A classic Vancouver bar that offers live music and a dance floor.
  • The Cambie Bar & Grill: A popular spot for students and backpackers, with cheap drinks and a lively atmosphere.
  • The Belmont Bar: A sleek and stylish bar with a focus on craft cocktails and local beers.
  • The Yale Saloon: A country-themed bar with live music, line dancing, and a mechanical bull.

Main Street Route

Main Street is another popular destination for bar hopping in Vancouver BC, with a mix of bars and pubs that cater to a variety of tastes. Here are a few highlights of the Main Street Route:

  • The Shameful Tiki Room: A tropical-themed bar with a focus on rum-based cocktails and exotic decor.
  • The Narrow Lounge: A cozy and intimate bar with a focus on classic cocktails and a rotating selection of craft beers.
  • The Cascade Room: A stylish bar with a focus on classic cocktails and a menu of comfort food favorites.
  • The Alibi Room: A popular spot for craft beer enthusiasts, with a rotating selection of local and international brews on tap.

Whether you’re looking for a night of live music and dancing or a more laid-back evening with craft cocktails and good conversation, Vancouver BC has something to offer for every taste.

Seasonal Considerations for Bar Experiences

When it comes to bar experiences in Vancouver, there are seasonal considerations that can enhance your experience. Vancouver’s mild climate allows for outdoor seating and rooftop patios to be enjoyed for much of the year, but there are also specific seasonal drinks and events to keep in mind.

In the summer months, rooftop patios and outdoor seating are a popular option for bar-goers. Many bars offer refreshing cocktails and craft beers that are perfect for hot summer days. Some bars even offer outdoor games like cornhole or bocce ball to keep patrons entertained.

During the fall and winter months, cozy indoor bars with fireplaces and warm drinks are a must-visit. Bars that specialize in whiskey or mulled wine are particularly popular during this time of year. Some bars also offer seasonal events like holiday-themed parties or festive drink specials.

Spring is a great time to visit bars that offer seasonal cocktails made with fresh, local ingredients. Bars that focus on gin or other botanical spirits are a great option during this time of year. Many bars also offer patio seating that is perfect for enjoying the mild spring weather.

No matter what time of year it is, Vancouver’s bar scene has something to offer. By keeping seasonal considerations in mind, bar-goers can enhance their experience and make the most of what each season has to offer.

Closing Remarks

Vancouver’s bar scene is constantly evolving, with new spots opening up and old favorites closing down. While it’s always sad to see a beloved establishment shut its doors, it’s important to remember the great memories and experiences that were had there.

As the search results showed, some notable bars and restaurants have closed in recent years, including Malones Kitsilano Beach and Chimec. However, Vancouver still has plenty of fantastic options for those looking for a night out.

From tiki lounges to craft beer bars, there’s something for everyone in this city. Some of the best bars in Vancouver include The Shameful Tiki Room, The Keefer Bar, and The Diamond. Each of these establishments offers a unique atmosphere and a carefully crafted drink menu.

In addition to the well-established bars, Vancouver also has a thriving craft beer scene. Breweries such as Parallel 49, Strange Fellows, and Brassneck Brewery offer a wide variety of delicious beers and ales.

No matter what type of bar or restaurant you’re looking for, Vancouver has something to offer. With its diverse range of options and constantly changing landscape, this city is sure to keep bar-goers entertained for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some of the best cocktail bars in downtown Vancouver?

Downtown Vancouver is home to many excellent cocktail bars. Some of the best include The Diamond, Prohibition at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia, and The Botanist. Each of these bars offers a unique atmosphere and a wide variety of expertly crafted cocktails.

What are some hidden bars in Gastown worth checking out?

Gastown is known for its hidden gems, and there are several bars worth checking out. The Alibi Room, The Keefer Bar, and The Diamond are all popular choices. Each of these bars has a unique vibe and a great selection of drinks.

Where can I find the best rooftop bars with a view in Vancouver?

For breathtaking views of the city, head to one of Vancouver’s rooftop bars. The Roof at Black + Blue, Reflections: The Garden Terrace, and The Keg Rooftop Bar are all great options. Each of these bars offers stunning views, delicious drinks, and a unique atmosphere.

What are some of the best bars in Vancouver for singles to meet?

Vancouver has a vibrant nightlife scene, and there are many bars where singles can meet and mingle. The Roxy, The Cambie, and The Bimini are all popular choices. These bars offer a fun atmosphere, great drinks, and a chance to meet new people.

What are some of the best bars to go to alone in Vancouver?

If you’re looking for a great bar to visit alone, Vancouver has plenty of options. The Narrow Lounge, The Shameful Tiki Room, and The Keefer Bar are all great choices. Each of these bars has a unique atmosphere and a friendly staff.

What part of Vancouver has the most vibrant nightlife scene?

Vancouver’s nightlife scene is spread out across the city, but some areas are more vibrant than others. Granville Street, Yaletown, and Gastown are all popular nightlife destinations. Each of these areas has a variety of bars, clubs, and restaurants to choose from.

Related Articles

The 9 Best Restaurants in Victoria BC 2024

Renowned for its breathtaking landscapes, friendly residents, and scrumptious cuisine, ...

Top 3 Best Web Design Company in Victoria BC in 2024

The technology sector in Victoria, British Columbia is flourishing, featuring ...

Top 3 Best SEO Company Victoria in 2024

Determining the top SEO firm in Victoria can be understandably ...