Great spots to walk the dogs and let them have a run!
Vancouver and its surrounding suburbs are renowned for the vast number of dogs that residents own. Whether you’re at the beach, wandering around Kits, or on one of the many glorious trails around the City, you’re almost guaranteed to spot a canine nearby! As a dog owner it can be hard to find places for your pupper to roam without a leash. At the bottom of this article you’ll find a list of websites that provide information on all the locations that allow dogs to roam freely. The following walks are a selection of our favourite dog walks that have non-leash areas. Be sure to follow trails and good dog walking etiquette whilst you’re out there, other than that be sure to have some fun and let us know if you think we missed any dimes!
Lost Lagoon Loop
Park up, and if your dogs has lots of energy right off the bat let them roam in the designated dog area near the car park (highlighted pink in the map below). From there, there are a plethora of options to make a good circular walk through Stanley Park. Keeping it under an hour, we’d suggest starting out by walking to the western seawall and then turning right at the end of second beach towards Lost Lagoon. There’s always the option to stop at the swimming pool café to grab an ice cream! Continue along around Lost Lagoon until you’re at the SE corner. From there go under highway 99 and you’ll find Devonian Harbour Park, this area is another off-leash zone. After your dog has had a good run around and met some friends head back under highway 99 and walk back to the car park!
Car Park: Stanley Park Pitch n’ Putt, and Denman St
Off-Leash Area: Small
A Queen Elizabeth Park Wander
Queen Elizabeth Park’s natural elevation makes it great to take the dog for a good stroll whilst taking in the wonderful scenery around you. The park has many trees scattered around but it is open enough that, though there are few trails, it is easy to walk about freely. There are two areas that allow your dog to roam. The area at the southern end of the park is my favourite as it’s a little more natural than the gravel-based dog area next to Riley Park. Bring a frisbee and some friends along if you fancy some disc golf, though be wary of your dog suddenly dragging you as it tries to chase the disc!
Time: Up to an hour
Car Park: Next to the public tennis courts and next to the lawn bowling club in the middle.
Off-leash area: Medium
Spanish Banks Stroll
The leash free zone at Spanish banks is my personal favourites. The views of the mountains, the ocean, and the city are always spectacular (Assuming it’s not raining!). There’s also a fantastic network of trails in the hill above that makes up the northern region of Pacific Spirit Park. I would recommend allowing your dog to have a good run around in the off-leash park before putting him or her back on the leash and heading up into the park. Head onto admiralty trail and turn left (east), soon after turn right (south) onto East Canyon trail, and then take your next two right-hand turns to be heading north on Pioneer Trail. From there, continue heading north until you meet Marine drive and stroll on back to the car park with a hopefully knackered dog!
Time: 30-60 minutes
Car Park: Spanish Banks Parking lot
Off-Leash Area: Large
Robert Burnaby Park
Located just south of Burnaby Lake, Robert Burnaby park is a great location to get your dog socializing and for a refreshing dip in Ramsay Creek (Especially for any water-loving Labradors out there!). Our recommended route is about 30 minutes, but as with all these routes allow for pup to spend plenty of time free on the off-leash area. The off-leash area in this park is under the power lines in the north-western corner. The rest of the park is a densely forested area that gives you the impression of being lost in a somewhere out in northern B.C! There are many trails that can be followed depending on how long you wish to be out for, and it’s simple to go north into the larger Burnaby Lake Park.
Time: 30-60 minutes
Car Park: Robert Burnaby Disc Golf
Off-Leash Area: Medium
Cypress Falls Park Ramble
I’ve saved the best till last with this one…Located in North Vancouver, Cypress Falls Park is a truly magnificent place for anyone (Dog owner or not) to go for a ramble. The falls themselves are hardly spectacular, though certainly Insta worthy, but the entire park is one of serenity and simple beauty. The route below is suggested by Vancouver Trails and takes around 1.5hrs, however due to the vast network of trails any length walk is possible. Better still, the entire park is an off-leash area meaning your dog can roam around to its hearts content! The forest is populated by old Douglas Fir and Cedar trees dating back as far as 300 years old.
Time: 1 – 3 hrs
Car Park: At the entrance to the park
Off-Lease Area: MASSIVE!