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Vancouver’s Spanish Banks Beach

Children Playing at Spanish Banks

The sandy shoreline and views make Spanish Banks one of Vancouver’s best beaches, and an especially great place for young children to play at low tide.


The park and beach at Spanish Banks have remained open throughout the coronavirus pandemic. The parking lots were closed for a while, but have since reopened. In the spring the Vancouver Park Board also removed logs that people used to sit on out of concern that they might encourage people to congregate and spread the virus. Starting in early June, however, logs are returning to the city’s beaches and should all be back in place by the end of the month, including at Spanish Banks.

As of mid-July, 2020, the concession stand at Spanish Banks is now reopen. Concession stands at most, if not all, public beaches around Metro Vancouver are now reopen. As well, lifeguards are now on duty at all beaches.

To learn more about the current status of the beach and other park facilities, check out the City of Vancouver‘s website.

The Beach at Spanish Banks

Spanish Banks is located in the Point Grey neighbourhood of Vancouver at 4875 NW Marine Drive between Locarno Beach and the University of British Columbia.

At low tide the water at Spanish Banks goes out for what seems like miles. The beach is a perfect place for children, as well as kite flying on windy days at low tide. With as many as 20 courts, the venue is also popular for beach volleyball and is sometimes used for beach volleyball tournaments.

At Spanish Banks there are a couple of food kiosks where you can buy coffee, soft drinks, ice cream and other food items like hot dogs in the summer.

Volleyball at Spanish Banks
Volleyball at Spanish Banks Beach

Tips and Advice

Below are some good things to know about Spanish Banks.

TIP #1: There is a nice level cycling and walking trail that connects Spanish Banks with other beaches along the waterfront (including Locarno and Jericho). Take your bike or walking shoes and enjoy the area!

TIP #2:  The Pacific Ocean around Vancouver is typically freezingly cold, with only kids and the brave swimming in it during July and August.

If you don’t mind the shallow water (like if you’re a toddler or just want to play as opposed to actually swim), then hit Spanish Banks on a really hot sunny day when the tide is out. Then, as the tide comes back in, the water heats up a couple of degrees from the hot sand. It still won’t be warm by more southern standards, but at least warmer than at other times.

TIP #3: Try to go at low tide, when the sand goes out for what seems like miles, and don’t forget to take your sandcastle-building tools. Check out the Tide Forecast website for the tide schedule.

Vancouver from Spanish Banks at Low Tide
Spanish Banks at Low Tide (with a zoom lens)

Other Information

Click the following link to learn more about Metro Vancouver’s Top Beaches (including Jericho, Locarno and Kitsilano all nearby).

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