The Lost Souls of Gastown is an excellent walking tour with Forbidden Vancouver. Its actor guide leads guests through Vancouver’s famous old-town neighbourhood.
For the tour’s official website, and to book your experience, visit the forbiddenvancouver.ca website.
Forbidden Vancouver’s Lost Souls of Gastown
Forbidden Vancouver shares fascinating stories through a variety of guided walking tours. The guides take groups of people around different areas within the City of Vancouver. You can sign up and go on your own, or you can sign up with a group of friends. You can book a private tour if you want, but normally each tour is open to anyone that wants to join (up to a maximum number of participants).
The company’s most popular offering is their Lost Souls of Gastown Walking Tour. As its name implies, the tour is all about Gastown and its history. The famous historic district is the city’s oldest neighbourhood, and it’s full of interesting stories.
The Lost Souls of Gastown tour is a unique way to explore Gastown. Led by a professional actor, the experience provides entertaining insight into some of the city’s darkest times, from fires to plagues, gambling dens, brothels and scandals. Whether you’re a tourist or a local, the tour is definitely worth checking out. It’s entertaining, fun and educational. It’s also a bit spooky in parts!
The Lost Souls of Gastown Walking Tour begins at the corner of Water Street and West Cordova Street in the heart of Gastown. It starts just outside Monaco Cafe, located at 356 Water Street, which is just a couple of blocks from Waterfront Station. In total, the experience runs for about 90 minutes, although sometimes for a little bit longer.
To book your tour, visit the Forbidden Vancouver website.
Schedule and Admission
As of the summer of 2023, the Lost Souls of Gastown Walking Tour runs every day at 7:00 pm. Extra tours are also offered on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at peak times of the year beginning at 8:00 pm.
Tickets for the walking tours are available online. The experience costs $32 for adults. Seniors (ages 65+) and youth (ages 18 and under) pay $29, so a few dollars less than adults. For the experience you’ll get, it’s a very good deal.
What to Expect
While on the Lost Souls of Gastown Walking Tour, you can expect to follow an enthusiastic guide through the streets and alleys of Gastown. You’ll feel like you’re all the way back in the 1800s.
Participants get to learn about old murders, disasters and diseases throughout Gastown’s history. There are tales of the Great Fire, smallpox outbreaks, hauntings, women of the Gold Rush, and more. Stories shared on the tour are historically accurate, at least for the most part, and based on historical facts. You’ll learn a lot about Vancouver’s early history!
The walking experience isn’t necessarily scary, but it is described as chilling and eerie. Without spoiling too much, the finale of the tour is also something to look forward to.
To book your tour, visit the Forbidden Vancouver website.
Lost Souls of Gastown Video
For an idea of what to expect on a Lost Souls of Gastown tour, check out the following promotional video. It shows a few scenes of people on the tour listening to the guide in her period costume. Mostly though, it’ll give you an idea of some of the stories and periods of Vancouver history covered on the tour.
Tips and Advice
The following tips are good to know before going on the Lost Souls of Gastown Walking Tour.
Things to Know in Advance
TIP #1: Each booking can be cancelled for a full refund up to 24 hours before the tour. If you cancel after that period of grace, you’ll only be able to reschedule for another day.
TIP #2: There are several parking lots nearby. However, we recommend taking public transit just in case the area is busy. The tours begin less than a block away from Waterfront Station. It’s a very convenient location with easy access to SkyTrains, the SeaBus and busses. If paying to park your car, be sure to pay for enough time. Parkades can be better than street parking because they don’t have maximum 2-hour time limits.
TIP #3: The tour takes about 90 minutes, but potentially up to two hours, and there aren’t any breaks. If you don’t want to miss any part of the experience, be sure to use the washroom before the tour starts.
TIP #4: For the most part, the route is a flat and leisurely stroll. However, be prepared to walk for about 1.5 km in total. Wear comfortable shoes and bring a jacket if the weather calls for one. The route is easy to follow in an electric wheelchair. There is one section, however, where pushing a regular wheelchair can be a bit of a challenge.
TIP #5: Because of its mature content (which includes descriptions of devastating fires, death, murder, crimes and prostitution), the tours are not recommended for folks ages 11 and under.
Other Tips & Things to Know
TIP #6: If you enjoy the tour and your guide puts on a memorable performance, tips are accepted and appreciated.
TIP #7: We highly recommend the Lost Souls of Gastown tour to both tourists and locals any time of the year. If you’re looking for a fun, spooky and entertaining experience to do in the Halloween season, October is an exceptional time to do this tour. It’s a popular event at its peak season, however, so be sure to book your tickets well in advance.
To learn more about the Lost Souls of Gastown Walking Tour, and the company’s various other tours, visit the Forbidden Vancouver website.
For information about other walking tours offered by the same company, see our articles about Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours, the Dark Secrets of Stanley Park and Really Gay History Tours. For even more information, and to book tickets, check out the following on Forbidden Vancouver’s website:
- Lost Souls of Gastown Tour
- Dark Secrets of Stanley Park Tour
- Really Gay History Tour
- Forbidden Vancouver Tour
- Monumental Scandals Tour
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Vancouver’s Historic Gastown
- City of Vancouver
- Vancouver’s Best Bars and Restaurants
- Festival and Events in Metro Vancouver