Walking Tours of Vancouver

John Atkin is a civic historian and author who organizes and conduct tours for groups and individuals.  John has explored Vancouver like few others have and offers an  interesting and offbeat insight to the city's architecture, history and neighbourhoods. He has created, and conducts, a number of unique and popular walking tours throughout the City of Vancouver.

John brings an insight of urban planning and development, a love of architecture, and the fascination of the curious to all his tours. the walks take approximately 2 hours - depending on the group size and route - and are organized year round. Tours cost 10 dollars per person. Custom tours can also be organized for groups or individuals, contact John for information. Please note for groups smaller than ten, there's a 100 dollar minimum charge.

Walks | Talks | Events


Heritage Foundation Walks

The Zero Point - Ontario Street (+ a bit of Carrall): Burrard waterfront to the Fraser River

In this series of walks we're exploring Ontario Street, the zero point for street addresses in Vancouver. It was the timber lease boundary for the Hasting Mill and later the eastern boundary of the CPR's massive 6000 acre land grant. We're walking the street and looking at the variety of architecture, streets and neighbourhoods found along the way.

Saturday July 2 - Where's 24th?
Saturday July 16 - Next to the Mountain, the Edge of Queen Elizabeth Park
Saturday July 30 - Church and School
Saturday August 6 - Sunset and Golf
Saturday October 1 - Specials and More
Saturday October 15 - Industry and the River

Booking is essential. Details are on the Heritage Foundation's website.

Hastings Street On Your Lunch Hour

The VHF is partnering with the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association to offer a series of free short lunch time walking tours of Hastings Street.
July 8, 15, 22 and August 5, 19, 26
Meet at The Perch, Lot 19 (W. Hastings St. at Howe St.)
Registration begins at 12 noon, walk at 12:15pm

Wednesday Night Heritage Walks

This summer we're looking at some quirky bits of the city. Walks start at 7:00pm and cost 10 bucks.  No reservations, just show up at the location listed.

July 13 - Strathcona: the other side of the tracks
The area between the CN tracks and Clark Drive is an interesting and eclectic piece of the Strathcona neighbourhood. On this walk we'll explore the area's history and development.

- meet at the corner of East Georgia and Campbell Ave.

July 27 - America comes to Vancouver: Beverly Crescent's Federal style houses
Beverly Crescent and the surrounding streets in Second Shaughnessy were built out in the 1920s, right at the peak of the American Colonial Revival. Today the street retains some beautiful and intact examples of this style.

- meet at the corner of Beverly Crescent and 32nd Ave.

August 10 - The West End:  From Tudor Manor to Dingbats
On this walk we'll be looking at the variety of apartment buildings build in the neighbourhood after the zoning change in 1927

- meet at the corner of Pacific and Jervis

August 24 - Heading South: A Grab Bag of Style
Large lots, a few winding roads, no curbs and a whole bunch of architecture from good to "interesting"

- meet at the corner of 58th and Hudson



Our Hycroft talk in the Fall for the Heritage Foundation is on the early history of Chinatown. We'll be looking at the origins and development of the early community. Check the Heritage Foundation's website for dates and ticket information



How to Research Your House
It's a chance to learn some secrets about how to find information on the previous life of your house. Presented by the Vancouver Heritage Foundation and the Vancouver Archives. Check the Heritage Foundation's website for dates and ticket information

UBC Continuing Studies

October 22 to November 19   Strathcona - Vancouver's Oldest and Newest Neighbourhood: In this course we will explore the history and development of the Strathcona neighbourhood. From an early neighbourhood of tidy homes to industrial zoning, threats of urban renewal and destruction brought by a freeway, Strathcona has emerged today as a place where innovative zoning shows the way for the rest of the city on how to create livable density through heritage preservation.

February 25th to March 25th - The Heights: Hills, Bumps and Real Estate: Real estate promotion in the early city tried all manner of gimmicks to attract buyers. With the announcement of the Shaughnessy Heights subdivision by the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1907, promoters were quick to attach a ‘Heights' to their property. We’ll explore some of the areas promoted in this manner and look at how they have developed since they were advertised and pitch to prospective purchasers.

Check UBC's Continuing Studies site for information on upcoming courses and registration information.


And the best little museum in Vancouver is the Hastings Mill Museum


Interested in London?

September is when we go to London for a week of walks. Drop us a line if you are interested in being on the list.

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Heritage Consulting

I provide Statements of Significance, Conservation Plans, Heritage Assessments and more for heritage properties.

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Did You Know?

A few fun facts and other bits of information about Vancouver.

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changing vancouver

Changing Vancouver

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