Closely linked to the Pacific Rim, Vancouver has more direct flights to China than any other North American city, and more than 40 percent of the population in metropolitan Vancouver is of Asian descent. These strong Asian influences permeate the city, from business culture to food. In particular, the Vancouver region has hundreds of Chinese restaurants, many serving high-end cuisine that rivals the fare in Hong Kong, Taipei, and Beijing.

The Richmond Night Market. Photo © Carolyn Heller.

The Richmond Night Market. Photo © Carolyn Heller.

The Vancouver region has hundreds of Chinese restaurants, many serving high-end cuisine that rivals the fare in Hong Kong, Taipei, and Beijing.Chinatown, near the city center, was once a vibrant immigrant community. While it still has Chinese markets, bakeries, and restaurants, new hip shops and eateries have moved in, making the neighborhood fun to explore but not necessarily the best place for traditional Asian meals.

For that, hop on the Canada Line to Richmond, the region’s new Chinatown, where dozens of restaurants serve cuisines from across China. It’s a 25-minute ride from downtown.

Whether you’re looking for spicy Sichuan or Hunan fare, handmade noodles and dumplings like you’d see in Shanghai, delicately seasoned Cantonese seafood, or the hearty lamb dishes of China’s western provinces, you’ll find it in Richmond. Cafés serving bubble tea and Taiwanese shaved ice desserts draw a young crowd, while families pack the round tables of countless dim sum houses. Richmond’s Alexandra Road, which runs for several blocks east from No. 3 Road, has so many restaurants that it’s known locally as “Food Street.”

The center of Richmond’s Asian food scene is the Golden Village, along No. 3 Road from Cambie Road south toward Granville Avenue. From the Canada Line, get off at Aberdeen (note that the mall here, Aberdeen Centre, has one of the best Asian food courts for delicious budget eats), Lansdowne, or Richmond/Brighouse stations, and you’ll find plenty to eat.

Color map of Downtown Vancouver, BC

Downtown Vancouver


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver and Canadian Rockies Road Trip.