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Granville Island: Off the Beaten Path With Your Kids

If you’ve got kids and you’ve been to Granville Island, you’ve probably spent more time at the Kids Market than you care to recall. While the Kids Market is certainly worth the visit, a trip to the Island does not necessarily have to include tantrums in the toy store and meltdowns outside of the candy shop. Granville Island is full of shops, restaurants and activities that are enjoyable for parents and kids alike, but which may not automatically come to mind when planning your day there.

We All Need to Eat

There are many places on Granville Island to grab a quick bite to eat, but sometimes (especially when you’ve got the kids with you) you don’t want to fight the crowds for the table while herding your family through throngs of people all while balancing a lunch tray with one hand.  If a more civilized sit-down experience is what you’re after, give Edible a try.  This bright and casual bistro opened in the summer of 2011 and specializes in fresh, local food.  Not only are their menus fit for a foodie, but its also a pretty decent place to take a child.  Their kids menu is fun and tasty, they always seem to be able to accommodate a stroller, and will equip your little one with a full colouring book and crayons once seated.

Island Adventures

No trip to Granville Island is complete without a spin through the Public Market.  While this can be harrowing at times, trying to navigate the crowded passageways with distracted children in tow, it can also be tremendously fun to show the little ones such a variety of goods: fruits, vegetables, fish, meat, cheese, pasta, cakes, cookies…I could go on and on.  Make a game of it and allow your child to buy one item that they have never tried before.  You may end up spending a few dollars on exotic fruit that you don’t know how to eat, but the experience will continue on at home as you share a new adventure with your child.

Kids love watching the boats at Granville Island.  Even better, why not take your child on a boat ride?   The False Creek Ferry has several routes throughout False Creek with two departure points on the Island.  Hop on and head across the water to downtown, or just take a sightseeing round-trip.

For kids aged three and up, it is well worth it to try to coordinate your next trip to Granville Island with a show at the Carousel Theatre. This year’s theatre productions include classics like The Wizard of Oz and The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Granville Island

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Foot of Granville Street, under the Granville Bridge

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