Vancouver might be best-known for its outdoors activities but this hip, young, innovative city delivers plenty of entertainment once the sun goes down.

Gone are the days of prohibition-era liquor laws (well, most, anyway) and the general loosening of regulations has helped liven up the city after dark. When you add in a surge of modern craft breweries, wine bars implementing the latest technology, a lively mix of festivals throughout the year, and the inspiration of a fantastic wine region nearby (the Okanagan),Vancouver's nightlife scene looks as fit as any seawall runner.

In nice weather, Vancouver is all about the patios—preferably waterfront. Otherwise, the younger set migrates to dance clubs while more laid-back types gather in friendly pubs (perhaps to watch the hockey game), live music venues hosting up-and-coming stars, and splashy cocktail bars where savvy mixologists cultivate city-wide followings.

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  • 1. Long Table Distillery

    Downtown | Wine Bars

    A 14-foot communal table crafted from a redwood plank is the heart of this tasting room and distillery, which produces small-batch gins, vodka...Read More

  • 2. Pourhouse Vancouver

    Gastown | Bars/Pubs

    The brick-and-beam 1910 architecture, antiques, and a 38-foot bar are in keeping with the menu of classic cocktails. Most are inspired by the...Read More

  • 3. Richmond Night Market

    Gathering Places

    About 80 food vendors, carnival rides, and a children's amusement area are among the attractions at this night market (open Friday to Sunday...Read More

  • 4. Tap & Barrel

    Downtown | Bars/Pubs

    The 360-degree views from this convention center patio take in Stanley Park, the seaplane terminal, and the North Shore Mountains. You can sit...Read More

  • 5. The Diamond

    Gastown | Tapas Bars

    At the top of a narrow staircase above Maple Tree Square, the Diamond occupies the second floor of one of the city's oldest buildings. A cool...Read More

  • 6. The Keefer Bar

    Chinatown | Bars/Pubs

    The Keefer Bar has fully capitalized on its Chinatown connection, using ingredients sourced from local herbalists (magnolia bark anyone?)—ginseng...Read More

  • 7. The Portside Pub

    Gastown | Bars/Pubs

    Nautical kitsch and a friendly maritimer bent woo many a land lover to the Portside Pub. Live bands, weekend DJs, and whiskey on tap handily...Read More

  • 8. 1181

    West End | Bars/Pubs

    This place is all about sleek interior design—plush sofas, glass coffee tables, wood-paneled ceiling—and standard cocktails (think caipirinhas...Read More

  • 9. 33 Acres Brewing Company

    Mt. Pleasant | Brewpubs/Beer Gardens

    This bright tasting room attracts creatives and techies who work in this once industrial, now trendy neighborhood. A crowded layout of communal...Read More

  • 10. Alibi Room

    Gastown | Bars/Pubs

    If beer is your thing, head to Alibi, which specializes in pairing beer with your meal. Kegs of microbrews from around BC and beyond are the...Read More

  • 11. Bacchus

    Downtown | Piano Bars

    Always an elegant choice, the lounge at Bacchus, in the Wedgewood Hotel, is a gathering place for Vancouver's movers and shakers. There's music...Read More

  • 12. Backstage Lounge

    Granville Island | Live Music

    Local bands of varying genres—from jazz to tribute bands—perform most nights. Even though the music is hit or miss, the drink specials are cheap...Read More

  • 13. Bar None

    Yaletown | Dance Clubs

    Once you hit Bar None you never really have to leave Yaletown. This longtime favorite is the place to get your groove on after dinner and drinks...Read More

  • 14. Biercraft

    East Side | Bars/Pubs

    With more than 50 Belgian, craft, and draft beers, the drinks menu here is a lengthy read, and there are wine and cocktails as well. A street...Read More

  • 15. Biltmore Cabaret

    Mt. Pleasant | Live Music

    A favorite hangout for dance parties and live music, the Biltmore Cabaret hosts a mix of local bands, international performers, and burlesque...Read More

  • 16. Brassneck Brewery

    Mt. Pleasant | Brewpubs/Beer Gardens

    Long, lean, and creatively wood-paneled, this is among a fresh crop of Main Street breweries leading the craft beer resurgence. The brewery...Read More

  • 17. Bridges

    Granville Island | Bars/Pubs

    This bright yellow landmark near the Granville Public Market has a cozy nautical-theme pub and the city's biggest marina-side deck. In warm...Read More

  • 18. Caprice

    Downtown | Dance Clubs

    The young and hip queue up at this former movie theater that's been transformed into a two-level dance bar and lounge. The LED bar, with backlit...Read More

  • 19. Cascade Room

    Mt. Pleasant | Bars/Pubs

    Named after the signature beer the Vancouver Brewery once produced on this very spot, the Cascade Room is a usually busy Main Street lounge...Read More

  • 20. Celebrities

    West End | Dance Clubs

    True to its name, since the 1980s this gay hot spot has had celeb cred. Expect to find a young, scantily clad crowd bumping and grinding to...Read More

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