A 20-minute drive from Vancouver International Airport, Steveston is a historic fishing village at the southwestern tip of Richmond whose maritime heritage, natural landscapes, and exciting culinary scene invite visitors to explore. Dating back to the 1880s, the waterfront destination was once known as one of Canada’s most prolific salmon canning centers. Today’s Steveston remains a busy commercial fishing harbor while its well-preserved 20th-century buildings and wooden boardwalks along the Fraser River serve as magnets for the tourism and film industries.

With opportunities to immerse yourself in local events, bask in the coastal atmosphere, and savor some of the freshest seafood you’ll ever eat, spring is the ideal time to visit Steveston.

Get the inside scoop on Richmond’s great outdoors.

Photo: Tourism Richmond

As warmer weather and longer days arrive, Richmond comes to life with blooming flowers and greenery that make spring the perfect season for time spent outside. And Steveston’s location on the southwest corner of the island, bordered by water and greenspaces, provides easy access to it all.

Start any spring day on the 3.7-mile West Dyke Trail for a dose of fresh air, activity, and vistas spanning from the surrounding marshlands to the Gulf Islands and mountains farther afield. As you stroll or pedal the flat gravel path, stop at the many benches along the trail to soak in the scenery. If you’re looking for bike rentals, Village Bikes in the heart of Steveston has you covered.

The West Dyke Trail is also popular among birdwatchers, especially in the spring when some 1.4 million birds return to British Columbia via the Pacific Flyway. If you’re new to birdwatching and not sure where to start, join a guided tour with expert birder Liron Gertsman. With over 15 years of experience in the area, Gertsman will teach you the ropes and ensure you have a good time.

Hop on a Zodiac boat for a three- to five-hour adventure through the photogenic Gulf and San Juan Islands. You may spot gray and humpback whales, as well as other marine wildlife such as porpoises, orcas, seals, and sea lions. Richmond’s whale-watching season kicks off in April and continues through October, making spring an excellent time to join a tour with Steveston Seabreeze Adventures or Vancouver Whale Watch.

To make like a local, take a stroll down the Steveston Harbour Boardwalk while enjoying a cup of coffee or frozen yogurt. Combining waterfront views with rich maritime history, the boardwalk stretches from the heart of the village to the Britannia Shipyards National Historic Site, where you’ll find souvenir shops, cozy cafes, and seafood restaurants, in addition to a fascinating history lesson. Explore the site’s collection of well-preserved boatyards, bunkhouses, and residences dating back to the mid-1800s. Other recommended stops along the harbor include the Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site, once the largest salmon cannery in British Columbia, and Imperial Landing Waterfront Park, where anglers cast their lines from the floating dock.

Celebrate spring’s bounty in Steveston.

Photo: Tourism Richmond

From cherry blossom festivals to farmers markets, there’s no shortage of opportunities to take advantage spring’s abundance, not to mention Richmond’s cultural diversity, in and around Steveston.

With large grassy fields, log-strewn beaches, and a Japanese garden honoring the first Japanese immigrant to arrive in the area in the late 1800s, the 75-acre Garry Point Park opens to broad views of the Fraser River and the distant Gulf Islands. It’s a popular spot for picnics and kiting, and in spring the waterfront park bursts into a display of color as more than 250 Akebono cherry trees blossom. Join the local community in admiring the blooms and celebrating Japanese culture at the Richmond Cherry Blossom Festival. Calligraphy and origami demos, along with performances by taiko drummers and dancers, add to the festive vibe.

Spring also welcomes the return of the long-running Steveston Farmers & Artisans Market, which kicks off on May 5 this year and takes place every second Sunday through September. Shop for baked goods, crafts, and locally grown produce against a backdrop of live music. And for even more high-quality produce — such as beets, garlic, kale, and fresh-cut flowers — don’t miss Athiana Acres. Open since 2022, the farm also runs a weekly farmers market starting in June where you can shop for goods.

Score wharf-to-table seafood with waterfront views.

Blue Canoe Richmond BC Canada

Photo: Tourism Richmond

Steveston Harbour is the heart of British Columbia’s fishing industry, hosting hundreds of commercial fishing vessels. Translation: Restaurants serve fresh seafood year-round, and come spring you can begin to enjoy it outdoors.

Spring also brings the highly anticipated spot prawn season, which typically runs from May to June. When planning your visit, be sure to look into the Steveston Spot Prawn and Seafood Celebration for the most up-to-date details on culinary festivities. During the season, participating restaurants serve exclusive dishes showcasing spot prawns, and chefs take part in cooking demonstrations to share seafood-handling tips. Outside of the season, visitors can still enjoy a bounty of fresh seafood that’s available throughout the spring months, including Dungeness crab, halibut, sablefish, and sea urchin.

To recharge after your outdoor excursions, try a pint of the refreshing and fruity Adrift Blonde Ale, a staple at Britannia Brewing Company. Pair it with unique coastal fare like the oven-baked wild sablefish with truffle cream or the Steveston spaghettini, featuring a medley of sockeye salmon, sablefish, and mussels. To sample the local seafood Japanese-style, head to Ichiro. Grab a bento box to take to Garry Point Park, or dive into steaming bowls of udon topped with crunchy tempura and rice bowls with succulent sashimi.

For the full waterfront experience, Catch Kitchen + Bar serves up pretty views of Steveston’s harbor from its rooftop patio, alongside hearty seafood dishes like shellfish steamed with white wine and Alaskan king crab legs served with rice and vegetables. Nearby Pajo’s Fish & Chips is one of the wharf’s most popular options for a casual seafood meal, especially on sunny days. The restaurant plates up sustainable, Ocean Wise fish and chips — including wild sockeye, cod, and halibut — plus bottomless fries from a floating dock.

But to really get a taste of what Steveston Village is all about, you have to check out Fisherman’s Wharf. This is where local fishing boats dock when they come back from a haul to sell their fresh and frozen catches directly to the public. What better way to connect with your food, right at the source? Fisherman’s Wharf is open 7 days a week, with offerings ranging from salmon to halibut to prawns (and much more!), based on what’s in-season. Check the Steveston Harbour Authority site for details during your visit.

After taking in the sights and scenes, learning about the local history, and indulging in as much seafood as your visit allows, you’ll see why spring is the season to enjoy the best of Steveston Village in Richmond, BC.