A highly evocative neighborhood of excellent character bars and a smattering of good restaurants, Gastown is Vancouver’s best old-town area. The Victorian era resonates in the cobblestone streets, antique lamps and old buildings, adding to the neighborhood’s distinctive ambiance.
Gastown is the place to pay your respects to Vancouver’s founding father, "Gassy" Jack Deighton, as a bronze statue of his likeness salutes Maple Tree Square. On Water Street stands the famous Steam Clock, a charming little artifact, built to resemble London's Big Ben. The neighborhood has also become a hotbed for local designer-owned shops, drawing a new crowd of regulars to the area. Travelers can pop into the art galleries along Water and Hastings streets and perhaps find a piece of beautiful, hand-carved First Nations art.
Microbreweries and brewpubs have also sprung up around the area in recent years, with many of Vancouver's best beer havens found in Gastown. Steamworks is a Gastown staple that brews its own beers onsite, while Irish Heather, one of the city’s best and most authentic Irish pubs, is convivial enough to make you want to stay all night.