A fantastic business and leisure destination with historical sites, coastal beauty and a mild year-round climate, Richmond offers easy access to Vancouver and a culture all its own. Richmond's diverse setting is heavily influenced by its 65 percent Asian-Canadian population, which can be seen in such areas as its Golden Village neighborhood, a bustling commercial district located in the heart of Richmond. The city is known for its sumptuous, award-winning authentic Chinese food, served in its more than 400 Asian restaurants, including those on Alexandra Road, which is also known as "Food Street."
Richmond offers a unique mix of metropolitan amenities, historical charm and green space. The city is home to more than 100 parks and green spaces, as well as 50 miles of connected dyke trails, cycling routes and walkways. Approximately 38 percent of Richmond's land is protected under the Agricultural Land Reserve, which enables the city to serve as Canada's largest cranberry producer and a strong viticulture destination. Many of Richmond's local wineries utilize the region's local berries. One example, LuLu Island Winery, is known for its ice wines and has an "East meets West" approach in its Chinese wine-making techniques that produces aromatic wines using local berries.
Richmond's Asian influence can be seen at its International Buddhist Temple, which serves as one of the largest Buddhist temples in North America. Guests can participate in lectures, events, ceremonies and classes that explore enlightenment and meditation, as well as wander through its devotional buildings and gardens; and dine on its vegetarian cuisine.
Richmond's historic fishing heritage can be experienced firsthand at the popular Steveston Village and Fisherman's Wharf. Once a salmon-canning center, the village now serves as Canada's largest commercial fishing hub and a quaint destination for whale-watching cruises, boutique shopping, dining and bike-riding.
Speaking of shopping, Richmond is home to two wildly popular night markets, the Summer Night market and the Richmond Night Market. Welcoming more than one million visitors each year, the markets serve as one of the most popular night market events in North America and the largest multi-cultural event in Canada.
Touring Richmond can work up quite the appetite, so it's a good thing that the city is home to a strong, multi-cultural culinary scene, with many fine restaurants that offer group dining space. Steveston Village is home to the French-inspired Tapenade Bistro, elegant Blue Canoe and modern Euro-Asian Mandalay Lounge & Restaurant. Other must-visits include Jade Seafood Restaurant, which serves exotic and traditional Chinese cuisine, while The Boathouse Restaurant specializes in sustainable, local and fresh ingredients, as well as fresh seafood from the British Columbia coast and around the world.
Although many call Richmond a City of the Future, its sense of community is very much rooted in the present. Celebrations such as Canada Day (July 1) and Chinese New Year (end Jan/early Feb) always include special events such as a crowd-pleasing salmon bake in Steveston, or a colorful Dragon Dance parade. And throughout the year, Steveston hosts a vibrant bi-monthly Sunday Farmers & Artisan market.