The city of Coquitlam is located north of Surrey, west of Maple Ridge and just 30-40 minutes east of Vancouver. It is part of British Columbia’s Tri-Cities (Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam). And it is the 6th-largest among the 52 cities of the province with its area of152 square kilometres which are six times greater than the other cities of Tri-Cities.
It’s one of the fastest-growing with a population of around 139,000 in 2016 that is expected to hit around 179,000 by 2021. The city name means “small red salmon” as the red salmons routinely travel through the Coquitlam river.
Coquitlam offers an abundance of outdoor activities like hiking, biking and fishing. With its 37,000 acres land area, about 17 acres are allotted for parks, agricultural and recreational areas. The shopping, dining, and entertainment options abound in this progressive city with a great history and mix of cultures.
The Coast Salish were the first inhabitants who still lives and supports the locals and organizations about taking care of the Coquitlam area. The river and lake are abundant in natural resources that helped sufficed the first nation’s needs.
The first European settlers arrived in the area in the 1860s, although Simon Fraser visited the area in 1808.
The Fraser Canyon Gold Rush of 1857 swept through the region after gold was discovered on the Thompson River. It lasted for about three years. Americans, Chinese, Canadians and other foreigners were among the first to notice the rush.
In 1891, the District of Coquitlam was established and in 1908, establishments had been built gradually improving with just around 20 houses, a post office, hospital and barbershop. A Sikh temple and a pool hall had also been built around the mill. It was built as a mill manager’s residence, which later became Place des Arts.
Coquitlam’s downtown is located in the Northern area. The growth in north Coquitlam in recent years has been primarily residential, but the goal is to bring in more companies to improve the area. The offices, businesses and combined nature and commercial buildings are still on their progressive path.
It is home to the largest mall in the Tri-Cities, the Coquitlam Centre. featuring over 200 retails, shops, restaurants and services on its 84,000 square meters of land. It is located south, near the transit station and other smaller shopping centres.
The Henderson Place Mall is a unique Chinese-themed mall with a size of over 22,000 square metres. Pinetree Village is another popular shopping centre in the city with more than 20 shops and services. Other smaller shopping centres in Coquitlam include Como Lake Village, Westwood Mall and Westwood Plateau Village.
The Value Village offers second-hand products from small household items to furniture. For gifts and souvenirs, Giftland and Spencer’s both offer wide options to find gifts from small crafted accessories to plushies and toys to household goods.
The city is packed with restaurants from casual to fine dining experience; A&W, ABC County Restaurant and Austin Gourmet are just some of the many great dining within the city.
For baked goods, coffee, pastries and desserts, try Awesome Place Coffee and Dessert, BjornBar Bakery, Café Delitzi and Café Bono.
For a taste of Asian cuisines, check out Bukchigo Jangguchigo, Big Chicken Town, BB.Q Chicken and Banshan BBQ for Korean restaurant and BBQs, a mix of Korean-Chinese restaurant – Bbong Restaurant, the Japanese restaurants Bento-Sushi and Best Sushi-N-Kitchen, Bubble Waffle Cafe, Chada Thai Fine Cuisine, Chuan Yang Gourmet Food and Chuan Chili House for Chinese cuisine and Bubble World for Asian teas and dessert.
Parks and Trails
Coquitlam is a great place to settle down because of all the outdoor activities, outings, and great food that it offers. Enjoy the mall, parks, and museums but if you want to avoid people you can go to the highlands, rivers, and other natural attractions if you prefer to be around them.
- Alouette Park(485 Alouette Drive) Amenities: Playground.
- Blue Jay Park(1625 Blue Jay Place) Amenities: Playground.
- Blue Mountain Park(975 King Albert Avenue) Amenities: Playground, sports field, conference rooms and library, picnic areas, an outdoor pool and spray park, and walking trails.
- Bramble Park(2775 Panorama Drive) Amenities: Playground, sports field, dog off-leash areas and trails.
- Brookmere Park(t565 Austin Avenue) Amenities: Sports fields and courts, picnic areas and trails.
- Burke Mountain Pioneer Park(1428 Collins Road) Amenities: Sports fields, basketball court and community garden.
- Burns Park(802 Edgar Avenue) Amenities: Playground and spray park.
- Burquitlam Community Garden Park(515 Ebert Avenue) Amenities: Community Garden.
- Cape Horn Park(186 San Juan Place) Amenities: Playground
- Como Lake Park(700 Gatensbury Street) Amenities: Fishing lake, lakeside trail and playground.
- Coquitlam River Park(1190 Shaughnessy Street) Amenities: Walking trail and river fishing.
- Cottonwood Park(672 Aspen Street) Amenities: Spray park, basketball court and playground.
- Crane Park(2060 Crane Avenue) Amenities: Picnic areas.
- Dacre Park(2884 Dacre Avenue) Amenities: Greenspace and playfield.
- Crestwood Park(907 Crestwood Drive) Amenities: Playground and basketball court.
- Dawes Hill Park(2215 Dawes Hill Road) Amenities: Playground and trails.
- Eagle Mountain Park(1799 Eagle Mountain Drive) Amenities: Sports fields and trails.
- Eagle Ridge Lacrosse Box(2675 Guildford Way) Amenities: Lacrosse box and Pickleball area.
- Eagle Ridge Outdoor Pool(2689 Guildford Way) Amenities: Outdoor pool.
- Eagle Ridge Park(2635 Runnel Drive) Amenities: Community garden, sports fields, playground and trails.
- Galette Park(3252 Galette Avenue) Amenities: River fishing.
- Galloway Park(3404 Galloway Avenue) Amenities: Playground, spray park, trails and a basketball court.
- Glen Park(1149 Westwood Street) Amenities: Playground, trails, picnic areas and a dog off-leash area.
- Good Neighbour Park(1415 Foster Avenue) Amenities: Playground.
- Guilby Park(345 Guilby Street) Amenities: Playground.
- Hampton Park(1760 Paddock Drive) Amenities: Playground, sports field and trail.
- Harrier Park(2573 Harrier Drive) Amenities: Playground.
- Hickey Park(320 Hickey Drive) Amenities: Sports fields.
- Hockaday Park(3318 McTavish Court) Amenities: River fishing, playground and walking trails.
- Hoy Creek Linear Park(Walton Avenue and Barnet Highway) Amenities: Trails and is home to Hoy Creek Fish Hatchery.
- Inspiration Garden(Guildford Way and Pipeline Road) Amenities: Community garden.
- Lower Lougheed Park(576 Alderson Avenue) Amenities: Playground, a basketball court and trail.
- Mackin Park(1046 Brunette Avenue) Amenities: Sports fields, playground, spray park and skateboard facility.
- Maquabeak Park(5 Burbidge Street) Amenities: River fishing and boat launching.
- Marguerite Park(1480 Marguerite Street) Amenities: Playground.
- Mariner Park(2985 Mariner Way) Amenities: Playground, sports fields, and trails.
- Meadowbrook Park(3000 Maplebrook Place) Amenities: Playground.
- Millard Orchard Park(3360 Millard Avenue) Amenities: Sports fields and playground.
- Miller Park(900 Oakview Street) Amenities: Playground, sports fields and dog off-leash area.
- Mountain View Park(751 Smith Avenue) Amenities: Sports field and sports equipment.
- Mundy Park(641 Hillcrest Street) Amenities: Playground, sports field, trails, an outdoor pool and dog off-leash area.
- Nestor Park(1270 Nestor Street) Amenities: Playground.
- Noons Creek Park(2500 Panorama Drive) Amenities: Picnic areas and playground.
- Norm Staff Park(3320 David Avenue) Amenities: Spray park, a basketball court and playground.
- Oakdale Park(835 North Road) Amenities: Playground.
- Ozada Park(3201 Ozada Avenue) Amenities: Playground.
- Panorama Park(1485 Johnson Street) Amenities: Sports fields, playground, spray park and picnic areas.
- Poirier Civic Grounds / Park(624 Poirier Street) Amenities: Playground, rose garden and sports fields.
- Princeton Park(1398 Maguerite Street) Amenities: Playground and picnic areas.
- Queenston Park(3415 Queenston Avenue) Amenities: A basketball court, playground and trails.
- Ranch Park(3060 Daybreak Avenue) Amenities: Playground.
- Riley Park(1315 Riley Street) Amenities: Playground and picnic areas.
- Riverview Park(728 Clearwater Way) Amenities: Playground, sports fields and trails.
- Robson Park(1420 Pinetree Way) Amenities: Playground, sports fields and trails.
- Rochester Park(1390 Rochester Avenue) Amenities: Playground, sports fields, trails and spray park.
- Selkirk Park(928 Selkirk Crescent)
- Shiloh Park(2992 Shiloh Place) Amenities: Playground.
- Smiling Creek Park(3456 Princeton Avenue) Amenities: Playground and trails.
- Spirit Square(3000 Burlington Drive) Amenities: Picnic areas.
- Tanglewood Park(1533 Tanglewood Lane) Amenities: Playground.
- Town Centre Park(1299 Pinetree Way) Amenities: Playground, sports fields, trails and spray park.
- Turnberry Park(2208 Turnberry Lane) Amenities: Basketball and playground.
- Victoria Park(3435 Victoria Drive) Amenities: Sports field, playground and skateboard facility.
- Westwood Summit Park(1342 Honeysuckle Lane) Amenities: Playground.
- Coquitlam Crunch Trail(2635 Runnel Drive) – a famous stair climb exercise also known as Coquitlam Crunch which offers around 890 steps, accessible through Eagle Ridge Park and Bramble Park.
- Deboville Slough Trail(4100 Cedar Drive) – a 4-kilometre length trail with calming scenery of nature, coastal mountains and river.
- Durant Linear Park(2860 Nash Drive) – this park is a great alternative for the Coquitlam Crunch. It features stairs good for stair climbing exercises, walking trails with a garden display.
- Harper Park(3510 Harper Road) – it is a park with picnic areas located at Burke’s Mountain linking it to many trail networks that are perfect for hiking and biking.
- Leigh Park(1254 Soball Street) – a neighbourhood park with picnic areas and trails for walking and cycling off-road. It also has a dog off-leash area.
- North Hoy Creek Park(2231 Parkway Boulevard) – a 14-acre forest land perfect for people looking for trails.
- Pacific Reach / Don Roberts Park(1780 United Boulevard) – a nature trail that allows river fishing.
- Ridge Park(1685 Parkway Boulevard) – a park that offers many trail networks and dog off-leash areas.
- Riverview Forest(501 Mariner Way) – a 60-acre forest land with many trail networks ideal for walking, jogging and biking.
- Scott Creek Linear Park(2695 Runnel Drive)
- Walton Park(1255 Durant Drive)
- Canada Day– an event celebrated across Canada that takes place every 1st of July. It includes family-friendly fun, entertainment, live music and fireworks display.
- Culture Days– it is also one of the events celebrated across Canada. It’s a celebration of Canada’s rich history, culture and arts.
- Kaleidoscope Arts Festival –an event mainly about arts featuring the city’s heritage and art galleries for exhibits and art activities. It also includes live concerts and performers.
- Lights at Lafarge –a Christmas attraction where parks and public areas are decorated with hundreds of Christmas lights. It usually runs from November until January
- National Indigenous Peoples Day– an event held every 21st of June celebrating Canada’s history, culture and recognition of the First Nations.
- Neighbourhood Nights –a free event for families aiming to bring closeness to the community. It involves family-friendly activities held at various parks from July to August.
- Youth Week –an annual event during every first week of May to celebrate youth’s contribution to the city, young people’s arts and passion, and diversity.
- Summer Concert Series– a free concert series during summer at Town Centre Park that happens every year.
- Coquitlam Farmers Market– a market of locally grown fresh produce, freshly baked bread and more foods every Sunday of May until October.
Other Interesting Places
- Molson Canadian Theatre– a massive 1950 square metre event theatre capable of holding 1074 audiences.
- Evergreen Cultural Centre– a community centre mostly holding events about arts and performing artists.
- Mackin House– a historical house built in 1909. It is now a museum that shows locals and visitors the way of living before with the home materials, home decorations and furniture.
- Riverview Arboretum– a 900,000 square metre area with more than 1500 trees planted since the 1900s.
- Sports Hall of Fame –a 100 square metre facility that exhibits the images and sports materials of Coquitlam’s athletes that made history and achievements for the city.
For those looking for a city lifestyle with the convenience of a small town, then this is the neighbourhood. People love it because it has some cool co-working spaces and a great public transportation system, as well as a wide variety of restaurants. It’s reminiscent of the early days of Vancouver’s urban landscape with natural scenery.
The urban conveniences are paired with easy access to fishing, hiking, and a variety of other outdoor activities. It’s a combination of the beauty of nature and the urbanized vibe of the downtown area. It is a nice place for a vacation or even to stay for good.