Master a New Skill: Top 20 Activities & Workshops in Vancouver

Elise Fournier
21 Min Read

Vancouver is a city rich with opportunities for personal growth and skill development.

Whether you're aiming to pick up a new hobby, advance your career, or simply challenge yourself, Vancouver offers a wide range of activities and classes to help you learn something new. From cooking and boxing to pottery and woodworking, this guide highlights the best places and activities to master a new skill in Vancouver.

We've explored the city to find top-rated classes and workshops that cater to all interests and skill levels. So, if you're ready to start a journey of learning and discovery, read on to discover the best activities in Vancouver to help you reach your goals.

1. Try Soap Making at Soigne

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Soigne offers a fantastic chance to dive into the art of soap making right in Vancouver. With 20 years in the business of natural beauty products, Soigne is the ideal spot to start crafting your own spa items.

Their hands-on classes teach you the ins and outs of soap and bath fizzy making. You get to personalize your creations with a wide variety of over 30 scents and herbs, making each item uniquely yours.

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The best part? You leave with your handmade beauty products and a bunch of recipes to try out at home.

All tools and supplies are provided, so you can experiment with different techniques without the pressure of buying your own materials right away.

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Classes are kept small, with a maximum of 12 students, ensuring you get plenty of personal attention from the instructor. Kids aged 7 and up can join in the fun too, but anyone under 16 needs to bring a parent along.

There's a small $10 materials fee, collected during the class, but it's worth every penny for the knowledge and goodies you take home.

Location: Soigne  - Google Maps

2. Take Pottery Classes

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Step into Mudlab and experience the magic of turning clay into beautiful pieces of art. Whether you’re just starting out or have some experience, Mudlab offers classes that cater to all skill levels. Their beginner-friendly Mudlab 101 is a six-week course that takes you through the entire pottery process, from preparing the clay to mastering glazing techniques.

Even if you’ve never touched clay before, this class is designed to get you comfortable with wheel-throwing and give you plenty of practice through drop-in sessions.

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For those with a bit of experience, Mudlab 110: Bridging Skills, taught by the talented Andres Joseph, helps you advance your pottery abilities. This intermediate course focuses on handling larger amounts of clay and perfecting your techniques.

It’s an excellent way to transition from basic skills to more complex pottery-making.

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Mudlab provides a welcoming environment where you can explore your creativity and improve your craft. All the necessary materials and tools are provided, ensuring a hassle-free experience.

Plus, the small class sizes mean you’ll get plenty of personalized guidance.

Location: Mudlab Pottery - Google Maps

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3. Attend Stained Glass Workshop

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Dive into the vibrant world of stained glass art at Cheeky Monkey Glassworks in Nanaimo, British Columbia. Their Stained Glass Workshop is perfect for those eager to learn a new craft in a friendly, creative setting.

This beginner-friendly workshop spans three sessions, where participants get hands-on experience with the copper foil method, a classic technique in stained glass art.

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Under the guidance of instructors with over 30 years of experience, you'll craft an 8-inch sun catcher, learning essential skills along the way. The studio's dynamic atmosphere, filled with original glass designs, inspires creativity and fosters a welcoming environment for all levels of artists.

Everything you need is provided, including all necessary glass supplies. For those without their own tools, rentals are available, making it easy to get started.

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Cheeky Monkey's workshops are more than just classes; they are immersive experiences where you can lose yourself in the process of creating beautiful, colorful glass pieces.

 By the end of the course, you'll not only have a unique sun catcher to take home but also the foundational skills to continue exploring the art of stained glass.

Location: Cheeky Monkey Glassworks - Google Maps

4. Try Leather Crafting

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Immerse yourself in the timeless craft of leatherworking with Hand & Sew's Handmade Leather Classes in Vancouver.

These classes cater to all skill levels, offering a hands-on approach to creating your own leather goods.

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For those new to leather crafting, the Belt Class is a great starting point. Over 1.5 to 2.5 hours, you’ll learn how to select, cut, and assemble leather to create a custom belt. This class also covers adding hardware and rivets, plus techniques for heat and foil embossing to personalize your creation.

If a smaller project interests you, the Wallet Class might be your perfect match. This session teaches you to make a 2-pocket fold-over wallet in 1.5 to 2.5 hours. You'll gain essential skills in pattern selection, cutting, stitching, and finishing touches, resulting in a sleek wallet that can hold 6-8 cards.

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For those ready to tackle a larger project, the Tote Bag Class is ideal. Spanning 2 to 3 hours, this class guides you through making a stylish tote bag with a simple interior and sturdy handles. You’ll learn to handle more leather and advanced stitching techniques, finishing with a beautiful, functional tote.

Hand & Sew also offers private classes for a more personalized experience. These sessions are perfect for creating unique gifts or enjoying a creative day with friends and family.

Location: Hand & Sew - Google Maps

5. Try Cocktail Making Classes

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Explore the world of mixology with Fine Art Bartending's Cocktail Making Classes in Vancouver. With over 40 years of experience, Fine Art Bartending offers an insightful and hands-on introduction to the craft of cocktail making.

This three-hour seminar is designed for anyone eager to learn the secrets behind the bar, whether you're looking to impress friends at your next gathering or simply want to become a more informed drinker.

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In this class, you'll uncover the techniques that make a perfect margarita or a flawless martini. The experienced instructor will guide you through the do's and don'ts of cocktail preparation, highlighting common mistakes and demonstrating how to avoid them.

You'll also learn about the different tools and ingredients that professional bartenders use, ensuring you can replicate these drinks at home with confidence.

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By the end of the class, you'll have the skills to make a variety of cocktails, from classic concoctions to modern mixes.

Not only will you walk away with a new skill set, but you'll also gain a deeper appreciation for the art of bartending. Plus, being more knowledgeable about what goes into your drink can enhance your future bar experiences.

Location: Fine Art Bartending Vancouver - Google Maps

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6. Take Mountain Bike Lessons

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Experience the thrill of mountain biking with lessons tailored for beginners at Whistler Blackcomb. Their Intro Mountain Bike Lessons are perfect for those new to the sport, providing a safe and supportive environment to learn the basics of downhill biking.

Set against the stunning backdrop of Whistler, these lessons are a great way to dive into this exciting outdoor activity.

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The three-hour session includes everything you need to get started. You'll be equipped with a full-suspension downhill bike, protective gear, and a lift ticket. The lesson begins in a designated learning area where you’ll get comfortable with the bike and learn essential techniques.

 As you build your skills, you’ll move onto easy freeride trails like the scenic Easy Does It trail, which offers a gentle introduction to real trail riding.

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Whistler Blackcomb's experienced coaches will guide you through the fundamentals, focusing on body positioning, braking, and cornering. Their expert instruction ensures that you gain confidence quickly and start enjoying the ride.

To get the most out of your lesson, dress appropriately for the weather, wear closed-toe shoes, and bring water, snacks, and sunscreen.

Location: Whistler Blackcomb - Google Maps

7. Learn to Kiteboard

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Discover the adrenaline-pumping world of kiteboarding with Aerial Kiteboarding in Vancouver.

Known for their comprehensive training and top-tier equipment, Aerial Kiteboarding offers lessons that cater to all skill levels, ensuring a thrilling and safe experience on the water.

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Beginners can start with the 4-Hour Crash Course, a perfect introduction to the sport. This immersive session covers all the basics, from kite setup to mastering the wind and waves.

Located in the scenic setting of Squamish, BC, it’s an ideal spot to get your feet wet—literally and figuratively.

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For a more personalized experience, consider booking private lessons. These one-on-one sessions are tailored to your individual learning pace and goals, providing focused attention from expert instructors. If you prefer learning with a friend, semi-private lessons offer a fun and supportive way to advance together.

For those who already have some kiteboarding experience, Aerial Kiteboarding's advanced lessons are designed to help you master new tricks and refine your technique. Their skilled coaches will guide you through more complex maneuvers, taking your skills to the next level.

If you’d rather explore at your own pace, equipment rentals are available. These packages include all the necessary gear, ensuring you have everything you need for a great day on the water.

Location: Aerial Kiteboarding - Google Maps

8. Attend Home Spray & Diffuser Workshops

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Experience the art of fragrance creation with Home Spray & Diffuser Workshops at A New Studio in Vancouver.

Founded by Ans Li, this creative space offers a welcoming environment for those looking to explore new artistic ventures.

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In the Reed Diffuser Workshop, you’ll spend two hours crafting a unique reed diffuser under the guidance of professional instructors. With a selection of 70 fragrances, you can blend and match to create a scent that perfectly suits your taste.

Beyond just choosing a fragrance, you can also personalize your diffuser with colors, dried flowers, and custom labels, ensuring it’s a perfect fit for your home decor.

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The Home Spray Workshop lets you dive into the world of scent composition. Expert instructors will guide you through the process of blending fragrance oils and other ingredients to create your own signature home sprays.

You’ll have access to a wide array of fragrances, allowing you to experiment and find the perfect combination. By the end of the session, you’ll take home two bespoke home sprays that reflect your personal style.

Location: A New Studio - Google Maps

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9. Learn How to Dance Salsa & Bachata

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Step into the lively world of Latin dance with Salsa & Bachata lessons at Salsa Studio Vancouver.

Their 6-week courses are designed to cater to all skill levels, ensuring a rewarding experience for both beginners and seasoned dancers.

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On Salsa Mondays, you’ll start with Salsa 1 Fundamental Lessons, which cover basic steps and essential patterns. The progressive structure of these classes helps build a solid foundation, with modules that include moves like Basic, Cumbia, Side Basic, and Cross Body.

Each session is filled with energy and fun, making it an enjoyable way to learn and practice salsa with a partner.

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For a taste of bachata, join the Bachata Thursdays sessions. The Bachata 1 Fundamental Lessons introduce you to the core steps and patterns of this sensual dance style. You'll explore moves such as side basics and body rolls in a supportive environment.

With two different series to choose from, you can progress at your own pace, deepening your understanding and ability on the dance floor.

Location: Salsa Studio - Google Maps

10. Take Cooking Classes

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Explore your culinary talents with the engaging cooking classes at Eden West Gourmet in Vancouver. These hands-on classes cater to all skill levels and offer a fun, educational way to enhance your kitchen prowess.

Whether you're a seasoned chef looking to refine your techniques or a novice eager to learn the basics, Eden West Gourmet provides a wide array of classes that cater to every palate and interest.

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Their class lineup is impressively diverse. Join Chef Sue for a session on creating delightful green desserts, perfect for those with a sweet tooth. Kids can dive into culinary adventures with interactive classes focused on themes like Mexican street eats or a spring-inspired Japanese dinner menu.

For those interested in mastering classic dishes, Chef Glenys leads a class on making paella, a traditional Spanish dish that's sure to impress. And for chocolate lovers, a Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory-themed class offers a sweet, whimsical experience.

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Classes are held in Eden West Gourmet’s state-of-the-art studio, equipped with modern kitchen facilities and ample workspace.

This supportive environment, combined with expert instruction, ensures you’ll gain valuable skills and confidence in the kitchen.

Location: Eden West Gourmet - Google Maps

11. Learn Boxing at Rumble Boxing Studio

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Get your adrenaline pumping and your fitness soaring at Rumble Boxing Studio in Vancouver. Combining the high-energy vibe of a nightclub with the intensity of boxing, Rumble offers a workout experience like no other.

Perfect for anyone looking to elevate their fitness game, their boxing classes provide a unique blend of cardio, strength training, and high-intensity interval training (HIIT).

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Dive into their signature 50-minute heavy bag classes, where you’ll learn the art of boxing while engaging in strength-building exercises and HIIT.

These sessions are designed to push your limits and sculpt your body, torching up to 700 calories per workout. The dynamic atmosphere, driven by pounding music and expert instructors, keeps you motivated and energized throughout.

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For those seeking a more personalized approach, Rumble offers individualized training sessions. 

These are tailored to your specific fitness goals, ensuring focused attention and guidance from top trainers.

Location: Rumble Boxing StudioGoogle Maps

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12. Try Axe Throwing

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Discover the thrill of axe throwing at Urban Axe Throwing in Port Coquitlam, just outside Vancouver.

This exciting and unique activity offers a perfect way to spend time with friends or family, providing a memorable experience for everyone involved.

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Urban Axe Throwing welcomes participants of all skill levels. Whether you’re a first-timer or have some experience, their friendly and knowledgeable staff will guide you through the basics of axe throwing.

They’ll teach you proper techniques to ensure you throw like a pro, focusing on safety and precision. All necessary equipment is provided, so you just need to bring your enthusiasm.

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Axe throwing is not only a fun and engaging sport but also a great way to challenge yourself physically. It requires upper body and arm strength, along with a keen sense of aim to hit your target successfully.

You can practice solo to hone your skills or compete with friends in a friendly match to see who can hit the bullseye.

Location: Urban Axe Throwing - Google Maps

13. Take Wind Surfing & Foiling Lessons

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Experience the thrill of windsurfing and foiling with Windsure Adventure Watersports in Vancouver. As pioneers in windsurfing education in Western Canada, Windsure now offers comprehensive lessons in the exciting sports of wing surfing and foiling.

These activities are perfect for those looking to harness the power of the ocean breeze and elevate their water sports skills.

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Begin with the Discover Wing Surfing course, a 3.5-hour session that introduces you to the fundamentals of wing surfing. This course covers the sport’s history, equipment essentials, and key techniques such as steering and tacking.

You’ll also learn about wind theory and water safety, ensuring you’re well-prepared for your time on the water. The lesson includes both on-land instruction and practical water time, allowing you to apply what you’ve learned directly on a windsurf board.

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For those looking to take their skills further, the Discover Wing Foiling course is the next step. This 3-hour lesson builds on your wing surfing knowledge, introducing you to the techniques needed to foil above the waves.

You’ll get a refresher on wing surfing basics, followed by advanced instruction on equipment handling, board control, and self-rescue techniques. This course aims to give you the confidence and skills to approach foiling safely.

Location: Windsure Adventure Watersports - Google Maps

14. Master Sewing Techniques

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Unleash your inner designer and master sewing techniques with workshops at The Sewing Club in Vancouver.

Catering to beginners and those looking to refine their skills, The Sewing Club offers a supportive environment where creativity and learning go hand in hand.

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The Sewing Club's workshops are led by experienced instructors who guide you through the essentials, from threading a sewing machine to sewing buttonholes and more.

Each class provides a hands-on experience, allowing you to create practical and stylish garments and accessories.

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For those just starting out, the Super Beginner - Sewing BINGO workshop is a fantastic introduction. This fun and interactive session teaches essential sewing skills while participants compete to complete a Sewing Club Bingo card. It's a perfect way to learn the basics in a relaxed and enjoyable setting.

If you're ready to take your sewing to the next level, consider the Cozy Jackets workshop. This intermediate class walks you through the process of creating a fully-lined, cozy jacket using soft jacquard cottons. The Beginner: Knit Tank Tops workshop is another excellent option for newcomers. Learn to work with knits and create stylish tank tops, mastering foundational techniques along the way.

For those with some sewing experience, the Confident Beginner - Bestie Bag workshop is ideal. This session focuses on various sewing techniques while you craft a stylish and functional bag, perfect for showing off your growing skills.

Location: The Sewing Club - Google Maps

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15. Attend Turkish Mosaic Lamp Workshop

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Experience the vibrant world of traditional Turkish craftsmanship by attending a Turkish Mosaic Lamp Workshop at Mosaic Art Studio in Vancouver.

This engaging workshop is perfect for anyone looking to create a stunning and unique lamp, whether it’s for your own home or as a heartfelt gift.

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Led by skilled Turkish and local artisans, the workshop provides step-by-step guidance through the entire process of making a mosaic lamp.

You’ll start by selecting your design and colors from a palette of 12 vibrant options, then move on to cutting and arranging hand-cut glass pieces and beads into intricate patterns.

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No prior experience is necessary, making this workshop accessible to everyone. Whether you choose to follow one of the traditional patterns provided or unleash your creativity with your own design, the artisans will be there to assist and ensure your lamp turns out beautifully.

Participants can also choose their lamp type either at the studio or by booking in advance. The hands-on process, combined with the rich history and techniques of Turkish mosaic art, makes for a truly immersive and enjoyable experience.

Location: Mosaic Art Studio - Google Maps

16. Learn Introduction to Archery at Lykopis Archery

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Step into the captivating world of archery with Lykopis Archery's Introduction to Archery Workshop in Vancouver. This immersive two-hour session is perfect for anyone interested in exploring the ancient art and modern practice of archery.

The workshop kicks off with an engaging presentation on the 'Four Disciplines' of archery, giving you a comprehensive overview of various bow types, from traditional longbows to modern compound bows. You'll learn about the evolution of archery and its historical significance, making for a rich educational experience.

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Led by experienced instructors, the hands-on portion of the workshop allows you to try your hand at shooting different bows and arrows. You'll get practical experience with a modern recurve bow and learn the Lykopis method, which emphasizes proper form and technique.

The skilled mentors provide personalized guidance to help you develop your skills, whether you're a complete novice or have some archery experience.

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Open to participants aged 16 and up, this bi-weekly Saturday workshop offers a welcoming environment for all skill levels.

It's a fantastic opportunity to refine your technique or discover a new hobby in a supportive and inclusive setting.

Location: Lykopis Archery  - Google Maps

17. Try Group Music Lessons & Workshops

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Discover the joy of making music together with group lessons and workshops at Rare Bird Music in Vancouver.

Rare Bird Music offers an inclusive and welcoming environment where individuals of all ages and skill levels can explore their musical passions and develop their talents.

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Group music lessons at Rare Bird Music cover a wide array of instruments and subjects, including voice, piano, ukulele, music theory, and songwriting.

Designed for learners aged three and up, these classes foster a collaborative and supportive atmosphere, making music education both fun and accessible.

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In addition to regular classes, Rare Bird Music hosts a variety of workshops that delve into specific instruments or topics. These workshops provide a more in-depth exploration of different aspects of music and performance. Collaborations with local and visiting musicians, conductors, composers, and wellness professionals enrich the learning experience.

Previous workshops have covered topics like singing in harmony, health and wellness in music, musical theatre, and introductory keyboard skills. Rare Bird Music is always open to new workshop ideas, responding to the needs and interests of the community.

Location: Rare Bird Music - Google Maps

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18. Learn Woodworking at Edge City

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Edge City offers a range of classes from 6 to 22 hours, ensuring you find a course that fits your schedule and skill level. With a maximum of six students per class, you’re guaranteed personalized attention from instructors who bring over 40 years of combined experience.

This small class size allows for an immersive and hands-on learning environment, where you can develop your skills effectively.

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During the classes, you’ll explore both handbuilding techniques and wheel throwing. You’ll learn to create functional and decorative pieces, gaining confidence and proficiency in woodworking.

After the initial workshop, you'll have the opportunity to select two pieces from each technique to be dried and fired. A follow-up session is available to paint and glaze your creations, adding a personal touch to your handcrafted items.

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Edge City Woodworking School provides all necessary tools and materials, making it easy for you to get started.

The supportive atmosphere and expert guidance ensure a rewarding experience as you master the basics of woodworking.

Location: Edge City  - Google Maps

19. Attend Chocolate Making Workshop

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Dive into the delectable world of chocolate making with workshops at Coconama Chocolate in North Vancouver.

Perfect for chocolate enthusiasts and aspiring chocolatiers, these immersive classes offer a unique opportunity to craft and savor exquisite chocolates.

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Start with the "Making Chocolate from Cacao Beans" workshop, where you'll get hands-on experience in the entire chocolate-making process. From learning about the origins of cacao to crafting your own chocolate by hand, this class covers every step.

It’s a thorough introduction to the art of chocolate making, providing a deep understanding of how to transform cacao beans into delicious chocolate treats.

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For those looking to refine their chocolate tasting skills, the "Be a Professional Chocolate Taster" class is ideal. This session takes you on a sensory journey through various chocolate origins and production methods. You’ll taste 4-5 distinct chocolate varieties, learning to identify subtle flavor notes and appreciating the complexity of bean-to-bar chocolate. 

Beginners can start with the "Discover Chocolate Ingredients" workshop. This foundational class explores the core components of chocolate, providing insights into ingredients commonly listed on chocolate packaging. Participants will also taste 4-5 different chocolate varieties, gaining a basic understanding of chocolate’s diverse flavor profiles.

Location: Coconama Chocolate - Google Maps

20. Take the Canadian Firearms Safety Course

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Begin your journey into responsible gun ownership with the Canadian Firearms Safety Course offered by Silvercore in Vancouver.

This essential course is perfect for beginners and is the first step towards obtaining a Canadian Firearms License, enabling participation in activities such as target shooting, hunting, and even roles in the film industry.

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The Canadian Firearms Safety Course is available in two versions: one that covers both non-restricted and restricted firearms, and another that focuses solely on non-restricted firearms.

Both courses are RCMP-approved and designed to be beginner-friendly, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of firearms safety.

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The combined course for non-restricted (long guns) and restricted (handguns) firearms spans either two consecutive days or three consecutive evenings. This efficient schedule includes the final exam and provides a thorough overview of firearm safety, handling, and regulations. Passing this course is a federal requirement for applying for your Possession and Acquisition License (PAL), covering both non-restricted and restricted firearms.

For those interested in non-restricted firearms only, the Non-Restricted course is a perfect fit. This program, also spanning two consecutive days, focuses exclusively on long guns. It includes testing and is designed to ensure you gain the necessary knowledge and skills to handle firearms safely. Completing this course is mandatory for obtaining your Non-Restricted PAL.

Location: Silvercore Outdoors - Google Maps

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To Sum It All Up

In Vancouver, there’s no shortage of exciting and enriching activities to try.

Whether you're diving into the arts with soap making, pottery, or stained glass workshops, exploring new hobbies like kiteboarding, salsa dancing, or woodworking, or even mastering practical skills like cooking and firearms safety, this city offers a wealth of opportunities to learn and grow. Each of these activities provides a unique way to meet new people, discover new passions, and have a lot of fun along the way.

So, why not step out of your comfort zone and try something new? Whether you're looking to get creative, stay active, or pick up a new skill, Vancouver has something for everyone. Grab a friend or go solo and make the most of what this vibrant city has to offer. Happy exploring!

Elise Fournier
Elise Fournier
Content Writer

Elise is a passionate Content Curator with a talent for discovering the best restaurants and unique activities in British Columbia. Her engaging and friendly writing makes it easy for anyone to explore and enjoy the best of what BC has to offer, turning her articles into a helpful and enjoyable guide.

 

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