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Wordtravels

Wordtravels

Polar Bear Swim

Polar Bear Swim © jsnsndr
Polar Bear Swim © jsnsndr

Icy winter swims may not be everyone's idea of fun; even so, the annual Polar Bear Race has been running for nearly 90 years in Vancouver. Thousands flock to English Bay every New Year's Day to take the plunge and celebrate the beginning of the year in this refreshing fashion. Outrageous costumes are the order of the day and many come to participate in the Peter Pantages 100 yard (90m) race, named in honour of the founder of the swim club in 1920.

Registration and participation in the event are free, and for those not brave enough, a good spot on the beach with a mug of hot chocolate is the perfect way to view the goings-on.

Venue: English Bay beach

Date: 1 January annually