Vancouver on the Cheap: Free Tours of TRIUMF


If you were to create a Venn diagram where one circle was labeled “cheap” and the other labeled “awesome”, the middle point where they cross over could be labeled “Vancouver on the Cheap”. In other words, this is a weekly series on things to do and places to go in Vancouver that fall into that magical category of being both cheap and awesome.

Got a cheap-living tip you’d like to share? Send it in here or tweet it to @andreaxuaxua (#cheapthing)!

Get inside this scientific chaos at TRIUMF. (Submitted photo.)
Get inside this scientific chaos at TRIUMF. (Submitted photo.)

Ever heard of TRIUMF? TRIUMF is Canada’s national laboratory for particle and nuclear physics research. If you are anything like me, you hear that and think it is a place for people who wear lab coats and are much smarter than you.

Well, turns out, that’s exactly the impression TRIUMF is trying to get rid of! One of their goals is to engage the public in their research, and one of the ways they do that is through FREE daily tours. The tours are lead by guides who will help anyone understand and appreciate the work that they do, whether or not you studied physics beyond a grade 10 level.

At the tours, you’ll get a chance to get up close to scientists and their experiments involving particle physics, nuclear physics, materials science, nuclear medicine, astrophysics, and accelerator physics, PLUS you get up close to the world’s largest cyclotron.

The tours are drop-in, weekdays at 1pm, but you can sign up in advance for a larger group by contacting them at or call 604-222-7582.