The District of North Vancouver is separated from Vancouver by Burrard Inlet. It can be accessed by the Lions’ Gate Bridge, the Ironworkers Memorial Second Narrows Crossing, and the SeaBus passenger ferry.
The District is bounded by the Capilano River to the west, Indian Arm to the east, Burrard Inlet to the south, and the Coast Mountains to the north. It sprawls in an east-west direction across the mountain slopes, and is characterized by rugged terrain and steep and winding roadways. While there is no true urban core within the District, there are a number of separate commercial neighbourhood centres. These include (from west to east): Edgemont Village, Upper Lonsdale, Lynn Valley, Main Street, Parkgate, and Deep Cove.
The District has a lot in common with West Vancouver and the City of North Vancouver. Together these three municipalities are commonly referred to as the North Shore. Most of the residents of the District live in single family dwellings. Except for a few more historical areas, much of the development of the District has occurred since the 1950s. The City of North Vancouver has considerably higher commercial and residential density. However, the differences between the two “North Vans” are most apparent to their respective residents. For the most part, other Lower Mainland residents rarely distinguish between the District and the City, referring to both collectively as “North Vancouver”.