Vancouver police spokesman Const. Randy Fincham says the woman was walking along Prince Albert Street near East 10th Avenue when a man approached her from behind, wrapped his arms around her and dragged her toward a dark green, older model van.
Fincham says the man hit the woman in the head and face with an unknown object as he tried to drag her inside the vehicle.
The woman fought him off, causing him to fall back into the van and giving the woman a chance to escape.
Police say she ran to a nearby home, where she called 9-1-1.
A police search of the area turned up neither the van, nor the attacker.
The man is described as white, in his 30s, six feet tall, wearing a dark hoodie and gloves and driving a dark green minivan.
Police are asking anyone who may have seen anything to give them a call at 604-617-0600 or to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at solvecrime.ca.