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Aurora Winter Festival via Facebook

7 Christmas Events in Vancouver & Area to Get You in the Festive Mood

By Mary Ann Bell

The countdown to Christmas and the holidays is officially on and with only a month left before the big day, we thought we’d share some of the festive activities and events taking place in the Vancouver, Coast & Mountains region! From light festivals and magical winter wonderlands to old-fashioned celebrations and traditional markets, there’s sure to be an event to suit everyone!

Aurora Winter Festival via Facebook

Aurora Winter Festival. Photo: Aurora Winter Festival Facebook

Aurora Winter Festival – Vancouver

Visit Santa’s Workshop, lace up your skates on a frozen river, slide down a tube park and marvel at captivating light displays, all in downtown Vancouver. Visitors can expect a magical North Pole winter experience at the Aurora Winter Festival while they enjoy the market huts, food gardens, amusement rides, and live entertainment. The Aurora Winter Festival takes place at Hastings Park/PNE until January 5. More information.

VanDusen Gardens. Photo: Viv Lynch via Flickr

Van Dusen Gardens. Photo: Viv Lynch via Flickr

VanDusen Garden Festival of Lights – Vancouver

Experience the Festival of Lights, a magical winter wonderland with over one million lights decorating VanDusen Garden open from November 30 to January 5. Stroll with friends and family through interactive themed areas and enjoy the Dancing Lights show on Livingstone Lake, the illuminated carousel and the Make-A-Wish Candle Grotto. Have photos taken with Santa, savour holiday treats, and delight in much more! More information.

Fort Langley Christmas

Fort Langley Christmas. Photo: Fort Langley National Historic Site

Christmas at Fort Langley

Make memories with family in the traditional holiday atmosphere of Fort Langley National Historic Site. From December 21 to 23 and December 27 to 30, visit the Fort and roast chestnuts over an open fire while swapping stories with costumed guides before you take a guided tour. And be sure to bring your camera to snap family photos around the site. More information.

Vancouver Christmas Market. Photo: greenguavas via Flickr

Vancouver Christmas Market

Vancouver Christmas Market

Experience the charm of an outdoor German Christmas festival in the heart of the city. Open now to December 24, some 80 wooden huts decorated with pine branches and sparkling white lights set the scene for this festive market and welcoming vendors tempt with offers of traditional German Christmas decorations, handmade gifts and seasonal snacks. Walk through Lovers Light Lane, a 20-foot tunnel adorned with 10,000 lights, a walk-in Christmas tree, take the youngsters on a Christmas Carousel and enjoy the entertainment and more. More information.

White Rock Christmas Sailpast

The International Yacht Club has announced that the annual Christmas Light Parade and Sail Past will take place on Saturday, December 7. The boats will turn on their lights around 6:00pm in front of the White Rock pier. They’ll make 2 passes and will perform pirouettes (360 degree turns) for a spectacular show! The best viewing is at the end of the pier, so grab a hot chocolate and get there early to watch this festive nautical parade. More information.

Carol Ships. Photo: Delta Optimist

Carol Ships. Photo: Delta Optimist

Carol Ships Parade of Lights

For the past 50 years Carol Ships have been a Vancouver holiday tradition. Almost every night between December 1 and December 23 a flotilla of brightly lit boats will cruise the Metro Vancouver coastline much to the delight of shore side onlookers. If you want to board the cruise ships, most of the ships offer cruise only or dinner cruises. More information.

Vancouver Santa Claus Parade

Photo: Telus Vancouver Santa Claus Parade

Vancouver Santa Claus Parade

Kick off the holiday season on December 1, with return of the 2019 Telus Vancouver Santa Claus Parade. The parade takes place in downtown Vancouver and the streets will be lined with almost 300,000 people waiting to get a glimpse of the man in red! The parade includes marching bands, dance troupes, festive floats and community groups. The parade is a free event, although spectators are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food or money donation benefiting the Greater Vancouver Food Bank and CKNW Kids’ Fund. Starting at 10am (the parade starts at noon) head to the Christmas Square in front of the Vancouver Art Gallery for family-friendly entertainment. More information.

For more Christmas Events check 8 Holiday Events In and Around Vancouver to Get You in the Festive Mood.

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Published: November 27, 2019


About the Author

As a tourism marketer and community manager for some of British Columbia’s most spectacular destinations, Mary Ann Bell spends her days writing, tweeting and posting! When she’s not online, Mary Ann can be found exploring Vancouver’s North Shore trails with her family and her camera, and trying new restaurants in the hunt for the best taco in Metro Vancouver.

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