Top 10 Vancouver Christmas & Holiday Events

Rogers Santa Claus Parade

December is here!

What can I say? I unabashedly love December in Vancouver because I love the holiday season with the fervor of a five-year-old. I love everything about the winter holidays: the lights, the decorations, the music….I even like the thrill and hum of everyone rushing around, buying gifts and attending holiday parties, hurrying to get home.

Of course, I also adore Vancouver’s famous holiday events. There’s something so special about seeing families and friends together at the Stanley Park’s Bright Nights or the Nutcracker and knowing that this is a memory they’ll always treasure.

Holidays are made for making memories, and these Top 10 Vancouver Christmas & Holiday Events are the perfect way to do it.

Top 10 Vancouver Christmas & Holiday Events

1. Bright Nights in Stanley ParkNovember 27, 2009 – January 2, 2010
Ride the Stanley Park Miniature Train through a forest made magical with millions of twinkling lights.

Peak of Christmas at Grouse Mountain

2. The Peak of Christmas at Grouse MountainNovember 28 – December 24, 2009
Talk about a winter wonderland! Grouse Mountain’s seasonal event has outdoor ice-skating, sleigh rides, real reindeer, live choral music, Santa, and more.

3. Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension BridgeDecember 4, 2009 – January 2, 2010
The Capilano Suspension Bridge is already dramatic without adornment, so just imagine it covered in sparkling lights. Sound awesome? It is.

4. Rogers Santa Claus ParadeDecember 6, 2009
The holiday parade in Vancouver features Santa, Chinese dragons, dancers, 60 bands, loads of floats, and much more.

5. Christmas at Canada PlaceDecember 6 – 31, 2009
An annual tradition for over 20 years, downtown Vancouver’s iconic Canada Place celebrates the holidays with free light shows on its sails. You can also have Breakfast with Santa on December 6 or December 12.

VanDusen's Festival of Lights

6. Festival of Lights at VanDusen Botanical GardenDecember 11, 2009 through January 3, 2010 (closed December 25)
Picturesque in any season, the lovely VanDusen Garden is transformed into a spectacular holiday tableau by millions of colourful lights.

7. Goh Ballet’s The Nutcracker - December 17 – 20, 2009
Come on, how can it be Christmas without The Nutcracker? Even if you don’t like the ballet, you like this ballet. This year’s production features the National Ballet of Canada accompanied by the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra.

8. Winter Solstice Lantern Festival - December 21, 2009
Celebrate one of the world’s oldest traditions by welcoming back the light after the longest night of the year. This annual festival happens at neighbourhoods around Vancouver; sites include Chinatown’s famed Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Chinese Garden.

9. Holiday Shows, Musicals & MusicVarious Dates
Vancouver’s arts community gets in the Christmas spirit with the Arts Club Theatre’s White Christmas and It’s a Wonderful Life, Vancouver Chamber Choir’s A Baroque Christmas, and the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s A Traditional Christmas.

10. Boxing Day Sales – December 26, 2009
If there is one holiday event in which almost everyone in Vancouver participates, it’s got to be Boxing Day. The biggest sale day of the year sees hoards of people packed into every mall in Metro Vancouver and all along Robson Street. The crowds are cumbersome, but the bargains are worth it!

What will you be doing this December?

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4 Responses to Top 10 Vancouver Christmas & Holiday Events

  1. Lisa Anton

    Hi! I need help! We’ll be arriving from Germany on Dec.29th. Any advice, what we can do on New Year’s Eve? We will not be carrying a tuxedo or ballroom dress…
    Thanks, Lisa

    • Lisa,

      Check out this New Year’s Eve post on the Top 5 New Year’s Eve Parties in Vancouver. There are lots of options, and tickets are still on sale for most, and only one is actually formal. You don’t need a tux/formal dress for the rest.

  2. Lisa Anton

    Thanks, Dana! I’m sure will pick out a good one. Just have to wait until I’ve asked my colleagues what they want to do. Have a wonderful start into a very Happy New,
    Lisa

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