One of the most magical elements of the holiday season is all the pretty Christmas lights that set the city aglow. There's something so special about seeing the neighbourhoods and streets lit up by strings and strings of lights and that beauty only happens once a year during the Christmas season.
Can you really ever have enough Christmas lights? I think not. And Vancouver seems to agree. Lights are strung up all over the city, illuminating it with that wonderful Christmas glow.
Many places take it to the extreme, in a good way, and bring absolutely astonishing light displays to Vancouver. From 103,000 sq. ft. of the biggest Christmas lights display in the world in Langley to three million sparkling lights in the heart of the city and everything in between, Vancouver is lit AF during the holidays.
Enjoy some holiday cheer this season and be enchanted by the dazzling lights of the city. Grab your friends or fam and get ready to be entranced by 12 of the most magically lit places in Vancouver. Not to mention all the incredibly cute Instas you can take at these spots (you're welcome).
Lights at Lafarge
Where: 1299 Pinetree Way // Lafarge Lake, Town Centre Park
When: November 25 – January 21 // Open daily from 4:30PM - 11PM
This might be one of the most beautiful Christmas trails in the city. Scenically running alongside a lake, Lights at Lafarge is a huge 1.2 kilometer long light display with 100,000 lights and 10 themed zones.
Where: 6501 Deer Lake Ave // Burnaby Village Museum
When: November 25 - January 5 // November 25 - December 15 open Monday to Friday 1pm - 5:30pm and Saturday and Sunday 1pm - 9pm, December 16 - January 5 open daily 1pm -9pm, Closed December 24 & 25
Experience Christmas with a retro twist and see the light displays at the Burnaby Village Museum. Admission is free and a carousel ride will cost you only $2.65. Walk through the cute heritage streets and get vintage vibes from the decorations, such as the cedar boughs, wreaths and red bows.
St. Paul’s Hospital Lights of Hope
Where: 1081 Burrard Street
When: Starts November 16
Watch the heart of Vancouver become illuminated by lights of hope. This an annual fundraiser supporting St. Paul’s Hospital's features 10 km of lights and 100,000 bulbs. Every year, 150 volunteers build the display over six weeks. The fireworks display takes place on November 16 at 6:30pm but if you miss it, you can still see the lights shine throughout the Christmas season.
Trinity Street Christmas Light Festival
Where: Trinity St (2400 and 2900 blocks)
When: December evenings until 10pm
Every year the Trinity St neighbourhood takes the home Christmas lights to the next level. Walk along this residential neighbourhood and see all the creative personal displays. Try to take transit or walk because there isn't street parking.
$5 to $15
Festival of Lights at VanDusen Gardens
Where: VanDusen Botanical Garden // 5251 Oak St
When: December 1 - January 7 // Dec 1 - 15 4:30pm - 9pm, Dec 16 - 23 4:30pm - 10pm, closed Christmas Day, Dec 26 - Jan 2 4:30pm - 9pm
With one million lights, The Festival of Lights is sure to brighten up your night. There will also be a selfie spot, a Fireside Lounge, an Air France carousel and more. For adults, tickets cost $15.25 online and $18.10 at the gate. You also get a free ride on the carousel with your ticket.
Christmas at Hycroft
Where: Hycroft Mansion // 1489 McRae Avenue
When: November 16 - 19 // Open daily 11am - 9pm, Sun 11am - 6pm
Walk through three levels of decked halls in an Edwardian mansion. At this 40-year-old Vancouver Christmas tradition, you can check out the Christmas decorations, over 25 local Artisans and unique boutiques. Tickets cost $15 for adults.
Bright Nights Christmas Train in Stanley Park
Where: 690 Pipeline Road // Stanley Park
When: Monday, November 28 – Saturday, January 1, 2017 // Open daily from 3:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m., closed December 25
How cute are Christmas trains though? Pretend you're riding the Polar Express at Stanley Park, where 3 million sparkling lights and a Christmas train awaits you. The event benefits the BC Professional Fire Fighters' Burn Fund. The Bright Nights Train costs $12 but entrance is just by donation ($4.00 suggested).
For $15 to $25, click "Next".
$15 to $25
Vancouver Chinese Lantern Festival
Where: Pacific National Exhibition // 2901 East Hastings Street
When: December 15 - January 21 // Sundays to Thursdays from 5pm - 10pm, Fridays and Saturdays from 5pm to 11pm, closed Christmas Day
See a different type of lights this Christmas and experience the biggest Chinese Lantern Festival in Canada. The Vancouver Chinese Lantern Festival celebrates Chinese culture. The new Vancouver event will have 35 big lanterns, performances and food. Located at the PNE, this five week celebration is unlike any other this holiday season. Every night there will be two 30 minute shows. For adults, tickets cost $19.
When: November 24 - December 30 // Open from 4pm to 10pm, closed on Sundays, November 27, December 25
Unfortunately, Enchant won't be returning this year, but we still have good news because once again, Vancouver is getting the world's biggest Christmas lights display. This year Glow will dazzle you with 500,000 lights of beautiful Christmas lights in a 103,000 sq. ft. space and a Christmas market. Located in Langley, there will be a 210 feet musical light tunnel, four Christmas-themed light gardens, food trucks, a bar and and over 40 vendors!
For 25+, click "Next".
Where: Capilano Suspension Bridge Park // 3735 Capilano Rd
When: November 23 - January 28 // Open daily 11am - 9 pm, closed Christmas Day
Definitely one of the most scenic light displays in Vancouver and Canada, Canyon Lights will satisfy all your Christmas light dreams. Each year for the holidays, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park becomes a magical Christmas haven filled with hundreds of thousands of lights and some of the tallest Christmas trees in the world. Admission costs $33.95 for students and $42.95 for adults.
Carol Ships Parade of Lights
Where: The harbours of Vancouver
When: December 2, 2016 - December 23, 2016
Sail along the shores and watch the water light up beneath you. The Carol Ships Parade of Lights features "Carol Ships" decorated with Christmas lights that sail through the Vancouver waters. You can buy tickets to get onboard the Carol Ships for a dinner cruise from companies like Harbour Cruises & Events and Vancouver Cruises. If you want to experience it for free, you can watch the magical lights from shore.
Peak of Christmas
Where: Grouse Mountain // 6400 Nancy Greene Way
When: November 28 - January 1 // Open daily 11am - 10pm
A winter wonderland exists and it's up on Grouse Mountain. See magical Christmas lights on the snow capped PNW mountains. The Peak of Christmas features festivities like a light tunnel display, snow tubing, skating at their 8,000 square feet frozen pond, Christmas movies in the theatre and more. All the Peak of Christmas activities are complimentary with your Grouse Mountain Alpine Experience ticket, Annual Membership, Winter Season Pass or Lift Ticket.