6 Vancouver Christmas Events to Get Your Holiday Cheer On!

Aurora Winter Festival

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… Not! Because it’s the holidays and you’re stuck home not knowing what to do in Vancouver this weekend. Well, it’s time to get off the couch off your Christmas movie marathon because whether you’re a local like myself or you’re looking to visit Vancouver this December, here are 6 super fun Vancouver Christmas events that will get your holiday cheer on!

1. Check out the newest winter festival in town.

This December, escape to a hidden village by the North Pole at the Aurora Winter Festival!

Aurora Winter FestivalAurora Winter FestivalAurora Winter FestivalAurora Winter FestivalAurora Winter Festival

From Christmas markets and food stalls to fun tubing rides and enchanting light installations, Aurora has everything to keep you and your loved ones entertained for the night.

Now until December 31st. Get your tickets now before it ends!

2. Experience Vancouver’s Famous Canyon of Lights Display at Capilano Suspension Bridge.

This is perhaps one of the most popular things to do in Vancouver in December. If you’re not a fan of crowds, I highly recommend that you plan your visit on a weekday before December 21st or after January 6th. (The lights run all the way until January 27th.)

I went last year and personally really enjoyed the experience. Tickets are $46.95 per person (ages 18-64) and grant you access to the park for the entire year. (I can’t seem to locate the photos I took last Christmas so will visit again this 2018 and keep you guys posted!)

Stressed out about not being able to find parking on the day of? Take Capilano’s shuttle bus! Pickup points and schedule can be found here.

3. Watch your favorite holiday story come to life on stage with Goh Ballet.

Raise your hand if you love the Nutcracker!

Goh Ballet's Famous Nutcracker Performance

Growing up, I watched so many different renditions of this classic. (Tom and Jerry and Barbie in the Nutcracker anyone?) While most of us are familiar with the Nutcracker as a bedtime story or holiday cartoon on TV, ballets are really what brings the tale alive. After all, Tchaikovsky did originally compose this as dance.

Goh Ballet 10th Annual Nutcracker PerformanceGoh Ballet 10th Annual Nutcracker PerformanceGoh Ballet 10th Annual Nutcracker PerformanceGoh Ballet 10th Annual Nutcracker PerformanceBehind the scenes rehearsal practice.

Founded in 1978 by National Ballet of China’s Choo Chiat Goh and Lin Ye Goh, Goh Ballet is Vancouver’s premier dance academy celebrating cultural awareness in the dance community. This year marks the 10th year anniversary of their renowned Nutcracker performance and features top talents like Devon Teuscher, Alexandre Hammoudi, Sun Haifeng, and Sun Jinjin.

Goh Ballet 10th Annual Nutcracker PerformanceChan Hon Goh – producer of the 2018 Nutcracker show. Current director of Goh Ballet and first Asian Canadian to be awarded a prize at world-renowned Genée International Ballet Competition.

Goh Ballet 10th Annual Nutcracker PerformanceGoh Ballet 10th Annual Nutcracker PerformanceA special thank you to Ms. Goh and the Goh Ballet team for inviting me to their rehearsal. As someone who took ballet lessons way back in the days, this really brought back fond memories.

Shows run from Friday, December 21st to Sunday, December 23rd. Don’t miss out on this holiday spectacle and get your tickets before they sell out!

4. Shop for the perfect holiday gift at Vancouver Christmas Market.

The holidays just aren’t complete without a visit to the Vancouver Christmas Market, am I right?

Vancouver Christmas MarketVancouver Christmas MarketVancouver Christmas MarketVancouver Christmas MarketVancouver Christmas Market

This year, I fell prey to the vendor stands and brought home a handmade candle, which you don’t light because it releases natural aroma. It’s mind-blowing the kind of amazing crafts you could find here. Remember to bring cash and don’t forget to treat yourself to a little mulled wine as well.

5. Take a photo with Santa at Oakridge Centre.

No matter how old you get, a picture with Santa always completes the holiday mood!

6. Spend girls’ night out at Hotel Georgia’s pop-up bar.

View this post on Instagram

Good friends, cold drinks, and all the festive cheer of the holidays. 🍸 | #rwhotelgeorgia

A post shared by Rosewood Hotel Georgia (@rwhotelgeorgia) on

Looking for a more adult-friendly way to celebrate the holidays? Round up your girlfriends because Reflections has the perfect festive cocktails and Instagram-worthy magical decorations.

And there you have it, 6 exciting Vancouver Christmas events you mustn’t miss this holiday season. Start counting down and get ready for the most wonderful time of the year!

34 Comments

  1. December 18, 2018 / 6:31 pm

    Wow these are some really beautiful pictures! Vancouver sounds so cold to me but I guess that adds to the charm of such Christmas- and twinkling-light-themed places like these. I’d love to try some of that mulled wine too – yum! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:06 am

      Aww thank you Erika! It’s quite nice here during the summer as well if the cold is too much for you, but you’re right! The winter vibes defs add to the Christmas charms 😉

  2. Jackie S.
    December 18, 2018 / 8:03 pm

    I’m a fan of the Nutcracker! When I was younger, I took ballet classes so seeing the elegant ballet dancers at the Nutcracker was always highlight during the Christmas time. Would love to see the performance from Goh Ballet.

    Your photos of the Vancouver Christmas Market are beautiful with the decor and lights. Looks like I need to schedule a trip to Vancouver during the wintertime!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:08 am

      High five to the two of us being young ballerinas hahaa.

      I really enjoyed the Goh Ballet performance and highly recommend it. You’ll for sure have to come visit us during the winter holidays!

  3. December 19, 2018 / 5:59 am

    This post really puts me in the mood for Christmas! Loved the pics of the Goh Ballet and the pic of you with all the night lights. Heard so many great things about Vancouver all along and I like how you bring the beauty of this wonderful city alive!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:08 am

      Aww thanks Namita! I hope all these great things you hear make you wanna come visit us!

  4. December 19, 2018 / 8:39 am

    The Canyon Lights looks like a great experience. Thank you for your tip about when to go to avoid the crowd. And beautiful photos of Christmas Markets of Vancouver. I’m finally getting into the mood for Christmas!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:09 am

      So happy you liked my photos! The Canyon Lights are most certainly a must if you’re ever in the Vancouver area during Christmas 😀

  5. December 19, 2018 / 10:43 am

    This is excellent! I had no idea that Christmas markets were popular in Vancouver. I always just associated them with Europe. Thanks

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:10 am

      They’re quite the holiday tradition here too! Although I do hear they’re obviously not as authentic as the European ones, but hey, I’m not complaining XDD

  6. December 19, 2018 / 12:56 pm

    Such a festive town! Love these christmas-y events, definitely encourages people to visit Vancouver in the winter time. I wish we had similar winter festivals, your photos are stunning!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:10 am

      Thanks so much Yara! Come visit us sometime in the future!!!

  7. December 19, 2018 / 1:02 pm

    Looks like a lot of beautiful places to see lights in Vancouver! I loved the ballet pictures. I took ballet lessons for about 20 years so I also have a lot of fond memories too. I really enjoy watching different Nutcracker productions around the world!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:11 am

      20 years! That’s really impressive, Elizabeth!!! Sounds like you’ll have to come check out the Nutcracker here next year 🙂

  8. December 20, 2018 / 7:24 am

    Assisting to a performance of The Nutcracker is a classic and favorite Christmas activity. The bright tunnel in your first photo resembles one I have seen a few weeks ago in Aarhus in Denmark. It’s a small world!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:12 am

      Ahh no way! I haven’t been to Denmark just yet so I guess this is close enough in the time being hahaa.

  9. December 22, 2018 / 1:40 am

    This is one thing I like in winter holidays. That you can enjoy them right at home because every place celebrates them in many ways. You certainly won’t be bored in Vancouver for Christmas with the ideas you offered through your post.

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:13 am

      You’re so right! There are endless things to do here in Vancouver during the holidays and I hope this inspires you to pay us a visit this Christmas!

  10. December 22, 2018 / 1:47 pm

    I’m adding Vancouver around the holidays to my travel bucket list based on this post, can’t wait! Love the girls’ night out idea, I will replicate it in NYC soon 🙂

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:13 am

      Whoohoo! So happy to hear that Vancouver’s now on your bucket list. You definitely won’t be disappointed 😉

  11. Heather
    December 22, 2018 / 10:15 pm

    I love Vancouver but have never experienced it in December. The lights on the suspension bridge have me! I totally would want to do that and browse the Christmas markets! After having just returned from my first Christmas market in Europe, I’m hooked! Also, does the Nutcracker take place every year in Vancouver?

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:14 am

      Yes, the Nutcracker is a yearly performance! (Last year was actually Goh Ballet’s 10th year anniversary.) Come visit us this Christmas and maybe I can show you around! <3

  12. December 23, 2018 / 3:17 am

    Yet one more reason to love Vancouver. Been there many times, but never during the Christmas season. Might have to change that one up … the Canyon of Lights looks spectacular!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:15 am

      Hahaa you need to come back during the holidays! It’s such a different vibe (although do prepare for lots of rain). Let me know if you ever need any other recommendations for a future winter visit!

  13. December 24, 2018 / 1:59 am

    Oh, you nice Christmas time! I love to discover a city at Christmas time. Why not Vancouver? Your tips will definitely make you want to say thank you and have a nice Christmas!

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:16 am

      You’re most welcome Susanne! Hope you had a great holiday celebration and let me know if you’re ever headed to Vancouver. Perhaps I can give you a few more itinerary suggestions 😀

  14. December 27, 2018 / 8:06 am

    This makes me want to visit Vancouver for Christmas. I really would love to go to Canyon Lights Display because Christmas lights are my favorite part about this time of year.

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:19 am

      You’d for sure love the Canyon Lights then! They’re one of my favorites during Christmas too.

  15. December 27, 2018 / 1:51 pm

    Thnx to your post Vancouver seems like a Christmas magic wonderland! And such a beautiful pictures too! By the way only by reading your post I remember that to see Nutcracker used to be my families Christmas tradition when I was a small boy.. Wow! What a beautiful memories it brings

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:19 am

      Aww thank you Ray! I’m happy to have brought back fond memories for you. Perhaps it’s time to see another Nutcracker show with your family this Christmas in Vancouver 😉

  16. December 28, 2018 / 2:12 am

    Wow, the Christmas decorations are incredible, they’re a lot better than what I’ve seen in my country. How does the city hall manage them once their time of the year has passed?

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:20 am

      You know what, that’s a great question and I honestly don’t know hahaa. I am intrigued now and will perhaps need to hunt down some answers!

  17. December 28, 2018 / 10:42 pm

    The Christmas market looks fantastic! This is one of my bucket list items. Your pictures are so vibrant…I would love to know what type of camera you used. I’ve been to the Capilano Suspension Bridge and think that it is so cool all decorated for the holidays. 😉

    • JASCHEN
      Author
      March 5, 2019 / 1:22 am

      Thanks Melody! I shoot on a Sony A7R III.

      Were you at the bridge during the holidays or just regular season because it really is a different experience with all the lights on!

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