holiday trains, lights and other ongoing events

Dazzling lights, decorated trees, and fun family activities are happening all over Metro Vancouver this holiday season. These annual events are a great way to create lasting memories and will become fun family traditions each year. We’ve listed everything below first by city, then by date, so it’s easy to find exactly what you are looking for.

hollyWe will be updating the list as new events come up, so check back every once in a while, and look for this bough of holly to denote new entries. And please let us know if you think we’ve missed anything! 

AbbotsfordBurnaby | Coquitlam | Langley | Maple Ridge | North Vancouver | Port Moody | Richmond | Surrey | Squamish | Vancouver | West Vancouver | White Rock

holiday trains and lights 2017

Abbotsford

Highstreet Holiday Showsholly
November 18th, November 25th, December 2nd, December 9th & December 16th, 5 pm – 5:30 pm, Highstreet Shopping Centre, 3122 Mt. Lehman Road, Abbotsford
The Highstreet Holiday Show is a Must-Do if you’re looking or a festive outdoor experience this Holiday season. Take in our 65ft Christmas tree with digital lights choreographed to holiday tunes. We’ve got BC’s best marching band, the MEI Screaming Eagles, Rudolf, Frosty, Spandy Andy and, of course, the jolly man himself live for 30 minutes! Come early to avoid the rush!

Burnaby

Heritage Christmas at Burnaby Village Museum
November 25th – January 5th (closed December 24th & 25th), Burnaby Village Museum, 6501 Deer Lake Ave, Burnaby, Cost: Free, Carousel Rides $2.60 each 
Head to the Burnaby Village Museum for a season of old-fashioned fun and spectacular light displays. This magical event is free and a wonderful way to get into the holiday spirit. Carousel rides are $2.65 each.

Trees of Hope
November 20th – December 27th, during mall hours, Sevenoaks Shopping Centre, 32900 South Fraser Way, Abbotsford
Visit the Food Court from November 20 – December 26 to view all of the wonderfully decorated trees from our generous sponsors. Vote for your favourite tree and enter to win a $100 Sevenoaks Gift Card.

Coquitlam

Brighten Up! A Seasonal Celebration of Arts & Heritage
November 17th – December 13th, various times & locations in Coquitlam, see website for details
Brighten Up! is a seasonal celebration of arts and culture. Join various events for all ages, and make lanterns and felt ornaments or listen to concerts and stories.

Langley

Wish Upon a Star
November 25th – December 31st, 5 pm – midnight, 20681 44th Avenue, Langley, Cost: By donation
Come and see one of the best Christmas light displays in Metro Vancouver. The display features over 40,000 lights sparkling in the yard! Enjoy a mug of hot chocolate, take a photo, and share the cheer of the season with a donation to BC Children’s Hospital.

27th Annual Christmas in Williams Park
December 1st – December 15th, 5:30 pm – 9 pm, Williams Park, 238th Street & 68th Avenue, Langley 
Drive through the spectacularly decorated Williams Park. Enjoy the magical light displays from the warmth of your car.

A Fort Langley Christmas
December 22, 23, 27, 28, 29 & 30, Fort Langley National Historic Site, 23433 Mavis Ave, Langley
Top off Parks Canada’s complimentary admission year at Fort Langley, the place where BC became BC. Hear Kwantlen stories, taste a chestnut roasted over the fire, and make a beautiful cedar ornament. Take a guided tour at 11 a.m. or 3 p.m., or enjoy the daily feature at noon. At 2 p.m., see what our interpreters have baked up in the outdoor oven. Admire the giant outdoor Christmas tree and take family photos at various scenic spots on site. lelƏm’ at the fort café will offer hot drinks, baked goods, tourtière and cookie decorating. We will be collecting food for the Langley Food Bank at the event. Please feel free to contribute non-perishable food donations at our Visitor Centre.

Maple Ridge

Timberline Country Christmas
December 2nd – December 20th, Timberline Ranch, 222351 144th Avenue, Maple Ridge
Leave the busy city behind, and enjoy the short trip to a 73-acre horse ranch in Maple Ridge that has been transformed into a Christmas wonderland. Here you will be enchanted by glorious lights, beautiful trees, interactive scenes, lovely music, and delightful activities that remind us of times when Christmas was a lot simpler. Activities include cookie decorating, a craft, a wagon ride, a petting zoo, a snowball themed ball pit, and so much more!

North Vancouver

Light Up the Village
November 17th – January 15th (closed December 25th), The Village at Park Royal, 925 Main Street, West Vancouver
Enjoy a spectacular light display and beautiful 30-foot Christmas Tree in the Village at Park Royal. The twinkling outdoor lights are on all season, so be sure to visit and enjoy a hot chocolate or two as you wander through the dazzling display

Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park
Open November 23 – January 8 from 11 am – 9 pm, with holiday activities beginning at 4 pm daily (Closed December 25), Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, 3735 Capilano Rd, North Vancouver 
This holiday season, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park will be transformed into a world of festive lights and dazzling visual enchantment. See the world’s tallest living Christmas tree and search for the glowing owls in the Snowy Owl Prowl. The holiday fun doesn’t stop there! Visitors are invited to sing-along to carols with the holiday band, decorate gingerbread cookies, make Christmas crafts and take family photos throughout the park.

Peak of Christmas
November 24th – January 7th, 9 am – 10 pm, Grouse Mountain, 6400 Nancy Greene Way, North Vancouver, Cost: Varies, see website for details
The best place to experience white Christmas in Vancouver area is on the top of Grouse. You can go ice-skating on the outdoor rink, visit reindeer, take a sleigh ride and visit Santa. There are crafts to create, snowy movies to watch, a gingerbread village to see, and many other fun things to discover.

Parkgate Winter Lights
December 1st, 5 pm – 7:30 pm, Parkgate Community Centre, 3625 Banff Ct, North Vancouver
This FREE community event returns with a focus on the wonder and beauty of the lights that are part of so many of our winter traditions. Featuring activities for people of all ages including: a low-cost family meal (5:00 – 7:00pm), crafts and activities, the youth services photo booth, craft and pottery sales, and of course, our tree lighting!

Hi-Light Festival
December 1st – December 31st, Park & Tilford, 333 Brooksbank Avenue, North Vancouver, Cost: By donation
Park & Tilford is decorated in all the holiday glory once again. The gardens are open every night, but Friday nights are special, with holiday music, face painting, hot chocolate and cookies, and visits with Santa.

Port Moody

Coming soon!

Richmond

Christmas at the Cannery: Festival of Trees
December 1st – December 31st, 10 am – 5 pm, Gulf of Georgia Cannery, 12138 4th Avenue, Richmond, Cost: Free
Take a tour of the Cannery, and check out the beautiful trees decorated by local businesses. Vote for your favourite in this friendly competition.

Surrey

Bear Creek Christmas Train 
Friday, December 8th – Sunday, January 7th, closed December 25th, 10 am – 4:30 pm, Bear Creek Park, 13750 88th Avenue, Surrey, Cost: $11
Meet Santa at the station, and receive a candy cane and a Christmas activity kit. Take a magical ride through the park on board the miniature train.

Squamish

Polar Express 2017 – Ride to the North Pole
November 25th, 26th, December 2nd, 3rd, December 9th, 10th, & December 16th, 17th, West Coast Railway Heritage Park, Squamish
Come ride the Polar Express to visit Santa at the North Pole. Get your picture taken with the Hobo ! Ride the Mini-Rail ! See the new G Scale Train Set ! Lots of fun for the whole family. This event sells out early every year, get your tickets ASAP!

Vancouver

Lights of Hope
Thursday, November 16th, 6 pm – 8 pm, St. Paul’s Hospital, 1081 Burrard Street, Vancouver
Join thousands of Vancouverites on Thursday, November 16th to experience the 2017 fireworks display at St. Paul’s Hospital in downtown Vancouver for St. Paul’s Foundation biggest fundraiser of the year. Guests can grab a snack at the on-site food trucks and sip on hot chocolate while listening to some of Vancouver’s best choirs at this family-friendly event for the Lights of Hope charity initiative. Be there by 6:30 pm to see the light display switch on for the first time in 2017 as fireworks light up the sky! For those that miss the big countdown, the display will be up until January 9th, 2017.

Christmas at FlyOver Canada
November 23rd – January 7th (closed Christmas day), FlyOver Canada, 201 – 999 Canada Place, Vancouver
FlyOver Canada will transform in to a magical winter wonderland this Christmas season from November 23rd – January 7th. Join Santa and his elves, Chestnut and Pinecone, on an exhilarating flight across Canada as they search for the rest of their missing elves. At FlyOver Canada guests will take off into a huge dome screen to take part in a truly breathtaking flying experience complete with wind, scents and mist!

Christmas at Canada Place 
November 23rd – December 31st, closed on December 24th and 25th, Noon – 6 pm, Canada Place, 999 Canada Place, Vancouver, Cost: Free
Walk along The Canadian Trail to discover the old Woodwards Windows and the beautifully decorated trees. Capture your Christmas memories by taking a photo in the 15ft snow globe, then make fun holiday crafts or stop by Rudolph’s Theatre for a holiday movie.

Festival of Trees
November 30th – January 1st, Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver, 791 W. Georgia Street & CF Pacific Centre Mall, 650 W. Georgia Street, Vancouver
Visit Pacific Centre Mall and the Four Seasons Hotel to see the wonderfully decorated Christmas trees, and vote for your favourite. Leave a donation to spread the holiday cheer and support BC Children’s Hospital.

Bright Nights Christmas Train in Stanley Park
November 30th – Saturday, January 6th, closed on December 25th, see website for times, Stanley Park, Vancouver, Cost: Adults $12, kids and seniors $9, kids 2 and under free, matinees $6
Take a train ride through the beautifully decorated forest. Over three million lights brighten up the train’s route. Cheerful holiday music is guaranteed to make you happy. Walk around the Plaza before or after your train ride, and you’ll find many fun holiday activities for the whole family. Partial proceeds support BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund.

Karaoke Christmas Lights 
December 1st – December 29th (no tour on December 25th), 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm, departure from Canada Place, 999 Canada Place, Vancouver, Cost: Varies, see website for details
Hop on a decorated trolley, and sing your way past the best Christmas light displays in town. Visit Bright Nights in Stanley Park and VanDusen Garden’s Festival of Lights, and keep singing all the way back.

VanDusen Festival of Lights
December 1st – January 7th, closed December 25th, VanDusen Botanical Garden, 5251 Oak Street, Vancouver
Experience VanDusen Festival of Lights, a magical winter wonderland with over one million lights decorating 15 acres of VanDusen Botanical Garden. At this spectacular festival, you and your family will get swept away on the Air France Carousel, become mesmerized by lights dancing to disco music, and enjoy story time with Old Saint Nick himself — and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Buy tickets online in advance to save money and skip the line.

Robson Square Ice Rink
December 1st – February 28th, see website for times, Robson Square, Vancouver, Cost: Free admission
Join one of Vancouver’s favourite winter traditions, and take a spin on the Robson Square Ice Rink. Admission is free, skate rentals are available. Helmets are mandatory for kids 12 and under.

West Vancouver

Dundarave Festival of Lights
November 18th – December 25th, Dundarave Beach, West Vancouver
Dundarave Beach will be adorned with decorated and lit up Christmas trees, courtesy of generous donors who have sponsored the trees. There will be free Saturday concerts and events, including live music, dancers, and a bonfire.

Check out other Metro Vancouver holiday events here:

By: Michelle Hughes

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