free fall activities Events

50 free and low-cost fall activities in metro vancouver

The changing of leaves and (slightly) cooler weather means it’s about time for some fall fun. This list is full of fun events and activities you and your family can take part in to keep the boredom and cabin fever at bay. The best part? We searched high and low for things to do that won’t cost a fortune. After all, having fun shouldn’t break the bank! All of the activities on this list are free or only a few dollars. We hope this list inspires you and your family to have a fabulous fall!

Did we miss a fun activity in your neck of the woods? Make sure to let us know.

  1. Don’t hide from the rain; there is lots of fun to be had even when it’s wet outside. Try painting with chalk, splashing in puddles, and hunting for worms!
  2. Take part in Culture Days, a three-day long cultural extravaganza with events and activities throughout Metro Vancouver from September 29th – October 1st. Many are free to attend!
  3. Visit your local library and sign your kids up for a library card (if they don’t already have one). It’s a great way to introduce the wonderful world of books and literacy. Before you go, take a look at the events calendar (Vancouver Public Library Events Calendar and Fraser Valley Regional Library Events Calendar) to see if there is a fun activity happening at your local branch.
  4. Learn all about Kwantlan’s rich history at a free nature walk near Whonnock Lake on September 23rd.
  5. Take a 30-minute crafting class at Michaels Crafts, every Saturday, for only $2! For kids aged 3 and up.
  6. Create a yummy hot chocolate station to warm up after a cold day playing outdoors.
  7. Plant a tree on National Tree Planting Day! Help plant 500 trees at Surrey’s Green Timbers Park and enjoy live music and a free BBQ lunch for planters!
  8. Bake a batch of cookies
  9. Pick some apples, while there are still some left on the trees.
  10. Snuggle up under a blanket fort, an extra fun activity if the power has gone out!
  11. Go geocaching to find treasure.
  12. Take a free tour of the Capilano Salmon Hatchery. September, October, and November are great months to see Chinook and Coho adult fish.
  13. Visit your favourite park to see the leaves change colour. Queen Elizabeth Park in Vancouver is one of our favourites to visit this time of year.
  14. Explore a new neighbourhood, there are shops, restaurants, and playgrounds waiting for you to discover! Not sure where to start? Try one of our favourite day tripping locations: Fort Langley, Port Moody, and Deep Cove.
  15. Celebrate the new season at a Fall Fair at the Mount Pleasant Farmers’ Market in early October. There will be a pumpkin patch, prize wheel, and a whole lot of fun!
  16. Visit the Vancouver Art Gallery on a Tuesday evening from 5 pm – 9 pm when admission is by donation.
  17. Take a free, guided nature walk in Surrey in the month of October.
  18. Take a free walking tour of a Vancouver neighbourhood.
  19. Head to the annual Cranberry Festival in Fort Langley for local wares and delicious eats on October 7th.
  20. Many Farmers’ Markets in Metro Vancouver are open until mid-October! Stop by and pick up some delicious produce.
  21. Build something great! Home Depot has free builds for kids the second Saturday of every month.
  22. Start a new Thanksgiving tradition with your family this year.
  23. Celebrate the delicious apple at UBC Botanical Garden’s Apple Festival! Learn all about apples and taste some rare varieties on October 14th & 15th. Admission is $5 for adults, kids 12 and under are free.
  24. Make a spooky snack.
  25. Start a new book series. With the chilly weather outside, it’s the perfect time to start a new chapter book with your kiddos.
  26. Celebrate Diwali at Diwali Fest, an annual South Asian arts and culture festival. There are activities and events all throughout October. Make sure you don’t miss Diwali Downtown Vancouver on October 14th, the festival’s main event full of musical and dance performances, a marketplace and a room-sized Rangoli.
  27. Watch the Grande Halloween Parade on Sunday, October 15th in Downtown Vancouver. Totally free to watch! Arrive early to snag a good seat.
  28. Stare at the stars through a super powerful telescope at the Gordon MacMillan Southam Observatory. It’s located right next to the Space Centre and admission is by donation.
  29. Make the most of a sunny fall day and head out for a fun family bike ride.
  30. Visit a Winter Farmers’ Market, enjoy fall fruit and vegetables and lots of handmade artisan wares.
  31. Try a fun, fall-themed craft.
  32. Head to Capilano River Regional Park on Saturday, October 21st to find out what the Coho Commotion is all about. At this free event, you can watch salmon leaping, get up close and personal with real specimens, and hear about their extraordinary lives.
  33. Light up the night at the free Garden Light Festival at Bear Creek Park in Surrey November 8th – 9th.
  34. Drop into Guildford Town Centre for fun and free children’s activities every Tuesday at 4 pm. There are crafts and story time and lots of fun to be had!
  35. Pay your respects to the men and women who have sacrificed their lives for our country on Remembrance Day — November 11th. Every community in Metro Vancouver holds a ceremony on this day. Lest we forget.
  36. Help harvest mason bee cocoons at Burnaby Lake Regional Park on November 12th. A fun, free event!
  37. Celebrate fish at the 18th Annual Hyde Creek Salmon Festival on November 19th.
  38. Hop in the car and head out on an easy, family adventure.
  39. View the latest exhibits at the ArtStarts Gallery in Vancouver, the first gallery in Canada devoted exclusively to young people’s art. Admission is free! Don’t miss their monthly ArtStarts workshop events and their new drop in ArtStarts Explores All are free!
  40. Go fishing.
  41. Head to the Lego Store for a free Monthly Mini Build event, the first Tuesday of every month.
  42. Get your groove on at Brentwood Town Centre’s Groovin’ Babies Dance Class. A free fitness and dance experience for toddlers and their caregivers every Wednesday at 11 am.
  43. Drop in to your local community centre for inexpensive fun! There are tons of great programs and activities for kids of all ages. It’s a great way to spend a rainy, chilly day.
  44. Visit Lynn Canyon Park and take a walk over the suspension bridge. Access to the park and bridge are totally free! Dress for the weather and go on a rainy day. You may find you have the entire park to yourself!
  45. Explore Granville Island. The Kids Market is a favourite place to visit for little ones!
  46. Celebrate your kiddo’s fall birthday by scoring some free stuff.
  47. Head to Coal Harbour to watch float planes take off and land.
  48. Hit the trails. Go on a family hike through the Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve. Even on a rainy day, the trails are a fun place to be since the trees block out some of the rain.
  49. In late November head out to Park & Tilford for their magical Hi-Light Festival where you can enjoy festive light displays. Entry is by donation.
  50. Check out a Holiday Craft Fair at a school or community centre near you. Lots start in early – mid-November. It’s never too early to start your holiday shopping!

Looking for even more affordable fall fun? Sign up for our weekly email newsletter and you’ll receive our weekend event guide which is chalk full of great family-friendly events and activities, many free!

By: Michelle Hughes

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