Excited for Christmas but not a fan of the cold? Don’t worry. Below you’ll find a handpicked list of our favorite indoor Christmas activities in Vancouver.
Our city is renowned for hosting a vast variety of Christmas events, including everything from light festivals and markets to theatre performances and concerts. To find out the best to celebrate everyone’s favorite holiday without having to step outside, join us as we count down our top 9 indoor Christmas activities in Vancouver.
#9 Christmas At The Cannery
Built in 1894 in Steveston, the Gulf of Georgia Cannery was once the biggest building in this historic town and the leading producer of canned salmon in British Columbia.
To experience the stories of this iconic place and learn more about the West Coast’s fishing industry, head on over to the Cannery this December for Christmas steeped in history.
As always, you’ll get to enjoy a variety of interactive exhibits, films, and guided tours. Plus, from December 1 to 31 the venue will be brightly lit by the Steveston Festival of Trees, a stunning display of Christmas trees decorated by local merchants and organizations. All guests will get a token to use to vote for their favorite tree.
There’ll also be a free indoor farmer’s market held on December 4, 11, and 18 featuring a variety of local produce.
Last but not least, you’ll also get a chance to meet the star of Christmas in person. After sailing into Steveston public wharf at 1pm, Santa will lead his elves to the Cannery’s Boiler House, where he’ll be available for photos.
The Cannery open hours: 10am- 5pm daily.
Steveston Festival of Trees: December 1-31.
Santa at The Cannery: December 4, 2pm-4pm
Tickets: NA. More info: gulfofgeorgiacannery.org
#8 Coquitlam Christmas Craft Fair, Poirier Forum
Looking to pick up some unique handmade goods to fill your Christmas stockings? Head on over to the Poirier Forum in Coquitlam for the 36th annual Christmas Craft Fair.
This year the fair will be held over 3 separate days and will feature over 100 local BC artisans. You’ll be able to pick up a variety of craft goods, including everything from glassware and leather goods to art, jewellery, and much more.
Finally, you’ll also be able to indulge in a variety of delicious food and drink, so make sure you come with an appetite. Some of the goodies on the menu include homemade soups, kettle corn, artisanal chocolate, craft coffee, baked goods, and much more.
When: December 2, 5pm-9pm.
December 3 and 4, 10am-4pm.
Adults $3, Seniors $2, Kids Free.
Weekend Pass $5 available through Eventbrite.
#7 The Day Before Christmas, Goldcorp Stage
The music king of Christmas Bing Crosby once sang Christmas is “a time to be jolly.” And what better to honour the man’s than with a theatre comedy?
Held at the Goldcorp Stage at the BMO Theatre Centre, The Day Before Christmas is a hilarious play about the perfect holiday disaster.
It follows the story of Alex, a perfectionist who is desperately clinging to her holiday traditions. But, while juggling family, work and a movie star, she finally loses control of her Christmas plans.
Will she be able to save the turkey, salvage her broken-down tree, and turn her plans back around?To find out, check out the play for yourself between November 24 to December 24.
When: November 24 to December 24, various show times.
#6 Christmas at FlyOver Canada
If you haven’t done so already, make sure you check out FlyOver Canada’s annual Christmas spectacular this year for an immersive journey to the North Pole.
You’ll get to travel across Canada in order to help Santa find his lost elves just in time for Christmas. Plus, you’ll also get a sneak peek into Santa’s Workshop in the North Pole, Mrs Claus’ Gingerbread factory, and much more.
The entire experience will take roughly 20-25 minutes and is a great option for the entire family.
When: November 24, 2016 – January 2, 2017, 10am til 9pm
Tickets: Adults: $21.95 Senior, Student, Youth: $18.95 Child: $14.95 flyovercanada.com
#5 Polar Express, West Coast Railway Museum
The Polar Express is arguably one of the most iconic Christmas films of the last decades. This year, celebrate Christmas by recreating the stunning train journey to the North Pole at the West Coast Railway Museum.
Hosted by the West Coast Railway Association, this 50 minute train ride will depart from the museum up to 4 times daily every Saturday and Sunday from November 26 til December 18. With tickets starting at just $30, you’ll get to enjoy hot chocolate and chocolate chip cookies while you ride, Christmas music and carols, exclusive merchandise, and much more.
Once you arrive at your destination you’ll get a chance to meet Mr and Mrs Claus as well as enjoy a mini train ride around the North Pole.
For the full movie experience, come dressed in your pyjamas and, if you’re planning an experience as a group, consider booking the private VIP passenger car complete with premium white glove service, light snacks and hot chocolate, exclusive chances to meet all the movie characters, and much more.
When: Saturdays and Sundays, November 26- December 18. Various departure times
Tickets: From $30. wcra.org
#4 A Traditional Christmas: Vancouver Symphony Orchestra
If you’re looking for a traditional way to celebrate Christmas, this event is perfect.
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra is the third largest of it’s kind in the country and is renowned both around the nation and internationally.
This Christmas, the orchestra will be bringing their vast repertoire of beautiful arrangements to various parts of town, including Burnaby, the North Shore, Surrey, Delta and downtown Vancouver.
Make sure you clear a night from your schedule to enjoy some classical music at it’s finest. Tickets start at $37.
When: Consult website for dates.
Tickets: $37 – $43, vancouversymphony.ca
#3 The Nutcracker, Queen Elizabeth Theatre
This is another event for those of you looking for a traditional way to get in the holiday spirit.
The Nutcracker is undoubtedly one of the most iconic Christmas tales of all time, and this is your chance to enjoy a stunning production of this timeless classic.
Presented by BC Ballet, Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet will sweep you away with this captivating show combining spectacular performers, authentic costumes, and Tchaikovsky’s iconic musical score played live by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.
When: December 8 – 11, 2pm and 7:30pm.
Tickets: $35 – $120, balletbc.com
#2 Kids Market, Granville Island
The Kid’s Market was created in 1984 as a plan to renovate an old industrial site dating back to 1917. Now, the venue serves as a major attraction for both tourists and locals.
Every Christmas, head on over to the Granville Island and work your way through 15,728 square feet of retail space combining over 25 shops selling everything from toys and games to books and costumes learning tools.
When: December 3 – 24 and 27-31. Various times.
#1. Enchant Christmas Light Maze and Market
Lastly, if you’re looking for the perfect way to make Christmas in vancouver truly special, check out Enchant 2016.
Based on an original Christmas story by local author Leanne Johnston, this event features and bustling indoor Christmas market boasting hundreds of local artisanal goods, dozens of food trucks serving up delicious seasonal food and drink, an outdoor fire pit, and more.
Those of you brave enough to face the cold are invited to recreate the Enchant story and search through a 55,000 sq. ft. light maze (the largest in the world) in order to help Santa find his missing reindeer who were set free after a storm hit the North Pole and destroyed his barn.
The maze will feature a variety of stunning structures and decorations, including 23 foot tall reindeer and a stunning 64 foot tall central Christmas tree decorated with over 85,000 LED lights.
Proceeds from the event will support a number of local charities, including including Variety – The Children’s Charity, Canuck Place, Ronald McDonald House BC and Yukon, Music Heals and Backpack Buddies.
To secure your part in this event and avoid missing out, get your tickets today. But be quick, they’re selling fast.
When: 4pm – 10pm from November 25th until New Year’s Eve, 2016.
Where: 1st and Crowe Street, in-between the Cambie Street Bridge and Olympic Village.
Tickets: Enchant Tickets Online Pricing