There are lots of festivals and events to enjoy in Vancouver.
Thanks to a large Chinese population, Vancouver’s Chinatown is the largest in Canada and among the biggest in the world. Chinese New Year celebrations in the city are a pretty big deal and streets such as Main, Carrall and East Pender get filled with people and various festivities. Throughout the year, both Vancouver Chinatown and the southern suburb of Richmond transform their neighborhoods for the Night Market. From buying clothing or electronics to sampling Asian cuisine, you’re bound to find something interesting while walking around. (More information on Chinese New Year and the Chinatown Night Market)
During the summertime, you’ll want to spend your free time along the waterfront. In late July and early August, English Bay is the site of the Celebration of Light. On certain Wednesday and Saturday nights, a fireworks display lights up the sky along the water. Be sure to reach the west side of downtown as early as possible to score the best view. But even if you can’t secure a spot at English Bay, there are a number of other great viewing spots including Jericho Beach and Queen Elizabeth Park around 33rd, which also offers the best vantage point of the Downtown skyline. (More information)
Playland at the PNE is a popular destination for people of all ages. This amusement park runs from early May until September on the city’s east side, offering tons of different rides and attractions, including a Wooden Roller Coaster, Atmosphere and Drop Zone. In the days leading up to Halloween, the park is transformed in the evenings with Halloween themed rides and activities and wearing costumes is strongly encouraged. (More Information on Playland and Fright Nights)
Film buffs also have a lot of options in this great city. Not only are a large number of Hollywood films and TV programs filmed in the area, don’t be surprised if you’re casually standing behind a celebrity while waiting in line for your coffee. The Vancouver International Film Festival is a popular event that takes place at a number of different cinemas across the city in September and October. Also, the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival occurs between the months of June and September in the Kitsilano neighborhood, which is located on the West Side of the city. (Additional info on VIFF and Bard on the Beach)