Formerly called Holiday Heights at the Bloedel Conservatory, Festivale Tropicale is a Christmas attraction at Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Park in December.
The popular indoor Christmas event ran last year from December 7th, 2019, until January 5th, 2020. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the event did not take place in the 2020/21 season.
Christmas at the Bloedel Conservatory
Festivale Tropicale is the newest Christmas attraction at Bloedel Conservatory. The last couple of years it has been called Holiday Heights at Bloedel, and before that it was the Enchanted Nights Christmas attraction which was held at the same venue for the first time in 2015.
A couple of years ago there were gnomes instead of fairies, just as many beautiful lights, and a slightly cheaper admission fee than the original event.
If you like Christmas, plants, birds and winter holiday illuminations, then you’ll love this event!
When and Where in 2019/20
For the 2019/20 season, Festivale Tropicale at the Bloedel Conservatory ran every day except Christmas Day from December 7th to January 5th between 10 am and 9 pm.
Festivale Tropicale was cancelled for the 2020 season. Hopefully the event will be able to return in 2021.
Situated at the top of Queen Elizabeth Park both inside and outside the Bloedel Conservatory. The venue’s address is 4600 Cambie Street.
The primary entrance to the Bloedel Conservatory is accessed off 33rd Avenue between Main Street and Cambie.
The Bloedel Conservatory is at the very top of Queen Elizabeth Park where there is pay parking. There is also pay parking in other areas of the park as well as free parking year-round along Cambie Street if you don’t mind having to walk (although spots there are limited and certain restrictions do apply).
Admission to Festivale Tropicale
Last year admission prices were the following, all plus GST:
- Adults – $6.75
- Senior – $4.55
- Youth (13-18 years) – $4.55
- Children (4-12 years) – $3.30
- Free for children age 3 and under as well as members of the VanDusen Garden Association.
IMPORTANT $ SAVING TIP
Don’t go to Festivale Tropicale at the Bloedel Conservatory and then later to the Festival of Lights at VanDusen Garden. If you do you’ll be paying too much!
Visitors to the Christmas lights attraction at VanDusen Botanical Garden during the Christmas season usually get a ticket for FREE admission to Festivale Tropicale, but it doesn’t work the other way around.
To give you an idea of what to expect at the Bloedel Conservatory at Christmas, check out the following video. As you’ll see, the place is beautiful and full of plants, birds and holiday-themed illuminations.
Bloedel Holiday Activities
Things to do at Holiday Heights at Bloedel last year included going inside the glass-domed conservatory, looking out for the Christmas gnomes (or other characters) in the holiday scavenger hunt, and admiring the Christmas lights, plants and various birds.
At the event there is also usually a food vendor or two outside selling things like hot chocolate, and there are great photo opportunities with the views of the city.
A couple of years ago the event’s theme was an Arctic Oasis. In 2018 it was just a basic Christmas theme, but with gnomes hidden around the place. In 2019 it had a tropical theme.
Tips and Advice
Below are some suggestions and information to help you make the most out of your visit to the Bloedel Conservatory over the Christmas season.
TIP #1: If you go with children, make sure they get a scavenger hunt paper and look out for the hidden characters. In past years there have been fairies, gnomes or penguins. If they found them all kids could redeem their completed cards for a candy cane (or something like that). It’s a great way to make the gardens extra fun (and tasty at the end)!
TIP #2: If you buy a ticket to see the Festival of Lights event at VanDusen Garden there’s a good chance you’ll get a free ticket to see Holiday Heights at the Bloedel Conservatory as you exit VanDusen. It doesn’t work the other way around though. Consequently, visit the Christmas lights at VanDusen Garden first and then Holiday Heights second. That way you’ll get to enjoy both attractions, but only pay for one! So be sure to look out for the person handing out the free Holiday Heights tickets as you leave the VanDusen event.
TIP #3: If you plan to take photos, be warned that if your camera lens is cold there’s a good chance it’ll fog up inside the conservatory.
TIP #4: Be sure to admire the outdoor fountain and its light displays between the Bloedel Conservatory and upper parking lot. They are especially beautiful at Christmas.
To learn more about the surrounding area, click Queen Elizabeth Park.
For more ideas on things to do over the Christmas season check out any of the following:
- Top Things to do at Christmas
- Best Christmas Activities
- Vancouver’s November Calendar
- Vancouver’s December Calendar
- Lower Mainland Parks and Places in Nature