Caribbean Days is a free festival celebrating Caribbean music, food and culture in July. Previously held in North Vancouver, it now happens in Coquitlam.
Up until a couple of years ago, the festival took place on the North Shore at Waterfront Park. As of 2022, however, its new venue is Coquitlam’s Town Centre Park.
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Caribbean Days Festival
After not happening for a couple of years, Caribbean Days took place in July of 2022 and was back again in 2023.
Hosted by the Trinidad and Tobago Cultural Society of BC, it’s a fun festival that attracts tens of thousands of participants from across the Lower Mainland most years.
Festival Date and Location
The Caribbean Days Festival happens in late July most years. In 2023 it took place on the Saturday and Sunday of July 29th and 30th. The dates for the festival in 2024 are still to be confirmed.
In 2022, however, the festival happened at Town Centre Park which is at Lafarge Lake in Coquitlam. The park is located at 1299 Pinetree Way. It’s very close to the Lafarge Lake – Douglas SkyTrain station. The festival took place at Town Centre Park again in 2023.
For a map of the venue, click Festival Layout.
Caribbean Days Events and Activities
The Caribbean Days Festival usually includes a multicultural parade, food fair, market, and live music and entertainment all weekend.
When the festival used to take place in North Vancouver years ago there was a parade down Lonsdale Avenue which is one of that city’s biggest and most important streets. Now that the event happens at Town Centre Park in Coquitlam, the parade takes place in the park. In 2023 the parade started at 1:30 pm on Saturday, July 29th.
In the carnival-style parade expect to hear festive Caribbean music and to see lots of people in colourful costumes dancing and having fun. There have never been floats in the procession, like there are in larger Lower Mainland parades, just lots of people.
Island & International Food Fair
At the festival there is a large food fair featuring both Caribbean and international foods. All kinds of tasty foods are available, as are a wide variety of refreshing drinks. Definitely buy your lunch and/or dinner at the venue – the food is one of the highlights of the festival. On a hot summer day the beer garden is also extremely popular.
At Caribbean Days there is also a market with vendors selling all kinds of things including imported goods from the Caribbean and both South and Central America. Expect there to be colourful clothing, hats, bags, artisan products and a wide selection of other items.
Live Music and Entertainment
Caribbean Days just wouldn’t be a Caribbean-style carnival without lots of live music and entertainment. From the festival’s Main Stage, dance groups perform and bands play everything from Reggae to Calypso, Latin and Soca, as well as other international genres of music.
Headliners this past year included Steele (an award-winning Reggae singer from Toronto) and Soca Monarch (from Trinidad & Tobago).
Below was the Main Stage entertainment schedule for 2023. (Note: Times and performer details were subject to change.)
Saturday, July 29th (in 2023)
- 10:00 am – DJ BJ John Edwards
- 11:00 am – Kaasa Jones
- 12:00 pm – Opening Ceremony
- 1:00 pm – DJ BJ John Edwards
- 1:30 pm – Multicultural Parade
- 2:00 pm – Mr. Fantastik
- 3:00 pm – Devan and The Eastvan All Stars
- 4:00 pm – Vancouver Soca Xperience
- 4:15 pm – King Fish Clifford
- 5:00 pm – X-Kalibre
- 6:00 pm – Julio Avila
- 7:00 pm – Out of Many
- 7:30 pm – Steele and Out of Many
Sunday, July 30th (in 2023)
- 10:00 am – Carl Sound Vibes
- 11:00 am – Gisto and The Grateful Living
- 12:00 pm – Amed Dance Academy
- 12:30 pm – Sweet Pan
- 1:30 pm – Children Parade
- 2:00 pm – Maffie and De Volcano
- 3:00 pm – Tropical Breeze
- 4:00 pm – Mostly Marley
- 5:00 pm – Phase III Steelband
- 6:00 pm – Ronnie McIntosh
Tips & Advice
Below are some suggestions and information to help you make the most of your experience at the Caribbean Days Festival.
TIP #1: Take public transit if you can. The event is a pleasant five-minute walk from a stop on the Millennium SkyTrain Station.
TIP #2: While in the area, explore the neighbourhood. There are lots of other things to see at Lafarge Lake, including the lake itself. There are also other parks and places of interest in Coquitlam.
To learn more about the July event, see the Caribbean Days Festival website.
For a list of major events at different times of the year throughout the Lower Mainland, see the Festivals & Events page.
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Carnaval del Sol
- Brazilian Carnaval
- Culture and History in Vancouver
- Shows and Entertainment
- Vancouver on a Budget