As evident in our Vancouver in January Video, January is a time for fireworks, polar bear swims, theatre, dining out, skiing and other fun activities.
January in Vancouver Video
Want to see what the Lower Mainland looks like in January? Then check out the following Vancouver in January Video.
For details about scenes from the video, continue reading below. And, for a list of events on different days, check out our January Calendar.
Scenes from the Video
Scenes in the Vancouver in January Video include fireworks during the first few minutes of the month, polar bear swims on New Year’s Day, and Christmas attractions during the first part of the month. The video also features the PuSh Performing Arts Festival, restaurants participating in the Vancouver Dine Out Festival, local ski hills, the Vancouver International Boat Show, sporting venues, a winter market and January sunsets.
It doesn’t snow much in Vancouver. Next to December, January is usually the coldest month of the year though, so if it does snow there’s a good chance it’ll be in January (plus or minus a couple of weeks). In the video you’ll see a few scenes with snow, but most days there isn’t much if any on the ground.
See below for further details about the different scenes in the video.
New Year’s Fireworks
The Vancouver in January Video begins with photos of Canada Place and fireworks on New Year’s Eve. Most of the city’s New Year’s Eve Celebrations happen earlier in the evening on December 31st, but the fireworks at midnight technically take place on January 1st.
The main New Year’s Eve celebrations take place between Canada Place and the Vancouver Convention Centre where over 100,000 people participate in the festivities each year.
The first two photos in the video, of the fireworks with Canada Place in the distance, were taken on January 1st, 2018, from Crab Park (where no more than a couple of hundred people typically watch from).
Click New Year’s Fireworks for more information about the pyrotechnics at the start of the year.
Polar Bear Swims
Six main polar bear swims take place on New Year’s Day in the Lower Mainland. Swims featured in the video include the ones in White Rock, English Bay, Deep Cove, Fort Langley and Port Moody. A sixth polar bear swim also happens in Delta.
For more information about the annual January 1st dips in the ocean, click Lower Mainland Polar Bear Swims.
Note: The White Rock Polar Bear Swim was cancelled in 2019 due to storm damage to the pier in December 2018. The event celebrates its 50th year, however, in 2020.
Most Christmas attractions in the region begin in late November or early December and run until around December 31st or the weekend of New Year’s Day. A number continue until the end of the first week of January, and a couple more continue on for more than half the month.
Christmas attractions featured in the video that typically run until the end of the first week or so of January include Bright Nights at Stanley Park, the Festival of Lights at VanDusen Botanical Garden and Heritage Christmas at Burnaby Village.
Not featured in the video, the Peak of Christmas at Grouse Mountain also ends officially around the first week of January, although its Light Walk, ice skating and some of the resort’s other festive elements continue until much later. Also, FlyOver Canada films have a Christmas theme right up until the weekend before children return to school in January.
For more information about Christmas attractions throughout the holiday season, click Vancouver’s Best Christmas Activities.
The PuSh Festival is a performing arts festival that usually runs from mid-January until the beginning of February with shows taking place at a variety of theatres around town. Venues featured in the Vancouver in January Video include the Vogue Theatre, Queen Elizabeth Theatre and Performance Works.
Dine Out Vancouver Festival
The Dine Out Vancouver Festival is a food festival that features special 3-course dinner offerings at hundreds of local restaurants.
Restaurants featured in the video include the Keg Restaurant on Granville Island, Seasons in the Park at Queen Elizabeth Park, Arc at the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel and the Cactus Club by the Vancouver Convention Centre. Also featured in the video are the Lift Bar & Grill in Coal Harbour, Pier 7 in North Vancouver, Top of Vancouver near Gastown, and the Observatory Restaurant at Grouse Mountain.
For more details about the festival, click Dine Out Vancouver.
For a list of other top places to eat out, click Lower Mainland Restaurants.
Vancouver Ski Hills
If you include Whistler, the Lower Mainland has five ski hills. Mountains featured in the video include Grouse Mountain (with the photo of the Observatory Restaurant), Cypress Mountain and Mt. Seymour (with the scene of people snowshoeing at the provincial park). The other local ski hill not featured in the video is Sasquatch Mountain which is located in the Fraser Valley.
Click Lower Mainland Ski Hills for information about all five of the region’s ski resorts.
Vancouver International Boat Show
The Vancouver International Boat Show takes place sometime in mid-January both outdoors at the marina at Granville Island and indoors at BC Place Stadium. The event features hundreds of exhibitors and is the largest marine trade show in Western Canada.
Click Vancouver Boat Show for more details.
Note: The Vancouver International Boat Show has taken place in January in recent years, including in 2018. In 2019, however, it takes place in February instead.
January is a great month for outdoor winter sports, with all the snow in the hills, but also for indoor spectator sports, both because they are fun to watch and because it can rain a lot in January.
Winter Farmers Markets
A number of farmers markets run all winter, including in January. The market featured in the video is the Nat Bailey Farmers Market which takes place on Saturdays in the parking lot of Nat Bailey Stadium near Queen Elizabeth Park.
Other winter markets in January, but not appearing in the video, include the Hastings Park Farmers Market and Port Moody Winter Farmers Market, which both take place weekly on Sundays, and the Royal City Winter Farmers Market which happens every second Saturday in New Westminster.
Click Lower Mainland Winter Markets for more details about the different markets.
When it’s not raining and the skies are clear, January can be an exceptional month for sunsets. The sun goes down early, like between 4 and 5 o’clock. It also sets fairly far south, so from some places on the North Shore the Vancouver skyline gets lit up. Sunsets are also nice this time of year from along the west shore in Richmond, like at Steveston Village, and other places.
The photos of the sunsets in the Vancouver in January Video are from Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver. The first sunset photo includes the Seabus in Burrard Inlet as the sun sets over Stanley Park in the distance. The final photo is from the plaza in front of the Lonsdale Quay Public Market.
December and February can also be exceptional months for sunsets from the North Shore. For more sunset photos from both North Vancouver and West Vancouver, click February Sunsets.
For further information about things to do in Vancouver in January, check out any of the following:
- Vancouver’s January Calendar
- Festivals & Events Calendar
- Free January Events in Vancouver
- Top Things to do in January
- Rainy Day Activities
- Vancouver’s Top Attractions
For a look at what Vancouver looks like at other times of the year, check out any of the following other videos:
- Vancouver Rainy Day Activities Video
- Vancouver Winter Snow Video
- The Lower Mainland in Snow Video
- Vancouver in MARCH Video
- Vancouver in APRIL Video
- Vancouver in MAY Video
- Vancouver in JUNE Video
- Vancouver in DECEMBER Video