Home January Events Free January Events in Vancouver

Free January Events in Vancouver

Free Events in January

There are many free things to do in Vancouver in January including winter markets, holiday lights, parks to explore and various special events.

At the beginning of January there are Polar Bear Swims and end-of-season Christmas activities, all month long there is free skating at Robson Square, and on weekends there are a number of great winter farmers markets. There’s so much to enjoy, and for free!

Free Activities in January 2020

For a list of some of the best things to do in January including activities that aren’t free, check out the January Events Calendar. For a list of the best FREE (or almost free) special events this month, see below.

(Note: dates, prices and other details are subject to change – check official websites for exact information).


On-Going Free Activities this Time of Year

For a list of other extra affordable things to do in the Lower Mainland, click Vancouver on a Budget.

Top January Things to Do


Wednesday, January 1st (2020)

  • Polar Bear Swims – events that include swims in the ocean take place at English Bay, in North Vancouver’s Deep Cove, at Rocky Point Park in Port Moody and at Boundary Bay Regional Park in Delta. All are free to watch and either free or inexpensive to swim at. Click Polar Bear Swims for details.
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Christmas Season Attractions
    • Bright Nights – last day of the season for Christmas lights (by donation) and (not free) miniature train rides at Stanley Park.
    • Heritage Christmas – holiday decorations and things to see at Burnaby’s outdoor museum.
    • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
    • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Thursday, January 2nd (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Christmas Season Attractions
    • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
    • Heritage Christmas – holiday decorations and things to see at Burnaby’s outdoor museum.
    • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Friday, January 3rd (2020)

  • Bill Reid Gallery – free admission to the First Nations art gallery between 2:00 and 5:00 pm (because it’s the first Friday of the month).
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Christmas Season Attractions
    • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
    • Heritage Christmas – the last night for holiday decorations and things to see at Burnaby’s outdoor museum.
    • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Saturday, January 4th (2020)

Rainy Day Activities

Sunday, January 5th (2020)

  • Sunday Markets
    • Hastings Park Farmers Market – near Hastings Skatepark at Renfrew by Pandora between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm. Parking at the PNE is also free for market attendees.
    • Port Moody Winter Farmers Market at the Port Moody Recreation Centre at 300 Ioco Road from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.
    • Cloverdale Flea Market – a large yard and garage sale-style market that’s both indoors and outdoors at Surrey’s Cloverdale Fairgrounds all day until 3:00 pm. Admission is $1.50, but free for kids ages 12 and under.
    • Abbotsford Flea Market – a large market at 32470 Haida Drive in Abbotsford from 6:00 in the morning until 4:00 in the afternoon. Admission is just $1.00, but free for kids under 10 years of age.
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Jazz Vespers – from 4:00 to 5:00 pm at St. Andrew’s Wesley United Church at 1022 Nelson Street in Vancouver. Admission is by donation. Music today is with Maria Ho.
  • Christmas Season Attractions
    • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
    • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Monday, January 6th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Tuesday, January 7th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.
  • Vancouver Art Gallery – admission from 5:00 to 9:00 pm is by donation (because it’s Tuesday).
  • Cheap Movie Night – at various movie theatres throughout Metro Vancouver (so although not free, it is less expensive than usual).

Wednesday, January 8th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Thursday, January 9th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Friday, January 10th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Lights on the Lake – Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.

Saturday, January 11th (2020)

Sunday, January 12th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Lights on the Lake – last day for the Sasquatch-themed holiday illuminations along the waterfront at Harrison Hot Springs.
  • Sunday Markets
    • Port Moody Winter Farmers Market – at the Port Moody Recreation Centre at 300 Ioco Road from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.
    • Hastings Park Farmers Market – near Hastings Skatepark at Renfrew by Pandora between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm. Parking at the PNE is also free for market attendees.
    • Cloverdale Flea Market – a large yard and garage sale-style market that’s both indoors and outdoors at Surrey’s Cloverdale Fairgrounds all day until 3:00 pm. Admission is $1.50, but free for kids ages 12 and under.
    • Abbotsford Flea Market – a large market at 32470 Haida Drive in Abbotsford from 6:00 in the morning until 4:00 in the afternoon. Admission is just $1.00, but free for kids under 10 years of age.
  • Jazz Vespers
    • At 4:00 pm at Surrey’s Northwood United Church at 8855 156th Street. Music with Kristian Alexandrov and the Shannon Gaye Quartet.
    • From 4:00 to 5:00 pm at St. Andrew’s Wesley United Church at 1022 Nelson Street in Vancouver. Admission is by donation. (To be confirmed.)

Monday, January 13th (2020)

Tuesday, January 14th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Vancouver Art Gallery – admission from 5:00 to 9:00 pm is by donation (because it’s Tuesday).
  • Cheap Movie Night – at various movie theatres throughout Metro Vancouver (so although not free, it is less expensive than usual).

Wednesday, January 15th (2020)

Thursday, January 16th (2020)

  • Beaty Nocturnal – admission to UBC’s Beaty Biodiversity Museum is by donation today between 5:00 and 8:30 pm.
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.

Friday, January 17th (2020)

Saturday, January 18th (2020)

Sunday, January 19th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Lights at Lafarge – last day of the Christmas lights in Coquitlam at Lafarge Lake between 4:30 and 11:00 pm.
  • Sunday Markets
    • Port Moody Winter Farmers Market at the Port Moody Recreation Centre at 300 Ioco Road from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.
    • Hastings Park Farmers Market – near Hastings Skatepark at Renfrew by Pandora between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm. Parking at the PNE is also free for market attendees.
    • Cloverdale Flea Market – aa large yard and garage sale-style market that’s both indoors and outdoors at Surrey’s Cloverdale Fairgrounds all day until 3:00 pm. Admission is $1.50, but free for kids ages 12 and under.
    • Abbotsford Flea Market – a large market at 32470 Haida Drive in Abbotsford from 6:00 in the morning until 4:00 in the afternoon. Admission is just $1.00, but free for kids under 10 years of age.
  • Jazz Vespers – from 4:00 to 5:00 pm at St. Andrew’s Wesley United Church at 1022 Nelson Street in Vancouver. (To be confirmed.)

Monday, January 20th (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Shred for the Cause Ladies Night – women can ski for just $15 from 5:30 until 10:00 pm at Mt. Seymour (so it’s not free, but it is extra cheap). 50% of proceeds also benefit a local charity.

Tuesday, January 21st (2020)

  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Vancouver Art Gallery – admission from 5:00 to 9:00 pm is by donation (because it’s Tuesday).
  • Cheap Movie Night – at various movie theatres throughout Metro Vancouver (so although not free, it is less expensive than usual).

Wednesday, January 22nd (2020)

Thursday, January 23rd (2020)

Friday, January 24th (2020)

Saturday, January 25th (2020)

  • Chinese New Year – today marks the first day of the Year of the Rat with celebrations all week and weekend throughout the Lower Mainland.
  • River District Lion Dances – traditional Chinese New Year lion dances take place at River District Vancouver at a couple of different times. Free refreshments are also provided.
  • Vancouver Lunarfest – Lunar New Year activities in the Vancouver Art Gallery Plaza between 11:00 am and 6:00 pm.
  • Chinese New Year at International Village – market stalls and live entertainment in celebration of the Year of the Rat at the International Village in Chinatown.
  • Lunar New Year at UBC – family-friendly Chinese New Year-themed family-friendly activities take place at Wesbrook Community Centre between 2:00 and 4:00 pm.
  • Chinese New Year at Aberdeen Mall – live entertainment and celebrations happen at the Richmond mall from 1:45 until 4:30 pm.
  • Riley Park Farmers Market – from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm at Nat Bailey Stadium.
  • Burnaby Artisan Farmers Market – at Burnaby City Hall from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Family Favourites Movies – a kid-friendly film shows in the morning for just $2.99 at select theatres in the Lower Mainland. It’s not free, but it is extra cheap!

Sunday, January 26th (2020)

  • Chinese New Year Parade – in Vancouver’s Chinatown from 11:00 am until around 1:30 pm. Up to 100,000 people are expected!
  • Vancouver Lunarfest – Lunar New Year activities in the Vancouver Art Gallery Plaza between 11:00 am and 6:00 pm.
  • Chinese New Year at International Village – market stalls and live entertainment in celebration of the Year of the Rat at the International Village in Chinatown.
  • Year of the Rat Temple Fair – Lunar New Year celebrations at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Garden in Vancouver’s Chinatown at 578 Carrall Street. Activities include live music and dance performances, Chinese food for sale, a lion dance and family-friendly activities. Admission is by donation.
  • Lunar New Year at Lansdowne Centre – free entertainment takes place at the mall in Richmond from 12:30 until around 4:30 pm.
  • Chinese New Year at Aberdeen Mall – live entertainment and celebrations happen at the Richmond mall between 1:00 and 4:15 pm.
  • Whistler Pride and Ski Festival – free daily ski and snowboard camps, après-ski, movies and a parade at the LGBTQ-themed festival at Whistler-Blackcomb.
  • Sunday Markets
    • Port Moody Winter Farmers Market at the Port Moody Recreation Centre at 300 Ioco Road from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.
    • Hastings Park Farmers Market – near Hastings Skatepark at Renfrew by Pandora between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm. Parking at the PNE is also free for market attendees.
    • Cloverdale Flea Market – a large yard and garage sale-style market that’s both indoors and outdoors at Surrey’s Cloverdale Fairgrounds all day until 3:00 pm. Admission is $1.50, but free for kids ages 12 and under.
    • Abbotsford Flea Market – a large market at 32470 Haida Drive in Abbotsford from 6:00 in the morning until 4:00 in the afternoon. Admission is just $1.00, but free for kids under 10 years of age.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Jazz Vespers
    • At 4:00 pm at Surrey’s Northwood United Church at 8855 156th Street. Music with the Wild Blue Herons.
    • From 4:00 to 5:00 pm at St. Andrew’s Wesley United Church at 1022 Nelson Street in Vancouver. Admission is by donation. (To be confirmed.)

Monday, January 27th (2020)

  • Shred for the Cause Ladies Night – women can ski for just $15 from 5:30 until 10:00 pm at Mt. Seymour (so it’s not free, but it is extra cheap). 50% of proceeds also benefit a local charity.
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).

Tuesday, January 28th (2020)

  • Skating at Shipyard Commons – from noon until 7:00 pm on the giant rink at Shipyard Commons in North Vancouver (weather permitting).
  • Robson Square Ice Skating – free ice skating on the covered rink all day behind the Vancouver Art Gallery.
  • Vancouver Art Gallery – admission from 5:00 to 9:00 pm is by donation (because it’s Tuesday).
  • Cheap Movie Night – at various movie theatres throughout Metro Vancouver (so although not free, it is less expensive than usual).

Wednesday, January 29th (2020)

Thursday, January 30th (2020)

Friday, January 31st (2020)

Other Information

For a list of some of the best things to do in January including activities that aren’t free, check out the January Events Calendar.

For more ideas on things to do, check out Vancouver’s Best Places for Winter Activities.

 

 

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