Maple Ridge is a city in Metro Vancouver that’s full of farms, forests, parks and nature. It’s also home to a number of attractions.
The region is known for its dykes, walking trails and farmland. Its most famous attractions include Golden Ears Provincial Park and the WildPlay Element Park. The city is also home to some impressive events and known for its many Dog-Friendly Venues. In the summer there are also free concerts and family-friendly activities with Maple Ridge Happenings at Memorial Peace Park.
This article contains the following information about Maple Ridge:
The City of Maple Ridge
Maple Ridge is situated close to mountains and several bodies of water. The surrounding nature is beautiful and great for folks who enjoy walking, hiking and cycling. There are also dog-friendly parks and places to both fish and swim. The city also has a small downtown core full of shops and restaurants.
With a population of over 80,000 people, Maple Ridge is the ninth largest municipality in Metro Vancouver. It’s located north of the Fraser River, east of Pitt Meadows and about a 45-minute drive from downtown Vancouver in good traffic.
The attractions and events listed below include some of the best places and things to do in Maple Ridge.
Maple Ridge Attractions
The following are some of the best attractions in the Maple Ridge area. Given the surrounding landscapes, it’s no surprise that nature is a highlight of the city.
Parks in Maple Ridge
Below are some of the city’s best parks and places in nature. There are lots of other parks too, including ones with children’s playgrounds, walking trails, picnic tables and open grassy fields. The following places though are some of our favourites.
- Alouette Lake – a picturesque lake in Golden Ears Provincial Park. It’s a popular place for boating, swimming and fishing.
- Golden Ears Provincial Park – a large park that features Alouette Lake, forest and mountain views. Golden Ears is a popular hiking and camping destination.
- Jerry Sulina Park – a small park with an off-leash dog park and access to the Trans-Canada Trail.
- Kanaka Creek Regional Park – a big park with walking trails, a hatchery, waterfalls and views of the Fraser River.
- Maple Ridge Park – a fair-sized municipal park at the corner of Fern Crescent and 232nd Street. It has a year-round children’s playground and a water spray area in the summer. There are also picnic tables, picnic shelters, walking trails and a river where people can swim in the summer.
- North Alouette Regional Greenway – a rural trail that meanders past farms, marshlands and forest along the Alouette River. The dykes are great places for cycling, running and walking.
- Whonnock Lake – a park with a sandy beach and a small lake that’s popular for fishing, canoeing and kayaking on.
In addition to the above, Memorial Peace Park is a municipal park in the heart of downtown Maple Ridge. It’s where a number of annual events take place as well as the Haney Farmers Market. In the middle of the park is a band stand. Bordering the park is the ACT Arts Centre, Maple Ridge Leisure Centre, City Hall and 224th Street.
Attractions and Other Places of Interest
- ACT Art Centre – a centre for visual and performing arts at 11944 Haney Place (so right by the Memorial Peace Park). The venue has a small gallery (with free admission) and a 486-seat theatre. It also offers a variety of arts-related programs.
- Haney House Museum – a historic site that was the former home of an early settler after whom a neighbourhood in the city is still named.
- Laity Pumpkin Patch – a popular farm and pumpkin patch at 21145-128th Avenue.
- Maple Ridge Golf Course – just short of 100 years old, it’s one of the first golf courses in the entire Fraser Valley. Located on the edge of the Fraser River at 20818 Golf Lane, it’s also affordably priced.
- Maple Ridge Leisure Centre – a rec centre at 11925 Haney Place (so beside the ACT Arts Centre and the Memorial Peace Park). The venue has a swimming pool, hot tub, gymnasium, squash and racquetball courts. It’s where locals go for indoor exercise.
- The Maple Ridge Museum – a small museum at 22520 116th Avenue (which is just off the Haney Bypass not far from the Port Haney Wharf).
- Planet Ice – ice skating facilities at 23588 Jim Robson Way (by the Albion Fairgrounds).
- The Rock Wall – an indoor climbing centre at 11455 201a Street.
- WildPlay Element Park – an outdoor adventure park with fun rope courses at 23485 Fern Crescent.
In addition to the above, there are also a couple of retreat centres in the Maple Ridge area. One is Loon Lake which is affiliated with the University of British Columbia (UBC). It offers corporate retreats, wellness weekends and youth retreats. The other is Timberline Ranch which has horses and offers summer camps and facility rentals.
Maple Ridge has always been a pooch-friendly place. The city has lots of parks that welcome dogs both on and off-leash. Some retail stores even let customers bring their pets inside.
In the spring of 2021, to help spread the word, the City of Maple Ridge launched its Dog-Friendly Maple Ridge Program where area businesses can sign up to be identified as dog-friendly venues. Even restaurants with outdoor patios can participate in the program. Dog owners, meanwhile, benefit by finding places that their pets are welcome.
To learn about places where furry companions can hang out with their owners, see our article about Maple Ridge Dogs, Parks and Patio Restaurants.
Events in Maple Ridge
The following festivals and events take place in Maple Ridge most years:
- Canada Day – annual celebrations at Memorial Peace Park on July 1st.
- Celebrate the Night – a free Halloween event at the Memorial Peace Park that has fireworks displays.
- Haney Farmers Market – a seasonal market with a wide variety of products at Memorial Peace Park on Saturdays from late spring until mid-autumn.
- Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Country Fest – a free community fair at the Albion Fairgrounds in July.
- Maple Ridge Summer Happenings – a series of concerts and family-friendly activities take place at Memorial Peace Park on different evenings in the summer.
- Music on the Wharf – outdoor summer concerts take place on the Port Haney Wharf.
- Maple Ridge Car Free Day – an annual event that happens in June in celebration of pedestrians and car-free culture.
- Maple Ridge Food Truck Festival – formerly its own event but now part of Maple Ridge’s Car Free Day event, the festival features food trucks, live music and activities for children.
- The Maple Ridge Caribbean Festival – a live music festival in August with food trucks, a marketplace and more.
- National Indigenous People’s Day – festivities celebrating First Nation’s culture at the Memorial Peace Park in June.
- Remembrance Day in Maple Ridge – public ceremonies occur on November 11th at the Memorial Peace Park.
In addition to the above, a number of other Christmas-themed events also take place around the end of the year. Continue reading for details.
Christmas Events In Maple Ridge
The events below happen in Maple Ridge during the Christmas season in November, December and January.
- CP Holiday Train – a Canadian Pacific Railway train decorated with Christmas lights makes its way across the country and visits communities along the way. The train makes a stop in Maple Ridge most years in mid-December. There is a free concert at which volunteers collect donations for the local food bank.
- Maple Ridge Christmas Festival – a Christmas festival with a Santa Claus Parade usually happens in early December.
- Glow Maple Ridge – Christmas lights in the downtown area of the city from late November until the beginning of January most years.
Where is Maple Ridge?
Maple Ridge is north of the Fraser River from Langley and just east of Pitt Meadows. It’s less than an hour’s drive east of downtown Vancouver in good traffic.
Coming from Vancouver you can get to Maple Ridge a couple of different ways. You can go via the Trans-Canada Highway, North Langley and the Golden Ears Bridge. Alternatively, instead of going over the Portman Bridge, you can take exit #44 before the bridge and get there via Highway #7. Coming from the Tri-Cities (i.e., Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam), you can simply drive east along the Lougheed Highway.
Maple Ridge is located on the traditional unceded territories of the Kwantlen and Katzie First Nations.
Where to Stay
The main hotel in Maple Ridge is the Best Western at 21650 Lougheed Highway. It offers continental breakfasts and has an indoor pool, steam room and hot tub. Kitchenettes and pet-friendly rooms are also available. The hotel has a no-smoking policy.
Memorial Peace Park Video
Memorial Peace Park is where a number of events take place in Maple Ridge. It’s right in the heart of downtown. The other main event venue is the Albion Fairgrounds which is a few kilometres away. The following video shows what Memorial Peace Park looks like during a Maple Ridge Happenings live music event in the summer. The artist in the video is Nette along with her band.
To learn more about things to do in the area see the following topics on the City of Maple Ridge’s website.
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Pitt Meadows & Maple Ridge
- Dog-Friendly Parks and Patio Restaurants in Maple Ridge
- Metro Vancouver
- Vancouver Festivals and Events
- Parks and Nature in the Lower Mainland