Some of Metro Vancouver’s best Christmas attractions are on the North Shore including at Grouse Mountain, Capilano Suspension Bridge and Park and Tilford.
There are also great Christmas things to see and do in the Lower Lonsdale area of North Vancouver and at Dundarave in West Vancouver. For people who like shopping, there are also a number of excellent Christmas artisan markets in both November and December.
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Christmas Attractions in North and West Vancouver
There are some amazing Christmas attractions over the holiday season in the Lower Mainland. See below for some of the best.
North Shore Christmas Craft Markets
November and December are “Christmas craft fair season” in the Lower Mainland and the North Shore offers some of the best places to find products made by both local and international artisans.
Christmas craft markets feature all kinds of handmade products. They are fabulous places to buy unique and good quality gifts. Products that you’ll typically find at a holiday market include fancy candles, handmade jewellery, exotic soaps, knitted products, greeting cards, homemade preserves, glass work and a wide range of other products that make ideal gifts.
Some of the best craft markets taking place on the North Shore in 2019 include the following:
Sunday, November 3rd, 2019 – the St. Thomas Aquinas Christmas Craft Fair
This large and very popular market features around 130 artisan vendors and takes place at Saint Thomas Aquinas Secondary School at 541 West Keith Road in North Vancouver. It happens on the first Saturday in November between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm.
Admission to the fair costs $5 for adults and $2 for seniors. Admission for both elementary and high school students is free. It’s a great event that’s well-known for the quality of its products.
For more information click STA Christmas Craft Fair.
Saturday, November 23rd, 2019 – the Fair Trade Christmas Market
This is a smaller market where you can find fair trade products that have been made by artisans in developing countries from around the world.
Ten Thousand Villages is a social enterprise non-profit business that imports products that have been ethically and sustainably produced and for which the people who make the items are paid a fair wage. The organization has stores in various places in the Lower Mainland including in Abbotsford, Langley and Vancouver (on Granville Island). On this day though they set up sort of a “pop-up shop” at St. Andrew’s United Church at 1044 St. George’s Avenue in North Vancouver.
The market is open between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm and it’s a great place to buy gifts that will make a difference.
November 23rd & 24th, 2019 – the NV Holiday Bazaar
Celebrating its 7th anniversary in 2019, this is a medium-sized Christmas craft market that takes place at the West Vancouver Community Centre at 2121 Marine Drive from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. The event features around 50 or so artisan vendors and admission is free.
Click NV Holiday Bazaar for more information.
November 30th & December 1st, 2019 – the Shipyards Christmas Festival
North Vancouver’s main winter holiday event where the city’s Christmas tree gets officially lit up takes place at the Shipyards in Lower Lonsdale on Saturday, November 30th, in 2019. At the event there is an artisan market in the Pipe Shop (which is a heritage building at Shipbuilders’ Square right in the heart of the festival).
The Shipyards Christmas Artisan Market is a great market that features dozens of local artisan vendors. In 2019 the market is open from 1:00 until 9:00 pm on the Saturday (so the same day as the Shipyards Christmas Festival. It is also open the following day, so on Sunday, December 1st, from 10:00 am until 5:00 pm.
Admission to the market is free on both days. They gratefully accept donations at the door, however, and give whatever they collect to the North Shore Neighbourhood House (which is a very worthwhile cause).
December 7th, 8th, 14th & 15th, 2019 – the Shipyards Christmas Market
Put on by the same folk behind the above-mentioned artisan market at North Vancouver’s Shipyards Christmas Festival, 50 or so vendors participate in this craft fair which again happens at the Pipe Shop at Shipbuilders’ Square. The address of the venue is 115 Victory Ship Way.
The Shipyards Christmas Market happens on the first two weekends in December. On both Saturdays it runs from 10:00 am until 6:00 pm and on the Sundays between 10:00 am and 5:00 pm. Admission is free, although donations benefiting the North Shore Neighbourhood House are greatly appreciated.
Peak of Christmas at Grouse Mountain
At Grouse Mountain there is the Peak of Christmas which includes outdoor skating, sleigh rides, gingerbread house displays, holiday movies and more. And that’s not including all the great skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing that take place up on Grouse Mountain all winter long (at least in years when there’s good snow).
In 2019 the Peak of Christmas starts on Friday, November 22, and continues until January 5, 2020.
Click Peak of Christmas for more information.
Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge
At the Capilano Suspension Bridge there is Canyon Lights which features amazing Christmas decorations and illuminations, carolers and lit up bridges above the canyon and through the trees.
This year Canyon Lights runs from November 22, 2019, until January 26, 2020, every day except for Christmas Day.
Click Canyon Lights for further details.
Holiday Hi-Light Festival
In the Gardens at Park and Tilford Mall there is the FREE Holiday Hi-Light Festival with Christmas decorations and thousands of lights, plus family nights every Friday in December prior to the 25th.
Admission is by donation with proceeds benefiting the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund.
Click Holiday Hi-Light Festival for more information.
Christmas in Lower Lonsdale
North Vancouver’s Lower Lonsdale neighbourhood celebrates the holiday season with the Shipyards Christmas Festival which is a wonderful family-friendly (and free) event on Saturday, November 30th, in 2019.
Dundarave Festival of Lights
West Vancouver celebrates the Christmas season with its Festival of Lights event at Dundarave Beach. Area businesses and community organizations decorate Christmas trees which are then on display for the month of December. They are pretty to see at night, and on the four Saturdays leading up to Christmas there is live entertainment and other family-friendly activities at the beach.
In 2019 the special Saturday events take place on November 30th and December 7, 14 & 21.
Click Dundarave Festival of Lights for more information.
Carol Ships Shoreline Celebration
The Carol Ships Shoreline Celebration takes place on a Saturday evening in mid-December. It’s a free event that features a massive bonfire, live music, kid-friendly activities and a procession of boats decorated with Christmas lights at Panorama Park in Deep Cove.
In 2018 the event happened on December 15th between 7:30 and 9:00 pm. 2019 details will likely be similar (but to be confirmed).
All five of the above attractions are among the Lower Mainland’s best places to see Christmas Lights and enjoy the festive holiday season.
For more ideas on other great places to see Christmas lights in the Lower Mainland, check out Top Things to do at Christmas.
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Vancouver’s November and December Calendars of Events
- Lower Mainland Christmas Craft Fairs
- Vancouver’s Best Christmas Activities
- Vancouver Theatre in December
- Vancouver Christmas Concerts
- Lower Mainland Ski Hills