One of the summer night markets has an Asian focus and the other is more upscale and includes a beer garden. The one in Richmond costs a few dollars for admission. The one on the North Shore is free. They both offer live music and are interesting in their own ways.
NIGHT MARKETS AND COVID-19
Because of the outbreak of the coronavirus, North Vancouver’s Shipyards Night Market was cancelled for 2020. The Richmond event didn’t happen last year either.
As of mid-July, 2021, the Shipyards Night Market has been cancelled for the second year in a row. Hopefully they’ll be back in 2022. The Richmond Night Market, meanwhile, still hopes to open, but at a reduced capacity. Fingers crossed that the Richmond event can still take place!
For information about events and venues that are open and happening, see our article about Vancouver, COVID-19 and Open Places.
Weekend Night Markets in Vancouver
Night markets in Metro Vancouver include the Richmond Night Market and Shipyards Night Market. Both are huge and amazing. Up until a couple of years ago there was also the much smaller Italian Night Market once a month or so in the summer, but now it only happens once a year around Christmas.
In previous years there was also the Illumination Night Market in Richmond. At different times it had also been known as the International Night Market and Panda Night Market. Its last year, however, was in 2017 and it is now permanently closed.
Also in past years there has been a Surrey Night Market and a Vancouver Chinatown Night Market. Neither of these continues to run either.
Richmond Night Market
The Richmond Night Market has a distinct Chinese theme and offers tasty Asian smells, music and imported things to buy. It takes place at 8351 River Road. The market attracts as many as 30,000 shoppers per weekend and boasts over 1,000,000 visitors a year.
The Richmond event is huge and quite the sight to see, with its hundreds of vendor stalls and crowds of people. In fact, it claims to be the largest night market in North America for the last dozen or so years running.
In years when it does operate, the Richmond Night Market costs about $5 and is open from 7 pm from mid-May until mid-October on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and holiday Mondays. It’s highly recommended – you’ll think that you’re in China!
In addition to dozens of food and market vendors, the Richmond venue is also home to a number of cool dinosaur displays (which helps make it fun for children).
North Vancouver’s Shipyard Night Market
North Vancouver also hosts an exceptional night market. It’s very different from the Richmond Night Market, but equally as impressive in its own way.
Whereas the Richmond market is amazing for all its Asian tastes, smells, sounds and products, the North Shore event has a beer garden, great live bands and views of Vancouver and Burrard Inlet. It also features farmers’ market-style vendors and dozens of food trucks selling every kind of food imaginable.
North Vancouver’s Shipyards Night Market takes place at Shipbuilders’ Square near Lonsdale Quay, just a short walk from the North Shore’s SeaBus terminal. It’s usually open on Friday evenings from May until September between 5 and 10 pm. In 2020, however, it never happened because of COVID-19. 2021 details are to be determined.
For information about the status of North Vancouver’s summer event on Friday evenings, see the Shipyards Night Market website.
Other Lower Mainland Markets
In addition to night markets, Vancouver and the surrounding region is also famous for its farmers markets. For a list of Lower Mainland farmers markets in alphabetical order, see Metro Vancouver’s Farmers Markets. For lists of farmers markets on specific days of the week, check out the following:
- Wednesday Farmers Markets: Main Street, Surrey and Whistler.
- Thursday Farmers Markets: New Westminster, Granville Island and Downtown.
- Saturday Farmers Markets: Abbotsford, Burnaby, Fort Langley, Haney, Squamish, Trout Lake and the West End.
- Sunday Farmers Markets: Ambleside, Coquitlam, Kitsilano, Mt. Pleasant, Steveston Village, White Rock and Whistler.
And for farmers markets taking place outside the summer season, check out Lower Mainland Winter Markets.
Vancouver Christmas Market
In addition to the above, there is also the Vancouver Christmas Market which runs from late November until just before Christmas. It takes place during the day too, but gets especially lively in the evenings.
The Vancouver Christmas Market obviously isn’t a summer market, but it is a night one, which is why we mention it here. It takes place at Jack Poole Plaza beside the Vancouver Convention Centre in downtown Vancouver. Its theme is 100% Christmassy and definitely European.
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Vancouver Places for Shopping
- Vancouver Farmers Markets
- Lower Mainland Food Truck Festivals
- Vancouver’s Most Interesting Streets
- Vancouver Summer Activities
- Vancouver’s North Shore
- Vancouver on a Budget
- Free Outdoor Summer Concerts
- Vancouver Festivals and Events