We’ve compiled a super-sized summer survival checklist that includes all the must-dos for your family to prevent the boredom blues. Print off our the list, stick it to the fridge, and see how many you can get through before the Fall arrives.
1. Metro Vancouver is going crazy for Canada Day this year! Check out our HUGE list of Canada 150 celebrations. Which party are you joining?
2. Check out the 4 day Golden Spike Days Festival in Port Moody June 30 – July 3rd.
3. West 4th Ave shuts down for the annual Khatsahlano Street Party on July 8th.
4. Check out the FREE family fun at Newton Days in Surrey. Saturdays noon – 4pm through July & August.
5. The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra performs, for FREE, at Burnaby’s Deer Lake Park on July 9th.
6. If your kid loves Pokemon you won’t want to miss the Pokemon Symphonic Evolutions performed by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in July.
7. Need a day of play? Why not explore one (or more) of these playgrounds with serious WOW Factor?
8. Check out the 34th annual Whistler Children’s Festival July 7th – 9th. The fun-filled weekend features a multitude of hands-on art workshops led by professional artists in fine arts, crafts, theatre, multi-media, dance and music from across BC.
9. Book a salmon & crab charter tour with Ocean Adventure Centre. The awesome crew, Vancouver’s gorgeous geography & tasty seafood make this an unforgettable experience!
10. Soar about the forest floor when you visit the Greenheart TreeWalk at UBC Botanical Garden
11. Visit the world of imaginative play at Richmond’s Kidtropolis. If you are looking to avoid the crowds, don’t visit on a cloudy / rainy day.
12. On the last Sunday of every month visit the model trains at the Maple Ridge Museum
13. Pack a picnic and have a family dinner either on the beach or at one of these 5 lesser known picnic spots
14. Ride the Fraser Valley Heritage Railway in Cloverdale. The 55 minute ride will take you on a fun journey & teach you a bit of history.
15. If your kids are a little bit older take them to the magical Bard on the Beach. The plays for the 2017 season are: Much Ado About Nothing, The Winter’s Tale, The Merchant of Venice, Two Gentlemen of Verona & Shylock. Family nights happen July 11, August 8 & 22.
16. Carnaval del Sol is a Latin America fiesta with outdoor salsa & zumba lessons, a mini world cup street soccer tournament, an arts and crafts market, a children’s tent and much more!
17. Phantom of the Opera has been re-staged and is even more dazzling that you remember. The Broadway Across Canada production visits Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre July 12 – 23rd.
18. The Aldergrove Fair Days return July 14 – 16. A tractor pull, zucchini races and loads of mid-way games.
19. On July 22nd, check out the FREE Boundary Bay Airshow.
20. Ride aboard a Paddleboat River Tour and take in the grandeur of the Fraser River
21. Grab a bag full of birdseed and feed the geese at Granville Island
22. In need of some good BBQ? Don’t miss the Port Moody Rotary Ribfest July 21 – 23 at Rocky Point Park.
23. Start hiking as a family! These 7 Kid-Friendly Hikes are great for kids of all ages.
24. The 7th annual Indian Summer Festival returns July 6 – 15th. Celebrating the Indian culture through food, performances, talks, and activities.
25. Go bowling with your kids. Did you know that in the summer Kids Bowl Free at various lanes around Metro Vancouver. All you have to do is sign them up!
26. Did you know there are THREE new family-friendly rides at Playland this year?
27. Raise your pinky finger and practice your English accent at high tea! Try either Secret Garden Tea Company or Adorabelle
28. Embrace all things aviary and visit the Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary
29. Find a perfect spot to view the Celebration of Light fireworks show. The countries competing this year are: Japan, United Kingdom and Canada.
30. Visit the night markets (Richmond Night Market, International Summer Market (aka Illumination Night Market), Shipyard Night Market)
31. Bring popcorn and watch a FREE outdoor movie in a number of communities across Metro Vancouver.
32. Go for a drive and explore Harrison Hot Springs! Don’t forget to check out their Festival of the Arts.
33. Does anything scream SUMMER like a bucket full of fresh berries? Kids need to experience picking berries and there are U-Pick farms all over the Lower Mainland!
34. Bring your rollerblades or bikes and have fun on the hills at the Seymour Demonstration Forest
35. Spend a day in historic & charming Fort Langley. We love visiting the birthplace of BC…check out our top 6 reasons!
36. Soak in the tunes of the Folk Music Festival at Jericho Beach July 14 – 16.
37. Theatre Under the Stars brings 2 great productions to Malkin Bowl in Stanley Park (July 7 – August 18). The family-friendly production is the supercalifragilistic Mary Poppins (odd days in July; even days in August). The Drowsy Chaperone, a Canadian musical parody and 5 time Tony Award winner runs even days in July & odd days in August.
38. Climb in the trees at WildPlay. An air-borne obstacle course perfect for tall 5 year olds & up. The kids love it – especially the zipline!
39. Play a round of mini golf
40. Spend the evening outdoors and enjoy live music in a beautiful setting! Outdoor music concerts happen around Metro Vancouver all summer long (and most of them are FREE!)
41. Soar over the trees and explore the Capilano Suspension Bridge
42. Visit your local library and sign up for the summer reading club. Lots of prizes to be won!
43. Find treasures in your backyard or wherever your summer ramblings take you. Geocaching is a FREE family activity you can do literally anywhere.
44. Say hello to some exotic animals at the Greater Vancouver Zoo in Aldergrove. Bring your bikes because the paved pathways are perfect for 2-wheeled fun.
45. Don’t miss visiting the Kids Gallery at the Surrey Museum. As of July 31st it closes for 18 months for a massive expansion. The Kids’ Gallery is FREE to visit.
46. Slurpees are FREE on July 11th at your local 7-Eleven store.
47. Don’t miss the two FREE Home Depot Kids’ Workshops this summer. The events happen on the 2nd Saturday of every month (July 8th & August 12th)
48. Get soaked at one (or many) of the spray and water parks in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland
49. Take a walk back in time and go to a drive in movie at Twilight Drive-In out in Aldergrove.
50. 2017 marks the 10th anniversary of the Surrey Fusion Festival. This year Nelly Furtado performs. The fun happens at Holland Park July 22 & 23rd.
51. Come for fun family activities all day at the Honeybee Festival (July 15 & 16): bee beards, beekeeping demos, live music, food, farmers market and a variety of fantastic local vendors.
52. Don’t miss the CP Canada 150 Train when it visits Port Moody on July 28th.
53. Country Fest has been celebrated in Maple Ridge for more than 100 years! The FREE entertainment; crazy lawnmower races; animal exhibitions of all sorts…the list of activities and entertainment goes on!
54. Feel the beat with the Caribbean Festival in North Vancouver July 29th & 30th.
55. The 45th annual Tsawwassen Sun Festival is 3 days of fun over the BC Day Long Weekend. Enjoy a ball tournament, great food, fireworks, an antique fair, a skateboard competition, a parade, an international market, a petting zoo, a children’s festival, a bike show and more!
56. Visit the spectacular Sea to Sky Gondola in Squamish
57. Ride the Granville Island water taxis
58. Take in a 365 degree view of downtown Vancouver at the Vancouver Lookout
59. Watch planes fly overhead and play at the airport-themed Larry Berg Flight Path Park in Richmond
60. Got a little detective on your hands? The Police Museum is the place for you.
61. Listen to the gentle clip-clop while enjoying a horse-drawn tour in Stanley Park.
62. Exhaust the kids at Bear Creek Park: ride the miniature train, play a round of mini golf, splash around at the water park, have a picnic in the beautiful gardens.
63. Soak in the blues at Jazz Vespers every Sunday at 4pm.
64. Take in a horse jumping show at Langley’s Thunderbird Show Park
65. Swim in an outdoor pool.
66. Catch a Vancouver Canadians game at Nat Bailey Stadium
67. If your kids love pirates you won’t want to miss stopping by Pirates Adventure Canada
68. Go on an ice cream tasting comparison. Be sure to check out: Earnest Ice Cream, Beta5 Chocolates, Rain or Shine, Butter Baked Goods, Bella Gelateria, and La Casa Gelato.
69. It is worth the drive. Visit Hell’s Gate Airtram
70. Check out the Way Cool Biodiversity Series on the first Sunday of every month. The museum is located on the UBC campus.
71. Ride the SkyTrain from one end to the other. Explore all three lines: Expo Line, Millennium Line, Canada Line. Try and get the front seat and then pretend you are the driver!
72. Queen Elizabeth Park offers entertainment such as lawn bowling, tennis, roller hockey, disc golf, pitch & putt and more.
73. Let your kids climb to the rafters at Funtopia! Dozens of climbing walls all kid-themed. It is a hoot!
74. The kids will LOVE playing at the Fresh Farm Fun Field: jumping pillows, games, tether ball, peddle cart race track & more. Parents will LOVE that admission to the Fresh Family Fun Field is FREE on August 6th.
75.The Abbotsford International Airshow is a must during August. The 2017 dates are August 11 – 13. You can buy tickets at Save On Foods stores starting July 1st.
76, Explore gorgeous Port Moody: Rocky Point Park, Rocky Point Ice Cream, The Village Toy Shop, Port Moody Station Museum
77. Get your mini-donut fill at the PNE. The summer concert line up is amazing! Did you also know there are a number of ways to visit the PNE for FREE or super cheap?
78. Ride the waves at Watermania in Richmond
79. On Saturdays throughout the summer (and through the year for that matter) you can enjoy the big-movie-theatre experience for just $2.99. The Cineplex Family Favourite Shows start at 11am. Some of the movies being shown this summer include: LEGO Batman, Power Rangers, Back to the Future, and Ballerina.
80. Buy local and support the farmers at the many local Farmer’s Markets
81. The Circle Farm tours are a great way to learn about agricultural treasures in your back yard. The Circle Farm tours exist for: Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Langley, Agassiz/Harrison Mills, and Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows
82. Head in the other direction and go West to the Britannia Mine Museum. The kids will love the underground train
83. On August 19th visit the amazing Larry Berg Flight Path Park & have fun at the FREE YVR Community Chill Out event.
84. The RCMP Musical Ride is celebrating Canada’s 150th with a tour across the country. Catch the red serge riders in August in Burnaby, Vancouver & Maple Ridge. Events happen August 18 – 23rd.
85. Immerse yourself in the beauty of our country at Fly Over Canada. Travel from the Newfoundland icebergs to our expansive West Coast and see all the provinces in between.
86. Have you tried the crazy game of disc golf? Give it a go at Little Mountain, Jericho Jill, Eastview Park, Rockridge or Qualichena.
87. Kids love climbing! Let them climb to the rafters at Funtopia in Surrey.
88. Water slides are an essential part of summer. Be sure to visit the iconic Cultus Lake Waterpark and while Splashdown Park closed in 2016, Big Splash has opened in the same location (Tsawwassen) for 2017!
89. Absorb the beauty with the walls of the Vancouver Art Gallery. Claude Monet’s Secret Garden is on display June 24 – October 1st.
90. Visit the FREE Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge
91. Spend a rainy summer day in the Bloedel Conservatory
92. Enjoy a peaceful walk through the Dr Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Gardens. Why not pack a picnic and make an afternoon of it?
93. If the weather is being disagreeable but the kids want to dig in the sand, head to 6Pack Indoor Beach and experience an 18,000 sqft indoor beach. Lots of digging fun for the kids!
94. Hike the trails that surround the beautiful Cleveland Dam in North Vancouver
95. Visit the ArtStarts Gallery and check out their FREE exhibits
96. Bike the seawall
97. Spin in circles on the antique carousel at the Burnaby Village Museum. Admission to the museum is FREE all summer long; carousel rides are $2.65 each.
98. Learn about urban farming at the UBC Farm. The Farmers Markets run on Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Saturdays until the end of October.
99. Come kick some tires at the Langley Good Times Cruise In on September 9th.
100. Have fun, take photos, and make the summer of 2016 one the kids talk about for years to come. Happy summer!
Been there, done that? Check our calendar to see exactly what’s happening this week in Metro Vancouver.
Have a great summer families!
Although we do our best to provide you with accurate information, all event details are subject to change. Please contact the facility to avoid disappointment.