If you are looking for things to do in Vancouver with kids then you are in the right place! Vancouver is an exceptional city when it comes to catering to the needs of families with children. The city boasts a plethora of family-friendly activities and attractions, making it an ideal place to live and for a memorable vacation.
One of the standout features of Vancouver is its stunning natural beauty, with an abundance of parks, gardens, and outdoor spaces. Stanley Park, for example, offers endless opportunities for exploration, with its vast greenery, playgrounds, and picturesque seawall perfect for family bike rides.
On rainy days, Vancouver is home to a multitude of museums and educational centers, such as the Science World and the Vancouver Aquarium, where children can engage in hands-on learning experiences and interact with fascinating exhibits.
The city also hosts various family-oriented festivals and events throughout the year, showcasing diverse cultures, art, and music. With its combination of natural wonders, educational attractions, and vibrant community spirit, Vancouver truly shines as a fantastic destination for families, ensuring that kids of all ages will have an unforgettable time.
40 Fun Things to Do in Vancouver with Kids:
Spend the morning at the Vancouver Aquarium one of the most well-known Vancouver attractions for families. We love that this can be done in half a day, just in time to have lunch and give the little ones a nap! It can get busy, so going early is your best bet to experience this popular Vancouver attraction without the crowds! The Vancouver Aquarium is one of the things to do in Vancouver with kids that locals and visitors both love. It offers a close-up experience of the marine life that can be found off the waters of British Columbia.
Location: 845 Avision Way (Stanley Park), Vancouver
Tickets and Info: https://www.vanaqua.org/ (Advance Booking suggested)
Wander Granville Island and check out the local shops (the kid’s market is a favourite), fresh food and even the water park for the kids! This is one of the popular tourist spots in Vancouver and is also flooded with locals looking to pick up fresh seafood and veggies from the public market. This is also one of the best places to find Vancouver souvenirs if you are visiting from out of town!
Location: 1689 Johnston Street, Vancouver. How to get to Granville Island.
Capilano Suspension Bridge
Cross Vancouver’s Capilano River on a 450-foot-long suspension bridge with this entry ticket. Capilano Suspension Bridge offers a view of west coast nature from the treetops! Completed in 1889, the bridge has seen millions of visitors over the years. The Capitano Suspension Bridge Park now boasts a variety of activities including a cliff walk, and treetop platforms, and also has self-guided programs for kids!
Location: 3735 Capilano Road, North Vancouver
Important Notes: Strollers are not allowed.
Tickets: Online here
Hit the Beach
If relaxing, or people-watching is your thing, grab your beach essentials and head over to Kits Beach for the afternoon with your kids! No trip to Canada is complete without enjoying some of the West Coast beaches that are right in the city of Vancouver!
Book a Photoshoot
Booking a photoshoot is always on the to-do list and Flytographer is an easy way to book a local photoshoot and update your family photos! When it is tough to plan ahead, use this site when booking a photoshoot.
Flytographer caters to people in the city who do not have a local photographer and for those out-of-towners who want to get family photos while in Vancouver. Their turnaround time for delivering photos is amazing! If you use the code LINDSAY you will save $25 off your booking!
Stanley Park SeaWall
One of the most popular things to do in Vancouver with kids is to get them outdoors and running around in Stanely Park. Bring a scooter and walk Stanley Park’s SeaWall or enjoy everything the park has to offer. If you like bike riding, this is the perfect place to do it at any time of year! With beautiful beaches and views of Deep Cove it is a perfect place to enjoy in Vancouver with kids.
If you do not live in the city or have no way to transport your bikes from home, there are bike rental shops just outside of the park that offer kid-sized bikes. There are also adult sized rental bikes all over the city that are machine operated.
Grouse Mountain is an amazing summer or winter activity in Vancouver with kids! With the hill covered in snow in the winter and amazing hiking and entertainment in the summer, it is well worth a visit! Did you know they have daily shows, a grizzly bear habitat, and wolves! Grouse Mountain (and the other local mountains) also offer night skiing, making it one of the popular things to do in Vancouver at night with families in the winter!
Lynn Canyon Park
Explore Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge and experience North Vancouver’s amazing parks. Open since 1912 it has been a popular destination among tourists and local families of Metro Vancouver ever since. The Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge towers 50 meters (160ft) over the canyon and is part of the Baden Powell Trail. In addition to the bridge, the park features several hiking trails to enjoy and some amenities including the Lynn Canyon Cafe and Ecology Centre. Bring a picnic and enjoy one of Metro Vancouver’s premier outdoor family activities!
Location: 3663 Park Rd, North Vancouver
Note: The park is free to visit but there is a cost to park in the parking lot
Daytrip to Fort Langley
Explore British Columbia’s origins at Fort Langley, a Parks Canada National Historic Site, on the bank of the Fraser River. Kids love exploring the Fort. There are plenty of restaurants and small shops to browse as well. A few favorites to eat are Beatniks, Blacksmith Bakery and Saba.
If you are coming to one of the pumpkin patches in Langley plan to spend a few hours exploring Fort Langley as well!
Hike the Chief in Squamish
Hike the Stawamus Chief (or take the new Sea to Sky Gondola!) to experience stunning views of Howe Sound and Garibaldi Provincial Park. This hike is a few hours long, with a large elevation gain and would not be suitable for young children. There are a few small ladders and chains to help navigate the steep sections, but this is a hike that can be done in good running shoes. If hiking is not your thing, you can still access the top of the chief with the Sea to Sky Gondola.
Probably the number 1 thing to do with kids in Vancouver is to spend the day exploring Science World. Make sure to catch a movie on the giant IMAX screen! Kids of all ages, from toddlers to teens can explore the interactive exhibits at the Telus World of Science.
HR MacMilan Space Centre
HR MacMillan Space Centre is a great way to spend the day for the little astronomy lover in your life!
Bike in Stanley Park
Biking the Seawall on a Sunny Day is one of the top things to do in Vancouver for visitors and locals! Don’t have a bike? No Problem. There are plenty of rental shops and the city now runs a bike share program!
Ride the Aquabus
Get the kids out on the water and ride the Aquabus around False Creek. These little ferries travel around False Creek as a bus system for residents and visitors. Go from one stop to the other, or take a round trip around Vancouver’s waterfront.
Blodel Conservatory offers beautiful flowers and exotic birds inside a giant dome in Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Park. Escape Vancouver’s often inclement weather for a taste of the tropics and view over 500 species of flowers and over 200 species of birds. How can they do this? Well with an assortment of indoor grow lights!
Daytrip to White Rock or Crescent Beach
White Rock and Crescent Beach in Surrey are great ideas if you are looking for a new beach to check out! They do require you to have a car though!
Watch the Whitecaps at BC Place
Take in a Vancouver Whitecaps Game at BC Place Stadium. We love the camaraderie of sports and like to get our children involved! When we travel, we always try and take in a local sports event! You can read more about our love of sports here.
Catch a Canucks Game
Hockey Fan? Watch the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena while you are in Vancouver.
Shop Until You Drop on Robson St.
Go Shopping on Robson Street. Mom and Dad need some “fun” time too! In its prime area roughly between Burrard and Jervis Street, Robson Street has every store that you could desire for your fashion wants. All the major national and international chain stores are located here, from more casual and athletic wear companies such as to well-known clothing retailers. Popular footwear retailers, lingerie and beauty products are all here. If you are looking for Vancouver souvenirs, check out the souvenir shops Grand Maple Gift and Canadian Crafts.
Soar over Canada at Fly over Canada
If you have never seen Fly Over Canada, then this is an experience you should not miss. During the Ultimate Flying Ride, you will see numerous cities and vistas across the country. The production team for FlyOver Canada was able to select 18 scenes from over 100 hours of footage to represent Canada in the ride film. There are no subtitles or voice-overs during the experience, as the designers did not want to detract from the flying sensation. Fly Over Canada is rated near the top of things to do in Vancouver at any time of year!
Tickets: Book your tickets online in advance here for the lowest price and to ensure availability.
Location: 201 – 999 Canada Place Vancouver, BC
Important Notes: The queue is partially exposed to the elements. Ensure you wear proper attire. It is recommended to buy tickets online in advance. Children must be 40″ tall. There are often seasonal productions added such as Halloween, Christmas, Hawaii etc.
Ride the Hop on Hop off Bus
Hop on Hop of Sightseeing Tours offer a convenient way to get aquatinted with Vancouver’s downtown. It is one of our favourite things to do when we visit a new city, gives us an idea of where we want o spend more of our time and the easiest ways to get from our hotel to the local attractions!
Go River Rafting
River Raft on the Chilliwack River. Fancy a thrill? Take a zodiac down the Chilliwack river! Guaranteed fun will be had by all!
Visit a Local Farm
Want to know how the food gets to the table for Vanocuverites? Go Berry Picking at Krause Berry Farms in Langley in the spring and summer months! They also have a yummy waffle breakfast!
Daytrip to Whistler
Take a day trip (or overnighter) to Whistler for epic family ski holidays. The Host Mountain for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games, Whistler is a great spot to visit, summer or winter. In the summer, hike or mountain bike alpine trails, relax at the spa, golf, or spend the afternoon shopping. There are beautiful alpine lakes to explore and there is something for kids of every age! In the Winter, hit the slopes for world-class skiing and boarding, then heat up with an afternoon hot tub! There are lots of winter activities in Whistler from dog sledding to snowmobile tours to cross-country skiing for those of you who do not want to hit the slopes!
Read more about things to do in Whistler with kids in summer!
Rent Kayaks in Deep Cove
Kayak in Deep Cove. What better way to spend a few hours when you visit Vancouver is to get out on the water! There are so many things to do in Vancouver, but some of the beautiful skylines can only be witnessed from the water. There are several rental companies in Deep Cove where you can rent kayaks.
Enjoy a Nooner at the Nat
Watch the Vancouver Canadians at Nat Bailey Stadium. A Vancouver Pastime is to take in a nooner at the Nat! Enjoy some popcorn as this is one of the top things to do in Vancouver with the locals.
Location: Nat Bailey Stadium 4601 Ontario St
See Local Animals at Maplewood or Maan Farms
Maplewood Farm is great for little ones. If you have a car, head out and enjoy the plethora of activities that Maplewood farm has to offer. Located about 20 minutes from Vancouver, kids can interact with the farm animals, go for a ride, and learn about farming in Vancouver.
Check out the BC Sports Hall of Fame Museum
One of the popular things to do in Vancouver for sports enthusiasts is the BC Sports Hall of Fame and Museum. Learn about British Columbia’s best athletes at this interactive museum.
Go Whale Watching
Whale Watching tours depart from Vancouver seasonally. Want to see whales and other wildlife? This is a fun activity for kids, the boats are large, there are tables for coloring for the little ones and hot chocolate and snacks on certain operators. If you really want a thrill, take a zodiac! If you would rather stay warm and dry while whale watching in Vancouver, opt for one of the larger boats with indoor seating! They have plenty of outdoor deck space once the boats get out on the water and find the whales! Even in summer, bring a jacket and touque for the outer deck!
Enjoy the Skytrain
Ride the SkyTrain from the Valley into Vancouver’s downtown. The kids love sitting up front as the driverless train races high above the round!
Self Guided Fraser Valley Wine and Cider Tour
Wine Tour the Fraser Valley. Who says you can’t bring the kids on a wine tour? Many of the Fraser Valley Wineries offer amazing cheese plates and snacks that he kids can enjoy while you sample some of BC’s local wineries.
See the Blooms at Dr Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden
Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden is a must for the garden enthusiast. Take your camera and enjoy!
Embrace Winter with Snowshoeing
Snowshoe at one of the local mountains. Visiting in the winter? Head up to one of the local mountains, Mount Seymour, Grouse Mountain or Cypress Bowl and strap on a pair of snowshoes!
Explore Vancouver’s Chinatown and learn about the Chinese Community’s history in Vancouver.
Hike the Grouse Grind
Hike the Grouse Grind. Vancouver’s natural stair master, a 2.9km trail up Grouse Mountain with 2800 feet of elevation gain. This is not for your little ones. It is a WORK OUT! Bring water and your camera. Don’t bother packing too much more because you are going to be climbing, and climbing and climbing. There are some great summertime actives at Grouse including the Lumberjack show. The Grind is one way only and you have to pay to take gondola down. It costs $10 per person.
Hike to the Stave Falls Powerhouse
Stave Falls Powerhouse is great for the outdoor enthusiast. Various hiking trails and gorgeous views can be found at this Vancouver attraction.
DayTrip to Harrison Hot Springs
Visit the Britannia Mine Muesum
The Britannia Mine Museum, one of Canada’s National Historic Sites, is located on the way to Whistler. It is worth a visit if you have a vehicle. Featuring authentic underground mining tunnels, kids of all ages will get a thrill as they ride underground at the museum.
Hit a Round of Golf
If you are visiting with older kids, golf one of the many golf courses around the Lower Mainland. From Par 3 courses to world class championship courses, there is something for every skill level and ability.
Ski at The Local Mountains
Skiing at one of the local mountains is probably one of the most popular suggestions for things to do in the winter in Vancouver with kids.
Grouse Mountain features 33 Ski and Snowboard runs, 15 night runs, 4 chairlifts and 6 terrain parks. Single Lift Tickets include access to the Skyride, chairlifts and mountaintop activities. Lift Ticket valid for one uphill and downhill ride on the Skyride in the same day.
Mount Seymour is the closest to downtown Vancouver. has 4 chair lifts, 5 terrain parks, a tube park, snowshoeing and a toboggan area. It has 40 marked runs, about half of which are available for nigth skiing.
Cypress is the biggest of the local mountains and has cross-country skiing in addition to downhill skiing and snowboarding. There is also snow tubing and snowshoeing.
Hit the Lake
Hit one of the many lakes for a beach day in Vancouver with toddlers or teens! There are many beautiful lakes within about an hour’s drive. They do get popular with the locals if you are visiting in the summer, so try and get there early! Beaches like Buntzen Lake and White Pine Beach often close the parking lot by early afternoon because they are full!
WHAT TO DO IN THE RAIN IN VANCOUVER
Do not let the Rain get your down, Vancouver is as beautiful as it is, partly due to its climate! Here are some ideas for What to Do with Kids in Vancouver in the Rain!
Where to Stay in Vancouver?
If your stay is short or you have an early morning flight out of the City, consider this option which is attached to the airport! You can even send one parent down to check the luggage in before you have to wake the kids for the security line up! Click on the Hotel below, enter your travel dates and voila!
5 Things to Bring with You to Vancouver
A good rain jacket is always a good idea, even in the summer. While you are not likely to get wet in July and August, late august almost always sees a wet day, and May, June and September will also get rain. If you want to read about average rainfall, I have more information on weather in Vancouver. Even if you are coming in the winter, unless you plan on skiing, you can get away with a rain jacket and some good base layers for most of the winter in and around Vancouver.
A good power bank to charge phones and other devices is always a good idea. After a day of videoing, GPS and taking photos, the last thing you want is a dead cell phone. These are inexpensive and come in handy during the day. If you are flying to Vancouver, make sure you keep any power banks in your hand luggage, as security will often remove them from checked bags (I have found that out the hard way before).
A Universal Adapter is going to be handy for International Visitors. Canada uses the same plugs as the USA but if you are coming from somewhere else abroad, grab yourself one before you arrive.
A good guidebook is something I always get when I am researching a new location. Lonely Planet is the usual go-to, but also check out these.
Reusable shopping bags are available to buy everywhere, but if you want to get a compact one before you arrive, it is a good idea.
Reusable water bottles are also a good idea. You can buy bottled water anywhere that you can get drinks, but Canada does pride itself on recycling as much as possible, and why shell out wasteful dollars when you can drink the tap water all over British Columbia.
If you happy to travel with grandparents (we do it often) or can hire a babysitter at your hotel, check out this Vancouver Nightlife Guide.
Visiting Toronto? Check out 50 Things to do this Summer in Toronto
Vancouver Travel Tips for 2023
If you are from out of town these resources should be helpful for your trip to Vancouver!
BOOK A PHOTOSHOOT: Capture those memories! Book a romantic or family photoshoot while on holiday! Click Here to find a local photographer. Use code LINDSAY to save $25 off your first photoshoot!
ACCOMMODATION: Find the best hotel selection on expedia.com booking.com or hotels.com (I always check out each one and then book the best option). Use VRBO.com to find home and vacation rentals (make sure you book well in advance during the summer).
CRUISING? If you are cruising from Vancouver or even considering it in the future, find information and cruise reviews on cruisecritic.com
TRAVEL INSURANCE: Medical care in Canada is very expensive. Ensure you have proper insurance coverage, consider World Nomads.
NEED TO TRAVEL LIGHT? If you need to store your luggage, you can find storage options in the city with Radical Storage.
Photo Credit: Vancouver Skyline – Tourism Vancouver Clayton Pelly, JellyFish – Vancouver Aquarium – HR Macmillan Space Centre by HR Macmillan Space Centre,
Lindsay Nieminen hails from Vancouver, Canada and shares her love of travel on this website. She is passionate about showing others that they should not put off traveling the world just because they have young children or are single parents. She aims to encourage them to seek out adventure, whether it is at home or abroad by providing information on how just about everywhere can be a destination to explore as a family.