Vancouver in the Fall: A Visitor’s Guide

Vancouver in the Fall: A Visitor's Guide
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Fall in Vancovuer

Experiencing Vancouver in the Fall can be a wondrous and unforgettable affair. This breathtaking city is simply filled to the brim with trees, trails, and countless refuges of nature and wildlife. When Autumn hits and the temperature begins to drop, the foliage comes alive with vibrant reds, soothing yellows, and startling oranges. It seems like almost overnight the landscape changes from a summery green rainforest to a comforting tapestry of warmer tones. Luckily for those venturing into this magical city, Vancouver is actually much more temperate and mild than many other Canadian cities.

As beautiful as the changing colours and transitioning seasons can be, Vancouver can get quite foggy, chilly, and wet. Among the top 3 cities in Canada for highest annual rainfall, Vancouver averages about 50 inches of rain per year. While this is the ideal romantic weather for the most poetic of souls, relentless rain can be a concern for some visitors. If you’re worried about getting rained on during your stay, don’t panic just yet. There is plenty to see and do in Vancouver, even on a rainy day.

Fall Events and Activities

As any Vancouverite will tell you, the weather doesn’t have to be perfect here in order to get outside and enjoy the day. If the sky is gray and there’s a misty sprinkle in the air, grab a raincoat and don’t worry about getting slightly damp. And while there is plenty of rain, not every day is a downpour. You may actually enjoy quite a few gorgeous, sunny days while visiting here in the fall. Without even getting into all the thrilling and chilling Halloween festivities, there are a few events, venues, and attractions, both indoors and outdoors, you won’t want to miss when you’re visiting in the autumn months.

Adventure into Nature

Hiking in Fall in Vancouver

Taking a journey along one of Vancouver’s many hiking trails is simply a must when you’re visiting in the fall. The forests, the vegetation, and all of nature herself simply transforms into a whole new world when the leaves begin to change color. The weather isn’t always perfect but the temperatures never get cold enough in the fall to prevent people from getting outside and enjoying these dense West Coast rainforests.

For all-day hiking excursions you can head to either the Golden Ears Provincial Park or Garibaldi Provincial Park. The trails options range from a couple hours to overnight excursions and there are enough options to suit any experience and fitness level. For something a little closer to the downtown area, check out the leisurely trails in Stanley Park or challenge yourself on the more demanding steps of the Grouse Grind.

VanDusen Gardens in Fall Vancouver

VanDusen Botanical Gardens is another perfect spot to enjoy the changing colors of autumn. During September and October you’ll be treated to stunning displays of foliage from Gingko trees, Autumn Crocus, Asters, Ornamental Grasses, and many other late blooming beauties. Anyone travelling near the end of October will definitely want to check out enchanting Halloween lights of VanDusen Glow in the Garden.

In and around the Metro Vancouver area you’ll find countless pumpkin patches and corn mazes during the month of October, such as the Hazelmere Pumpkin Patch in Surrey or the Laity Pumpkin Patch in Maple Ridge. Pumpkin patches are perfect for family friendly fun, but if you’re more interested in spooks and scares head to Maan Farms in Abbotsford and check out their Haunted Corn Maze.

Enjoy the Comforts of the City

The natural beauty of Vancouver is certainly something worth boasting about, but you don’t need to spend all your time outside. This bustling city has just as much to offer indoors with its vibrant nightlife, delectable dining options, and robust cultural and artistic attractions. Head to any of these intriguing events and venues if you want to expand your horizons while keeping warm and dry.

The Vancouver International Film Festival runs between September and October each year, presenting the world’s best cinema. There are many related talks and events during the festival which provide audiences and creators the chance for discussion and the ability to connect over the various works.

Museum of Vancouver

Rather than getting soaking wet, soak up a little local culture in one of Vancouver’s many museums or art galleries. The Museum of Vancouver will walk your through the ages, presenting the history of Vancouver a few decades at a time. The current feature exhibitions include Haida Now, Wild Things, and Neon Vancouver. Connected to the Museum is the H.R. MacMillan Space Center, a non-profit community resource which provides programming, exhibits, and activities focused on Earth science, space science, and astronomy.

Fall and winter are the best times to splurge on our favorite comfort foods as sweater weather takes over and we snuggle into our cozy winter wear. However, the food and beverage choices in Vancouver are vast and can sometimes be a little overwhelming. To get the most out of the amazing dining experiences this city has to offer, try a food, wine, or beer tour. Taste Vancouver Food Tours is a walking tour that will take your through the trendiest Vancouver neighbourhoods. You’ll wander down the cobblestone streets of Gastown, get a taste of Italy on Commercial Drive, or experience the foodie scene around North Vancouver.

Vancouver Wine Tour

Discover the Fraser Valley Wine Country with a Vancouver Wine Tour. On a full day wine tour you’ll get the chance to explore a variety of wineries and vineyards with your transportation, tasting fees, and lunch included. If beer is more your style, take a Vancouver Brewery Tour and taste the best craft brews Vancouver has to offer. Enjoy VIP access with a behind the scenes look at each unique brewery on the tour.

Pack Accordingly and Be Prepared

There’s no need to worry about poor weather in Vancouver as long as you come prepared. Pack enough options for any kind of weather, cram plenty of extra socks in your suitcase, and layer up with cozy sweaters and water resistant materials. Not every day is going to be wet and dismal so don’t forget to throw a couple of t-shirts into your bag. If you know what to expect in terms of weather in Vancouver, you’re going to have an incredible stay no matter what the forecast.

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Nikki Bertrand

Nikki Bertrand

Nikki is a British Columbia native who was born in the Vancouver area. When she’s not busy being a tourist in her own city, you can find her exploring her passion for SFX makeup at MixxSFX.com or reviewing subscription boxes at unboxingrocks.com