This Friday marks the first long weekend of Canada’s summer and there will definitely be a number of activities happening both across the country, and in Vancouver. What exactly does Canada celebrate on Canada Day? Well, on July 1, 1867, three British colonies were united into one single colony and was called Canada. However, it wasn’t until 1982 that Canada gained its full independence from the United Kingdom. Our strong ties to the Commonwealth remain intact today and the new royal couple, William and Kate, will be taking a tour of Canada in July.
A number of locals take advantage of the long weekend and escape to the Gulf Islands, the Sunshine Coast and a number of other beautiful getaway destinations. Meanwhile, the long weekend brings in the crowds that want to enjoy Vancouver’s big celebrations this weekend. So, if you’re coming into Vancouver and looking to spend a day or the weekend in the city, here are a few suggestions to add to your itinerary.
Three years ago, the now annual Canada Day Parade started and is the perfect prelude to the Burrard Inlet fireworks. The parade starts this Friday (July 1) at 7pm at Broughton and West Georgia and makes it way down to West Hastings.
The end location is the perfect spot to find a spot to catch the Burrard Inlet fireworks that will be set off at 10:30pm. If you want to guarantee an unobstructed view and donate some money to the Strathcona Community Centre’s Food Security for Children program buy your tickets here. Children accompanied by an adult under 12 are free, and tickets for those that are older go for $9.99. A little reminder, the fireworks are not viewable from English Bay, so make sure you head over to Burrard Inlet to catch the explosive beauties. During the day, there will be some celebrations going on down at Canada Place throughout the day, so make sure to take advantage of that, too.
So, you’ve got the evening covered, but what about during the day? Granville Island is a bustling place on any given day, but throw in a national holiday and you’ve got a party. From 8am until midnight there will be patriotic people celebrating Canada Day. Some of the things you can expect over at Granville Island are, a parade, live jazz, the famous False Creek Ferry Ballet, tasty treats, a pancake breakfast and a number of cultural activities that showcase Canada’s diverse multicultural population, just to name a few.
Nothing screams British Columbia like fresh salmon and we’re fortunate enough to have an abundant supply here in Vancouver that’s fresh, local and tasty. If you’re into doing something a little different outside of Vancouver, head to Steveston Village for their annual Steveston Salmon Festival where they will be cooking over 1200 pounds of wild salmon filets during their other Canada Day celebrations.
Wherever you decide to go and celebrate Canada Day, grab something cold and toast to our very beautiful country!