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Visiting Vancouver in August 2024: Events, Festivals & Things to Do

Vancouver in August is the dream vacation scenario.

The constant sunny days and warm weather serve to showcase our amazing outdoor attractions. There are also tons of August events in Vancouver, festivals, and other summer highlights.

Let’s take a deeper look at all the best things to do in Vancouver in August.

Things to Do in Vancouver in August

people suntanning at kits beach in vancouver with downtown and mountainsVisit Vancouver Beaches

Vancouver has some of the best beaches in Canada if you’re looking to soak up the sun. Of all Vancouver’s best beaches, I recommend Kitsilano Beach and English Bay Beach.

When talking of fun things to do in Vancouver in August, you’ll head to English Bay Beach for people-watching, socializing, and heading up to the popular West End for post-beach snacks and drinks.

On the other hand, with its stunning views of downtown Vancouver and more wild feel, Kits Beach is a better place for sports, long walks, and even a dip in Canada’s largest swimming pool.

a humpback whale spotted during vancouver whale watching tourGo Whale Watching

In August, it’s peak Vancouver whale watching season as resident killer whales follow migrating salmon inland.

Off the coast of Vancouver, you’ll actually be able to see three magnificent species – orcas, humpbacks, and gray whales. Along the way, you’ll also see other marine life, such as dolphins, seals, and sea lions.

Vancouver whale watching tours leave from either Granville Island or Steveston, and half-day packages start at around $190.00.

a vancouver seaplane tour flying above the vancouver skyline with coast mountains in background

See the City in All Its Summer Glory

Our rainy season lasts more than half the year, so there are very few months to take advantage of Vancouver’s best seaplane tours.

The sunny skies showcase Vancouver like nothing else, and seeing it from aboard the world’s first carbon-neutral airline is a great way to do it.

This is a great once-in-a-lifetime activity to see the coast, skyline, and mountains from an epic perch – and flights start at ‘just’ $167.00.

the gastown steam clock erupts with steam in vancouver canadaTake a Gastown Walking Tour

There’s a certain mystique to Gastown. Take away the yummy, modern Gastown Restaurants and many of Vancouver’s top bars, and you’re left with brick buildings, cobblestone streets, and a step back to the pioneer days.

Gastown has been the site of some pretty gruesome moments in Vancouver’s history. From fatal protests to famous murders to the Great Fire of 1886, there’s plenty of saucy subject matter.

With the late nights and warm weather, there’s no better way to learn about Vancouver history than outdoors at the Lost Souls of Gastown Tour – these macabre Vancouver tours run every day at 7:00 pm in August.

runners hiking up the grouse grind in vancouver bc canadaHike the Grouse Grind

If you’re looking for a physical challenge, the Grouse Grind (Mother Nature’s Stairmaster) will help you burn a zillion calories – and reward you with a sick panoramic view of the city.

Basically, the Grouse Grind is a 2.9-kilometre trail up the face of Grouse Mountain in North Vancouver, British Columbia.

The trail is considered one of the most challenging Vancouver hiking options around, with an average grade of 30% and a total elevation gain of 853 metres – expect about two hours to complete it.

In Vancouver in August, I always reward myself with a beer up on the Paradise Patio.

Read more: Grouse Mountain Summer Activities.

stanley parkExplore Stanley Park

No Vancouver itinerary is complete without a trip to Stanley Park.

This sprawling urban park made up of old-growth forest is home to a variety of attractions, including the Vancouver Aquarium, the Stanley Park Totem Poles, and Siwash Rock.

The best things to do in August would be attending the Theater Under the Stars (more on that later) or renting a bike in downtown Vancouver, rolling through via Vancouver Seawall.

The skyline, mountains, and ocean views along this path (the world’s longest seaside path) are simply incredible.

Another great way to explore? See it taking one of the best bike tours in Vancouver – or go straight into the top Stanley Park tours.

vancouver harbour tour boat in coal harbour with vancouver skyline

Discover Vancouver by Boat

The heat of August makes it the perfect time to pay tribute to Vancouver’s motto: by sea, land, and air we prosper.

Vancouver’s best boat tours have something for everybody: wildlife boat tours, harbour cruises, whale watching, sunset excursions, dinner cruises, and more.

Most tours have a base of Stanley Park, the Lions Gate Bridge, the Coast Mountains, the city beaches and the Vancouver skyline.

Me? I’m a sucker for the Harbour Sunset Dinner Cruise and its sumptuous west coast menu and live music.

Visit Granville Island

Granville Island is at the very top of our list of the best things to do in Vancouver – in August or any other month.

This vibrant neighbourhood is home to some of Vancouver’s best shopping (think artisans, galleries, and unique gifts), but it’s the Granville Island Public Market that really delivers.

This food lover’s paradise delivers the best fresh produce, seafood, artisan cheese, and baked goods. If you’re visiting Vancouver in August, make sure you get some local sockeye salmon – they even pack it to ship at Longliner Seafoods.

Looking for something sweet? Grab some maple syrup, or be sure to check out Lee’s Donuts.

The entrance to Fisherman's Wharf, Steveston
Instagram: @richmondbc

Head out to Steveston

One of the most unique things to do in VancouverSteveston is a charming fishing village with a number of cute souvenir shops and seafood restaurants (try Pajo’s for fish and chips).

The Gulf of Georgia Cannery is a great museum to explore the roots of the early Vancouver industry, and you can buy fresh seafood directly from fishermen (sockeye salmon are in season in August) right off the docks.

In August, there’s also the Steveston Dragonboat Festival.

You can also check out Steveston’s best whale-watching tours while you’re at it.

richmond night market vancouver at sunset
Instagram @richmondnightmarket

See the Richmond Night Market

The Richmond Night Market is Vancouver’s answer to a big Bangkok or Hong Kong night market – call it an outdoor international food court on steroids.

You’ll find everything from Korean fried chicken to rice burgers and mochi-covered strawberries. In addition, there are live performances, games, and market shopping.

The Night Market runs Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in August from 7:00 pm to midnight.

rides at playland during the pne in vancouver bc canada
Instagram @pne_playland

Visit Playland

Located in East Vancouver, Playland is a must-visit for any fan of amusement parks.

With 39 rides and attractions, there’s something for everyone, whether it’s children’s rides or their three white-knuckle rollercoasters.

In August, I’m heading straight for the Plume, a classic chute-style log ride which drops you down 40 feet into the refreshing water. The Wooden Roller Coaster is the highlight, though it’s a retro roller coaster that has been freaking people out since 1958.

vancouver whale tour banner

Vancouver Events August 2024

Kits Beach during BC Day in Vancouver in August.

BC Day

BC Day is a public holiday celebrated in British Columbia, and it’s one of the top events in August in Vancouver.

The 2024 edition rolls on Monday, August 5th. It’s a holiday commemorating the founding of the Colony of British Columbia in 1858.

Usually, locals use the long weekend to spend time with family and friends. That said, outside of getting out to parks and beaches to BBQ, the preceding weekend counts the Vancouver Pride Parade and the Celebration of Light.

2024 date: August 5th

artists decorating a mural in vancouver bc

Vancouver Mural Festival

Discover a vibrant artistic extravaganza across the city featuring new murals, engaging pop-up events, and a lively street party in hip Mount Pleasant.

The Vancouver Mural Festival is a yearly outdoor spectacle dedicated to fostering connections, reflections, and celebrations through art and live events.

This is a great time to unearth newfound adoration for local artists. I like to pair a visit with a couple of Vancouver craft breweries found in the nearby Brewery District.

2024 dates: TBA (August 4-13 in 2023).

parade goers holding the pride flag at the pride parade in vancouver canada
Courtesy: Vancouver Pride

Vancouver Pride Parade

The Vancouver Pride Parade is perhaps the largest Vancouver event in August. Located in the city’s West End neighbourhood, it celebrates the area’s large LGBTQ+ community.

This year’s parade is scheduled for Sunday, August 4th, 2024. The route will begin at Robson Street and proceed down Denman Street to Sunset Beach Park.

The parade is expected to attract over 100,000 spectators. Vancouver Pride is one of the largest pride celebrations in Canada and is a great opportunity to show support for the LGBTQ+ community.

2024 date: August 4th.

The Ambleside Music Festival

The top August festival in Vancouver – but that’s just my opinion as a music lover!

Nestled into scenic Ambleside Park in West Vancouver, with the beautiful mountains as a backdrop, this two-day August festival brings some of the best international artists to Vancouver’s stage.

The 2023 version ran August 19-20 and featured Weezer, Third Eye Blind, and Finger Eleven.

Check the Ambleside Music Festival website for more info.

2024 dates: Cancelled for 2024 (will be back in 2025).

riders ride the wooden roller coaster at the pne in vancouver bc canada
Courtesy: PNE

The PNE

The Pacific National Exhibition is our annual summer fair that lasts 15 days between mid-August and Labour Day. It’s an amusement park, a summer concert series, and an outdoor food fair extravaganza all in one.

There’s also tons of great shopping, a petting zoo, midway games, a casino, Vancouver craft beer tents and anything else entertaining under the sun.

So, if you’re in town with children, the PNE is undoubtedly one of the top things to do in Vancouver in August 2024.

Summer concerts in 2023 included TLC, Boyz II Men, Aqua, and Billy Idol. The artists for 2024 are yet to be announced.

2024 dates: TBA (mid-August until September 2nd)

Big on beer? Check out the best brewery tours in Vancouver.

a performer playing drums at the vancouver african descent festival in vancouver july

African Descent Festival

The African Descent Festival is a celebration of the African diaspora and its culture, history, and contributions to the world – with the ultimate goal of promoting oneness between Vancouver ethnic groups.

One of the highlights here is the parade, which features colourful costumes, traditional music, and dancing.

The festival includes a marketplace, food vendors offering African cuisine, workshops, and live entertainment at beautiful English Bay Beach.

2024 festival dates: TBA (August 11th to 13th in 2023).

Theatre Under the Stars at Stanley ParkTheatre Under the Stars

If you’re looking for a unique theatre experience in August, I strongly recommend Vancouver’s Theater Under the Stars.

This open-air theatre at the Malkin Bowl in Stanley Park hosts a variety of performances throughout the summer months, ranging from musicals to Shakespearean plays.

In August 2023, the menu rotates, with even days going to Matilda the Musical and odd days going to The Prom.

Vancouver August 2024 Concerts

  • Tyler Childers: Aug 8, Rogers Arena
  • Olivia Rodrigo: Aug 9, Rogers Arena
  • Mt. Joy: Aug 17, Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Arena

Sporting Events

  • BC Lions: BC Place
  • Vancouver Whitecaps: BC Place
  • Vancouver Canadians: Nat Bailey Stadium

More events are waiting TBA. For tickets and more information on the Vancouver August events, visit our partners at TicketNetwork via the banner below:

August Weather in Vancouver

Vancouver weather in August is usually warm and sunny, with the average temperature ranging from 18° to 25° degrees Celsius (64° to 77° Fahrenheit).

Of course, this won’t sound all that summery to many, but temperatures do every now and then push 30°C (86°F).

However, it is important to remember that Vancouver is a rainshadow city, so showers can occur throughout the month. In fact, there are 8.8 days of precipitation in August.

capilano suspension bridge and grouse mountain tour banner for 2024

What to Pack for Vancouver in August

If you’re visiting Vancouver in August, pack your sunscreen, shorts, and T-shirts. Beach weather (thankfully!) persists well into September, even if a little rain gets mixed in.

Do know though that the weather can sometimes become quite cool and rainy. For this reason, a sweater and a light jacket are a must. You’ll also do well with long pants and good outdoor walking shoes.

the view of downtown vancouver and stanley park from a harbour air seaplane tour

Visiting Vancouver in August FAQ

What to wear in Vancouver in August?

A typical Vancouver August is warm and dry, so for men, some lightweight shirts and shorts are a good option, while women might want to consider a sundress or capris. Sunglasses and walking shoes are also a must.

Can you see orcas in August in Vancouver?

In terms of seeing orcas in Vancouver in August, it’s possible but not guaranteed. Orcas are migratory animals and typically follow salmon inland in August. You’ll need to get a whale watching tour as they’re likely out in the middle of the Salish Sea and don’t come into the harbour often.

How hot is a typical Vancouver August?

In Vancouver in August, the average high temperature is 26°C, with the average at low 13°C. Note that Vancouver is a coastal city, so the temperatures tend to be milder than inland cities. There can always be a heatwave or two during the month, but overall, let’s call August a warm month.

What’s happening in Vancouver in August?

In August 2024 in Vancouver, you can celebrate BC Day, watch Theater Under the Stars, attend the PNE, and hit up the massive Vancouver Pride Parade. You can also head to BC Place to check out a game with the BC Lions or Vancouver Whitecaps.

What time does it get dark in August in Vancouver?

In Vancouver, the summer days are long, and the nights are short. In August, the sun sets at about 9:00 pm and rises at 5:00 am. This means there are about 14 hours of daylight and 10 hours of darkness.

Visiting Vancouver in August?

I’ve compiled a solid list of what to do in Vancouver in August – but I’m almost certain I’ve missed something!

If you’re looking for some customer advice on planning a Vancouver August vacation, get in touch in the comments below, and I’ll be happy to help.

Enjoy the Vancouver August sun☀️

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