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a snapshot of the Seawall on a visit to Vancouver in May.

Vancouver in May: Events, Festivals & Things to Do


May in Vancouver blossoms into its full glory, presenting a captivating fusion of urban vibrancy and breathtaking natural surroundings.

As the warmth of late spring embraces the city, Vancouver bursts to life with an abundance of outdoor adventures, cultural festivities, and magnificent scenery.

Whether it’s trekking through the North Shore Mountains, immersing oneself in local museums and galleries, or simply reveling in the city’s bustling atmosphere, Vancouver during May beckons visitors to savor the finest aspects of city living amidst the splendor of the season.

Visiting Vancouver in May 2024

Welcome to Vancouver in May, where the city’s natural beauty and urban charm are coming to their peak. This month marks the transition into late spring weather, perfect for outdoor enthusiasts and city explorers alike.

As the weather warms up, the city’s parks, beaches, and streets come alive with activity. The mild temperatures and longer days are ideal for exploring Vancouver’s outdoor attractions and vibrant neighbourhoods, making it a perfect time for a visit.

Vancouver in May is a treasure trove of experiences waiting to be uncovered, so let’s dive right in and get your Vancouver itinerary done and dusted.

Related: Things to Do in Vancouver on the May Long Weekend

vancouver whale tour banner

Things to Do in Vancouver in May

Welcome to our guide on the best things to do in Vancouver in May! In this section, we’ll explore the myriad of activities and attractions that make Vancouver, BC in May such an exciting and diverse destination.

Let’s take a look at the unique experiences that Vancouver has to offer during this beautiful time of year.

tourists crossing the capilano suspension bridge in vancouver bc canada

Take a Walk on the Capilano Suspension Bridge

Suspended 230 feet (70 m) above the Capilano River, the Capilano Suspension Bridge stretches 460 feet (140 m), offering an exhilarating experience in the heart of North Vancouver’s lush rainforest.

This simple suspension bridge lacks towers or piers, inviting visitors to walk upon it, embrace its subtle sway, and enjoy the views below.

All the while, you’ll be surrounded by the stunning coastal rainforest as your heart rate spikes from the unique experience. It’s truly one of the most remarkable adventures that await tourists in the area.

A woman completes the Grouse Grind
Instagram: @grousemountain

Hike Vancouver’s North Shore

When winter recedes, the North Shore mountains north of Vancouver transform into a hiker’s haven, shedding their skiing reputation for scenic trails and stunning views.

The Grouse Grind, known as Mother Nature’s Stairmaster, ascends 2.9 km up Grouse Mountain and treats hikers to breathtaking panoramic vistas of the city, typically opening in April or early May.

For a more beginner-friendly option, the Lighthouse Park Trail offers relatively flat terrain and spectacular views of Point Atkinson Lighthouse, the Salish Sea, and the Coast Mountains. 

Alternatively, the Quarry Rock hike in Deep Cove provides awe-inspiring views of the Indian Arm with a manageable level of effort, though transportation may be required.

RelatedVancouver hiking: The Best Trails & Paths

science world building and some row boats in vancouver bc canada
Courtesy: Science World

Ignite Wonder & Curiosity with a Visit to Science World

Vancouver in May isn’t all sunshine and flowers. You’ll still want some rainy day activities to fill out your clipboard of fun. Enter Science World, a non-profit science center in Vancouver dedicated to engaging learners of all ages to foster a deep connection with the natural, physical, and built environments.

With its iconic geodesic dome, Science World offers visitors interactive and hands-on exhibits that ignite the process of discovery, encouraging exploration and learning.

A trip during May is an enriching and entertaining experience, especially for those visiting Vancouver with kids. Located conveniently near downtown along the scenic seawall, it becomes a beacon for families seeking both fun and education.

Related: The 20 Best Museums in Vancouver

Spin Your Wheels on a Vancouver Bike Tour

Embarking on a bike tour of Vancouver in May is an exhilarating way to experience the city’s unique blend of urban charm and natural beauty. As the city awakens in the full bloom of spring, cycling becomes one of the most enjoyable and efficient ways to explore Vancouver’s diverse landscapes.

Vancouver’s downtown core, known for its relative flatness, is particularly bike-friendly, making it accessible for cyclists of all skill levels. A bike tour allows visitors to weave through historic neighbourhoods like Gastown and Chinatown or the vibrant Granville Island.

Perhaps the most scenic part of a Vancouver bike tour in May is the ride along the Vancouver seawall. Stretching around the perimeter of Stanley Park, this path offers breathtaking views of the coastline, the North Shore mountains, and the city skyline.

The Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden

Visit the Dr. Sun-Yat Sen Chinese Classical Garden

The Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden in Vancouver’s Chinatown has been hailed as ‘The Best Urban Garden in the World’ by National Geographic, cementing its position as a top attraction.

Serving as a serene oasis, this garden offers a peaceful retreat for both locals and visitors, providing a tranquil respite from the vibrant city atmosphere and a soothing contrast to a day of sightseeing.

With its enchanting beauty and serene ambiance, the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden offers a perfect setting to relax and recharge, offering a serene escape from the bustling urban surroundings of Vancouver.

a group takes the gondola up Mt. Habrich after purchasing sea to sky gondola tickets

Try the Sea to Sky Gondola

The Sea to Sky Gondola seamlessly blends the grandeur of Grouse Mountain with the adventurous spirit of the Capilano Suspension Bridge, creating an unparalleled experience.

Situated in Squamish, about 60 kilometres north of Vancouver on the way to Whistler, this Austrian-style ski gondola is a beloved tourist attraction on the scenic Sea to Sky Highway.

Within approximately 10 minutes, the gondola elevates you 885 meters (2905 feet) up Mount Habrich, offering breathtaking panoramic views through its floor-to-ceiling windows, showcasing the mesmerizing turquoise waters of Howe Sound Fjord and the majestic Coast Mountains, including the iconic Stawamus Chief.

group of people jumping and doing high five on uncork a bottle of adventure on a fraser valley wine tour

Uncork a Bottle of Adventure on a Fraser Valley Wine Tour

Looking for something a little more indulgent? How about embarking on a Vancouver wine tour? You’ll visit four local wineries to indulge in delightful wine tastings and gain insights into the art of wine-making.

The wineries are located about 45 minutes outside of town, but not to worry! You’ll receive round-trip transport between Vancouver and the Fraser Valley wine region, allowing you to enjoy your tastings safely.

But that’s not all! In addition to savouring the exceptional wines, you’ll be treated to a delectable lunch and tantalizing amuse-bouches, making it a truly satisfying culinary experience.

Trust us when we say that it is seriously one of Vancouver’s best food tours!

the vancouver to whistler seaplane docked at the vancouver seaplane terminal

Take off on a Vancouver Seaplane Adventure

Immerse yourself in the captivating beauty of Vancouver’s mountainous landscapes and coastal vistas with a thrilling seaplane tour, offering a truly unforgettable experience.

Whether you’re a visitor exploring the city or a local seeking unique and exhilarating adventures, a Vancouver seaplane tour should be high on your list of considerations.

With breathtaking views and a perspective that unveils the stunning natural wonders of the region, a seaplane tour is an exceptional way to embrace the scenic charm that defines Vancouver.

The view of Vancouver from Grouse Mountain
Instagram: @grousemountain

Discover the Peak of Vancouver at Grouse Mountain

Grouse Mountain offers breathtaking panoramic views of the entire city, whether you conquer the challenging Grouse Grind or opt for a leisurely gondola ride.

In spring, the mountain transitions from one of the best skiing destinations to a hub of Vancouver’s top summer activities, while still maintaining its winter wonderland charm until April.

As the temperatures warm, visitors can enjoy thrilling activities like zip-lining, lumberjack shows, paragliding, wildlife exploration, fine dining at the chalet, drinks on the panorama deck, and movies at the Theater in the Sky.

Looking to get off the beaten path? Check out our guide to the top Vancouver hidden gems.

Vancouver May Events 2024

May in Vancouver is a vibrant month, filled with events and festivals that celebrate the city’s diverse culture and the beauty of spring. These events, set against the backdrop of Vancouver’s blossoming landscapes and improving weather, make May an exciting time to experience the city’s lively spirit.

Let’s have a look at what is on the docket for 2024.

group of people during the vancouver international childrens festival in vancouver bc canada

Vancouver International Children’s Festival 2024

The Vancouver International Children’s Festival is the longest-running professional performing arts festival for young audiences in North America. This family-friendly spectacle returns for its 46th iteration in 2024.

Held from May 27th to June 2nd, this Granville Island-based event offers a wide range of music, theatre, dance, puppetry, acrobatics, storytelling, and creative arts activities

Dedicated to engaging and delighting young audiences, it is a must-attend annual event for families near and far.

Related: The 12 Best Things to Do in Vancouver with Kids

The Abbotsford Tulip Festival

A short drive from Vancouver in the picturesque Fraser Valley, the Abbotsford Tulip Festival presents a breathtaking spectacle that is a feast for the eyes and a delight for the senses. This annual event is a celebration of spring, showcasing an expansive and vibrant canvas of tulips in full bloom.

You’ll find over 5 kilometres of flower-lined pathways featuring millions of tulips, creating a kaleidoscope of colours that range from the deepest purples and reds to the brightest yellows and pinks. The sheer number of tulips and the variety of shades are truly awe-inspiring.

For visitors looking to experience the beauty of nature in a spectacular setting, a trip to the Abbotsford Tulip Festival is an absolute must.

richmond night market vancouver at sunset
Instagram @richmondnightmarket

The Richmond Night Market

As the evenings grow warmer and longer, the Richmond Night Market near Vancouver returns from its winter hiatus. Located in the suburb of Richmond, the market offers a vibrant and bustling experience that is a must-visit for locals and tourists alike.

The event provides an immersive cultural experience, with a particular focus on an astounding variety of Asian cuisine. You’ll find over 110 booths offering more than 600 delectable menu items from all across Asia.

Whether you’re a foodie in search of new flavours or a traveller looking to soak up the local culture, the Richmond Night Market is an experience that epitomizes the vibrant spirit of Vancouver’s diverse community.

event poster for lindy bloom this may 2024

Lindybloom

One of the things to do in Vancouver in May 2024 is to attend LindyBloom event, which is scheduled for May 2024.

These three days and nights are filled with dancing, live music, community building, second-line parades, ice cream crawls, cabarets,

Have fun with friends and a music jamboree. It’s a jubilant celebration of music and dance.

Get ready for the most extensive week of live music and swing dancing in Canada. Experience 11 consecutive days of live music for swing dancing!

Related: Victoria Day Vancouver: Celebrate in Style

capilano suspension bridge and grouse mountain tour banner for 2024

Concerts in May in Vancouver 2024

  • Idles: May 2/3, PNE Forum
  • Foreigner: May 3, Abbotsford Centre
  • Cody Johnson: May 4, Abbotsford Centre
  • Talk: May 6, Commodore Ballroom
  • Death Cab for Cutie: May 14, Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Centre
  • Charlie Crockett: May 20/21, Commodore Ballroom
  • Brothers Osbourne: May 22, Abbotsford Centre
  • Avril Lavigne: May 22, Rogers Arena

Sporting Events

  • Vancouver Canucks: Rogers Arena (playoffs, we hope!)
  • Vancouver Whitecaps: BC Place
  • AEW Wrestling: May 11, Rogers Arena
  • Vancouver Canadians: Nat Bailey Stadium

For tickets and more information on these May Vancouver events, visit our partners at TicketNetwork via the banner below:

May Weather in Vancouver

In May, Vancouver experiences mild and pleasant weather with an average high temperature of 16°C (61°F) and a low temperature of 9°C (48°F). The month typically experiences several warm spells that will feel much like summer, so Vancouver’s best beaches might even be in play.

The city enjoys more daylight and warmth compared to rainfall, making it a delightful time to explore its outdoor attractions and events. Do note that occasional rainfall is still possible, so it’s advisable to pack some rain gear when visiting.

What to Pack for a Trip to Vancouver in May

When visiting Vancouver in May, pack a mix of clothing suitable for mild temperatures and occasional rain showers. If you’re feeling optimistic, packing some items for the beach could also be an idea, especially if you’re visiting near the end of the month.

Otherwise, bring layers, such as light sweaters, hoodies and long-sleeve shirts, as the weather can vary throughout the day. Don’t forget to include a waterproof jacket or umbrella to stay dry during potential rain showers.

Vancouver Hotels in May

Ready to dive into the vibrant energy of Vancouver this May?

Get set for a hotel adventure that’s as exciting as the city itself! From cozy hideaways to luxurious retreats, Best Vancouver’s hotels are your gateway to unforgettable experiences.

Check out the following recommendations:

  • Auberge Vancouver Hotel
  • Century Plaza Hotel & Spa
  • Days Inn Vancouver Metro
  • Executive Hotel Le Soleil

Best Beach in Vancouver in May

Get ready to soak up the sun and dive into the waves because May in Vancouver is all about beach bliss!

Whether you’re up for a stroll along the shoreline or craving some adrenaline-pumping water sports, Vancouver’s beaches have got you covered.

So grab your sunscreen, pack a picnic, and let’s make some waves in May to the best beach in Vancouver in May which is Kitsilano Beach Park.

Kitsilano Beach Park where the fun never sleeps!

Lifeguards? Check. Swimming pool? Check. Tennis, basketball, and a playground? Check, check, and check! Plus, your furry friend can join in on the action at the off-leash area.

And don’t forget about the Vancouver Seawall—a 28-kilometer stroll with breathtaking views.

After all that excitement, refuel at The Boathouse Waterfront Restaurant.

Visiting Vancouver in May FAQ

Is May a good time to go to Vancouver?

Yes, May is a good time to go to Vancouver, with mild weather, blooming flowers, and various outdoor activities. It’s a perfect opportunity to explore the city’s beauty and vibrant atmosphere.

What is Vancouver like in May?

Vancouver in May is a vibrant and lively city, emerging from its winter slumber. The weather is mild and enjoyable, where you can enjoy more sunlight and fewer rain showers, allowing for plenty of outdoor activities.

What are the top things to do in Vancouver in May?

The top things to do in Vancouver in May are enjoying the Cherry Blossom Festival, exploring Stanley Park’s lush trails, visiting the vibrant Granville Island Public Market, biking along the Seawall, and embarking on whale-watching tours in the Pacific Ocean.

Is the weather in Vancouver nice in May?

Yes, the weather in Vancouver is nice in May, making it a great time to visit. The month sees warming temperatures, with averages ranging from 10°C to 17°C (50°F to 63°F), with the odd spell into the 20s taking place.

Ready to visit Vancouver in May?

Visiting Vancouver during May promises an unforgettable experience for visitors. The city blossoms with warmth and sunshine, appealing to both nature enthusiasts and city explorers alike.

With its tranquil parks and bustling street festivals, Vancouver offers a rich tapestry of experiences that epitomize the essence of late spring.

Don’t hesitate! Secure your trip to Vancouver in May and immerse yourself in the city’s enchanting spring ambiance.

Julian

I've used online guides on five continents to find the world's greatest travel spots and this is my chance to give back - with insider info on my home, the mighty Vancouver BC!

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