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How long does it take to walk through Van Dusen Festival of Lights?

Winter is the best time of year for festive events and beautiful sights. The cold weather and snow make everything feel cozy and magical, especially when you attend the Van Dusen Festival of Lights.

This annual winter event transforms the Van Dusen Botanical Garden into a whimsical wonderland with over 1.4 million multi-coloured lights! It’s a fun outing for families and couples alike, but before you go, you might be wondering about the most frequently asked question – how long does it take to walk through Van Dusen Festival of Lights?

Plan to spend about one to two hours at the festival. Kids will want plenty of time to run around, investigate all the paths and displays, and, of course, visit Santa. That’s enough time to walk through the displays and enjoy the Dancing Lights once or twice, as well as a stop for a warming drink and a snack.

If you want to enjoy the festivities in a more relaxed manner, the ideal time to explore the garden is when it opens at 4:30 pm. This gives you ample time to enjoy the views, take photos, and maybe even have a bite to eat before the crowds start to arrive. However, it’s important to note that the garden will start to get busy after 6 pm and if you don’t fancy battling the crowds, then plan to attend earlier in the evening.

If you’re attending the Van Dusen Festival of Lights for the first time, here are some tips that will help you make the best of your time:

Top Tips to Make the Most of Your Visit to Van Dusen Festival of Lights

1. Arrive Early

Make an effort to arrive at the garden early, as it will give you enough time to park, settle in and plan your itinerary before the crowd begins to pour in.

2. Dress Appropriately for the Weather

Dress warmly for the cold as this is a wintertime activity. Be sure to wear warm clothing, comfortable shoes, and bring gloves and hats.

3. Prepare for the Santa Line

One of the highlights of the Van Dusen Festival of Lights is visiting Santa. However, the lineups can be quite long, so be prepared for this and arrive early, or visit him on a weekday to avoid the crowds.

4. Fuel Up at the Food Stalls

There’s a variety of food stalls to choose from at the festival, and it’s an excellent opportunity to sample local winter-themed delicacies. Fuel up before your walk through the garden with yummy treats like roasted chestnuts, gingerbread cookies, and hot apple cider.

5. Take your Time to Explore the Garden

The light displays are beautiful, and you won’t want to miss anything, so be sure to take your time and explore. The garden encompasses 22 hectares, so give yourself enough time for your walk-through, and see everything you want to see.

6. End Your Night with the Magical,Dancing Lights

The Dancing Lights is a spectacular light and sound show that takes place every half an hour – it’s a must-see! You can enjoy it twice and even from different viewpoints throughout the gardens.

So, there you have it – all the information you need to make the most of your visit to the Van Dusen Festival of Lights. Whether this is your first time visiting or you’re returning for another year, don’t forget to enjoy yourself, soak up all the festive cheer, and create special memories that will last a lifetime!


The Van Dusen Festival of Lights is an excellent way to get into the festive spirit and enjoy time with family and loved ones. Although the festival has a lot of ground to cover, plan to spend about one to two hours there, and follow the tips above to make the most of your visit. When it comes to the Festival of Lights, there’s no rush to see and do everything in a hurry. So take your time, enjoy the festive atmosphere, and make this year’s holiday season one to remember!


Do you have to pay for parking at Van Dusen?

If you plan on visiting the VanDusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver, BC, you may be wondering about the parking situation. Fortunately, visitors to the garden do not have to pay for parking. The parking lot is conveniently located on West 37th Avenue, just off of Oak Street, and is easily accessible for visitors driving to the gardens.

One of the benefits of free parking at VanDusen is that it adds to the overall affordability of visiting the gardens. Many botanical gardens and other outdoor attractions may charge a premium for parking in order to raise revenue or offset costs. By offering free parking, VanDusen is helping to ensure that everyone who wants to visit the gardens is able to do so without having to worry about additional expenses.

In addition to being convenient and affordable, the parking lot at VanDusen Botanical Garden is also designed to accommodate a variety of visitors’ needs. There are accessible parking spots available for those with disabilities, making it easier for everyone to access the gardens. The lot is also located close to the entrance, which is helpful for visitors who may need to carry strollers or other equipment with them.

Visitors to VanDusen Botanical Garden can rest assured that they won’t have to pay for parking. With accessible parking spots available and a convenient location just off of Oak Street, visitors can enjoy the beauty of the gardens without worrying about extra costs.

Can you picnic at Van Dusen?

Yes, you can definitely have a picnic at Van Dusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver, Canada. The garden features a designated picnic area with picnic tables that offer a great view of the Great Lawn. These picnic tables can accommodate up to six guests per table.

Van Dusen Botanical Garden also provides picnic service to enhance your experience. A dedicated team member will be assigned to your table to take care of all your dining needs. Service charges may apply and depends on the types of food and drink ordered.

It is essential to note that outside food or beverages are not allowed in the garden. However, visitors are allowed to bring sealed bottles of water (up to one-liter sized).

If you don’t want to bring your own food, you can try the garden’s Truffles Fine Foods Cafe, which is located adjacent to the picnic tables. They offer snacks, coffee, and delicious meals that you can enjoy in the designated picnic area.

Van Dusen Botanical Garden provides its visitors with an excellent outdoor picnic experience with breathtaking views and well-maintained picnic areas. So, gather your family or friends, pack a picnic basket, and enjoy a relaxing day at the picturesque garden.

How long is the UBC TreeWalk?

The Greenheart TreeWalk located at the University of British Columbia (UBC) is an exciting way to experience the majestic beauty of the Pacific Northwest’s temperate rainforest. The TreeWalk consists of a 310-metre-long aerial trail system, suspended from huge Douglas firs, cedars, and grand firs, that allows visitors to walk from platform to platform in the canopy. The trail provides breathtaking views over the forest and the surrounding landscape. Visitors can experience the rich and complex ecosystem that the temperate rainforest provides, and learn about the fascinating ecology of this unique environment. The TreeWalk is accessible to people of all ages and abilities, making it an ideal destination for families, nature enthusiasts, and anyone looking for an unforgettable adventure. So, if you’re planning to visit the UBC campus, take a stroll on the Greenheart TreeWalk and be amazed by the wonders of nature that await you!

How big is VanDusen gardens?

VanDusen Botanical Garden is a popular attraction located at 37th Avenue West, Vancouver, British Columbia. The garden covers an area of 55 acres, making it one of the largest botanical gardens in North America.

Inside the garden, you can witness an enormous collection of over 7,500 plant species that originate from various parts of the world. The vibrant blossom showcases seasonal displays, formal gardens, Asian-influenced gardens, and inventive forms of garden designs.

The garden features a vast array of gardens enriched with medicinal plants, plant species in various colors, textures, and fragrances. A few of the most popular gardens to visit while exploring the VanDusen Botanical Garden include the hedge maze, rock garden, tranquility garden, and the Elizabethan Maze.

Besides showcasing a vast array of plant species, the VanDusen Botanical Garden is also a venue for various events, which include musical concerts, plant sales, workshops, and lectures.

In addition to the diverse gardens encompassing various garden designs, visitors can also avail of the garden’s facilities such as accessible paths and wheelchair rentals to optimize their visit. To explore the vast area of the garden, visitors can either stroll around on foot or take the garden’s shuttle that circles through the garden’s main thoroughfares.

Vandusen Botanical Garden boasts an extensive landscape that covers 55 acres, featuring over 7,500 plant species and varieties from around the world. The garden is a must-visit destination in Vancouver, especially for plant lovers, garden enthusiasts, and nature lovers.

Are dogs allowed in Van Dusen?

VanDusen Botanical Garden is a popular destination in Vancouver, Canada among tourists, families, and nature lovers alike. It is an iconic 55-acre garden located in the heart of Vancouver which showcases over 7,500 plant species and varieties from around the world. While many visitors to the garden may be pet lovers who would love to dog-walk with their furry friends in the park-like serene environment of the garden, the truth is that dogs are generally not allowed into the park.

The garden management and staff consider dogs to be a potential risk to the delicate ecosystem of the garden. They also understand that dogs can be a nuisance to other visitors and can interfere with the experience of other visitors who are not comfortable with pets. To address these concerns, VanDusen Botanical Garden has a strict policy that prohibits pets except for working guide and service dogs.

Working guide and service dogs are specially trained animals that provide support and assistance to individuals with disabilities. These dogs are permitted into VanDusen Botanical Garden because they are necessary companions for individuals with disabilities, and without them, they would not be able to enjoy the facility equally with other visitors. These dogs must be identifiable as working guide dogs, therapy dogs, or psychiatric service dogs. In such situations, it is preferable for the visitors to notify the garden management about the nature of their service dog before visiting the garden.

It is important to respect the garden’s policy and keep pets at home to ensure that VanDusen Botanical Garden remains an inviting and safe environment for all visitors. While pet lovers may be disappointed with this policy, it is necessary to understand the purpose behind the restrictions and consider alternative parks or outdoor spaces to enjoy time with their furry friends.

What Neighbourhood is Van Dusen Gardens in?

VanDusen Botanical Garden is a renowned botanical garden located in Vancouver, British Columbia, which spans across an area of 55 acres. The garden is a natural oasis in the heart of the city, offering a breathtaking collection of over 7,500 plant species from around the world. VanDusen Botanical Garden is located in the Shaughnessy neighbourhood, which is considered one of the most affluent and prestigious residential areas in Vancouver, surrounded by other beautiful gardens, parks, and architecturally stunning homes.

Shaughnessy, the neighbourhood where VanDusen Botanical Garden is located, is bordered by Oakridge, Canadian Pacific Railway tracks, and Arbutus Street to the west, Granville Street to the east, 16th Avenue to the south, and 41st Avenue to the north. The neighbourhood is known for its rich history and stunning architecture, with many of its homes being built in the early 1900s. Shaughnessy is home to a diverse range of facilities, including schools, parks, and restaurants, making it a highly attractive neighbourhood in which to live, work, and visit.

Vandusen Botanical Garden is situated in the Shaughnessy neighbourhood, which is a beautiful and affluent residential area in Vancouver, British Columbia. The garden is a natural oasis in the heart of the city, providing a retreat where visitors can experience a diverse range of plants and beautiful landscapes. Shaughnessy is a well-connected neighbourhood with access to a wide range of amenities, making it an attractive and sought-after location in which to reside and explore.