Things to do

11 Local Summer Activities To Do With Your Kids That Won’t Break The Bank

If you are looking to do some fun things with the kids without having to worry about entrance fees or spending a lot of money, there are plenty of options.

In fact, summer in Metro Vancouver is the perfect time to explore some of the wonderful areas around us.

There is no shortage of family-friendly activities. Here’s our round-up of some must visits to add to your summer list.

RELATED: 8 Waterfront Playgrounds In Metro Vancouver Worth The Summer Day Trip

11 Summer Kids Activities That Are Mini Adventures

Check Out The Art Installation in Langley

Photo: @discoverlangleycity / Instagram

There is currently a beautiful umbrella installation at McBurney Plaza on 20518 Fraser Highway in Langley. The summer is the perfect time to explore some neighbouring cities with your family. They also have some amazing playgrounds to check out while you’re there.

Cost: Free

Hit Up A Provincial Park

Photo: @lapinaylea / IG

While this isn’t an innovative area, provincial parks in B.C. make for a perfect day trip and are oozing with family fun. We are lucky to be surrounding by a number of them that include waterfront playgrounds but also are like mini getaways or great picnic spots. Some ones to ensure you check out include: Alice Lake, Golden Ears, and Shannon Falls, to name a few.

Cost: Free

Drive-Worthy Splash Parks

Photo: @braveandfreeadventures / Instagram

A water-filled play area with no entrance fees, no line-ups and no need to make reservations is always a win. Make it an adventure by adding in a small drive to visit any one of the best  spray parks and outdoors pools in the Tri-Cities.

Cost: Free

Burnaby Village

Photo: Burnaby Village Museum & Carousel

Burnaby Village Museum will officially open on May 1 and run through September 6, during the day. The entire village charm is still there, showcasing life in the 1920’s with your favourite exhibits open. There is always a lot to learn and interact with at Burnaby Village. The event is asking people to book reservations online.

Cost: Free

Spend A Day at Granville Island

Photo: @mandy4019 / Instagram

Granville Island is a great place to visit, especially during the summer. Kids will love the variety of food available, the regular and kid-sized market, and it has one of the largest  free water park in North America near by. If you need a break, you and the family can enjoy a stroll by the water while taking in the beautiful views.

Cost: Free

Visit the Cleveland Dam

Photo: Claire Thompson/Flickr

Get up close to hundreds feet of crashing waters. This easy hike is perfect for those with kids, and they will be in awe at the impressive 300-foot tall dam. You can walk right along the top of the dam, and there are also areas to spend the day and have a picnic. The location is easily accessible and there is a large parking log nearby.

Cost: Free

Kid-Friendly Hikes

Photo: @_kit_l / IG

An outdoor adventure is possible with the kids, so you don’t have to shy away from going on a hike. There are plenty of options around B.C. that you can visit for the day and do not take up more than 45 minutes for a hike. Check out some kid-friendly hikes that are worth adding to our list of summer adventures.

Cost: Free

Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Park in Chinatown

Photo: @prairieguy1970 / Instagram

The famous Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden may have a charge, but right next door, the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Park is free. Like the pay garden, it features traditional Chinese architecture, bridges, pavilions, and water lilies. It is also located near Andy Livingstone Park, with a great outdoor field, playground and dog park. And if you’re up for some cheap eats, Chinatown has some great treats, or a Costco hotdog for $1.50 is less than a 10 minute walk away.

Cost: Free

Lynn Canyon Park and Ecology Centre

This is a great place for kids to learn more about their local ecosystems and global environmental concerns. From the plant gallery to the animal gallery, it is full of informative fun facts. Visitors can then take a walk nearby and over the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge or a walk along the canyons.

Cost: Admission by donation $2 suggested. Please note thought that paid parking for the lot is now required.

Richmond Night Market Fun

Photo: Richmond Night Market

The market officially opens on July 23rd, and will run every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through September 6th, 2021 from 7 pm to 12 am. Like previous years there will be various stalls with lots of kids items to peruse, as well as a host of things to eat with enhanced seating areas.

Cost: Kids 7 and under are free, otherwise tickets are available for $3.50 each online.

Lakeland Flowers U-Pick Farm

Photo: @magmei & @wanderwithsav / Instagram

Lakeland Flowers is a U-Pick Flower Farm that grows millions of millions of daffodils, tulips, peonies, and sunflowers. Over the massive 35-acres of land you can find over 5 million tulips and 100,000 new sunflowers weekly. This is a great place for candid pictures of kids frolicking and flower joy. Plus, they get to pick some of their own!

Cost: $8 on weekdays (goes up to $16 on weekends), kids 3 and under are free


Whatever kids activities you decide on, your family will be able to have fun make memories without having to spend a lot.


For more places to explore in beautiful BC, check out our Travel & Outdoors section.

Christina Chandra

Christina Chandra is a Vancouver-based writer and editor with a background in food and nutrition, as well as years of media agency experience. You can often find her exploring eateries and events.

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Christina Chandra
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