Things to Do on Christmas Day in Vancouver

Pick From Aquarium, Skating, Skiing, and Movies

Canada Place at blue hour, Vancouver, Canada
Canada Place during Christmas time. LeonU / Getty Images

Once all the packages are open and everyone's had a satisfying brunch on Christmas morning, the long afternoon stretches out before you. While it's true that much of Vancouver shuts down on Dec. 25  for Christmas Day, the city is alive with seasonal and interesting things to do, from visiting the Belugas at the Vancouver Aquarium to hitting the slopes or going out for Chinese. Here are some ideas on how to spend Christmas Day in Vancouver in 2017.

  • 01 of 05
    Girl watches Beluga whale at the Vancouver Aquarium
    Grant Faint/The Image Bank/Getty Images

    One of the best things to do on Christmas Day in Vancouver is to head to the Vancouver Aquarium. Unlike most Vancouver attractions, which are closed on Dec. 25, the Vancouver Aquarium is open 365 days a year. It's also a great option if the weather is bad since most of the aquarium is indoors; there's even a (small) play area for younger kids on the lower level. The aquarium will be open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Christmas Day 2017.

  • 02 of 05
    Robson Square ice rink, lit up at night.
    Ian Cook / Getty Images

    Situated in the heart of downtown Vancouver, Robson Square's free outdoor (but covered, in case of rain) ice skating rink is open on Christmas Day, Dec. 25. Check the website before you go for the hours the rink is open. You can rent skates at the rink. 

    The 50-foot lighted Vancouver Christmas Tree, which will be in Robson Square this year, serves as a beautiful holiday backdrop for a Christmas Day skate.

  • 03 of 05

    Eat Out

    Eating out is always one of the best things to do on Christmas Day in Vancouver. Lots of restaurants are open on Dec. 25. This includes most Chinese restaurants, many Indian restaurants, and top restaurants like the Teahouse in Stanley Park that serve Canadian Christmas dinners. If you have a favorite Chinese or Indian restaurant, call ahead to confirm that they're open and make a reservation. Nearly every deluxe hotel in downtown Vancouver has a Christmas brunch, too. Here are just a few recommendations:

  • 04 of 05
    Skiing at Whistler Blackcomb resort, Canada
    James D. Morgan/Getty Images

    Vancouver is perfectly situated for hitting the slopes on Christmas Day. It's just 30 minutes from Mount Seymour and Cypress Mountain and just two hours from Whistler. After all that holiday eating and drinking, crisp air and exercise are a perfect antidote.

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05
    Scotiabank Theatre in downtown Vancouver
    Courtesy of Scotiabank Media

    One of the most popular things to do on Christmas Day in Vancouver--or in any city--is head to the movies. Some of the biggest movies of the year open on Christmas Day, so you are sure to find one you want to see.