21 Very Fun Things to Do in Vancouver This Summer

Heat up your summer plans with this hit list of sizzling to-dos.

shrek and other characters from the movie shrek

Ogre in the Don-key of C: Shrek 2 in Concert

WHEN July 3 and 4

WHERE The Orpheum

COST From $21

Join the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra for a magical evening with Shrek and friends—perfect for families, nostalgia-seeking millennials and Gen-Zers into Shrek raves.

Missy Elliot

Work It: Missy Elliott

WHEN July 4

WHERE Rogers Arena

COST $104

Get your freak on with rap matriarch Missy Elliott alongside special guests Ciara, Busta Rhymes and Timbaland. This is set to be the biggest summer dance-a-thon of the year, so we suggest you start stretching now.

Insert Airhorn Noise: Vancouver Craft Beer and Music Festival

WHEN July 6


COST From $65

Gear up for a festival dedicated to everything you love—except all your ex-boyfriends, who will also probably be there.

Carnaval del Sol

Feeling Hot Hot Hot: Carnaval del Sol

WHEN July 5 to 18

WHERE Jonathan Rogers Park

COST From $17

Sizzle into summer with Latin beats, treats and VIP vibes at Carnaval del Sol. DJ kickoff? Check. Flamenco night? July 11. Soccer tournament? July 12 and 13. It’s fiesta o’clock all summer long.

Country Club: Country Music and Whiskey Festival

WHEN July 7


COST From $55

Grab your Stetson and don your tightest Wranglers for the next best thing to the Calgary Stampede (but with just as much whiskey).

Becky Hill

Run to the Hills: Becky Hill

WHEN July 18

WHERE The Hollywood Theatre

COST From $42

Becky Hill, the powerhouse from The Voice UK, is set to energize Vancouver with her infectious electro-pop beats. Get ready for a night where the dance floor feels just like home (but don’t forget to leave after).

Rock the Boat: The Fox Cabaret’s ’90s vs ’00s Night Boat Cruise

WHEN July 19

WHERE Plaza of Nations Marina

COST $78

Set sail on this DJ’d boat bash pitting the ’90s against the ’00s. Whether you’re Team Spice Girls or Team Britney, this throwback dance party on the open seas is sure to float your boat.

Folk Ya: Vancouver Folk Music Festival

WHEN July 19 to 21

WHERE iy’a’l’mexw Jericho Beach Park

COST From $200

Globetrotters: Stay home and let your ears do the travelling. From Appalachian banjos to zesty zithers, this fest features over 40 acts from more than a dozen countries—way cheaper than airfare.

Dig a Peony: Rosé Disco

WHEN July 28


COST $55

It’s like a garden soirée met a dance floor and decided to throw the most charming party of the summer—and it’s the perfect excuse to wear your floral-est frock.

Festival of Cocktails and Tacos

Punchbowl: Festival of Cocktails and Tacos

WHEN July 27


COST From $30

Tacos and cocktails come together for an all-day happy hour offering up over 250 drinks, a DJ and even an on-site liquor store so you can step up and host the after-after party.

Portland Organ: The Decemberists

WHEN July 29

WHERE Queen Elizabeth Theatre

COST From $51

The early 2000s called—the Decemberists are back! With their new album, As It Ever Was, So It Will Be Again, these indie rock literati (yep, the pre-TikTok sea shanty trendsetters) are set to reignite millennial nostalgia.

Norah Jones

Easy Breezy: Norah Jones

WHEN July 30

WHERE Queen Elizabeth Theatre

COST From $226

Come away with Norah Jones and special guests Hurray for the Riff Raff for a night of soothing serenades—like auditory melatonin, but the only side effect is good times.

Weird Beards: JJUUJJUU with Special Guests

WHEN August 1

WHERE The Pearl

COST $20

Plunge into psychedelic rock with JJUUJJUU, helmed by the bearded, L.A.-based Phil Pirrone and his eclectic crew. Spend the evening swaying trippily in your baggiest poncho.

Spread the Love: Queer As Funk!

WHEN August 2

WHERE Commodore Ballroom

COST From $54

Ain’t no party like a queer as funk party because a queer as funk party has pride (and dancing into the wee hours of the morning).

Idol Worship: An Evening with Mink Stole and Peaches Christ

WHEN August 3

WHERE The Rio Theatre

COST From $40

Calling all John Waters fans, Divine devotees and cult movie lovers: don’t miss this night of cult cinema, scandalous stories and endless glitter.

Rainbow Road: Public Disco Pride Block Party

WHEN August 3

WHERE West 3rd Avenue and Ontario Street

COST From $23

Featuring DJs Shaun J. Wright and Sappho, an industrial laneway turns into a rainbow-hued dance floor for a day of pride partying and dancing in the streets.

Cool for the Summer: St. Vincent

WHEN August 11

WHERE Orpheum Theatre

COST From $62

Her new album, All Born Screaming, is out now, and the U.S. guitar great and indie darling is coming to remind everyone that she is way cooler than us and that’s okay.

Meet Me in Gastown
Photo courtesy of Low Tide Properties

Water Werks: Meet Me in Gastown

WHEN August 15

WHERE Water Street


On Gastown’s iconic Water Street, local food stalls line the cobblestones and the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra fills the air with enchanting sounds—plus the occasional chime from a certain steam clock!

Tiger Beat: Waxahatchee

WHEN August 16

WHERE  The Orpheum

COST From $68

Join the entirety of Vancouver’s indie music scene to worship at the altar of their beloved moody melody maker, Waxahatchee—fresh off her latest album, Tigers Blood.

What a Character: Comedy Bang! Bang!

WHEN August 18

WHERE The Vogue Theatre

COST From $40

This unique podcast-turned-TV show is coming to town, bringing hilarious character-based improv silliness (and probably Paul F. Tompkins).

I’m So Excited: The Commodores with the Pointer Sisters

WHEN August 27


COST From $40

Dust off those bell-bottoms (they might be cool again) for a blast-from-the-past dance party at the PNE. Come for the funk and soul hits, stay for The Beast—with full access to the fairgrounds.