Well folks you know what they say- April showers bring May flowers. And while Vancouver might want to extend that timeline a little bit, we’re still confident that we’re going to see some amazing weather next month. With that in mind, we’ve got a whole range of indoor and outdoor options for you, from watching movies at home to exploring our local wonderland.

Here are 25 things to do in Vancouver this May.

Editor’s Note: Due to the ongoing effects of COVID-19, provincial and city guidelines are continually changing. Please double-check business closures and restrictions before proceeding.

Available Options/Events

Do a little Mother’s Day gift shopping

That’s right folks, Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and Vancouver is filled to the brim with amazing places to grab a gift. If you’re looking for some inspiration, we rounded up some of our go-to spots in the city. So, no matter what type of mom you have, you’ll be able to make the day that much more special.

When: Now until May 9th
Where: Click the link above for more info

Have a thrilling afternoon

Playland has got the go-ahead to reopen for the summer from public health officials, with various safety measures in place. So it might be a little different (masks are mandatory, no indoor attractions, and so on…) but the real draw is as good as ever- you’ve got tons of amazing rides to check out, from relaxing options to the most thrilling ones in Western Canada!

When: Slated to open Saturday, May 1st
Where: 2901 E Hastings Street
Cost: $29.50 to $39.50

Do a little local sightseeing

We think that Vancouver might be at its prettiest during the spring months. Everything is looking lush, but (hopefully) the sun is going to be out more often than not. If you’re ready to see Vancouver from all sorts of angles, then make sure to check out our spring sightseeing guide, and enjoy all the beauty the city has to offer you!

When: Available throughout May
Where: Click the link above for more info

Go for a bike ride

Full those more active readers, a big old bike ride is in the canon of Vancouver activities. We’ve always been put off by where to go, though. So, we rounded up some of our favourite trips and routes, from leisurely afternoon rolls to major expeditions throughout Metro Vancouver.

When: Available throughout May
Where: Click the link above for more info

Watch some documentaries in a drive-in setting

Huge shoutout to DOXA Documentary Film Fest for embracing the drive-in setup this year. In addition to the main, 11-day long festival, there will also be screenings of some of the most notable submissions at the PNE Amphiteatre. We love the contrast between a classic movie watching experience and some contemporary, eye-opening documentaries, so we’re really excited to check this one out.

When: May 13th to May 15th
Where: 2901 E Hastings Street
Cost: $50 per car

Explore a Classical Chinese Garden

After months of closure, the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden has reopened for the spring! This amazing blend of landscaping and architecture is sure to transport any Vancouverite who wanders in. And, like all the other relevant activities listed on here, there are new protocols in place (one-way routes, face masks, and so on…) to protect the health and safety of guests.

When: Open throughout May
Where: 578 Carrall Street
Cost: $16

Or a Traditional Japanese Garden

Speaking of immersive gardens, the Nitobe Memorial Garden at UBC is (in our eyes) right alongside Dr. Sun Yat-Sen in its authenticity. After all, the former emperor of Japan said ‘I am in Japan’ during a visit here. If that’s not a seal of approval, then we have no idea what is.

When: Open throughout May
Where: 1895 Lower Mall, UBC
Cost: $5

Head to a patio

Of course, it’s hard to pass up a quick trip to a local patio when the weather really starts to heat up. And while you can’t make plans to meet friends there or anything, we have rounded up some of our favourite places in the city to swing by for a drink and a snack. Bring your roommate, or enjoy your own company, and turn into that adult that comfortably dines alone- the holy grail of confidence.

Where: Click the link above for more info

Go on an early spring hike

Is sightseeing not enough anymore? No? Fair enough-we’ve got an amazing selection of spring and year-round hikes to check out across the Lower Mainland. Before making any serious plans, we recommend checking in with local health authorities to see what they’re saying. Yeah, we know, it’s weird that BC and municipalities are on different wavelengths regarding local travel, but that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

Where: Click the link above for more info

Capilano Suspension Bridge

We like the Capilano Suspension Bridge for a variety of reasons. The North Vancouver institution is the perfect way to immerse in North Shore’s forested beauty, without having to trek halfway up a mountain to do so. Plus, we honestly think the cliffwalk is just as fun as the bridge itself, with the treewalk on the far side just serving as a nice little cherry on top.

When: Open daily
Where: 3735 Capilano Road, North Vancouver
Cost: $54.95 (same price as an annual pass)

Seek out some beautiful cherry blossoms

We’re getting to the tail end of cherry blossom season, but don’t let that discourage you. One of Vancouver’s most beautiful sights is still going to be around for a couple of weeks, and all you have to do is know where to look. Click the link above for some our of favourite spots, or check in with the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Fest for the most recent updates.

Where: Click the link above for more info

Head to a Farmers’ Market

We don’t blame you if your farmers’ markets visits dropped in frequency over the winter. But, we do hope that with spring your passion for supporting local growers and artisans has returned! After all, you just can’t beat a big old bag of produce from an early morning trip to the market. Heck, it’s practically a rite of passage in the city.

Where: Click the link above for more info

Play Disc Golf at Queen Elizabeth Park

If you’re looking for a way to hang with your friends outdoors in a socially distanced manner then disc golf might just be for you. And what’s even better is that the course at Queen Elizabeth Park is completely free! So grab a frisbee and your friends and try it out.

When: Open throughout May
Where: 33rd Avenue and Cambie St

Hit the Links

Confession time- we personally don’t play frisbee golf, because we’re too busy with actual golf. Along with a lot of other Canadians, we really dove into the sport last summer, since it was more or less the only thing that let us avoid interaction with other people. Turns out, as long as you don’t care about your score, it’s not nearly as infuriating as you’d expect!

When: Courses open daily
Where: Around Vancouver
Cost: Varies

Learn about Vancouver’s history

The museum of Vancouver is a worthwhile trip for the neon exhibit alone. But, we also think that the newest exhibit ‘A Seat at the Table’ is worth checking out too. The exhibit looks at the history of Chinese immigrants in Vancouver, with an emphasis on the culinary contributions made over the years.

When: Open throughout May
Where: 1100 Chestnut Street
Cost:  $10

Hear some Arctic Voices

Science World’s latest exhibit is a massive showcase of the culture, environment, and inhabitants of Canada’s Arctic. Personally, we think the arctic is the most metal biome on earth, so we’re definitely recommending this option for anyone in the learning mood.

When: Open throughout May
Where: 1455 Quebec Street
Cost: $27.62, reserve your timeslot online

Look at a food-focused art exhibit

Do you love taking pics of food almost as much as you love eating it? Our friends sure do, which is why we told them to visit The Polygon’s latest exhibit, titled A Feast for the Eyes. The show is a roundup of some of the world’s most famous photographers, and all the pieces have one thing in common- a focus on food.

When: On until May 30th
Where: 101 Carrie Cates Court, North Vancouver
Cost: Admission by donation

Wander around the Vancouver Art Gallery

There are a few exhibitions currently on at the Vancouver Art Gallery, ranging from a photography exhibition focusing on mass media and advertising, to an exploration of the gallery’s own history, to a massive video installation. And, the offsite exhibit (which is free) also has something on right now!

When:  Open throughout May
Where: 750 Hornby Street
Cost: Varies

Museum of Anthropology- A Future for Memory

MOA welcomed a new exhibition earlier this year. This one focuses on the impact and aftermath of the 2011 earthquake off the coast of Japan. It’s an interesting one, especially since MOA itself is undergoing extensive ‘earthquake-proofing’ reconstruction.

When: Open throughout May
Where: 6393 NW Marine Drive, UEL
Cost: $15

Bill Reid Gallery- To Speak with a Golden Voice

Following the continued interest in the exhibition, the Bill Reid gallery has chosen to extend this incredible exhibition on Bill Reid himself. A master goldsmith, carver, and sculptor, Reid is undoubtedly one of the most important Indigenous, and by extension Canadian, artists to have emerged in the 20th century.

When: Open throughout May
Cost: $13

See what’s new on Netflix and Disney+

Without a doubt, streaming services were a real crutch for us during the winter months. And while warmer weather might have you getting out more, know that these two streaming giants are continuing to roll out amazing content. Netflix is getting Volume 2 of the Love, Sex and Robots anthology, while Disney+ is going to be releasing their latest live-action movie, Cruella.

When: Throughout May

Check out a regular Drive-In Movie

In the same vein, the Twilight Drive-In is an amazing way to enjoy movies on the silver screen, both old and new. Whoever is running the programming there deserves a pat on the back- one week it’s the latest movies to come out, and the next it’s some all-time classic.

When: Showtimes weekly
Where: 260th Street & Fraser Highway, Langley
Cost: $30 and up

Planned Options/Events

Return to the Vancouver Aquarium

We’re looking at the sale of the Vancouver Aquarium as optimistically as we can. Why? Because the group that bought it also owns Dollywood, and we see Dolly Parton as a modern day patron saint of ethical behaviour. So, fingers crossed that conservation stays at the forefront, and that the Vancouver Aquarium doors will reopen once more!

When: Slated to reopen as soon as possible
Where: 845 Avison Way
Cost: TBD

See some live theatre

Local theatres like Firehall and Arts Club Theatre had been doing live shows over the winter, but new restrictions have put their plans on pause. So, keep them in mind if they can reopen since they need all the support they can get right now. Or, spice up a night in by streaming one of their productions.

When: To be determined
Where: Around Vancouver
Cost: Varies

Do a tour of roadside attractions

This is dependent on public health restrictions being lifted, but fun enough that we think it’s worth including. Turns out, BC is home to a ton of major roadside attractions, ranging from giant hockey sticks to a glass mosaic house. Probably better as part of a spring camping trip, but the devoted few can see amazing things in a day trip.

Where: Click the link above for more info

And that’s what we have in mind for things to do in Vancouver this May! We hope that you can make the most of the next few weeks folks, whatever you decide to do!