If you’re looking for some fun to have in and around the city this month without breaking the bank, we feel you. And we’ve got some great options to toss your way that will keep the summer fun going a bit longer! We’ll get right to it… Here are 20 free & cheap things to do in Vancouver this September.

Richmond Community Block Party 

After the mass success that was the first Richmond Community Block Party, The Greater Vancouver Food Truck Fest is taking over
Lansdowne Centre this long weekend with even more food truck vendors, entertainment, and drink options. Best of all? The block party is completely free to attend!

When: Friday, September 2nd to Sunday, September 4th
Where: 5300 No. 3 Road
Cost: Free

Italian Summer Festival & Car Show

Il Centro Italian Cultural Centre’s Italian Summer Festival and Car Show are nearly upon us, and there will be tons to do by way of delicious eats, drinks, and car show viewing. Simply register here and get ready for a variety of food from around Italy, and a market full of street vendors with treasures to peruse.

When: Sunday, September 4th
Where: 3075 Slocan Street
Cost: Free

Chilliwack Sunflower Festival 2022

There’s only about a week or so left of Chilliwack’s beloved Sunflower Fest, so if you haven’t already admired the 50+ stunning varieties of sunflowers or taken pictures in their garden displays, you’ll want to head to Chilliwack sooner rather than later! Tickets are only $10-15, and you’ll get to enjoy more than just sunflowers. There will be an additional 50 varieties of Dahlias, 8 varieties of Gladiolas, and several varieties of Zinnias and Cosmos to appreciate.

When: Wednesday, August 10th to September 5th
Where: 41310 Royalwood Drive, Chilliwack
Cost: $10-$15 GA

Light Up Chinatown

Vancouver’s Chinatown will be adorned with colourful light decorations this month in a two-day community-wide celebration. Best of all? The event is completely free to attend on both days. So, if you’re looking for an excuse to dress up in your nicest fall attire and peruse the local food & drink scene, this is it.

When: Saturday, September 10th and Sunday, September 11th
Where: 500 Columbia Street
Cost: Free

Check out a patio happy hour

It probably goes without saying that patio-hopping is a must this month, but we know it’s easy to rack up quite the bill. Thankfully, there are a ton of stunning patios with equally amazing happy hours to take advantage of, so why not keep the summer vibes going a little while longer?

Where: Check out our picks above

Vegan Night Market


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Canada’s first all-vegan night market is up and running, and the next market will take place on Thursday, September 8th. Even better–admission is by $2 minimum donation. For all the delicious eats and drinks you can get (and not to mention the live music and dance floor…), this is quite the steal.

When: Thursday, September 8th
Where: 1489 East Hastings Street, The Waldorf
Cost: $2 minimum donation

Explore the Nanaimo Bar Trail

We think the history of the Nanaimo bar in BC is as fascinating as it is delicious. And if you agree, you can go on this self-guided tour of Vancouver Island’s most unique Nanaimo bar-inspired treats, which includes ice cream, savoury bites, and even fancy drinks. Assuming you indulge in one treat per cafe or restaurant, this unique experience won’t cost your wallet too much!

Where: See locations above

Check out some dog parks

Thanks to this online interactive map of all the off-leash dog parks in Vancouver, you’ll never need to wonder where to let your canine friend roam free next. And if you don’t have any dogs, we think going for the sole intention of dog-watching is a great time too. After all, it doesn’t cost a thing to treat your furry friend to some quality outdoor time.

Where: Check out the online map above

Visit the outdoor pool at Kits Beach

Since the beloved outdoor pool at Kits Beach reopened a bit late this summer, we think a dip or lap swim is very much warranted this month. Folks can view the pool’s schedule and book a time slot here.

When: Open throughout September
Where: Click the link above for more info

Recent Posts:
Food guide: Here are all the unique eats you can find at the PNE Fair this year
Ice cream, coffee, & cocktails: You can take a tour of all the Nanaimo bar-inspired treats in BC

Enjoy a scenic picnic


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If you want to mix in some quality picnicking with the last of your beach days, we’ve got just the list for you. From the grassy hills and killer views at Queen Elizabeth Park to the shady spots at Trout Lake, here are some amazing summer picnic spots around Vancouver to check out.

Where: Check out our picks above

Visit the Polygon Gallery

For folks who are into more adventurous, interactive art programming, there’s The Polygon in North Van. Visitors can check out Chester Fields’ Look Again until September 11th, and mark their calendars for the upcoming Stan Douglas opening celebration on September 9th. The latter exhibition explores several historical instances of social and political unrest through a panoramic photograph series.

When: Open throughout September
Where: 101 Carrie Cates Court, North Vancouver
Cost: Admission by donation

Rent some e-bikes

Starting on August 30th, folks who want to hop on a Mobi and go on a joyride can do so with an emission-free electric bike that’s not only energy and time-efficient, but money-efficient as well.  Whether you bike through Stanley Park or go across the Lions Gate Bridge, Mobi has you covered. The 24 Hour Pass gives you access to e-bikes for 25¢/min for the first 30 minutes and 35¢/min thereafter.

Play some pickleball

Interested in learning a new, beginner-friendly sport this month? Enter pickleball, the more casual cousin of ping pong and tennis. Luckily, Vancouver has several permanent outdoor courts as well as pop-up courts throughout the city to take advantage of.

Where: See locations above

Visit a ghost town 


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With ‘spooky season’ almost upon us, there’s no better time than now to check out some ghost towns around BC & learn about their history. We say either because while some of these are just a stone’s throw from the city, others are downright impossible to get to (unless you’ve got some scuba gear handy).

Where: Check out our picks above

Go chasing waterfalls

Admittedly, we’re more about waterfalls than waterparks. Especially when BC is absolutely filled with gorgeous ones to see, from massive cliff faces to hidden forest gems. Either way, you won’t be disappointed with the latest roundup of our favourites in the province.

Where: Click the link above for our picks

Eat your way through Chinatown

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Vancouver’s Chinatown has some of the best eats in town. What’s even better is that most options are very affordable – and there are so many to choose from. Our recommendation?? Start with Kam Wai Dim Sum or New Town Bakery.

Where: Chinatown
Cost: Varies

Go camping

The good thing about camping is that you can set whatever budget you want and actually stick to it – unlike a rowdy night out on the town, where a painful food & drink bill is pretty much guaranteed. When it comes to expenses, as long as you’ve got all the camping equipment you need and ample gas in the tank, you can definitely save some money elsewhere and enjoy the great outdoors this summer.

Where: Click the link above for our picks

Go swimming

Doesn’t cost a thing to dive into the ocean or a BC lake for a little swim! If you’re more of a pool person, though, rates aren’t too bad at all. Make a splash regardless of the medium!

Where: Various

Vancouver Canadians

It’s still the season of peanuts and cracker jacks in our book – and for just 20 bucks a pop, you can score tickets to one of the Vancouver Canadians’ home games. This month, they’ll be facing off against Eugene’s Emeralds.

When: Games until September 11th
Where: 4601 Ontario Street, The Nat
Cost: $20+

Kids Take Over at the Vancouver Art Gallery

If you haven’t heard, all youth aged 18 and under can now visit the Vancouver Art Gallery for free, which means several field trips this September are definitely warranted. definitely warranted! Plus, with the onset of more child-friendly exhibits such as Kids Take Over, the VAG is becoming more and more youth-friendly and engaging for all ages.

Where: 750 Hornby Street

And that’s the list, folks! We hope you enjoy the month and plan some fun day (and night) excursions that don’t end with a hefty bill.