Home
The Butchart Chronicles : November 23, 2017

Family-Friendly Activities for the Christmas Season

Festive Fun - December 1st to January 6th

The Christmas season means fun for the whole family at The Butchart Gardens. Here are five activities for kids to enjoy when they visit The Gardens from December 1st to January 6th.
Image: travelingislanders.com

1. Bring a Snowflake in Exchange for Hot Chocolate

For children 12 and under, bring us a paper snowflake you have created at home. We will exchange it for a cup of hot chocolate in the Coffee Shop.

  • Snowflake must be made from an 8x11 sheet of white paper and brought from home
  • Limit one per child per day
  • We will put your snowflake on our Coffee Shop windows (space permitting)
  • Valid Dec 1st, 2017 to Jan 6th, 2018
  • Regretfully no substitutions can be made
  • Organized children's groups are required to advise participation when making reservations for the visit.

2. Participate in the Magic of Christmas Walk

Children under 12 years of age will be given a checklist at the admission gate to identify each of the Christmas highlights displayed throughout The Gardens. Upon presentation of their list at the visitor centre, participants will receive a Christmas treat.

  • Limit one per child per day
  • Valid Dec 1st, 2017 to Jan 6th, 2018
  • Not valid for organized child and youth groups

3. Glide Across the Ice Rink


Fun for adults and children, skating underneath soft twinkling lights to the sounds of seasonal music is Butchart Christmas must-do. Skating runs every hour (during admission hours) and runs for 40 minute sessions. Skate rentals are available in the information centre, located across from the rink. See pictures and rates here.

4. Ride the Rose Carousel


Ride around on one of thirty hand-crafted animals on the Rose Carousel, the only carousel on Vancouver Island. Two chariots accommodate accessible requirements.

A portion of the proceeds from the carousel are donated to local children's charities.

5. Listen to Live Musical Entertainment

There's no better way to get into the Christmas spirit than humming along to Christmas music. Every evening, listen to a festive brass band and traditional carollers perform amongst thousands of Christmas lights. These two performance groups rotate every half hour on the stage, located in the Piazza as you begin your walk. No fee or reservations. Simply take a seat and enjoy at your leisure.

We look forward to welcoming you this Magic of Christmas season.

Planning Hints:

  • Budget at least two hours, not including dining
  • Dress warm - it's often cooler at The Gardens than in town
  • Check #ButchartTraffic on Twitter to see if there is any wait at the admission gate
  • If you plan to skate, stop in at the Visitor Information Centre when you first arrive to secure your time. Reservations are not taken prior to arrival to The Gardens
  • The Blue Poppy Restaurant and Coffee Shop are family-friendly environments where you can enjoy a quick meal or warm beverage

Looking for a holiday gift idea? Purchase gifts and gift tickets from our online store.

Rates