Photo credit: Vancouver Whitecaps FC
For a true taste of how sports-crazy Vancouver is, get your hands on a ticket to see one of the city’s professional teams compete. Well before you’ve taken your seat, you’ll encounter face painting, team chants, and a whole lot of passion. Below, you’ll find information on where you can go to see the professional athletes do their thing, while Vancouver’s fans do theirs.
Check our Calendar of Events find more information on what's happening in the city.
Vancouver is home to the BC Lions, the province’s team in the Canadian Football League. Canadian football is closely related to American gridiron, but with some important differences, including the dimensions of the field, the number of downs, the number of players in a team, and time rules. Each season, nine teams from across the country battle each other from June to November, culminating in the championship Grey Cup game each fall, a uniquely Canadian tradition and the country's most- watched sporting event. In their signature bright orange and black team colours, the BC Lions play at downtown Vancouver’s BC Place Stadium, and tickets can be purchased online through their site.
Is there anything more Canadian than cheering for your team at a hockey game? The city’s National Hockey League (NHL) team, the Vancouver Canucks, play home games at Rogers Arena in downtown Vancouver. Games are so popular, that most games sell out, but there are still ways to get tickets if you’re serious about it. Our Vancouver Canucks Game Basics page has tips on getting your hands on seats for the game, and once you have tickets, check out our page on what to expect once you’re inside the stadium. If you’re unsuccessful, don’t despair – when the Canucks are playing, you’ll find many Vancouver bars and restaurants, and not just sports bars, will be showing the game. Pull up a stool and make friends with the rabid Canucks fans that surround you.
The city’s minor league baseball team, the Vancouver Canadians play out at Nat Bailey Stadium – an old fashioned ballpark with a lot of character. The team plays from June through to September, and a warm summer evening in the stands cheering for the Canadians, an affiliate of the Oakland Athletics, is a lovely way to spend an evening. Tickets are very well-priced, making it a favourite among families.
> Visit our page on what to expect when you’re at a Vancouver Canadians game.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC is the city’s professional soccer club, playing in North America’s Major League Soccer (MLS) competition. The team plays home games at BC Place Stadium in downtown Vancouver, and on game days, you’ll see the streets around the arena filled with fans proudly wearing their blue and white scarves. The MLS season runs from March through October, and tickets can be booked through the team’s website.
The city’s other hockey team is the Vancouver Giants, a junior ice hockey team playing in the Western Hockey League (WHL). The Giants play out at Pacific Coliseum, which was previously home to the Vancouver Canucks, and have a season that runs from September through to March. Catching a Giants game is an excellent way to experience a hockey game live – tickets are more accessible than for Canucks games, and you’ll get to see some of the game’s up-and-comers show their stuff as they try to catch the eye of NHL scouts. Because tickets are well-priced, you’ll find the stands full of families cheering on the hometown team—a quintessentially Canadian experience.
World Rugby Sevens Series
Vancouver is an annual host city of one of the 10 tournaments that make up the World Rugby Seven Series. Over one weekend in March, the world’s top 16 national teams do battle at BC Place Stadium, playing a game similar to rugby union, but quicker and with less players. As an international tournament, the excitement happens both on and off the field, as visitors from around the world cheer their teams on and also partake in a weekend-long festival and celebration. Tickets for the tournament can be purchased online.