Day Camps

Give your child a fun, activity-filled week of exploring the garden, learning more about the natural world around them, and their role in the urban ecosystem. Want to keep up-to-date on our programming and registration dates? Sign up for our monthly Education Updates.

Programming is developed and run by the Vancouver Botanical Gardens Association (VBGA) Questions about camp? Email us or call 604-257-8443

Spring Break Camps

Get whisked away by fairies, travel back in time to discover ancient plants, explore the rainforest, and get your hands dirty! Every day is a new adventure for 6-10 year olds at our nature based spring break camps. No matter the theme, our camps are carefully crafted for maximum fun with a blend of science, exploration, games, crafts, and art.

Limited to 24 participants per day
Member: $58.50 / Non-member $65


VBGA Members: Don’t forget to enter promo code “MEMBER” at checkout to receive your 10% discount. A family or Individual plus one child membership is required to qualify for the member discount. Contact 604-257-8675 if you have questions about your membership.

  • +Natural Curiosities

    Monday, March 19th, 2018

    Discover nature’s weird, wonderful, and unique treasures! From green giants to ancient plants, and stinky flowers to carnivorous plants, delve deeper into the wonders of the Garden with microscopes, observation tools, and activities.

  • +Secrets of Spring

    Tuesday, March 20th, 2018

    Marvel at the first signs of spring by getting outside to hunt for flowers, leaf buds bursting open, birds, bugs and more. Dissect buds and bulbs to explore what’s happening inside, and plant wildflower seeds to take home in your own decorated container.

  • +Living Fossils

    Wednesday, March 21st, 2018

    Journey back in time with a tour of VanDusen’s prehistoric plants.  Explore fascinating plant defenses against the predators of the era, learn how to make a stegosaurus salad, and marvel at an array of ancient fossils.

  • +Plants with a Purpose

    Thursday, March 22nd, 2018

    A look at the many ways we use nature in our day-to-day lives through hands-on exploration. We will learn how to craft with natural dyes, make tea, create earth art, and explore traditional plant uses. You’ll never look at a garden the same way again!

  • +Citizen Science: The Birds in your Backyard

    Friday, March 23rd, 2018

    Contribute to valuable international scientific initiatives! Learn how to Identify and observe birds in our brand new Backyard Bird Garden, and submit your data to citizen science programs like Project FeederWatch. We will master using binoculars, craft a bird feeder, and practice local bird calls.

  • +Fantastic Fairy Gardens

    Monday, March 26th, 2018

    Flutter in for a whimsical day in the world of fairies.  Create your own fairy garden with enchanting greenery, and hear folklore about which plants are most likely to attract fairies.  Make mini toadstools, elaborate doorways and more charming miniatures for your own fairy garden at home.

  • +Dirt to Dinner

    Tuesday, March 27th, 2018

    Get your hands dirty and discover what it takes to make stone soup from the ground up. Starting from the soil we will explore decomposition, experiment with soil pH, dissect seeds and plant microgreens. Finally, we will prepare and enjoy a simple veggie-based meal together!

  • +Marvelous Rainforests

    Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

    What does a poison dart frog and a Pacific tree frog have in common? They both live in the rainforest! Compare life in VanDusen’s temperate rainforest to the lush tropics in Bloedel Conservatory through stories, activities, and crafts. Get immersed in the beauty of tropical world on our field trip, where we will discover what life is like in a bromeliad.

  • +Art of Rain and Rainbows

    Thursday, March 29th, 2018

    Let your creativity flow during this “art-full” camp dedicated to rainbows, clouds and rain. Make and decorate a rain stick, learn the science behind colour and rainbows, and maybe even paint with rain if the weather permits!

Summer Camps

**New Summer Camps are now available to browse below! Registration opens on March 5th for MEMBERS ONLY, and March 7th for the general public. Members must have Family or Individual plus one child categories in order to qualify for priority registration and discounts. If you have not received an email, contact us by email to request your access code. Please provide your member number in your email (found under the barcode on your member card) if you need assistance with your membership or need to renew, please call 604-257-8675.

VanDusen’s camps are immensely popular and often sell out very quickly. Our carefully crafted blend of science, exploration, games and crafts give children the opportunity to learn and play throughout the beauty of the Garden and the Conservatory, while fostering positive stewardship of the environment. Days are spent mostly outdoors, but may also include time in the classroom in the Visitor Centre, glasshouse or Bloedel Conservatory.

Hours: 9:30am to 4:00pm with drop-off available from 9:00 am.

See descriptions below.


Full week camps: Member $274.50 / Non-member $305
4-day camps (July 3 – 6 & Aug 7 -10): Member $225 / Non-member $250
Capacity limited to 24 campers per week.

Cancellation Policy: 
All cancellations must be requested in writing to at least 14 days in advance of your camp start date. Refunds are subject to a $15 administration fee. Cancellations with less than 14 days notice will not receive a refund.

  • +Science in the Garden
    • Ages 5-7: July 3 – 6 & July 16 – 20
    • Ages 8-10: July 9-13

    Unearth young biologists who want to learn about how the natural world functions. In the Garden, campers will explore trees, bugs, birds, soil, ponds and more. We’ll use microscopes, learn how to be a citizen scientist, and use words like ornithologist and metamorphosis as we have a fun week discovering the garden with a scientific focus.

    This camp includes a field trip to Bloedel Conservatory.

  • +Artists inspired by Nature
    • Ages 5-7: July 9-13 & July 23 – 27
    • Ages 8-10: July 3 – 6

    Investigate connections between art and nature through the work of Claude Monet, Andy Goldsworthy, Vincent van Gogh, and other artists that find inspiration in nature. This fine art camp will teach the elements of art using techniques in watercolour, paint, pastels, and mixed media. Gather inspiration from the plants and creatures while exploring the Garden, keep a nature sketchbook, and complete a painting on canvas.

    This camp includes a field trip to Bloedel Conservatory.

  • +Eco Sleuths
    • Ages 8-10: July 16 – 20

    Who do these bones belong to? Where did all the seeds go? Eco-Sleuths will solve the daily nature mystery by exploring the Garden in search of clues. Campers will learn new investigative techniques such as water pH tests and plant dissections, and use tools such as compasses, maps, binoculars, and microscopes. Available for ages 8-10 only.

    This camp includes a field trip to Bloedel Conservatory.

  • +Dirt to Dinner
    • Ages 5-7: July 30 – August 3
    • Ages 8-10: July 23 – 27

    Get your hands dirty and discover what it takes to make your meal from the ground up. Starting from the soil we will explore decomposition, experiment with soil pH, dissect seeds, and plant micro-greens. Every day we will prepare and enjoy some delicious food together. Veggies, fruits, herbs and honey have never tasted so good!

    This camp includes a field trip to Bloedel Conservatory.

  • +Aquatic Adventures
    • Ages 5-7: August 7-10
    • Ages 8-10: July 30 – August 3

    Dive into the wonderful world of water and get to know the plants and animals that live there. Peer into a pond to find and identify the creatures that lurk below, tour VanDusen’s lakes and streams, and comb the beach for crabs and kelp. Explore freshwater and saltwater ecosystems and splash around at the Stanley Park water park.

    This camp includes a field trip to Stanley Park.

  • +Zoomed in on Nature
    • Ages 8-10: August 7-10

    This camp is for kids who want to have a close look at nature, patiently taking their time for focused observations. We’ll use magnifying glasses and microscopes to examine and draw flowers, feathers, leaf skeletons, bees and our daily discoveries. Like our other camps, this one includes active games, but will also have calm, quiet moments, to allow campers to watch wildlife or do other activities in the Garden. For ages 8-10 only.

    This camp includes a field trip to Bloedel Conservatory.

  • +Nature’s Architects
    • Ages 8-10: August 13-17

    Find inspiration from nature’s master builders such as ants, plants, and spiders to build your own structures. Observe birds closely to inspire the design of your own kite. Build a parachute that floats like a seed blowing in the wind. Use sonar like a bat or create a new communication system like a bee. Practice using nature inspired technology such as collecting energy from the sun like a leaf or design your own nature inspired invention. For ages 8-10 only.

    This camp includes a field trip to Bloedel Conservatory.

  • +Budding Birders
    • Ages 5-7: August 13 – 17
    • Ages 8-10: August 20 – 24

    Calling all junior ornithologists! Get to know birds at VanDusen, such as the barred owl, Anna’s hummingbird, spotted towhee and others. We’ll explore how birds eat, fly and build nests, and learn to identify and observe birds using our ears and binoculars. Campers will explore the new Backyard Bird Garden and over 300 tropical birds living at the Bloedel Conservatory.

    This camp includes a field trip to Bloedel Conservatory.

  • +Bugs and Beyond
    • Ages 5-7: August 20 – 24

    Focus on the weird and wonderful world of insects and other amazing arthropods. Junior entomologists will explore ecology from the bugs-eye view: as pollinators, decomposers, predators, and prey. Search under logs, in the pond, in a flower, or in the air for bugs and learn which are helpful, harmful, or edible to plants or people. For ages 5-7 only.

What parents are saying about our camps

  • “This camp has ignited a spark – that it’s cool to be interested in nature, and all that’s in it.”
  • “My child gained an appreciation for plants, nature, and relationships humans have with nature”
  • “The leaders were enthusiastic, professional and caring, and got to know my child really quickly.”
  • “She is gaining a greater understanding of the scientific model, learning a lot, and developing an appreciation for the environment”


Pro-D Day Camps

For children ages 6-10. Registration is limited to 24 participants in each camp, and is expected to fill up quickly! Like all of our camps, participants will have plenty of fun, hands on activities to keep them busy while learning something new.

Registration for MEMBERS ONLY will be available March 5th & 6th, starting at 9 AM on March 5th. Must have Family or Individual plus one child categories to qualify for priority registration and discounts.

General registration opens March 7th at 9 AM.

Fees: Member $58.50 / Non-member $65 per camp

Cancellations must be made one week before scheduled camp date in order to receive a refund less a $15 admin fee.

  • +April 27th: Garden Grossology

    Delve into the slimy and smelly side of the Garden! This camp is not for the squeamish, as we will seek out all that is stinky, slimy or strange. Count the corpses inside pitcher plants, explore decomposition in action, and dig up worms to identify as you learn about Project WormWatch.

  • +May 18th: In Pursuit of Pollinators

    Buzz buzz! Are you ready to see the world like a bee? Look for ultraviolet landing pads on flowers, collect pollen, take the honey taste test challenge, visit our beehives, search for hummingbirds, and enjoy a butterfly craft.

Program Bursaries

The VanDusen Botanical Garden Association is pleased to provide bursaries for families in financial need. Apply for a bursary, or contact 604-257-8443 for information. If you are interested in donating to the bursary program, and giving a child the opportunity to go to camp, we would love to hear from you!

Contact Us

Have questions about the programs, or having difficulty registering online? Call 604-257-8443 or email us.