With summer now seeming like a distant memory, fall is rolling in faster than a candy apple tumbling down a steep hill. But as the trees transition to their picture-perfect autumnal hues of orange and scarlet, it’s time to slip on a layer of fleece and embrace the season at one of Metro Vancouver’s most popular October attractions.

A local legend that’s been running since the early 1980s, the Pumpkin Patch at Richmond Country Farms lures fall fans from across Metro Vancouver and beyond. But if you haven’t been before—or you’re wondering what’s on at the farm this year—here’s the lowdown on why you should gather the family together and head on over.

Richmond Country Farms
The Pumpkin Patch is a popular seasonal attraction. | Photo: Richmond Country Farms

Where and when is it?

Richmond Country Farms is located in East Richmond (12900 Steveston Highway) and it’s easily reached by car (there is plenty of free parking). Buses also stop right outside­­—you can plan your visit via the TransLink website.

This year’s Pumpkin Patch operates between October 5 and October 30, from 9:00am to 1:30pm Monday to Friday and from 10:00am to 4:30pm on weekends and holidays. Weekday hours may be extended to 5:00pm on fine-weather days. Call ahead at 604.274.0522 to confirm the hours on the day you plan to come.

Pumpkin Patch at Richmond Country Farms
Pick the perfect pumpkin at Richmond Country Farms. | Photo: Tourism Richmond

What will I see?

Perfect for families—especially those with children aged 10 and under—visitors will find live music, tractor-drawn wagon rides, and friendly costumed characters such as Polly Pumpkin and Strawberry Shortcake. The site will be accented with autumnal decorations, while an impressive array of resident farm animals will also be on-hand for viewing. All ticket holders receive one free, small pumpkin plus a tasty BC-grown Spartan apple.

Tell me more about the animals?

Housed in their own enclosures, the resident critters at Richmond Country Farms include goats, alpacas, donkeys, and more. Colourful chickens and ducks also call the site home and you’ll likely see some of them wandering around the grounds on your visit. Keep in kind this is not a petting zoo: photos are fully encouraged, but you won’t be hugging any goats while you’re here!

Richmond Country Farms - Photo: John Lee
There are lots of resident chickens to spot at Richmond Country Farms. | Photo: ​John Lee

Isn’t there also a train?

Yes! Operating on weekends when the weather is fine, the bright-red CP Huntingdon Miniature Train—a handsome replica of an 1860s steam locomotive—trundles visitors through the pumpkin patch and farm fields. Call ahead on the day you want to come to make sure it’s running. There is an additional $4 charge per person if you want to hop aboard.

Richmond Country Farms
The train passing by a couple of Clydesdales. | Photo: Richmond Country Farms

Will I be able to buy pumpkins?

Yes! Every ticket holder receives a free pumpkin. But if you’re looking for something more for Halloween or your own pie-making shenanigans, you can also buy some choice farm-grown pumpkins at the onsite produce market. Looking for a behemoth squash to wow the neighbours? Now’s your big chance to get one.

Is there any other produce for sale?

Family-run Richmond Country Farms houses one of the area’s largest and most popular destination produce markets. After your Pumpkin Patch adventure, explore the indoor and outdoor stands piled high with seasonal produce from this and other farms. At this time of year, look for corn, kale, potatoes, broccoli, and more. In October, the market is open daily from 9:00am to 7:30pm.

Produce stands at Richmond Country Farms
The market shop is big lure for locals and visitors. | Photo: John Lee

Is there anything else to buy?

The site also houses its own charming winery. Country Vines Winery has a friendly, rustic-look tasting room that stocks dozens of well-priced wines made from the farm’s own grapes. It’s a great place to pick-up a few bottles—plus a gift or three for Christmas (yes, it’s just around the corner). Check out their popular Shameless Rosé and velvety Harvest Moon dessert wine.

Richmond Country Farms - Photo: John Lee
Don't miss out on Country Vines Winery while you're there. | Photo: ​John Lee

What should I wear?

This is a working farm and it’s also October. Boots are highly recommended for muddy conditions, while raingear and warm layers are essential for Metro Vancouver’s fall weather. Keep yourself warm and dry and you’ll enjoy your visit much more!

Richmond Country Farms
Tractor-drawn wagon rides are a popular draw at the Pumpkin Patch. | Photo: Richmond Country Farms

Are there any farm rules I should know about?

Yes. Dogs are not allowed on the farm and smoking is also not permitted. Outside food is not allowed on weekends.

How much does it cost?

Weekday Pumpkin Patch admission costs $11 per person, rising to $14 on weekends and holidays. And don't forget that if you’re keen to have a ride on the train (and the weather is nice enough for it to be running), this costs an additional $4. Visit the Richmond Country Farms website for updates.