Locals and visitors are marking their calendars for the 2023 return of one of Metro Vancouver’s favourite outdoor happenings. The brilliant Richmond Night Market will be operating every weekend from April 28 to October 9 this year––and once again there will be a full menu of irresistible fun to check out.

If you’ve never been to this unique event before or you’re planning a return visit this year, read on for our handy insider’s guide to the upcoming season. Then choose some dates, gather your friends and family and head on over to this must-do night out extravaganza.

The food stands are a huge attraction. PHOTO CREDIT: Richmond Night Market.

Why should I visit the Richmond Night Market?

Inspired by Asia’s multisensory night market scene, Richmond’s version––which launched in 2000––is the largest of its kind in North America. Attracting more than one million visitors every year, it’s an exciting evening filled with browse-worthy vendor stands, colourful live performances and famously adventurous food stalls serving hundreds of tempting dishes.

Just one of many food stalls serving up fresh and mouthwatering dishes.

Where is the market and how do I get there?

The market is once again occupying a large outdoor site near the corner of No. 3 Road and River Road, right next door to the landmark River Rock Casino Resort. Although limited free parking is available at the market, the venue is also just a one-block walk from Canada Line’s Bridgeport Station, which is an easy and direct 17-minute ride from downtown Vancouver.

The market is easily accessible via transit.

What are the opening hours?

The market runs on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings–plus Mondays when they are public holidays. Opening hours are 7:00pm to midnight on Fridays; 7:00pm to midnight on Saturdays; and 7:00pm to 11:00pm on Sundays and holiday Mondays. This year, the market will also run on Thursday June 30 from 7:00pm to midnight as part of the Canada Day long weekend. Top tips: arrive early to avoid an extra-long line-up at the gate or consider purchasing a 2023 Zoom Pass. The $35 pass includes five entries to the market throughout the season and pass holders have their own express entry gate that bypasses the regular entrance line-up.

What kind of vendors are there?

There are dozens of retail stands to explore on your visit. Give yourself plenty of time to browse and you’ll likely spot everything from toys to pet accessories and from phone gadgets to quirky arts and crafts. This is also a great place to pick-up souvenir Canada-themed T-shirts at bargain prices.

What about the live performances?

On stage throughout the season, you’ll find an eclectic array of free performances to enjoy. A restorative break from your evening of shopping and dining, the ever-changing roster can include everything from singers to dancers and from toe-tapping bands to local cultural groups. Check to see what’s on as soon as you arrive, and plan your evening accordingly.

Kick back and check out the amazing live performances on the Main Stage. PHOTO CREDIT: Richmond Night Market.

What else will I see?

The theme for the 2023 market is Summer Wonderland, which means there will be plenty of selfie-ready installations and decorations to spot during your visit. Check out the Wonderland-themed forest, pose in giant-sized chairs and don’t miss the twinkling neon lights adorning the entire site. There’s even a huge bouncy castle here this year.

Is this a family-friendly event?

Yes, there are lots of sights and sounds for kids here. If you’re bringing youngsters, it’s best to visit earlier in the evening to explore before the crowds arrive, and to eat earlier at the food stands before they become too busy. Make sure you apply sunscreen to your children; even with the sun fading through the course of the evening, it’s easy for sensitive skin to be affected.

Kid-friendly fun and games at the market. PHOTO CREDIT: Richmond Night Market.

What can I eat?

Food is always the market’s star attraction––just check out the huge array of social media posts depicting the dishes here on any given night. In 2023, there will be more than 110 food vendors serving over 600 different dishes. The vendors are organized into rows of steam-shrouded, hawker-style stands where dishes are prepared right in front of you. Typically, this includes authentic Asian options, intriguing international dishes (look for new options from Indonesia and Turkey this year) and adventurous fusion creations.

Tempting fusion dishes like this Japanese poutine are popular. PHOTO CREDIT: John Lee.

What are the best things to eat?

Everyone has their favourites and many diners come back for the same amazing dishes every season. But each year some unique culinary experiences pop-up that simply have to be sampled. In previous seasons, these Instagram-ready must-tries have included Japanese poutine, Spam fries, gold-coated chicken drumsticks, lightbulb sodas, ice-cream-topped bao buns and many more. This year, look out for mocha waffles, butter beer, flying cup noodles and, of course, those legendary rotato stick potatoes!

Potatoes on sticks at the Richmond Night Market. PHOTO CREDIT: John Lee.

Any other dining tips?

There are several ways to get the most from the market’s culinary side. Firstly, make sure you don’t eat too much before you arrive; that way you’ll have plenty of room for a full-on culinary adventure! Next, head to the food area as soon as you get here and walk around all the stands before choosing what to eat. Try a dish or two early in the evening, then explore the rest of the market. After a couple of hours, you’ll likely have room for another dish.

Be spoilt with plenty of food options.

Are there any ways to beat the crowds?

The market can be very busy, especially during the peak weeks of summer. We recommend arriving earlier in the season and also making a return visit towards the end of the run in October. In our experience, Fridays and Saturdays are generally busier than Sundays, while holiday Mondays are often even less crowded. And if you don’t mind rainy days, those are always the best evenings to visit-the market operates rain or shine.

 Crowds gathering at the ever-popular Richmond Night Market. PHOTO CREDIT: Richmond Night Market.

Whenever you plan to attend, arrive early to avoid an extra-long line-up at the gate. Alternatively, purchase a special 2023 Zoom Pass. This moneysaving $35 pass includes five entries to the market throughout the season, with pass holders sidestepping the main queue via their own express entry gate. Even better, the Zoom Pass is transferrable, which means you can share it with your friends and family throughout the season.

How much is admission?

General admission is $8. Children under seven years of age as well as seniors aged 60 and above enjoy free admission. Planning to visit more than once this year? Purchase a $35 Zoom Pass, which includes fives entries to the market as well as a special express entrance that bypasses the main line-up.

Any other tips?

The Richmond Night Market is a great place to snap photos, but make sure your camera is adjusted to the correct settings for nighttime images. Please also kindly keep in mind that vendors only accept cash payment. While there will be ATM machines onsite, avoid wait times by bringing cash. Keen to save money? There’s also a free coupon book for 2023––available via the market’s website––and it includes special discounts at 30 food stands. Download it before you arrive and catch a dining deal or two while you’re here.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Tourism Richmond