The holidays are the only time of the year when it's appropriate to point at a dead plant and expect a kiss. Channel your mistletoe horticultural failure into romance, then reward yourself with today's Groupon: for $25, you get one Spirit of Christmas Tour including admission to the VanDusen Botanical Garden from Big Bus (up to a $50 value). Tours take place 6:30 p.m.–9:30 p.m. from December 9, 2011 through January 2, 2012.
Big Bus' Spirit of Christmas Tour takes guests on a holiday-themed journey of live shows, crafts, and both indoor and outdoor light displays. Sightseers pile into to the motorized steed to journey to Canada Place and then disembark into the Pan Pacific Hotel lobby to dazzle eyes with a twinkling forest of decorated Christmas trees, which grow from pinecones watered in eggnog. Two million lights, animated displays, and hot beverages foster cheer as buses stop at Stanley Park for its 13th annual Bright Night, hosted by the Vancouver Parks Board and the British Columbia Professional Fire Fighters Burn Fund. Next, guides navigate the crowd toward VanDusen Botanical Gardens' Festival of Lights. Guests have one hour to explore brightly lit decorations covering vibrant flowerbeds and reflecting off of Livingstone Lake. Tour captains ferry passengers past Canuck Place, where volunteers assemble a show of 70,000 LED lights, and onward to St. Paul's Hospital to see the Lights of Hope display lit by local businesses. Festive crews finish their trips at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre's Christmas Market, where they can sample tasty eats or pick out authentic crafts to send in with their admissions essays to Santa's workshop.
Big Bus Ltd.
Rain or shine, for 362 days out of the year (depending on if it's a leap year), Vancouver's streets teem with Big Bus's fleet making their daily stops around the city's sites. Customers pile aboard for 90-minute Hop-On, Hop-Off tours that trek down a route that wends past Vancouver's most compelling attractions, enabling guests to create flexible sightseeing outings that proceed at a convenient pace. Tour leaders transport passengers past 22 city landmarks, such as Stanley Park, Granville Island, and Gastown, letting passengers spring out of their seats before picking up ticket-holders and tumbleweeds eager to make their way across the city.