Lantern Tour Series


At Lantern Tours, visitors age 10 and up carry their own candle lanterns.

NPS Photo

The park's Lantern Tour Series offers attendees an opportunity to view many of the resources of Fort Vancouver National Historic Site in a different light -- at night, on foot, and by candle lantern!

Reservations for all Lantern Tours are required, and payment for the tour must be made at the time of reservation.

Lantern Tour: An Evening at the Fort

Cost: $15 for adults, $10 for children 15 years and under.

The "Lantern Tour: An Evening at the Fort" is a wonderful opportunity to experience the reconstructed Hudson's Bay Company's Fort Vancouver at night. As in past years, each adult attending the program will carry their own candle lantern and tour with a Park Ranger through the reconstructed fort's Counting House, Fur Store, Chief Factor's House, Kitchen, and Bake House.

In each building, visitors will experience historical vignettes with costumed living history interpreters, including graduates of the park's Youth Volunteer Programs. Visitors will learn what activities would have occurred during the evening hours at Fort Vancouver, and enjoy a cup of hot cider at the end of the tour. These tours meet at the entrance gate to the reconstructed Fort Vancouver, 1001 E. Fifth St. All tours start at 7:00 p.m., and will take place on the following dates:

  • October 10, 2015
  • October 24, 2015
  • November 14, 2015
  • November 28, 2015
  • December 5, 2015
  • December 19, 2015
  • January 9, 2016
  • January 23, 2016
  • February 6, 2016
  • February 20, 2016
"The reconstructed Fort Vancouver in the evening is quite an experience, with candlelit buildings, interpreters in historical costume, and each visitor with their own lantern walking under the night sky," said Park Guide Justine Hanrahan, program coordinator. "When the sun goes down and the city is quiet, visitors are transported to the 1840's."

Lantern Tour: Walking Vancouver Barracks

Cost: $10 for adults and $7 for children 15 years and under.

Titled "Lantern Tour: Walking Vancouver Barracks," these new ranger-led programs will walk visitors through the grounds of Vancouver Barracks by lantern light, connecting attendees to the national park's military history through thematic storytelling.

These tours will be small in size, and each will feature a specific thematic focus rather than historical vignettes. They will require walking through grass and uneven surfaces at night and in in inclement conditions, including rain and mud. These tours also meet at the entrance gate to the reconstructed Fort Vancouver, 1001 E. Fifth St., start at 7:00 p.m., and will take place on the following dates with specific themes:
  • October 17, 2015: Halloween at Vancouver Barracks
  • November 21, 2015: Thanksgiving at Vancouver Barracks
  • December 26, 2015: Christmas at Vancouver Barracks
  • January 16, 2016: Anniversary of the Kaiser Shipyards
  • February 13, 2016: Romance at Vancouver Barracks

"These new additions to our Lantern Tour Series give visitors the opportunity to join a smaller, more personal tour at a reduced price-point, through the heart of Vancouver Barracks," said Greg Shine, chief ranger & historian, "and connect to the stories, people, events, and landscape of the national park's military era."


Reservations are required for all Lantern Tours. To make reservations, prospective attendees can call the Contact Station at Fort Vancouver at 360-816-6244.

Payment for the tour must be made at the time of reservation;payment will NOT be accepted on the evening of the tour.

National Park Passes do not cover this special program.

Reservations are final and non-refundable. Tickets/receipts are transferrable.

Changes to reservations may be made up to noon the day before the tour, allowing those on the waiting list an opportunity to attend.

Other Information

Due to program length, Lantern Tours are not recommended for children under 10 years old.

Parking is available at the lot adjoining the reconstructed Fort Vancouver, at 1001 E. Fifth St. This parking lot will open at 6:30 p.m.

Attendees are requested to please arrive no later than 6:45 p.m. to allow time to park, present ticket, and get oriented.

Attendees are also requested to please follow the lantern-lit path upon arrival, and check in at the Contact Station just inside the main gate to the reconstructed Fort Vancouver.

The tours last approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Attendees are advised to please dress for the weather and the terrain, as they will be outside and on sidewalks, pathways, and/or grass and uneven ground surfaces.

Only attendees 10 years and older may carry a lantern.

If a lantern tour is cancelled by the National Park Service due to inclement weather, the tour will be rescheduled to the nearest of the following dates:

  • November 7, 2015
  • January 2, 2016
  • January 30, 2016
  • February 27, 2016
Lantern Tour

Costumed living history reenactors present historical vignettes throughout the fort during Lantern Tours


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