Climate adaptation is being embraced by many municipalities worldwide. An element of this is the planting and protection of urban trees. However, the fact that climate change will also have an impact on urban trees has been largely overlooked. We argue that climate vulnerability assessments are necessary for addressing climate adaptation in urban forests and contribute to successful climate adaptation in cities. We review and integrate the literature on climate vulnerability and urban forests to explore how the general notion of urban forest vulnerability to climate change can be developed into an operational framework for undertaking a vulnerability assessment. The framework characterizes climate exposure, impact, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity, as well as nonclimatic drivers and factors, in urban forests. The most important themes in this discussion include urban tree species selection and diversity, naturalization, resource access, social awareness and engagement, budget and economic valuation, liability issues, and governance structures. Climate change vulnerability assessments help us understand how and why urban forests are vulnerable to climate change, identify future areas for research, and determine what adaptation measures could be included in urban forest management. These assessments help bring climate change to the forefront of the decision-making process and contribute to successful urban adaptation to climate change.