There is no shortage of things to do in British Columbia, whether you have lived here your whole life, or whether you are planning your first visit to BC. From the South Coast to the North, there is something for everyone. By the time you have gotten to the bottom of this list of things to do in BC, you will likely have a very full itinerary!
99 Things to do in British Columbia
Top Things to do in BC
Need I say more? Whistler is one of the best ski resorts in the world and also a top summer destination. With lakes, golf, hiking, shopping for souvenirs, biking and plenty of hotels and restaurants, whether you are visiting British Columbia in the winter or in the summer, a visit to Whistler is a must! While you can visit from Vancouver for the day, I suggest staying at least one night and two or three is even better. Check out local AirBNB’s in Whistler.
If you are traveling to British Columbia with kids and have Whistler on your itinerary, I have a post that covers Whistler with kids of all ages.
Victoria is BC’s capital and located on Vancouver Island. It is right on the Pacific Ocean for those who want to be close to the water. It is a year-round destination in Canada thanks to its sub-Mediterranean climate. Whether you are planning on a summer visit or a Christmas in Victoria, there is plenty to do any time of the year!
Visit Fort Langley
More than one of Canada’s National Historic Sites, Fort Langley is a quaint area of Langley with boutique shopping, plenty of restaurants and coffee shops, walking trails and a peek into what British Columbia looked like in the 1800s. Spend some time at the Fort, and then visit one of the many small restaurants along Glover Road.
There is more to Langley then just fort Langley, ensure you read all of the other things to do in Langley while you are here.
Located just off the Trans-Canada highway in Golden, the Golden Skybridge is the newest must-see attraction for thrill-seekers in British Columbia. It is Canada’s highest suspension bridge, located 130 meters above a canyon. It offers 360 degree views of the Purcell mountains and the Rocky Mountains and the canyon and waterfall below.
Go Salmon Fishing in Prince Rupert
If you have never been on a fishing charter, then British Columbia is the place to do it. Home to salmon, halibut and cod, there is no shortage of excitement if you pick the right guide! Check out Water Witch Fishing Charters Prince Rupert, that’s my top pick!
Play at Canada’s Largest Inflatable Water Park
Harrison Watersports Inflatable Water Park is the largest in Canada. Located just under 2 hours from Vancouver, this waterpark is great for kids and adults! The minimum age is 6 and it caters to teens and adults with difficult obstacles and plenty of adrenaline and fun! Check out more details in this post: Harrison water park review!
Visit a Local Farm
Are you visiting Vancouver in October? Check out a local pumpkin patch. If it is summer, it is prime berry season. Whether you are in the Fraser Valley or visiting British Columbia’s wine region, there is no shortage of farm activity.
Roadtrip to Tofino
A roadtrip from Nanaimo to Tofino will leave you with a trip like no other. The rugged pacific coast of Tofino boasts old growth rainforest, stunning beaches and an island lifestyle like no other. This town of 2000 residents is a surf mecca, a foodie paradise, a luxury retreat and everything in between. Looking for an AIRBNB in Tofino? Check out the best AirBNBs in Tofino
Harrison Hot Springs
Check out a Britannia Mine: A Canada National Historic Site
The Britannia Mine Museum, one of Canada’s National Historic Sites, is located on the way to Whistler. It is worth a visit if you have a vehicle. Featuring authentic underground mining tunnels, kids of all ages will get a thrill as they ride underground at the museum. Boom! the multi-sensory experience is so well done. It shows what the mine would have been like when it was in operation.
If you are visiting with older kids, golf one of the many golf courses around the Lower Mainland. From Par 3 courses to world class championship courses, there is something for every skill level and ability.
Ski the Local Mountains
Visiting Vancouver in the Winter? Skiing and Snowboarding are among the popular winter activities in Vancouver. Visit Grouse Mountain, Mount Seymour, Cypress Mountain for a day on the slopes! If you have more time, spend some time in Whistler!
Watch the Canucks
Although the Vancouver Canucks are the brunt of many Vancouver jokes, Rogers Arena can still make for a great night out. The passion of 18000 people in one place is addictive, and anyone who watched Canada beat the USA in the Vancouver 2010 Olympics can still feel a bit of that buzz in the building.
Check out the Lakes
Hit one of the many lakes for a beach day in Vancouver with toddlers or teens! There are many beautiful lakes within about an hour’s drive. They do get popular with the locals if you are visiting in the summer, so try and get there early! Beaches like Buntzen Lake and White Pine Beach often close the parking lot by early afternoon because they are full!
If you are looking for the best in Vancouver, check out this post on the best swimming beaches in Metro Vancouver.
Stanley park is the jewel of Vancouver and always ranks as one of the best things to do in British Columbia. It offers not only does it offer dramatic forests, it also offers ocean views. Walking the 8.8km seawall is a popular thing to do for locals and visitors alike.
Cycling and walking in Stanley Park has become so popular there is now a bike lane along the road. YOu can rent bicycles or use the Shaw bikes that are stationed around the park.
While enjoying Stanley Park, visit Lost Lagoon, a freshwater lake full of waterfowl. Keep an eye out for the blue herons that call the lagoon home.
Whale Watching tours depart from Vancouver seasonally. Want to see whales and other wildlife? This is a fun activity for kids, the boats are large, there are tables for coloring for the little ones and hot chocolate and snacks on certain operators. If you really want a thrill, take a zodiac! If you would rather stay warm and dry while whale watching in Vancouver, opt for one of the larger boats with indoor seating! They have plenty of outdoor deck space once the boats get out on the water and find the whales! Even in summer, bring a jacket and toque for the outer deck! Here is more info about the best time to go whale watching in Vancouver.
Ride the Sky Train
Ride the SkyTrain from the Valley into Vancouver’s downtown. The kids love sitting up front as the driverless train races high above the round!
Enjoy a Wine Flight
Wine Tour the Fraser Valley. Who says you can’t bring the kids on a wine tour? Many of the Fraser Valley Wineries offer amazing cheese plates and snacks that he kids can enjoy while you sample some of BC’s local wineries.
Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden is a must for the garden enthusiast. Take your camera and enjoy!
Snowshoe at one of the local mountains. Visiting in the winter? Head up to one of the local mountains, Mount Seymour, Grouse Mountain or Cypress Bowl and strap on a pair of snowshoes!
Explore Vancouver’s Chinatown and learn about the Chinese Community’s history in Vancouver.
Hike the Grouse Grind
Hike the Grouse Grind. Vancouver’s natural stair master, a 2.9km trail up Grouse Mountain with 2800 feet of elevation gain. This is not for your little ones. It is a WORK OUT! Bring water and your camera. Don’t bother packing too much more because you are going to be climbing, and climbing and climbing. There are some great summertime actives at Grouse including the Lumberjack show. The Grind is one way only and you have to pay to take gondola down. It costs $10 per person.
Check out the views at Stave Falls Powerhouse
Stave Falls Powerhouse is great for the outdoor enthusiast. Various hiking trails and gorgeous views can be found at this Vancouver attraction.
Splash at Langley’s Otter Coop Outdoor Experience Water Park
Metro Vancouver has lots of options for swimming. But the Otter Coop OutDoor Experience is a township of Langley swimming facility with an outdoor water park! Admission is less than $10 per person. Get more info about how to book in advance and what to expect here.
Lindsay Nieminen is the creator of UncoveringBC.com. She grew up and still lives in the suburbs of Vancouver with her family. She aims to inspire inform, and educate others about traveling in her home province of British Columbia. She is also the creator of carpediemourway.com which aims to show parents how to seek out adventure at home or abroad, with their children in tow!