Enjoyable issues to do in Squamish, British Columbia
Over the previous 20 years, we’ve pushed up and down the Sea to Sky Highway numerous instances. Most frequently, we drive this well-known Canadian freeway whereas enroute to Whistler, one among British Columbia’s hottest vacationer locations.
Squamish is the pure half-way level between Vancouver and Whistler. It’s usually used as a pit cease to gas up, have lunch and choose up provides. Many first time guests to British Columbia will drive proper via Squamish, with out realizing that it’s a enjoyable journey vacation spot all by itself. There are such a lot of issues to do in Squamish, particularly throughout summer season, that we imagine it ought to be your closing vacation spot.
It’s, in spite of everything, the Outdoor Recreation Capital of Canada.
Surprisingly, up till a couple of weeks in the past, we had not stayed in a single day in Squamish earlier than. On condition that it’s lower than an hour drive from our dwelling, we regularly go to as a day trip from Vancouver.
Whereas the main target of this weblog publish is to share the most effective issues to do in Squamish through the summer season, it’s vital to notice that Squamish is a 4 season vacation spot. Many of those actions might be carried out within the winter, too. Simply ensure you pack a high quality rain jacket and umbrella.
Sea to Sky Gondola
With out query, the Sea to Sky Gondola is the preferred attraction in Squamish lately. For those who solely have in the future in Squamish, we advocate you begin with the Sea to Sky Gondola.
It’s positioned instantly off the Sea to Sky Freeway, making it simply accessible. It’s greatest to reach early as a result of the car parking zone fills up rapidly. Buy your gondola tickets on-line here.
The Sea to Sky Gondola transports friends as much as the Summit Lodge in lower than 10 minutes. Watch this 30 second video of the gondola ride from backside to prime.
Why go to the Sea to Sky Gondola in Squamish?
There’s way more to this well-liked Squamish vacationer attraction then fairly mountain landscapes. Though, the gorgeous landscapes are definitely well worth the price of admission. Through the years, the Sea to Sky Gondola has expanded it’s choices and points of interest.
- Panoramic views of Howe Sound from the Viewing Platforms
- Stroll throughout the bouncy Sky Pilot Suspension Bridge (photograph above)
- Take a hike. There are a number of trails from the summit lodge, from straightforward paths to backcountry alpine trails. Here’s the list of hiking trails.
- Squamish By way of Ferrata excursions. Extra information here.
- Patio eating with spectacular views at Sky Pilot Eatery.
- Snowshoeing, tubing and ski touring within the winter.
One of the best views of Squamish from the Chief Overlook Viewing Platform.
Spectacular mountain views from the outside patio at Summit Lodge.
The Squamish By way of Ferrata is positioned on the Sea to Sky Gondola.
It’s an adrenaline pumping adventure that mixes mountaineering and mountaineering, whereas being clipped into a security cable. An skilled information takes friends via a mountaineering course that ends on the Summit Lodge. Be taught extra and guide your tour here.
Shannon Falls Provincial Park
Positioned instantly beside the Sea to Sky Gondola, Shannon Falls Provincial Park is dwelling to the third highest waterfall in British Columbia. At 335 meters, it’s three instances as excessive as Niagara Falls in Ontario.
Shannon Falls is a should go to attraction in Squamish. It’s a brief 5 minute stroll from the car parking zone to the bottom of the waterfalls, so it’s fairly accessible. The path to the falls is flat with little elevation, so it’s a simple stroll. You solely want 30 minutes to go to the park and see the waterfalls.
Shannon Falls is most spectacular through the spring and early summer season, when the encircling mountain snow melts and water circulate is at its highest.
It’s straightforward to mix visits to the Sea to Sky Gondola and Shannon Falls.
Parking is difficult through the summer season, particularly on weekends. There’s an overflow car parking zone on the other facet of the Sea to Sky Freeway (Freeway 99). As a result of the waterfalls are straightforward to entry, and it doesn’t take lengthy to view them, folks come and go ceaselessly. Ready for a parking spot might be irritating, however parking spots do open when you’re affected person.
Rope Runner Aerial Journey Park
The Rope Runner Aerial Journey Park is one other enjoyable factor to do in Squamish with children. Push your consolation zone with a wide range of obstacles and cord options that can get your coronary heart pumping. Friends use a full physique harness that clips into security system.
Watch this video from our time at Squamish Rope Runner Course.
Go to the Rope Runner Park website to see extra photographs and video in regards to the journey park, be taught in regards to the necessities to climb, basic admission and hours of operation.
Hike the Stawamus Chief
One of the vital well-liked hikes in Squamish, and British Columbia for that matter, is the well-known Stawamus Chief hike. Stawamus Chief Provincial Park protects the huge 700 metre granite cliffs that tower over Squamish. The Chief is likely one of the largest granite monoliths on the earth.
Entry the mountaineering trails from the car parking zone that’s positioned off the Sea to Sky Freeway. The principle trailhead can also be accessible from Shannon Falls Provincial Park by way of the 1.5 km connector path.
There are three hikes on The Chief
- First Peak – 1.5 km path with an elevation achieve of 540 meters
- Second Peak – 1.7 km path with an elevation achieve of 590 meters
- Third Peak – 1.eight km path with an elevation achieve of 630 meters
The above distances are a technique. You should additionally think about the return hike again down. See the Stawamus Chief path map here.
Plan for three to four hours to do the Chief. It’s a strenuous hike for a lot of, so convey loads of water and snacks, correct footwear and examine the climate situations previous to your hike.
Above is the highest of the Stawamus Chief, seen from the Chief Overlook Viewing Platform on the Sea to Sky Gondola.
Different well-liked mountaineering trails in Squamish
Fast break whereas mountaineering the Brohm Lake loop path in Squamish.
Entrance to the Panorama Path, positioned on the Sea to Sky Gondola. Extra photographs here.
Bike using trails in Squamish
One other enjoyable factor to do in Squamish is journey bikes. There are a number of paved, gravel and forest trails scattered all through Squamish, so there’s one thing for each ability and desire.
A great place to begin is the Corridor Trial (pictured above). This straightforward paved path runs north and south via Squamish. It additionally connects to the huge community of motorcycle trails. The Hall Path runs beside the Rope Runner Journey Park (referenced above), so you can begin your bike journey right here after spending time on the aerial ropes course.
Don’t have a motorcycle with you? To not fear. There are a number of bike rental retailers in Squamish that provide street bikes, full suspension mountain bikes, children bikes and E-bikes.
Mountain Biking Squamish
Squamish has an enormous community of mountain biking trails, together with the Diamond Head Zone. We don’t mountain bike, so we’re not the most effective useful resource. Nonetheless, our good buddies verify that Squamish is dwelling of a number of the greatest mountain biking in Canada..
Above is the brand new growth on the east facet of the Mamquam Blind Channel in Downtown Squamish.
Rock Climbing in Squamish
Squamish is broadly referred to as the mountaineering capital of Canada. Climbers come from all over the world to expertise its well-known granite cliffs and bluffs. Lots of the climbing spots are positioned inside a ten minute drive of Downtown Squamish.
The star attraction is the Stawamus Chief, a large granite monolith towering 700 meters above Squamish and Howe Sound. The Chief has tons of of climbing routes for each stage (pictured above).
Smoke Bluffs is one other well-liked spot for Squamish mountaineering. Positioned simply throughout the freeway from downtown, The Bluffs are straightforward to get to with primarily quick approaches. It’s an excellent place to expertise Squamish’s world-famous granite.
Study the most effective spots for mountaineering and bouldering in Squamish here.
Can you see the rock climbers within the above photograph? Trace – one climber is sporting yellow.
Airhouse is an indoor freestyle coaching park that gives trampoline and motion sport coaching packages. It gives drop-in periods, classes, camps and group occasions. Extra information here.
This can be a enjoyable place to spend a wet day. It has a wide range of trampolines, gymnastic gear and a half-pipe, so you possibly can work in your type no matter your sport.
Kayaking round Howe Sound and Squamish Harbour
Squamish is a implausible place to go paddling, too. Howe Sound is surrounded by a community of unimaginable fjords, so you possibly can kayak for a couple of hours round Squamish Harbour or make it a multi-day tour.
Don’t have a kayak or stand-up paddleboard? No downside. You’ll be able to hire gear at Squamish Watersports in downtown Squamish. It gives sit-in and sit-on kayaks, touring sea kayaks, double kayaks and expedition sea kayaks.
Above is the Squamish Estuary on the tip of Howe Sound.
Scenic Flightseeing tour
Hop aboard a small aircraft in Squamish to get a birds eye view of Howe Sound and the spectacular Coast Mountain Vary within the Pacific Northwest. This 50-minute flightseeing tour travels north to Whistler, passing over Garibaldi Provincial Park, countless coastal forest, snow-capped peaks and the long-lasting Black Tusk Mountain.
Can you see the flightseeing aircraft within the above photograph?
Learn extra about Whistler Backcountry Flightseeing Tour here.
Go to a Brewery – BC Ale Path
We attempt to go to an area craft brewery (or two) after we go to new locations. Squamish has joined the BC Ale Trail with a couple of new brewery additions lately. For those who like beer, we advocate you add one or two of those Squamish breweries to your itinerary.
Record of breweries in Squamish:
- Howe Sound Brewery – the unique native brewery courting again to 1996. Voted ‘Brewery of the 12 months’ on the Canadian Brewing Awards 2022.
- Backcountry Brewing – serving up scrumptious pizza when you pattern a flight.
- A-FRAME Brewing – rustic tasting room with a Pacific Northwest cabin vibe.
- Cliffside Cider – get pleasure from conventional cider with views of the Stawamus Chief.
Tasty handcrafted pizza at Backcountry Brewing.
Railway Museum of British Columbia
The Railway Museum of British Columbia (previously the West Coast Railway Heritage Park), has a set of 95 heritage railway locomotives and vehicles. See the reveals and principal points of interest here.
Friends can hop aboard a mini-rail prepare and journey across the park grounds. The 20 minute journey travels 2 kilometers of monitor and takes riders from one finish of the grounds to the opposite. For more information, go to to the museum web site here.
Britannia Mine Museum
Positioned 15 minutes south of downtown Squamish, Britannia Mine Museum is each a Nationwide Historic Website and British Columbia Historic Landmark. It has an interesting historical past that dates again to 1904, when it was the most important copper mine within the British Empire.
There are over 210 km’s of mining tunnels within the mountains surrounding Britannia Beach. Take into consideration that for a second. It was as soon as one the British Empire’s largest copper mines.
Britannia Mine Museum gives an underground tour, the place friends board an previous mine prepare that travels via the mine, similar to miners again in 1914.
Contained in the previous mining tunnel at Britannia Mine Museum.
Discover Downtown Squamish
Whereas there’s an abundance of out of doors adventures in Squamish, exploring the downtown space must also be in your record of issues to do in Squamish. The downtown space is simply 5 minutes from the primary intersection on the Sea to Sky Freeway.
The principle avenue in downtown Squamish is Cleveland Avenue. Right here you’ll find espresso retailers, boutique retail shops, native artwork shops, eating places, the Squamish Public Library, Junction Park & O’Siyam Pavilion and Howe Sound Brewery.
The long-lasting Stawamus Chief towers over downtown Squamish eating places and retailers.
Mountain climbing apply at Junction park in downtown Squamish.
Vibrant rainbow avenue crossing in downtown Squamish. The small metropolis is surrounded by mountains.
Squamish Farmers Market
The Squamish Farmers Market is a well-liked attraction with over 60 distributors promoting a wide range of native produce, cheese and artisan items. It’s open on Saturdays from 10:00 AM to three:00 PM.
Extra information about distributors and market map here.
The place to Eat in Squamish
There are a number of eating places in Squamish, so you’ve loads of choices to select from.
The most well-liked Squamish eating places are: The Salted Vine, The Copper Coil, Fox & Oak, Zephyr Cafe, Fergies Cafe and Howe Sound Brew Pub.
Additionally, you will discover most quick meals eating places right here. Most are positioned alongside the Sea to Sky Freeway for simple entry. For those who’re searching for a fast chunk, there are drive via home windows on the McDonalds, Tim Hortons (there are two), Wendy’s, Starbucks and A&W.
Squamish additionally has a White Spot and Boston Pizza, when you’re searching for a well-recognized household restaurant.
Hearty breakfast at White Spot after visiting the Sea to Sky Gondola. White Spot a well-liked household restaurant chain in British Columbia. We dine right here usually with our boys as a result of the menu has one thing for everybody and the meals is sweet.
‘2 Chill Gelato’ is a enjoyable ice cream store in downtown Squamish.
The reply is all the time, “double scoop on a cone”.
Scrumptious Indian meals at Indian Masala Bar & Grill, positioned close to the Walmart within the new growth off the Sea to Sky Freeway.
Having fun with lunch outdoor at The Copper Coil. The mighty Stawamus Chief within the backdrop.
I not too long ago found Sunny Chibas. It’s positioned instantly on the Sea to Sky Freeway, on the south finish of downtown Squamish. It’s a cool fast service restaurant that’s recognized for its Twice cooked pork stomach burritos, black sesame habanero fried hen and chiba fries. See the menu here.
The place to Keep in Squamish
Throughout our journey to Squamish, we said on the Sandman Hotel. It’s positioned simply off the Sea to Sky Freeway close to the Walmart. We loved our time at this lodge. It’s pretty new with good sized rooms. We had two double beds plus a pull-out sofa, which is right for our household of 4.
Examine Sandman Resort room charges and availability here.
There are additionally loads of Squamish trip leases to select from, together with rustic cabins and high-end condos on the waterfront. Check VRBO for availability.
Learn extra weblog posts about journey in British Columbia:
Have you ever visited the Squamish? If not, do you intend to go to sooner or later?
Depart us a remark beneath when you have any questions on issues to do in Squamish.