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Radium Hot Springs, BC offers so many epic activities to make your trip memorable! Located in the stunning Columbia Valley and just 1.5 hours west of the ever-popular Banff, Radium is the place to be. This cute village is surrounded by gorgeous scenery, golf courses for days, tons of hiking trails and lakes, and adrenaline-pumping activities like white water rafting!
Oh, and the hot springs, of course!
I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Radium on countless occasions. And to be honest, I love this town! It’s adorable and surrounded by stunning mountain scenery just waiting to be explored.
Radium Hot Springs is the perfect place to visit and enjoy a holiday in Western Canada, and in this blog, I’m going to tell you about all the fun and exciting things to do in Radium Hot Springs to ensure you enjoy this cute town as much as I do.
- 23 Things to do in Radium Hot Springs, BC
- 1. Soak in the Radium Hot Springs
- 2. Check out the Kootenay Valley Viewpoint
- 3. Go hiking
- 4. Golf
- 5. Satisfy your sweet tooth at Old Tyme Candy Shoppe
- 6. Go whitewater rafting
- 7. Hit the slopes at Panorama Ski Resort
- 8. Explore Kootenay National Park
- 9. Visit Lower Bugaboo Falls
- 10. Relax at Olive Lake
- 11. Explore Sinclair Canyon
- 12. Meet the locals
- 13. Enjoy a few beach days
- 14. Book a tubing/wakeboarding tour
- 15. Stay in a cute cabin
- 16. Shop at Funky Junk
- 17. Drink delicious coffee at Big Horn Café
- 18. Go skating or cross-country skiing on Lake Windermere
- 19. Visit Invermere
- 20. Relax at Fairmont Hot Springs
- 21. Test your nerves Valley Zipline Adventures
- 22. Go camping
- 23. Mountain biking and trail riding
- Where to Stay in Radium Hot Springs, BC
- Before you go…
23 Things to do in Radium Hot Springs, BC
1. Soak in the Radium Hot Springs
Okay, obviously you need to start off by checking out the namesake of this town! Radium Hot Springs is just 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) from downtown and are nestled right into the mountainous surroundings.
The Springs are man-made pools fed by natural spring waters, and provide a place to relax and unwind. You can jump right into the cool pool to take a swim, or just relax and warm up in the hot pool.
The hot springs are open year-round and sit within Kootenay National Park. Because they are owned by Parks Canada, the cost is kept low at about $8 CAD. You can even purchase a punch pass and go multiple times!
Without a doubt, soaking in the Radium Hot Springs is the most popular thing to do in Radium!
2. Check out the Kootenay Valley Viewpoint
Stunning views are par-for-the-course in this corner of BC, but sometimes you just need to get a different vantage point to really enjoy it.
If you are looking for a photo-op or romantic sunset view, take a drive up the BC-93 northeast for about 15 minutes. You can pull over at the Kootenay Valley Viewpoint to take in the sweeping, panoramic views of the Mitchell and Vermillion mountain ranges.
This is one of my favorite viewpoints near Radium – well worth checking out!
3. Go hiking
Hope you brought your hiking boots! There are so many options to get outside. Radium has a number of hiking trails, ranging from short and easy, to work-for-your-view challenging.
Old Coach Trail is a very popular 9-kilometer (5.6-mile) long trail (one-way) with amazing views of the Columbia River. It’s easy and accessible for any level of hiker. Back in the 1920s, this historic route was traveled by Ford Model Ts, and there are signs along the way to help educate hikers about this fascinating history.
You can start the trail near the Visitor Information Centre, at the southern edge of Radium Hot Springs village, and there are signs along the way to direct you.
If you’re looking for a real challenge and have a day to spend, check out the Kindersley Pass and Sinclair Creek Loop. This hike is 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) with over 1300-meter elevation gain. This is not for the faint of heart, but you will be rewarded with stunning views!
There is no shortage of golfing options in the Columbia Valley! This region is so popular for golfing that it actually has a name, the “Columbia Valley Golf Trail,” a series of eight golf courses between Radium Hot Springs and the town of Fairmont Hot Springs. They range from small, local courses to world-class options, all within a 40-minute drive.
Other options include Edgewater Hilltop (famous for their post-golf homemade pie!), Eagle Ranch Resort (award-winning, 18-hole course), or Copper Point (natural, lay-of-the-land route).
Honestly, close your eyes and pick a course – you’ll have a great time enjoying one of Radium’s best summer activities!
Related read: Avid golfers will also love Kimberley. Golfing is easily one of the best things to do in Kimberley, BC!
5. Satisfy your sweet tooth at Old Tyme Candy Shoppe
I have a massive sweet tooth, and can’t resist a good old-fashioned candy store! The Old Tyme Candy Shoppe in Radium Hot Springs is like stepping back in time. You can find all of your nostalgic childhood favorites, in addition to hard-to-find candies from around the world, including licorice, taffy, chocolates, and everything in between.
Located conveniently in downtown Radium, this gem is easily accessible when out for a walk around town.
Related read: There is another Old Tyme Candy Shoppe located in Canmore, Alberta. Check out all the other things to do in Canmore!
6. Go whitewater rafting
Nothing gets your adrenaline running quite like a trip down a river full of rushing rapids. This is a unique way to see the beauty of the region, covering a large section of remote wilderness, and stunning views such as Pedley Falls.
Kootenay River Runners offers whitewater rafting trips that are appropriate for the whole family from Radium Hot Springs village. Tours are either half-day or full-day and take you down a set of class 2-3 rapids in the Kootenay River. Prices for a half-day trip start from $97 CAD.
7. Hit the slopes at Panorama Ski Resort
If you are lucky enough to visit Radium Hot Springs in the winter, then Panorama Ski Resort is a must-visit! Here you can experience over 3000 acres of terrain, with a summit elevation of 8000 feet, giving the most breathtaking views around.
Panorama is conveniently located in a ski-in/ski-out village, making it easy to hit the slopes. You can actually book somewhere to stay right in the village so the ski hill is literally right on your doorstep.
There are tons of options for ski and snowboard lessons, so is a great option for beginners as well. Other activities include Nordic skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and tubing.
Panorama Ski Resort is located about 30 minutes away from Radium, through the neighboring town of Invermere. Prices are about $120 CAD for a day of skiing or boarding, but there are a variety of options and savings available depending on when you go.
Panorama is one of the best things to do in Invermere as well – find out our other recommended activities in Invermere!
8. Explore Kootenay National Park
Radium is the gateway to the stunning Kootenay National Park. Seriously, you will not be able to put your camera away during this visit.
From Radium town, get on Highway 93, which runs right through the park. You can explore it through an hour-long scenic drive, where you can get out at different viewpoints and enjoy the sights. Some highlights are the Vermillion River and the massive 11,234-foot Deltaform Mountain.
If you’re looking for something more active, there are tons of backcountry trails to try out. Marble Canyon is our favorite. It’s just about 1.5 hours to complete, and you are rewarded with a view of the magnificent Tokkum River, carving through the canyon in a way that is just spectacular.
As part of Parks Canada, there is a fee to enter Kootenay National Park. It’s either $10 for the day, or you can purchase a Discovery Pass for just under $70, giving you access to all national parks for a years’ time. We promise – it’s totally worth it for a day in this gorgeous place!
9. Visit Lower Bugaboo Falls
If you’re looking to get outside, but keep it chill, make sure to add Lower Bugaboo Falls to your list of things to do in Radium. It is just about a 35-minute drive from Radium Hot Springs, making it perfect for a short afternoon getaway.
The trail is just 1.5 kilometers (0.9 miles) of fairly easy walking, ending at a beautiful waterfall.
10. Relax at Olive Lake
All this hiking probably has you itching for some R&R. If you need a day to just relax, check out Olive Lake. Located just 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) east of Radium, it’s quick to get to.
Olive Lake is picturesque, with crystal-clear water. It’s the perfect place for a peaceful afternoon to read a book, or enjoy a picnic lunch at the picnic tables around the lake.
11. Explore Sinclair Canyon
Starting right in Radium town, the Sinclair Creek Trail System has a variety of trails. They follow Sinclair Creek, offering some easy and enjoyable walks right next to the rushing river.
Good news for dog-owners – the trails are all off-leash dog areas!
These trails are informative, too. If you continue along the main trail, there are a series of kiosks to educate users about the area. You can learn about the trout and salmon spawning, or the habitat restoration of the area.
Related Read: If you love to hike, consider visiting nearby Fernie. Even in the winter, there’s plenty to do in Fernie including beautiful trails to explore.
12. Meet the locals
And by locals, we mean sheep. Yes, sheep. Radium Hot Springs is famously home to the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep. Tourists are often lucky to catch a glimpse of these amazing creatures, distinguished by their large, curled horns.
It is common to see them both in and around the village, and along the highway leaving Radium. If you do see these magnificent animals, snapping pictures is okay, but make sure you say your hellos from a distance! While they may seem tame, they are still wild animals, so caution is required.
13. Enjoy a few beach days
Radium Hot Springs enjoys warm, dry summers, and so a day at the lake is an absolute must! Well, maybe a few days!
There are just so many options to check out. Our favorite nearby lakes are Windermere Lake (pictured above) and Columbia Lake.
Windermere Lake is just 15 minutes away, in the town of Invermere. If you’re up for it, we recommend renting a boat in town and spending the day on the lake. Try your hand at skiing or wakeboarding! You can rent a boat for under $500 CAD/day, so if you’re going with a group, it’s very reasonable.
Columbia Lake is a little farther south, and has the title of the largest warm water lake in the East Kootenay region – in the summer it is a warm 18°C!
This lake is popular for windsurfing, canoeing, and kayaking. There is 3km of undeveloped beach area, perfect for appreciating nature and viewing wildlife.
Invermere is a small city located just down the road from Radium. It’s also a good place to stay to explore the Columbia Valley – just check out all the amazing Airbnbs in Invermere!
14. Book a tubing/wakeboarding tour
If renting your own boat sounds a little stressful you can also book this Airbnb experience with our Airbnb host named Mike. That way you can relax while someone else does all the hard work.
He has a beautiful ski boat and their experience costs only $200 per person for 4 hours of fun on Columbia Lake. The boat is much nicer than the rentals and you won’t need a designated driver or need to rent extra equipment for wakeboarding and tubing.
Because the tour is on Airbnb Experience it’s much cheaper than you’d expect to pay elsewhere. The best part? You only need two people to book the tour.
15. Stay in a cute cabin
A cozy cabin in the woods? Sign me up! There are so many holiday home rentals and Airbnbs available in Radium to choose from! It’s a totally different vibe to stay in a little vacation rental or cabin, over a hotel, hostel, or camping. It’s that perfect mix of rustic, but with all the amenities you need.
There are a ton of great options, but we have to admit we are a little biased to this one. We loved our stay in this cute little log cabin in the woods. It has a private hot tub right on the deck, so you can relax and warm up while immersed in nature. The hosts are amazing, and the price is very reasonable ($130 CAD/night average).
It’s located just a few kilometers up the road from Radium town, making it accessible to all the activities on this list. You can even hit the trails (hiking or snowshoeing/cross country skiing) right from the front door!
You can check prices and book this cute cabin in Radium on VRBO.
For more options, check out our blog about the best Airbnbs in Radium Hot Springs and area!
16. Shop at Funky Junk
Looking for a souvenir? Make sure to check out Funky Junk, located in downtown Radium. This eclectic shop offers stunning stained-glass art. You can pick from the selection or request a custom piece!
There is other locally made handicrafts such as paintings, soaps, birdhouses, or renovated furniture. When we were there last time we bought a beautiful blackberry bar of soap and a painted postcard.
Not only is shopping at Funky Junk one of the best things to do in Radium, but you’ll also support local small businesses – a win-win if you ask me!
17. Drink delicious coffee at Big Horn Café
You’ve said hello to the real-life Big Horn Sheep, so why not step into the Big Horn Café? It’s the perfect place to relax and recharge after an active day hiking or browsing the shops.
Big Horn Café is a new coffee house, and prides itself on offering local products – both in food and drink, and the artwork displayed on their walls.
They serve up 49th Parallel espresso (Vancouver-based roastery), which you can pair with treats from around the Columbia Valley, such as Gimme Some Sugar from Fairmont, Wild Mountain Chocolate from Invermere, or Kootenay Kombucha from Nelson.
18. Go skating or cross-country skiing on Lake Windermere
If you’re in the region during winter, skating or cross-country skiing on Lake Windermere is (literally) a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! It holds the Guinness Book of Records for the longest skating pathway in the world, so you can’t find anything else like it.
The Lake Windermere Whiteway is a 29.98-kilometer (18.6-mile) frozen trail, created back in 2006 to help connect communities during the wintertime. It has two starting points – Kinsmen Beach in Invermere and Windermere Beach – both of which are about a 20-minute drive south from Radium Hot Springs.
The Whiteway is maintained by the Toby Creek Nordic Ski Club, and it is groomed for cross-country and skate skiing, with another path cleared for ice skating. Access to the Whiteway is $5 CAD and rentals are available in the town of Invermere.
This is a such a unique winter experience near Radium – don’t miss out!
19. Visit Invermere
Just 15 minutes down the road from Radium is Invermere and it is PACKED with awesome things to do.
After you’ve walked around the downtown area, make sure to pop into either the Arrowhead Brewing Company or the Ulrr Bar for a drink. There is even a distillery made famous on Dragons Den! Taynton Bay Spirits makes some of the tastiest infused vodkas we have tried.
Invermere is home to Windermere Lake, Kinsman Beach, and a variety of other day-on-the-lake options. Make sure you pack your sunscreen and hat – you’ll need them!
20. Relax at Fairmont Hot Springs
If Radium Hot Springs got you hooked, the next step is to check out Fairmont Hot Springs! It’s just about 30 minutes drive south of Radium, and offers a luxurious, relaxing environment to spend a day at.
The Fairmont Hot Springs are gorgeous clear, natural mineral hot springs – the largest in Canada! There are multiple pools to relax in, with the soaker pool at a comfortable 39°C (102°F) and the swimming and dive pool at a bit cooler, 32°C (89°F) and 30°C (86°F). Take in the sights of the panoramic mountain views and just breathe.
The Fairmont Springs Resort is also available for an overnight stay – you won’t be disappointed by the amenities such as in-room soaker tubs, cozy fireplaces, seasonal activities like yoga or kayaking, and of course, access to the mineral hot springs.
Related Read: The Fairmont Hot Springs are located in the small town of Fairmont. Check out all of the other fun things to do in Fairmont, BC!
21. Test your nerves Valley Zipline Adventures
Where are all my adrenaline seekers at? This one’s for you! Valley Zipline Adventures is not for the faint-hearted, with a roue of 7 zip lines over a section of 2000 feet! While you’re high up in the air, you can take in the stunning views of the Dry Gulch Valley.
If you want to try another height-defying activity, check out the 32-foot climbing wall or the 35 Jump Tower… Basically, you can just climb up things and jump off things! It’s just like being a kid again.
Prices for the Zipline experience is $84 CAD/adult. If you’re looking for something even more, Valley Zipline Adventures partners with other businesses in the area, so you can bundle your Zip experience with a Segway tour, massage, beer tasting, ATV adventure, or white-water rafting, among others. These options can be an additional $30-$100CAD on top of the Zipline price, depending on what you choose.
22. Go camping
Camping has got to be one of the quintessential Canadian experiences. And what better place to do it in the Columbia Valley? There are a few options for camping around Radium Hot Springs.
Dry Gulch Provincial Park is just 4.5 kilometers (2.8 miles) south of Radium Hot Springs and offers a quiet, relaxing camping experience. It is a small campground, surrounded by trees, so cool and shady during the hot summers. Amenities include flush toilets, campfire rings, drinking water, and vehicle-accessible camping.
Redstreak campground is located within Kootenay National Park, accessible to the town of Radium by a 1.8-kilometer trail. This campground is at a higher elevation, sitting on a sunny plateau area. There are many amenities such as kitchen shelters, drinking water, fire rings, playgrounds, cell coverage, and food storage.
23. Mountain biking and trail riding
If you’re comfortable on two wheels, try out the endless mountain biking and trail-riding options in this region! There are over 150 mountain bike trails, and another 61 trails appropriate for e-bikes (flatter, easier rides).
Trails are grouped into networks around the region, including Panorama Mountain Resort, Swansea Mountain Recreation Site, or Lillian Lake. These areas are all within an hour of Radium.
Trails are coded similar to ski runs, with green, blue, black, and double black diamond coding for the level of difficulty. Make sure to do some advance planning and choose an option to your comfort and skill level.
Where to Stay in Radium Hot Springs, BC
You can choose from a variety of hotels in Radium and area.
Personally, the Radium Chalet is my favorite go-to. It is super affordable while still providing some awesome features including rooms with amazing mountain views, fireplaces, kitchens, and more. It is located just on the edge of Radium village, so it’s a quieter option while still being central.
But if you’re looking for a pure luxury resort that’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience, then you can’t pass up Prestige Radium Hot Springs Resort.This brand new resort is simply stunning!
Alternatively, there are some amazing holiday homes and Airbnbs to choose from in Radium – read my blog for details about my favorite ones in the area!
Related read: Head further down the valley to the highly underrated town of Cranbrook. Contrary to what you might’ve heard, there’s plenty to do and see in Cranbrook and its surroundings!
Renting a Car in British Columbia
If you’re arriving in British Columbia via plane then I can’t recommend getting a rental car enough. British Columbia is a large province and traveling between cities and even just getting out to the best attractions within them requires transport. Although you can use public transport on some occasions, this means your trip will not only require more time but more planning.
Car rental in Canada is relatively cheap especially if you get a budget car. The cheapest car with a pickup and drop-off in different locations is around $70 CAD per day. The price does vary though depending on the time of year. For car rentals, I use the website Rental Cars.com. It’s a search engine with lots of deals with good customer service. In fact, I’ve used Rental Cars.com all over the world including in Chile, New Zealand, and Australia.
Another popular option is to rent a campervan or motorhome (only for the brave in winter.) Using Motorhome Republic you can search hundreds of deals across multiple companies to pick a great vehicle and the cheapest price. Having a motorhome is a stunning way to see Canada and using crown land and campsites you can often camp for free or very cheap in the most beautiful places imaginable!
Canada Travel Essentials
Before you decide to head off and explore the gorgeous mountains, lakes, towns, and cities around Canada it’s important to have the right equipment. Of course, it’s likely you’ll have most of the basics already but there are some common items people forget that I never travel without.
Crampons: In winter crampons are super handy, but what people don’t realize is that they come in handy in summer too. In fact, up until mid-July, you can still expect icy conditions in the mountains. The pair I use is only $29 and they have lasted me 3 seasons so far!
Waterproof shell: Most people will have this item but I thought I’d include it anyway since it’s so handy in Canada. The Columbia waterproof jacket is a lightweight windproof jacket that will seriously save you in many situations. The best part though? It comes in pink!
Scent-proof bag (for bears): Most people think you only need to keep the smell of food away from you when you’re overnight camping. However, bears can smell the food in your bag while you’re hiking and the best way to avoid an encounter is to use a scent-proof bear bag. Basically, you put your food in the bag and the bear cannot smell it while you’re hiking. This is one item most people never have (I never hike without it) but it could save you and the bear.
Buff: I love my buff! Seriously, I go nowhere without it both in winter and summer. There are a few brands around but I always buy the original Buff (you know, the one from Survivor!) They’re a little more expensive but the material is good quality and both breathable and quick drying.
Dry bag: I have expensive camera equipment so I always travel with a dry bag large enough to fit some of my equipment. It can be a camera, book, binoculars, or even my keys. Regardless, a dry bag gives me peace of mind! The MARCHWAY bag is really good quality, and when not in use, takes up only a small amount of room.
Binoculars: I love my binoculars! Seriously they have come in hand so many times especially when I’m looking for wildlife. The best part is, I use a set that only costs $27 and they serve my basic needs without any issues!
Before you go…
Radium Hot Springs has so much more to offer than just its namesake (which is pretty amazing too!). It’s got something for everyone, whether you are adrenaline-seeking, or just want to chill at a lake or in a cabin in the woods. Radium has too many epic things to do to leave it off your itinerary.
We hope you love it as much as we did!
Be sure to read our other blogs about the Columbia Valley, or check out some blogs about our favorite places nearby below: