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COMPLETE Guide to Whistler in Winter +Our Favourite Activities

COMPLETE Guide to Whistler in Winter +Our Favourite Activities

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If you want me to define the beauty of winter in one word, I’ll say “Whistler.” This magical place is a winter wonderland that’s beyond your imagination. It’s home to tall mountain peaks, stunning alpine lakes, old cedar trees, and spectacular wildlife.

And the best part? There are a ton of awesome winter activities in Whistler!

It doesn’t matter whether you are a skier or not; there are many fun things you can do in Whistler while enjoying the glory of nature. In fact, the first time I visited Whistler in winter, I’d never skied before and instead kept myself busy with all of the other winter activities.

From short hikes to scenic drives, here are the 40 best things to do in Whistler this winter, including other important info for visiting this popular Canadian winter destination!

Don’t have time to read the full article? Here are my top 5 favorite things to do in Whistler in winter!

  1. Hit the slopes at Whistler Blackcomb
  2. Go Snowmobiling in the backcountry
  3. Relax at Scandinave Spa
  4. Go ziplining above snow-covered trees
  5. Try snowshoeing along Medicine Trail

40 Best Things to do in Whistler in the Winter 

1.Hit the slopes at Whistler Blackcomb

People ski at Whistler Blackcomb, Canada
Whistler Blackcomb is a fun ski resort!

Whistler Blackcomb is one of the largest ski resorts in North America. With over 4,757 acres / 1,925 hectares of skiable terrain, 36 lifts, and over 200 runs, Whistler Blackcomb is suited to the novice skier all the way up to the pro. I love this ski resort and I’m pretty certain you will too!

You can plan your visit to Whistler Blackcomb anytime between December and March. However, in January and February, the powder is at its best! When it comes to lift passes, Whistler Blackcomb is one of the most expensive ski resorts I have visited – which to me was a little off-putting.

However, once I was out there skiing, I began to see just how cool this resort is. It’s like visiting Canmore in winter and skiing all the resorts in the area in one day!

Lift passes for adults (13- 99) start at $123 CAD, and for kids ages 7 to 12 at $63 CAD if purchased during pre-season (until Dec 3rd 2023.)

Regular season day passes will cost a whopping $299 CAD during the peak of the season if you purchase them at the resort on the day. That price does not include any early bird or pre order discount, so if you know you’re skiing Whistler Blackcomb, book in advance to save money!

If you have kids that are learning to ski, then you can opt for daily group ski/snowboard lessons at Blackcomb at a price of:

  • $299 for one day (ski only) for kids (3 – 12 years old). 
  • $299 for one day (ski/snow lessons) for kids (13-18 years old)
  • $319 for one day (ski/snow lessons) for adults

Another thing that’s important to remember is that you have to book these lessons online. So make sure you book it three days before visiting Whistler, and if you go ahead with the private lessons, you have to plan it five days before your trip. 

You can also pre-book your ski rentals or snowboard rentals here.

Skiing is a popular winter activity anywhere in Canada, and with Whistler Blackcomb’s huge mountain to explore, this is easily the most popular thing to do in Whistler in winter!

Hot Tip: There are some great ski-in ski-out hotels in Whistler. When choosing where to stay in Whistler for skiing, be sure to pick a hotel close to the chairlifts!

2. Go snow tubing 

The snow tube park at Whistler Blackcomb
Although most think this is just for kids, it’s actually really fun for adults too!

If you’re feeling tired after long days skiing, then it’s time to have a little fun that doesn’t involve so much effort. I’m talking about snow tubing. Do you know what the best part is? You don’t need to take classes, rent any equipment, or go the extra mile!

This fun activity is one of the best, especially for those who haven’t quite mastered skiing or snowboarding but still want to go down a hill fast!

The Bubly Tube Park is located on Whistler Blackcomb and even has its own magic carpet. You need to buy tickets from the tube park hut, and it’s best to go on weekdays. On weekends, the lineup can be huge and, in all honesty, not worth the wait!

Tickets are sold in one-hour passes and a family of 4 can go for around $100 CAD. However, prices change yearly, so be sure to check before you go.

There are some requirements for kids. Your child has to be three years old or a height of 36-inch (91 cm). If your child’s height is between 36 inches (91 cm) and 41 inches (103 cm), then only the mini kids’ lane will be open for them.

The Tube Park is on Blackcomb Mountain near parking lot 8, and there is free parking! You can also use the Excalibar Gondola to reach lot 8, but you have to walk if you don’t mind stairs.

Related Read: There is also a snow tube park in Banff. If you’re headed that way, read about all of the other fun things to do in Banff in winter!

3. Try Snowmobiling 

a group of smowmobilers in whistler, canada
One of the best winter adventure activities!

Snowmobiling is the perfect winter activity in Whistler for those who love an adrenaline rush – not to mention you can let the snowmobile do the work!

In Whistler, it’s best to join a snowmobiling tour as it’s very unlikely you’re arriving with you’re own snowmobile (if you are then congrats!)

The Callaghan Cruiser Snowmobile Tour is a great option that takes you through the Callaghan Valley and to the abandoned NorthAir gold mine. You’ll also visit an open area known as a play area that’s perfect for seeing just what a snowmobile can do.

In total, the tour is 3 hours long, costs $282 CAD, and is filled with interesting information, breathtaking views, and of course, a ton of excitement – I loved it! The best part is that kids as young as five can join the tour. However, you need to be 19+ with a full, valid driver’s license to drive the snowmobile. You can book this snowmobile tour here.

If you’d prefer something a little more adventurous, then this Whistler Wilderness Run Snowmobile Tour is the best option. It also visits the Callaghan Valley but has the option to include a typical Yukon breakfast cooked on a wood stove. Mmmm, I can smell eggs and waffles now…

The tour is also 3 hours long and costs the same without the optional breakfast, which is an upgrade. You can book this snowmobile tour here.

This fun and exciting activity is a must-do at least once in your life and Whistler is one of the best places to do it!

4. Visit the Audain Art Museum

Audain Art Museum in Whistler
Some of the pieces are very interesting!

The Audain Art Museum is equally as beautiful from the outside as it is inside – it almost sinks into the surrounding forest. This is a private museum (not government-owned) and houses Michael Audain’s personal art collection.

The beautiful art within starts with late 18th Century British Columbia art up to the present day. The museum is home to one of the best collections of First Nations masks in the world and works from some of Canada’s best artists, including Jack Shadbolt and Gordon Smith, as well as international artists like Jeff Wall and Rodney Graham.

The Audain Art Museum is located across from Whisler Olympic Plaza and costs $22 CAD for adults, $10.50 for 19 to 25s, and is free for kids under 18. You can book tickets to the museum in advance here.

On a winter’s day in Whistler, this is a great way to learn about the First Nations’ culture and art and escape the cold!

5. Go ziplining 

Ziptrek Ecotours winter ziplining
Photo credit: Ziptrek Ecotours

Did you know that you can go ziplining in Whistler in winter!? Neither did I before I arrived, but after seeing a group get ready in town, I was shocked and excited! Needless to say, this really is one of the coolest winter activities in Whistler and it’s not even a typical winter activity!

The best ziplining tour to do in Whistler in winter is this Zipline Adventure with Ziptrek Ecotours.

On this tour, we soared through the sky above the beautiful forests of Whistler Blackcomb, crossed suspension bridges, checked out treetop observation platforms, and walked ground-based trails. You’ll also be with an expert guide who will provide you with safety details, as this fun activity is a source of adrenaline! 

Be aware this is a cold tour, so you NEED to dress appropriately. The best thing to do is wear your ski or snowboard gear – that’s what we did. If you don’t have any, warm clothes and boots will suffice.

Related Read: If you’re still debating a trip here, let us help you make up your mind with this guide on if visiting Whistler is worth it!

6. Fresh Tracks Mountain Top Breakfast

Views form the Roundhouse Lodge Whistler
Views form the Roundhouse Lodge Whistler

What if I tell you it’s possible to cross the mountains, walk over clouds, and do your favorite thing? “Eat, eat, and eat a little more!” 

If you enjoy breakfast with a view, you need to visit Roundhouse Lodge for their famous Fresh Tracks Mountain Top Breakfast. Located on Whistler Mountain at the height of 6069 feet/1850 meters, it overlooks the entire valley and the views are out of this world.

They serve an all-you-can-eat buffet breakfast that includes bacon, eggs, potatoes, pastries, yogurt, muffins, and even fruit. The experience is open from mid-December to early April.

The best part is if you already have ski lift tickets you can listen for the first tracks bell and jump on the fresh powder before anyone else. Talk about a great way to start the day!

To enjoy the Fresh Tracks Mountain Top Breakfast you need to start your day early, as you have to catch the Whistler Village Gondola between 7:15 am and 8:00 am. Lift tickets to the restaurant cost $25.95 for adults and $18 for children. Once there, grab a seat and enjoy breakfast with the best seat in the house.

7. Go snowshoeing 

Snowshoeing in Whistler
It’s so quiet in the forests around Whistler in winter!

Immerse yourself in the glory of the winter wonderland that is Whistler by snowshoeing on some of the beautiful trails nearby. The best part is that snowshoeing is a winter activity for all ages, so it will be fun even if you have small kids.

I myself love snowshoeing simply because I am an avid hiker and when winter comes around, snowshoeing makes winter hiking easier (and in some cases, possible.)

One of the best places to go snowshoeing in Whistler is at Whistler Olympics Park. There are over 30 kilometers of marked trails, 15 of which are dog-friendly (yay for the pups!) You can choose to go self-guided or take a private tour, depending on what experience you’re looking for. Rentals are also available for $18.75 (adults) and $10.50 (children).

Other places you can snowshoe around Whistler include Lost Lake Park and Ski Callaghan. These areas offer lots of snowshoeing trails to explore but there is an entrance fee at both places (rentals are also available). With that, though, comes well-marked trails and even maps.

For more “backcountry” snowshoeing routes, head to the Sea to Sky Trail, Train Wreck Trail, and even the Cheakamus Trails. Simply rent your snowshoes and pop into the Whistler Visitor Centre for maps of the trails as well as safety information.

If you still don’t feel comfortable hitting the trails on your own or just want to learn more from an expert guide, then join this Medicine Trail snowshoe tour. This guided hike lasts for 2.5 hours and will take you on a journey to the mysterious forest through Medicine Trail. See tall cedar trees, explore Trapper’s Cabin, and even Totem Pole Lake. The tour costs $125 CAD but includes an expert guide, snowshoe rental, snacks, and transportation.

Snowshoeing in Whistler is easily one of the best winter activities simply because it’s cheap, suited to most visitors, and the views are spectacular!

8. Cross-country skiing 

Cross country skiing in Whistler, BC
Going down is still my favorite part, haha!

During winter in Canada, it’s easy to find yourself indoors a lot. That’s why I started to cross-country ski. It’s cheap, fun, and you get a great workout!

In Whistler, cross-country skiing is very popular and I myself just had to try out the trails at Whistler Olympic Park. The park is home to 90 km of trails marked as easy (green), intermediate (blue), and advanced (hard). Enjoy the breathtaking viewpoints and get a workout while you’re at it.

Rentals are available at Whistler Olympic Park for $32 CAD for adults, $17.75 for youths, and $10 for children. On top of that, you’ll need to pay the entrance fee to use the trails, which is $30 for adults (subject to changes) for the day.

You can also book lessons if you’re a novice, seven days a week. Kids’ private lessons are $88/child per hour (it’s cheaper the more people you have.) Adult lessons start at $125 for one person.

If you have never cross-country skied before and don’t want to do lessons, then simply stick to the groomed tracks. These are grooves on the ground that make the sport much easier, even for first-timers. I still only use these!

9. Attend a winter event in Whistler

Whistler Fire and Ice Whistler Blackcomb
Photo credit: Whistler Blackcomb

Whistler is one of the best winter destinations in the world, and every winter, it is home to a varied list of fabulous and inspiring events.

At the start of the winter season is Cornucopia Whistler, a festival of food and drinks (my kind of festival!) It is held most weekends in November and there are hundreds of events to choose from, from small events at the town’s restaurants to a huge wine show held in the Conference Centre.

The Whistler Pride Ski Festival is a week-long celebration held at the end of January. There are fun events held both on and off the mountain and the entire town immerses itself in a sea of rainbow colors for the celebrations.

One of my favorite winter events in Whistler is the Fire and Ice Show held every Sunday evening at Skiers Plaza (at the base of Whistler Mountain). The main drawcards are the fire spinners and fireworks. And for the finale, some of Whistler’s best skiers and riders hit a big air jump through a blazing ring of fire. This is a free event and draws a huge crowd each week!

10. Go hiking

A train sits in the snow on the Train Wreck Trail, Whistler
In winter, the trail is uncrowded and really peaceful.

Winter hiking can be done in Whistler, especially with its well-trodden trails and warmer weather.

If you want to go hiking without snowshoes, Train Wreck Trail is an exciting place to visit. Although also a snowshoeing route, the trail receives a fair amount of traffic, so the snow is usually compact enough to do it in a good pair of hiking boots. The Train Wreck Trail visits some abandoned train carriages left there in the 50s. It’s a unique spot and the trail is only 2 kilometers return.

If you don’t mind driving a little out of town on the Sea to Sky Highway, you can also visit Brandy Wine Falls. This short 1-kilometer return trail leads to a stunning waterfall that in winter, is even more spectacular.

Last is The Valley Trail. This vast network of trails is almost always free from snow due to its elevation and the fact it’s a paved trail. There are 45 kilometers of trails here that wind their way around Whistler town and the lakes in the area.

11. Go dog sledding

Bailey with one of the dogs on our dog sledding tour in Canada
This was the best part!
Bailey dog sledding in Canmore
Mush!

Would you believe that the activity of dog-sledding is over 4000 years old?! Back then, it was a necessary aspect of life in Northern Canada. Nowadays, it is a memorable experience that’s not to be missed when visiting Whistler in the winter months.

Dog sledding is a true Canadian experience and your sleds are pulled by either Siberian or Alaskan huskies through incredible mountain scenery. Would you believe you will reach speeds of up to 35 km per hour! The tours are run in the Callaghan Valley (between Squamish and Whistler) and are run by Blackcomb Dog Sledding.

You can choose to sit back and relax in your cozy sled or stand on the back of the sled and drive the dog team!

I personally loved getting to know the dogs, and the tour from start to finish was really cool.

12. Relax at a spa

Scandinave Spa, Whistler in winter
Can you imagine anything more relaxing!? Photo credit -Scandinave Spa

Scandinave Spa is located just a few minutes drive from Whistler Village in a Nordic-inspired outdoor spa that’s surrounded by native forest. It’s huge at 20,000 square feet and is the best way to relax after a long day of adventuring around Whistler in winter.

The outdoor baths are mirrored on old Finnish traditions and have the added benefit of being surrounded by Whistler’s incredible natural beauty. You can also get a traditional Scandinavian massage to truly relax after having all the fun in Whistler.

Whistler’s most unique spa is open from 10 am – 9 pm daily. Access to the baths starts at $110 CAD per adult. 

13. Try axe throwing

Are throwing in Canada
Give it a try. It’s surprisingly fun!

Axe-throwing is sure to get people at home talking – and once you try it you won’t believe how much fun it is!

It’s an hour-long session, and to be honest, you’ll probably spend most of the hour trying to get the hang of throwing an axe. However, your experienced coach will also encourage you to get involved in some fun axe-throwing games. I actually got the hang of it after 30 minutes and even hit some bullseyes!

They sell craft beer as well as other alcoholic (or non-alcoholic) beverages for you to enjoy after your session – I don’t recommend drinking too much while you’re axe-throwing, though!

Forged Axe Throwing is located in Function Junction, a 15-minute drive from Whistler Village and you can book your tickets in advance online. The experience costs $45 CAD for an hour-long session.

14. Drink lots of craft beer

At Whistler Brewing drinking a beer
Escape the cold with a craft beer!

Whilst on the topic of alcohol, why not consider a brewery crawl through some of Whistler’s best breweries? Whistler’s craft brewery scene is exploding and every year, new places are opening up.

The best breweries in Whistler to visit include Whistler Brewing Company, High Mountain Brewing Co., and Coast Mountain Brewing!

My favorite of the three is Whistler Brewing Company. They serve great beer and even better food. Try the nachos – you won’t regret it!

15. Join a distillery tour

Selection of liquor at Montis Distilling
Craft liquor, anyone? Photo credit Montis Distilling

Not a beer fan? That’s okay because Whistler has its very own local distillery!

Montis Distilling is a boutique distillery focused on creating spirits inspired by nature. That’s why you’ll find lots of interesting flavors, such as my favorite, Berries, and Basil (pictured above.)

You can just pop in and pick up some bottles to take home. However, I highly suggest doing this distillery tour and tasting experience.

This tour is held at the distiliery in Function Junction – 15 minutes from Whistler. It’s a 2-hour tour and includes a guided tour of Montis Distilling, where you’ll get to taste all of their liquor and get a free charcuterie box by Picnic Whistler. I recommended trying everything but especially the Alpenglow Gin!

Pick up and drop off from Whistler Village is provided, and the tour only costs $88 CAD. After, when you get dropped back in Whistler you’ll get exclusive deals at The Raven Room (Whistler’s best cocktail bar!)

16. Enjoy breakfast and coffee at Purebread

A selection of treats at Purebred Café in Whistler, BC
How good does that all look?
A coffee at Purebread in Whistler, BC
Mmm, coffee!

I first found Purebread while in Vancouver and instantly fell in love. You wouldn’t believe my joy when I found out there was one in Whistler too!

If your day starts with good coffee at home, it should also start that way on holiday. The cappuccino at Purebread has to be one of the best, especially if you like them made how they’re supposed to be. On top of that, the food is delicious and I guarantee your eyes will light up when you see the selection of savory and sweet baked goods.

My favorite? Well, it has to be the spinach and feta muffins, raspberry white chocolate scones, and bacon and egg brioche (oh, you thought I’d only have one favorite!?)

Be sure to pop in here at the beginning of your trip. That way, if you love it as much as me you can have it every day!

Purebread is easily one of the best cafes in Whistler – trust me, you’ll love it!

17. Day trip to Squamish

The Sea to Sky gondola in winter
The gondola takes you up really high and there’s even this huge suspension bridge at the top! Photo credit – Sea to Sky Gondola

Just under an hour’s drive from Whistler, Squamish is quickly becoming a tourist destination in its own right. Recently its popularity has surged thanks to the Netflix series Virgin River, which was filmed here. The drive from Whistler to Squamish is incredibly scenic and worth the journey alone (more on that below). But once you get to Squamish, you are spoiled with some of the best things to do in BC.

In my opinion, the quickest way to fall in love with Squamish’s beauty is to get the Sea to Sky Gondola to the top of Mount Habrich and admire the views of the Howe Sound. The gondola rises 885 meters above sea level in just 10 minutes- so be warned if you’re afraid of heights. Tickets cost $70 CAD and can be purchased here in advance.

One of the best and most challenging hikes in the Whistler area is located in Squamish – the Stawamus Chief is a favorite amongst locals. There are two ways to climb “the Chief” as it’s also known. You can rock climb it (only if you’re experienced) or hike up but beware there are leg-burning stairs at the beginning of the hike.

In Squamish, there are lots of great restaurants, cafes, and shops too.

18. Visit the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre

A mask at the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Cen

At the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre, you’ll discover all aspects of Lil’wat culture and history as well as their unique traditions and practices from ancient times up to the present day.

If you can, be sure to do one of the guided tours on offer by the Ambassadors from both the Squamish and Lil’wat Nations. It features a hand drum welcome song, which is really moving. These guided tours happen every hour from 10 am – 4 pm.

After your tour, take your time to view the permanent and temporary exhibitions that showcase the relationship between two unique Nations – Squamish Nation and Lil’wat Nation.

There’s also a great gift shop selling unique First Nations merchandise as well as a lovely Cafe – I’ve visited this cafe numerous times and it’s one of my favorites!

Admission to the Centre is $20 CAD per adult. It is open from Wednesday – Sunday from 10 am – 5 pm.

19. Ride in a helicopter

Blackcomb Helicopters views during a flight in winter
Photo credit: Blackcomb Helicopters
Blackcomb Helicopters views of the mountains in whistler in winter
Photo credit: Blackcomb Helicopters

A helicopter ride over glaciers, bright blue lakes, and the all-around stunning mountain scenery of Whistler is an activity that should be added to everyone’s Whistler winter bucket list! And this bucket-list activity doesn’t have to break the bank.

In fact, this 15-minute Whistler helicopter tour starts at only $205 CAD – one of the cheapest scenic helicopter flights I have done!

The tour only includes 15 minutes of flying time but you still get to explore a ton of the area. One of the highlights is flying over the top of Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resort and seeing all the skiers and snowboarders below. You can book this tour here.

For a slightly longer flight, this helicopter tour takes you further to see even more of the surrounding area, including glaciers! The flight time here is 25 minutes and includes an alpine landing. All that will set you back $325 per person.

If you would prefer a private tour, this Whistler Explorer Helicopter Tour, which lasts 25 to 45 minutes, is a top choice. It costs a fair bit more at $1,618 CAD but for that, you can take up to 5 people. The tour even includes an alpine landing.

There are various other helicopter tours available, all ranging in price and length, for you to see Whistler from high up above. One of my favorite tours available in Whistler is the heli-skiing option! If you’re obsessed with skiing, then this one’s for you!

There are 432,000 acres of ski terrain available to explore on a heli-skiing tour and obviously, you can’t do it all in one day, so you may just need to book a couple of heli-skiing tours to see it all. There are 173 glaciers and 474 runs within this terrain.

20. Whistler Sightseeing Tour

A beautiful lake near Whistler
Beautiful!

If you want to explore Whistler but want an expert guide at your side, then a sightseeing tour is a must. Of course, I consider myself a local expert so I have not done this tour. However, I’ve taken a look at all the sightseeing tours offered in Whistler and love this specific tour!

The tour focuses on the outskirts of Whistler by visiting some of my favorite places, including Lost Lake, Green Lake, Rainbow Park, Whistler Valley Trail, and more! The tour costs $199 CAD per person but does include things like entrance fees at museums and transport around Whistler. It’s also a 3-hour tour, so you get a great introduction to the area.

You can book this sightseeing tour here in advance!

21. Hit the backcountry slopes

Backcountry skiing at Whistler
Backcountry skiing at Whistler

For those who want to get away from the crowds and explore the backcountry, Whistler is the perfect place for you.

One of the most popular places the backcountry ski is in the Duffy Lake Area, just northeast of Pemberton, BC, around 1 hour and 20 minutes from Whistler. There are four main backcountry ski areas Cerise Creek, Joffre Lakes, Marriott Basin/Rohr, and Cayoosh. You can read more about them here but be aware experience is required to use these backcountry ski areas safely!

If you’re going, be sure to pop into the Whistler visitor center, where you can find backcountry maps and guides as well as up-to-date avalanche information and tips.

If you’re not a pro but still want to experience something a little more adventurous, then be sure to go back join a backcountry skiing and split-boarding tour.

On this specific tour, you’ll head out with a professional guide with no lift tickets, just your skis and a thirst for adventure. The tour, which lasts for 6 to 8 hours, gives people a great introduction to backcountry skiing as well as a ton of safety information. There’s fresh powder, steep terrain, and no chairlifts or lift lines.

Prices start from $649 CAD and that doesn’t include ski rentals either. However, if you want to get away from the crowd, this tour is best for you! 

22. Stay at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler

When it comes to the most luxurious stays in Whistler, the Fairmont Chateau ranks as one of the best and is ideal for your winter holiday. With 6 on-site restaurants, two heated pools, a host of renovated rooms, and some of the most gorgeous views, you’ll stay cozy inside and never want to leave!

Their spa and wellness center is famous here in Whistler, offering a swathe of treatments ranging from facials to massages, rituals and so much more. We also can’t forget to mention the rooms, which range in comfort and luxuries to fit any travel style. 

Of course, no stay in the Fairmont Chateau would be complete without making the most of all the activities right on your doorstep, with local ski lifts quite literally on your doorstep. And during the summer, Lost Lake is perfect for swimming and is just a 4-minute drive away.

Rooms here at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler start from $422 CAD up to around $2,000 per night depending on the season and type of room you are searching for. You can check availability and book your relaxing stay at the Fairmont Chateau here!

23. Attend the Whistler Film Festival

The Whistler Film Festival is another annual event that attracts large crowds. It is held the first weekend in December (one of the many reasons to visit Whistler in December) every year and attracts a lot of visitors. This event showcases up to 100 films – most local and indie productions.

There will be 100+ speakers offering interactive sessions. It’s all about tapping into the local filmmaking industry. 

To me, it played an important roll in my career and I not only loved the films but learnt a ton while I was there.

24. Eat at Bearfoot Bistro

Brome Lake Duck Confit at The Bearfoot Bistro  in Whistler, BC, Canada
Photo credit: Bearfoot Bistro

The Bearfoot Bistro is one of the best restaurants in Whistler if not all of BC. Try their 4-course tasting menu for a cute date night (guys, you hear that!) From the main menu, the Wagyu beef, Perigord truffles, and Berkshire pork are outstanding!

Be sure to check out their daily happy hour from 3:30 pm – 5 pm for their oysters and drinks specials.

Head to the restaurant’s underground wine cellar and try to saber the top of a champagne bottle off, a tradition that dates back to the Napoleonic era. In the cellar, you will be surrounded by over 20,0000 bottles of wine, so take your pick of the bottles and see if you can successfully saber it!

Another cool meal activity is this Whistler Finer Things Dinner Tour. It visits the Barefoot Bistro for the famous champagne bottle tradition and you’ll taste some of the most famous dishes by chef Melissa Craig who was Canadas top chef in 2008.

25. Join a Snowcat tour 

BLACKCOMB FAMILY APRES SNOWCAT
Snowcat tours!

Have you ever wondered what an igloo is like? Well, if you join the Blackcomb family apres snowcat tour you’ll be able to find out.

This 19-passenger snowcat is heated, and comfortable, and takes you out into the snowy mountain to see a real-life igloo. On top of that, you’ll get to enjoy warm beverages in the igloo just to make the experience all the more memorable.

This tour starts at $129 CAD and departs at 4:30 pm in the winter months only.

Suppose that doesn’t sound like enough to you, then there’s also a dinner tour. On the same snowcat, you’ll be taken to the crystal hut to enjoy dinner under the stars. This tour was awarded the Canadian Signature Experience and departs at 7:15 pm and starts at $229.

26. Go ice skating

For a family-friendly activity in Whistler this winter why not try the outdoor ice-skating rink in Olympic Plaza. It is a beautiful place to ice skate outdoors and the rink is surrounded by snow-capped mountains, twinkling festive lights, and the iconic Olympic rings. 

Hours of operation during winter are 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m, 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m, and 6 to 8:30 p.m. It costs $2 if you bring your own skates or $8 with skate rental.  

You can also try indoor ice skating at Meadow Park Sports Centre a few minutes drive from town, this is available year-round.

27. Drive the Sea to Sky Highway

Alexander Falls near Whistler
What a winter wonderland Alexander Falls is!

The Sea to Sky Highway (Hwy 99) is a beautiful stretch of road that connects Whistler with Vancouver. You’ll pass Squamish at the halfway point. It takes about 2 hours to drive the Sea to Sky Highway from Vancouver to Whistler without stops, but there are some cool attractions that you really should check out along the way.

Some of the best stops along this route include Porteau Cove for views of Howe Sound, the impressive 335-meter-tall Shannon Falls, Alexander Falls, the town of Squamish, Alice Lake, and Brandywine Falls – a lovely hike and waterfall just outside Whistler.

Be sure to read up on the drive before you go so you can make a list of your favorite stops and turn this road trip into one amazing adventure! Then, once you’ve arrived in Vancouver plan to spend a few nights too – there are plenty of fun things to do in Vancouver in the winter too!

28. Sit by a fire at an outdoor patio

The locals know that the best patio in Whistler is located at the luxurious Four Seasons Hotel in the Upper Village. The patio is part of the Braidwood Bar in the hotel and it is a large heated patio with fabulous views of Blackcomb Mountain. Go here for apres-ski and watch the sunset, or during the day for drinks and some delicious food.

Another extremely popular patio is the one at Irish bar Dubh Linn Gate in Mountain Square in the main village. There’s an outdoor firepit (get here early to nab a seat next to it), over 25 beers on tap, and live music most evenings. You can’t miss the lively Dubh Linn when walking through Whistler Village!

29. Enjoy tacos and tequila at The Mexican Corner

Tacos at The Mexican Corner Restaurant, Whistler, BC
I love fresh cilantro!
Bailey and Daniel cheers at the Mexican Corner in Whistler
Margs at the Mexican Corner!

If you haven’t filled up on Purebread already then you’re in for another treat in Whistler. The Mexican Corner is going to be our new go-to restaurant in Whistler for authentic Mexican food!

The decor, style, and colors are super cultural too and it really brought us back to all the time we’ve spent in Mexico. We recently are here and this restaurant is so good so much so that there is often a wait, so try and book a table in advance!

The cocktails are delicious and they offer a selection of premium tequila and mezcal to choose from. From their food menu, we ended up trying a bit of everything! From starters like fresh guac with jalapenos and gooey cheese dip to Chicken Enchiladas, Beef Barbacoa Tacos, and the Baja Cauliflower Tacos for entrees – we loved it all!

We also liked the fact that you can order single tacos, so you can try a few different types instead of being restricted to the same flavor!

On top of it all, the service was also top tier so there is really nothing to complain about! If you are looking for a fun night out, a romantic dinner, or a special celebration, this is one of the best restaurants in Whistler to visit!

30. Visit the Whistler Museum

Learn about Whistler’s unique history at this small museum. The Whistler Museum tells the story of Whistler’s beginnings as a complete wilderness to the ski resort it is today and of course, its role in history as a host of the Winter Olympics. You can also join a Valley of Dreams Walking Tour and uncover the early history of Alta Lake.

A very cool exhibition is the “pop up” museum at Lost Lake, a nice, short walk from town. It explores Whistler’s unique natural history and includes visual displays and on-site interpreters.

Whistler Museum is located at 4333 Main Street and the entrance is by a suggested donation of $5 CAD.

31. Go bungee jumping

Bungee jumping at Whistler Bungee
Do you dare to take the plunge! Photo credit – Whistler Bungee

For the adventurous traveler, why not consider bungee jumping at arguably the most scenic bungee in the world?! Whistler Bungee is surrounded by old-growth forest and basalt cliffs, not forgetting the Gatorade-blue waters below you. Plus, in winter, all that beautiful scenery is covered with a dusting of snow, making it even prettier!

Whistler Bungee has an office in Whistler. However, the 160ft jump over the Cheakamus River is located around an hour from town along the Sea to Sky Highway. Unfortunately, they don’t offer transport so you’ll need to drive yourself there.

This is an experience in Whistler not to be missed at any time of the year!

32. Party the night away

Bailey and Daniel party in Whistler
Whistler is a party town!

Nicknamed the Vegas of the North, Whistler is a town that loves to party. “Work hard, ski hard, play hard” is the local motto! There are three nightclubs in Whistler as well as the many late-night bars. So, whether you want to participate in karaoke, relax with live music on an outdoor patio, or party the night away with a well-known DJ in one of the nightclubs there are plenty of after-dark options in this ski resort town.

The nightclub Garfinkels (or Garfs as the locals know it) has hosted some top acts, including Avicii and Afroman, Tommys and Maxx Fish.

A great way to party as a tourist in Whistler is to join the Bar Hop guided tour on Friday and Saturday nights. This tour takes you to four epic bars/nightclubs and includes VIP access, 5 drinks of your choice, and pizza.

33. Go ice fishing

Ice fishing in Canada
Ice fishing is a test of patience!

Ice fishing is a popular winter activity in Canada and of course, in Whistler. With so many lakes around, all you have to do is pick one, find a hole (or create your own), and you’re ready to fish! In Whistler, you can fish for bulltrout, rainbow trout, kokanee, and more.

To be honest though, I’m not an experience ice fisher so I opted to do a tour instead.

On this half-day ice fishing tour, you will be accompanied by an experienced guide who will help you and give you lots of fishing tips. The tour includes all fishing equipment, plus pickup and drop-off at your hotel. To keep you warm, they also bring along ice fishing tents and a heater!

34. Take some epic photos

Whistler Village in winter
Photo credit – Mardzpe Depositphotos

Team up with a local professional photographer and capture some stunning shots at some of Whistler’s most beautiful spots as a memento of your time there. This is an hour-long tour and your guide will send you your high-quality photos after your tour.

This is perfect for couples on a romantic getaway (or honeymoon in Whistler) or families wanting to get some photos together to remember their trip. These memories are priceless so capturing them is important!

35. Ice climbing

Ice climbing in Whistler
This is one activity even the most adventurous will love! Photo credit – Mountain skills Academy

You don’t need to have any ice-climbing experience for this awesome activity. If you’re a beginner, you will be given an introduction to the sport with a smaller and easier wall. If you have experience, then you can take on some epic climbs under the guidance of a professional guide. It’s a surprisingly easy activity! In fact, Whistler is one of the best places in Canada to go ice climbing.

This ice climbing tour is 6 to 8 hours long and includes all your equipment and a professional guide for $349 CAD. Although not cheap, the tour involves a lot of training and is a full-day adventure!

36. Try Escape Whistler

Escape rooms are becoming more and more popular these days. I myself have done a few over the years and love them.

In Whistler, Escape Whistler has 6 escape rooms ranging in difficulty. Try and figure your way out of a themed room by solving puzzles, riddles, and clues. You have only 45 minutes to get out so be sure to put your thinking cap on. Try to escape from a Pirate Ship, Buried Cabin, or a Pinball Machine. This is a great activity for families or groups of friends looking for an indoor winter activity.

37. Fat biking

Fat biking in Canada
Fat biking is the best way to ride through the snow!

Fat biking in Whistler is best experienced on the trails of the Callaghan Valley or at the Whistler Olympic Park. It is a great way to explore the trails of Whistler safely during the winter months. You can explore some of the local trails if you feel confident and the team at Spicy Sports can help you with the best tips and you can rent your bike and other gear from them too!

Cut Yer Bars and Emerald Forest are two firm favorite trails that I love!

38. Whistler Sliding Centre

Whistler Sliding Centre
You go so fast!

Have you watched the famous old-school movie Cool Runnings? Well, at the Whistler Sliding Centre you can be a passenger in a bobsleigh!

Their Bobsleigh Experience is one of Whistler’s most unique activities! You will slide in a real bobsleigh, driven by a trained pilot. Hold onto your skin as you race through numerous twists and turns at speeds of 125+ km/hr. On the bobsleigh, you will feel the acceleration of up to 4 g-forces. Now that’s fast!

No previous experience is required.

39. Visit The Meadows Park Sports Centre 

The Meadows Park Sports Centre complex in Whistler is open every day from 6 am to 8:30 pm. It’s a great recreational facility in Whistler that everyone can enjoy.

You can warm up in the hot tub or take the family for a swim if you want to do something relaxing while escaping the cold. However, there is also a fitness center, so you can hit the gym if you’ve been eating a lot during the holiday as well as squash courts (my favorite), an indoor skating rink, and basketball courts! When I was last in Whistler I headed here to soak in the hot tub after a long day of skiing.

The drop-in admissions are usually around $9 CAD for an adult, $5.50 for youth (13-18 years old), and $4.50 for children (4-12 years old). You can also get a family pass for $18 CAD. You can purchase the passes in person from the center on arrival.

Overall, it’s one of the cheapest winter activities in Whistler!

40. Go shopping

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory
Yummm, chocolate!

For a small town where the main focus is the outdoors, there’s a surprising amount of great shopping options. Some of my favorites include Aritzia for stylish women’s clothes, The Oracle for unique jewelry, Cool as a Moose for quirky Canadian souvenirs, and Amos and Andes Sweater Shop for beautiful handmade sweaters.

There are also two supermarkets in Whistler Village – Fresh Street and the Whistler Grocery Store.

If you want to bring some food and drink inspired gifts home – check out Davids Tea in Olympic Plaza, Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, and Cow’s to try their yummy ice cream and buy some cow-inspired merchandise. Cows are an institution in Whistler and you’re likely to be queuing to get in.

Related Read: Check out our complete guide to visiting Whistler in Fall/Autumn!

Where to Stay in Whistler in Winter

Pinnacle Hotel, Whistler
A cute but well-priced hotel! Photo credit – Pinnacle Hotel Whistler

As you can imagine, Whistler is a mountain town filled with great hotels. Better yet, the prices in winter are typically cheaper than in summer in Whistler, so you can get yourself some great deals by booking in advance. Still, Whistler is an expensive town so expect to pay a little more.

Our go-to hotel in Whistler is the Adara Hotel. For us, it is the perfect mix of luxury and affordability with everything you need for a comfortable stay. They offer underground parking and are only a one-minute walk from the Whistler Stroll, so you can park your car and leave it while you explore Whistler Village. They also have a beautiful outdoor pool and hot tub offering mountain views – perfect for relaxing in the evening. The loft rooms are our favorites and most also offer mountain views from the upstairs patio.

For budget travelers, Pangea Pod Hotel is a great option. It’s a basic hotel with pod-style rooms with clean, well looked after facilities. The location is also really good and you are within walking distance to the ski lifts in Whistler Upper Village. One thing to note is this is not your typical hotel and it does lack privacy due to the style of rooms. However, for location and price, it’s the best low-cost option. We like booking here through either Hostelworld.com or Booking.com.

If you can spend a little more (my typical category), then you can certainly get privacy in a good location. The Pinnacle Hotel Whistler is located in the heart of Whistler Upper Village, and features a fitness center, hot tub, pool, and restaurant. On top of that, it’s only 500 meters from the chairlifts.

For luxury travelers, I obviously love the Fairmont Chateau Whistler, but another option slightly cheaper is the Pan Pacific Whistler Village Centre. Its location is perfect for luxury skiers because it’s only 250 meters from the closest gondola. On top of that, it has all the luxury facilities you’d expect such as a heated, outdoor pool and 2 hot tubs with mountain views, a fitness center, a spa and wellness center, as well as an included breakfast. Oh, and all suites have a full kitchen!

Those are just a few of the many amazing places to stay in Whistler – read our blog for more info!

Thanks for reading!

Bailey from Destinationless Travel on a gondola in Whistler
Thanks for reading!

Whistler truly is a winter wonderland and you’re sure to enjoy a holiday there at this time of year. With plenty of fun things to do in Whistler in winter, it’s going to be a trip to remember!

For more great blogs, be sure to browse around this site a little more. I absolutely love writing about travel and have tons of information to share with travelers like myself!

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