WHISTLER MUST-SEE SIGHTS AND ATTRACTIONS
Whistler is conveniently located in the Coast Mountains of British Columbia, just two hours north of Vancouver. Featuring two mountains with epic snow conditions, four championship golf courses, bars, restaurants and shopping, it’s consistently been voted the number one mountain resort in North America.
Sea to Sky Highway View PointsBeginning just north of Horseshoe Bay, and winding some 100 plus kms along the coast of Howe Sound through the city of Squamish, and inland to Whistler is the spectacularly scenic Sea to Sky Highway. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Sound, as well as Bowen, Anvil and Gambier islands (the latter once the largest boom island in the world.) Along this amazing drive be sure to keep your eyes open for the Cultural Journey highway signage. Cultural Journey was created by the Squamish and Lil’wat First Nations to welcome the world to the Sea to Sky Corridor.
Porteau CoveEnroute between Horseshoe Bay and Squamish is Porteau Cove. Just off the highway this serene stop is a perfect place to enjoy a roadside picnic and view the Howe Sound. The cove is a diver’s paradise, consisting of several old ships, including a 1920’s tugboat, a crane barge, a sailboat hull and a former minesweeper, sunken to create artificial reefs.
The Stawamus Chief, SquamishThe Stawamus Chief is a staggering 700 meter (2000plus feet) granite cliff-face just south of Squamish. Enticing rock climbers and hikers alike, it is suggested that the Chief is the second largest granite monolith in the world. Be sure to stop as you are bound to see climbers challenging its sheer face.
The FallsEvery spring in Whistler the snow starts to melt away after the first heavy rain and one of the local and tourist favorite pastimes is trekking to the waterfalls to watch as they cascade from mountain tops. The areas finest include:
- Alexander – located 30 minutes from Whistler;
- Brandywine – located 15 minutes south of Whistler;
- Nairn – located 30 minutes north of Whistler, near the town of Pemberton
- Shannon Falls – located 50 minutes south of Whistler, near the Stawamus Chief; height
In addition to waterfalls, Whistler is also surrounded by glaciers that provide fun day trips when you embark on a heli-hike, heli-ski trip or just a regular old helicopter tour.
Garibaldi Provincial ParkGaribaldi Provincial Park runs along the Sea to Sky Highway between Squamish and Pemberton is home to many trailheads that range in length from 2km to 16km. The park also offers an abundance of recreational activities including canoeing, cycling, fishing, swimming, camping and winter recreation.
BrakendaleBrackendale, a community north of Squamish, is the winter home of the North American bald eagle and holds the world record count for eagles, 3,769 in 1994. The best time to view the eagles is from mid-December to mid-January but they may also be seen in late November and early February. For viewing head to the “Eagle Run” along the dyke where you’ll find a walking trail and viewing platform.
PEAK 2 PEAKThe PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola is another great way to see 360 degree views of Whistler no matter where you look. This alpine experience starts with a 20 minute gondola ride from the village of Whistler to the Roundhouse on Whistler Mountain where you catch another ride to Rendezvous on Blackcomb. While at these heights, wander the trails or take the Peak 2 Peak Gondola to connect to the next mountain. There are 13 well-maintained alpine trails to discover on Whistler and six more on Blackcomb. Your hiking options are endless!
Top PEAK View Points & Trails
- Peak Interpretive Trail: Alpine Views, Length - 1.6km/1mile, Elevation - 30m/98ft
- Harmony Lake Trail: Alpine Forests & Lakes, Length - 2.5km/1.6miles, Elevation - 130m/426ft
- Musical Bumps: Views of Black Tusk, Cheakamus Glacier and Cheakamus Lake, Length - 21km/13miles, Elevation - 30m/98ft
- Burnt Stew: View of Fitzsimmons Valley, Length - 1.7km/1miles, Elevation - 270m/885ft