As Vancouver turns into a winter wonderland (way ahead of schedule), the pull of the outdoors is ever-strong. And since BC is known for its ski resorts and outdoor experiences, we think it’s time to share some go-to options when it comes to getting outside this season. And no, it’s not all about skiing and snowboarding. There are plenty of other fun activities that will have you feeling just as sporty and outdoorsy!

Without further ado, here are some great outdoor activities to try around Vancouver this winter.



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While there are a ton of snowshoe trails to enjoy all around Vancouver, Grouse Mountain does boast ‘The Snowshoe Grind’, which is a tamed-down, winter version of the ever-popular trail up the mountain. Looking for something even more adventurous (and cheaper)? Then you might want to try a day trip to Squamish.

Where: 6400 Nancy Greene Way, North Vancouver

Cross-country skiing

While snowshoeing is a toss-up for the best place to go, cross-country skiing has a clear-cut winner. Cypress Mountain boasts some of the best, and most popular, cross-country trails in all of Canada. Head out during the day for a fun expedition, or, enjoy the 7.5km of lit trails at night!

Where: 6000 Cypress Bowl Road, West Vancouver

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Snow tubing


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Tubing (or tobogganing) is certainly a rare opportunity for Vancouverites. Luckily, you can enjoy both on dedicated hills at Mt. Seymour. It’s a great option if you’re looking for a family-friendly day trip, or as a way to unwind after a day on the actual slopes.

Where: 1700 Mt Seymour Road, North Vancouver

Downhill skiing

Speaking of actual slopes, we can’t forget that all three of Metro Vancouver’s mountains offer great, close-to-home on-piste options. This is a no-brainer pick, so all we’ll say is that you’re better off playing hooky during the week than trying to visit on the weekend.

And in addition to the trifecta, there are plenty of other amazing ski hills to check out in BC if you’re up for a bit of a road trip.

Where: 1700 Mt Seymour Road, North Vancouver, 6000 Cypress Bowl Road, West Vancouver and 6400 Nancy Greene Way, North Vancouver

Ice skating

We’re pleased as punch that both of Metro Vancouver’s ice skating areas have reopened for the winter! Head down to the Shipyards Skate Plaza and Robson Square Ice Rink for some hot laps with family or friends. Plus, if you bring your own skates, both of these options are free!

And if you’re looking for something new, check out the mountaintop ice skating pond at Grouse Mountain.

Where: 125 Victory Ship Way, North Vancouver and 800 Robson Street


Told you we’d have a left-field pick or two in here. Thanks to Vancouver’s (usually) temperate climate, winter kayaking is actually not as insane an idea as it sounds. But, instead of braving the Burrard Inlet or Horseshoe Bay, take the drive to Deep Cove for a much more relaxing & still scenic day on the water.

Where: 2156 Banbury Road, North Vancouver



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Of course, one of our final picks is also for the most ambitious outdoors enthusiasts around. Take a weekend off and hop on the ferry, then make the drive to either Tofino or Ucluelet. The spot doesn’t matter, as both offer easy access to beaches with great winter surfing. It’s a bucket list experience for most Canadian surfers, and we stand by it.

Where: Tofino/Ucluelet, Vancouver Island

Go on a winter stroll 

By contrast, a winter stroll is perfect for any type of outdoor enthusiast. If the point is getting outside and enjoying the beautiful winter scenery that Vancouver has to offer, then this list is the perfect place to start.

Where: See our picks above

While we’re partial to a day of snowshoeing or some laps at the ice rink, we hope that this list of outdoor activities to try around Vancouver gave you some solid ideas.