New Sea to Sky Gondola Ready to Open Outside Vancouver

Photo sourced from Sea to Sky Gondola.

Photo sourced from Sea to Sky Gondola.

The long-awaited Sea to Sky Gondola is finally set to take its first passengers.

Situated in Squamish, about one hour north of Vancouver, the gondola will begin whisking visitors from sea level to a height of more than 885 metres on May 16.

The $22-million facility is situated on a strip of land between the famous Stawamus Chief Provincial Park (better known as “the Chief”) and Shannon Falls.  After a 10-minute ride in plush, eight-person gondola cars, passengers disembark on a mountain peak situated high above Howe Sound.

Up top, there’s an entire adventure centre tucked away high in the Coast Mountains.  A 9,000-square-foot lodge offers visitors a place to grab a beer or bite to eat and enjoy the views from multiple viewing platforms.  Meanwhile, a network of walking trails provide access to the kind of alpine scenery usually accessible only to serious hikers.

Hop on the Panorama Trail for a 1.6-kilometre trek through woods and across cedar bridges to a one-of-a-kind viewpoint, a special, cantilevered platform extending right off the side of the mountain.  For a taste of local First Nations culture, explore the 400-metre Spirit Trail, which offers an interpretive account of the local aboriginal community, the Squamish Nation.

Photo sourced from Sea to Sky Gondola.

Photo sourced from Sea to Sky Gondola.

In addition, there’s a wobbly suspension bridge hung across a deep gully separating two peaks (at 100-metres-long, it’s only a bit shorter than the world famous 140-metre Capilano Suspension Bridge).  Plus, more experienced hikers can also access serious backcountry trails from the top of the gondola.

While the project has not been without some controversy (including opposition from activists who fear the impact on nearby Stawamus Chief Provincial Park and its iconic, 700-metre granite dome), it’s also being lauded as a way for people of all ages and skill levels to experience a pristine piece of mountain scenery.  The gondola is expected to provide some 60 full-time jobs and inject $3 million into the economy of Squamish, the so-called “Outdoor Capital of Canada.’

Photo sourced from Sea to Sky Gondola.

Photo sourced from Sea to Sky Gondola.

The Sea to Sky Gondola officially opens on May 16.  Adult tickets are $34.95, with discounts for seniors, youth and family groups.

Would you take a ride on the Sea to Sky Gondola? Let us know below. 

Follow me on Twitter @RemyScalza for more updates. 

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28 Responses to New Sea to Sky Gondola Ready to Open Outside Vancouver

  1. Sandra

    Not at that price!

  2. Erin

    Yes I wanna take a ride on the new gondola!! Very cool. A great opportunity for families to see an area otherwise not accessible.

  3. I’m a travel agent guest services concierge at the largest full service hotel in the Fraser Valley and one if the many things I do is keep abreast of what’s going on in and around the community so that our guests can experience what I already know. Being in the tourism travel and hospitality industry over 25 years and now in charge of social media marketing for the hotel, I can’t wAit for this new attraction to open and would love to experience a ride on the gondola!

  4. Marie-Claire van den Heuvel

    Yes, we would love to!!!! We are from the Netherlands ( Europe) and in July we are going on a vacation to Vancouver and Alaska for three weeks! I am already planning the trip to see all those beautiful places and this would be an incredible and beautiful experience to remember our vacation.

    Kind regards,

    Marie-Claire van den Heuvel

  5. Pingback: The long-awaited Sea to Sky Gondola is almost set to take its first passengers http://www.insidevancouver.ca/2014/04/14/new-sea-to-sky-gondola-set-to-open-outside-vancouver/

  6. Patti

    Cant wait to go.. Planning the weekend in Squamish May 24th…so excited

  7. Peggy

    Hope there will be discounts for local residents.

  8. Corey Ouellet

    I have lived in Vancouver since 2008 and have not yet had a Squamish experience… this sounds like a perfect opportunity to initiate one.

  9. Neena

    Yes my family would love to go. Not so affordable at those prices

  10. Neena

    Yes my family would love to go. Not so affordable at those prices

  11. max

    Greaaat.

    Was hard enough to find parking to do the hike as is
    … now it is going to be impossible.

    Way to ruin a good hike. Now with more tourists, crying babies, and trash on the peaks. For those wanting an easy way up, go to cypress.

    Leave the chief to the rest of us.

    • Tom J

      Don’t be silly, this is accessing the mountains behind the Chief and does nothing to harm the experience of hiking up the Chief. The gondola will have its own parking area and overflow area serviced by a shuttle (according to the gondola website) so it will not affect the existing parking areas for Shannon Falls and the Chief. As a former Squamish resident I think this is a truly awesome attraction for tourists. Cheers.

  12. Larry

    After a lovely day on the mountain… drinking … I hope you have a shuttle to the nearest Hotel..thx

  13. Michele

    Not for $35!

  14. Christine Taylor

    Bit pricey

  15. Lisa C

    Hell YEAH!

  16. Frank

    I’ve hiked the Chief and now I’m ready to ride it up. It’s a major investment and $35.00 is really quite inexpensive . The views are awesome and now with trails to explore, super natural British Columbia is more than just a slogan!
    Squamish is a perfect place to view over beautiful Howe Sound.
    Wish I could be there for he first ride up!
    Frank

  17. derek

    Time for gondola between north van and waterfront station. Get rid of seabus!

  18. Mario

    Planning different scenic sites for visiting family from Italy this summer. This sounds worth the drive from the city, but a multiple person discount pack would be ideal.

  19. Judy

    Most definitely! can’t wait I love the Sea to Sky and all it’s beautiful glory.

  20. Eric Jones

    Awesome!

  21. The price seems a bit steep for 10 minutes… but yes, I would do this because I just love the beautiful BC trails and outdoors. Can’t wait!

  22. Clio

    Oh Yes, as a Sydneysider-Australia, My 1st visit to Vancouver is in June. I’ll definitely be on this Gondola!

  23. Bob Law

    It’s typical BC fayre…overpriced. And everyone will pay it, because the alternative is to object, and Canadian’s would rather yell at people from their cars than object to anything worth challenging. Nice though, especially the bridge.

  24. Kelly

    I don’t think a ride on the gondola is too expensive at that price, that’s actually a pretty average price, I do wonder if they would also discount for military families? Beautiful view and lots of things to do at the top! Sounds similar to the one at Alyeska, Alaska :)

  25. valerie

    I would if someone threw a freebie my way (hint, hint)

  26. Ruby

    Me to! It would be a lovely adventure; See a part of BC that I haven’t

  27. Karen

    We are visiting Canada for the first time in September and we are staying in Vancouver for a week. Hope there will be some organised tours to this, as we would love to go.

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