10 Family-Friendly Things to do Outdoors in Vancouver This Winter Break

Family sledding at Grouse Mountain in Vancouver

Family sledding at Grouse Mountain. Photo: Tourism Vancouver/Grouse Mountain

Looking to keep the kids entertained this Winter Break and want to make some holiday memories too? Plan an outdoor adventure that the whole family will enjoy. Here are our picks for the best Vancouver area family-friendly things to do outside this Winter Break.


Until February 5, 2021, in line with the public health order issued on November 20, non-essential travel into and out of BC is not recommended. BC residents let’s do our part by continuing to stay local and support local, with your immediate household or bubble, in accordance with the latest guidelines


Go For a Hike

While the mountain peaks may be covered in snow, it’s still hiking season down at sea level. Work up an appetite for your holiday meal with a family hike. Use our lists of the best hikes for kids or the best rainy day hikes to pick a trail. Hiking is a little different during the pandemic. Read our tips for getting outdoors during COVID-19.


Try Snowshoeing

Snowshoeing is one of the easiest winter sports you can try. If you can walk, you can snowshoe. Head to one of the North Shore mountains to rent snowshoes, then try one  of our beginner-friendly snowshoe trail recommendations.


Enjoy Outdoor Lights

Family members of all ages will love the magic of twinkling Christmas light. Take a stroll through your neighbourhood or head to one of the dazzling outdoor light displays around Vancouver.


Go Skiing or Snowboarding

Winter break is a great time to go skiing or snowboarding as a family. With six ski areas in the Vancouver area, you have lots of choices. Skiing is a little bit different this winter due to COVID-19 so be sure to check before heading out.

Photo: Tourism Vancouver

Try Birding

Vancouver has a thriving bird population (even in the winter), and spotting birds can be a fun activity for the whole family. Grab some binoculars, download a bird ID app, then use our list of the best birding spots near Vancouver to plan your day.


Take the Dog to an Off-leash Park

Celebrate the season with your furry family members on a visit to one of Vancouver’s off-leash dog parks. There are lots of places where Fido can run free, play fetch, or dig in the sand.


Skate on an Outdoor Rink

Nothing says winter quite like skating outdoors. The Vancouver area has three outdoor skating rinks to choose from and they are all decked out for the holidays with seasonal decor and twinkling lights.


Take a Family Walk

The Vancouver area has plenty of gorgeous places to take a family walk. You can explore urban parks that feel like wilderness, or follow one of our recommended walking routes. Pro tip: Bring a thermos of hot chocolate to warm up mid-way.

Family at Prospect Point in Stanley Park, Vancouver

Prospect Point in Stanley Park is a great place for a family walk. Photo: Tourism Vancouver/Hubert Kang


Try Geocaching

Have you heard of geocaching? It’s a family-friendly hobby where you use a phone app or GPS device to find hidden treasure all over the city. There are hundreds of geocaches around Vancouver to discover. Read our beginners guide to geocaching to learn how to get started.


Go Sledding, Tobogganing, or Snow Tubing

Sledding is a fun activity for all ages and it is the perfect winter break activity. Cross your fingers for a white Christmas to sled close to home, or head up to one of Vancouver’s ski hills. They have sledding and tubing parks with guaranteed snow. Use our guide to find a local sledding spot.

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