10 Family-Friendly Winter Adventures Around Vancouver

Taking a ski lesson on Grouse Mountain

Family ski lessons on Grouse Mountain. Photo: Destination Vancouver/Grouse Mountain

Take your family on an outdoor adventure this winter. Keep your kids entertained with fun activities like sledding, hiking, skiing, eagle-watching and more. Here are our picks for the best family-friendly things to do in Vancouver this winter.


Sledding or Snow-Tubing

Kids love sliding down snowy slopes, and adults will love unleashing their inner child to join in on the fun. There are seven tube parks with guaranteed snow near Vancouver. And when the white stuff falls in the city, local parks transform into toboggan hills. Check out our guide to sledding in Vancouver for details.

Family sledding at Grouse Mountain in Vancouver

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


Enjoy Outdoor Holiday Lights

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

Lights by the Lake in Harrison Hot Springs

Lights by the Lake. Photo: Tourism Harrison



While the tops of the mountains are blanketed in snow, the forest is still green closer to the ocean. Vancouverites love to hike all year. Use our list of snow-free Vancouver hikes to plan your winter hiking trip. Most are short and easy, perfect for families.

Children hiking in the forest near Vancouver, BC

Photo: Tourism Vancouver / Hubert Kang


Skiing and Snowboarding

With six ski resorts near Vancouver, there’s a great ski hill for your family’s skill level. Kids enjoy discounted lift tickets and rentals. Lessons are a great way to help kids gain confidence on the hill. Enroll them in a morning lesson, then ski together as a family in the afternoon.

A family at the gondola platform at Whislter Mountain near Vancouve

Photo: Destination BC/Rick Collins


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 treasures 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.

Open geocache with treasure inside.

Photo: Settergren on Pixabay


Ice Skating

You can skate in the crisp winter air at five outdoor rinks around Vancouver. They each have skate rentals on-site. Our guide to outdoor skating in Vancouver has more info. You can also check out community ice rinks in Vancouver, Burnaby, and the surrounding municipalities for indoor skating. Most have family-friendly drop-in skating sessions.

A family skates at Whistler Olympic Plaza

Skating at Whistler Olympic Plaza. Photo: Tourism Whistler/Justa Jeskova



Did you know that Squamish is home to one of the world’s largest populations of wintering bald eagles? Kids will love walking along the river to see how many eagles they can spot. Don’t forget to pack your binoculars!

Eagle in flight in the fog.

Photo: Phillipp Pilz/Unsplash



Snowshoeing is one of the simplest winter sports you can try. If you can walk, you can snowshoe! It’s especially easy for kids since they are light and don’t sink into the snow as much as adults. Vancouver’s North Shore Mountains are a great place to try snowshoeing for the first time. Try one of our picks for beginner-friendly snowshoe trails.

Two people snowshoeing at Grouse Mountain in Vancouver

Snowshoeing at Grouse Mountain. Photo: Destination Vancouver/Kindred & Scout


Explore a New Park

Greater Vancouver is dotted with fabulous parks that protect forests, meadows, wetlands, and shorelines. Use our park of the month archives to find a new-to-you park, then go out on a family adventure.

People walk on a boardwalk at Campbell Valley Regional Park in Langley

Exploring Campbell Valley Regional Park. Photo: Metro Vancouver


Ride a Gondola to a Winter Wonderland

The Grouse Mountain Skyride and the Sea to Sky Gondola will whisk you up the mountain to a winter wonderland. Kids will love the Light Walk, an easy path through the forest lit up with thousands of lights. At the Sea to Sky Gondola, face your fears with a walk across the suspension bridge. Both attractions also have lots of holiday-themed decor and events.

Snowshoers at the Sea to Sky Gondola

Photo: Sea to Sky Gondola

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