Your Outdoors Bucket List for Winter 2023/24 in Vancouver

Family snowshoeing at the Sea to Sky Gondola in Squamish

Family snowshoeing at the Sea to Sky Gondola. Photo Sea to Sky Gondola

With snow dusting the tops of the North Shore mountains, it’s beginning to feel a lot like winter in Vancouver. From sledding to skiing to snowshoeing and more, you’ll want to add these outdoor adventures to your winter 2023/24 bucket list.


Go Sledding and Snow-Tubing

While it rarely snows in the city, Vancouver’s mountains get lots of snow. Make sure you slide down the slopes at one of Vancouver’s snow tube parks this winter.

Family sledding at Grouse Mountain in Vancouver

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


Ice Skate Outdoors

Feel the snowflakes land on your cheeks as you twirl around the ice at an outdoor rink this winter. Vancouver has a few different outdoor skating locations to choose from.

Ice skating at night at Whistler Olympic Plaza

Ice skating at Whistler Olympic Plaza. Photo: Tourism Whistler/Justa Jeskova


Go on an Adventure After Dark

Sunset comes early at this time of year, but just because it’s dark doesn’t mean you can’t have an adventure. Our guide to snowy nighttime adventures has info on night skiing, snowshoeing by headlamp, skating under the stars, and lots more.

Night skiing at Cypress Mountain

Skiing at Cypress Mountain. Photo: Destination Vancouver/Kindred & Scout


Go Snowshoeing

Snowshoeing is one of the easiest winter sports you can try. If you can walk, you can snowshoe! Try one of our picks for beginner-friendly snowshoe trails, or sign up for unique snowshoe tours where you can combine snowshoeing with fondue or snowshoe at night.

A group of people snowshoeing at Grouse Mountain in Vancouver

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


Go Skiing or Snowboarding

There are six ski resorts near Vancouver. Stay local at North Shore Mountains: Mount Seymour, Grouse Mountain, or Cypress Mountain. You can also drive north to the world-class terrain at Whistler Blackcomb. To the east, hit the slopes at family-friendly Sasquatch Mountain or Manning Park Resort. Our guide to skiing near Vancouver in winter 2023/24 has all the info you need to plan a trip.

Skiing above the clouds at Cypress Mountain in Vancouver.

Skiing at Cypress Mountain. Photo: Destination Vancouver/Kindred & Scout


Try an Extreme Sport

Warm up this winter by getting your blood pumping with an adrenaline rush. Try extreme sports like ice climbing and bungee jumping, ride a snowmobile or bobsled, or soar through the air on a zipline or helicopter. You won’t want to miss these adventurous Vancouver winter activities.

Whistler Bungee

Photo: Whistler Bungee


Ride a Gondola to a Winter Wonderland

Step onto the Grouse Mountain Skyride or the Sea to Sky Gondola and let it whisk you up the mountain to a winter wonderland. At the top, you’ll find snowy scenes perfect for photos, easy walks through the forest to beautiful views, snowshoe tours, and lots of holiday fun.

Snowshoers at the Sea to Sky Gondola

Photo: Sea to Sky Gondola


Hang Out With Hundreds of Eagles

Did you know that Squamish is home to one of the world’s largest populations of wintering bald eagles? Each year over 1000 eagles spend December and January hanging out along the Squamish River just north of Vancouver. Pack your binoculars, then use our list of the best places to spot eagles.

Eagle in flight in the fog.

Photo: Phillipp Pilz/Unsplash


Try Cross-Country Skiing

Cross-country skiing is a great way to explore the winter landscape. You can get a full-body workout or go for a casual cruise with friends. There are four cross-country ski areas near Vancouver to choose from.

Cross-country skiing at Cypress Mountain

Cross-country skiing at Cypress Mountain. Photo: Destination Vancouver/Kindred & Scout


Enjoy Outdoor Holiday Lights

Combine the magic of twinkling holiday lights with an outdoor adventure at Canyon Lights at the Capilano Suspension Bridge, the Light Walk at Grouse Mountain, or the Decorated Forest Walk at the Sea to Sky Gondola.

Cliffwalk at Canyon Lights, Photo: Capilano Suspension Bridge Park


Take the Polar Bear Plunge

Did know that Vancouverites have been taking polar bear swims on New Year’s Day since 1920? Plan to ring in 2024 with a frigid dip in the ocean or a lake. Our guide to Vancouver polar bear swims has tips on where to go and how to prepare.

Vancouver Polar Bear Swim

Photo: City of Vancouver


Go for a Hike

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. And be sure to read our tips for safe winter hiking before you go.

The dock at Whyte Lake in West Vancouver, an easy hike

Whyte Lake. Photo: Taryn Eyton/

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