British Columbia

British Columbia Travel Guide

For winter sports lovers, Whistler is one of the most popular destinations not just in British Columbia, but in all of North America. Visitors can ski, snowboard, zip-line, ice skate, bungee jump and more in this lovely town, the host of the 2010 Winter Olympics. After hitting the slope, there’s a wonderful array of activities, too: from shopping to dining to dancing the night away at a club. Adventurous travelers looking for things to do in British Columbia will also love the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, (where they can walk along the 230 ft tall and 450 ft long bridge above the river) and the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail, a gorgeous hiking route lined with beaches, tide pools, picnic areas and breathtaking landscapes.

Speaking of great views, don’t miss Glacier National Park, where mountains, caves, rivers and active glaciers create a spectacular experience. For a more low-key approach to nature, spend the day at one of Victoria’s pretty beaches, like Cordova Bay and Gonzales. For a taste of British Columbia’s most vibrant side, head to the beautiful city of Vancouver. With a rich cultural side (expect opera, theater, and film happenings, as well as art and design fairs throughout the year), excellent restaurants and bars, and an eco-friendly lifestyle, it brings together all of the greatest things to do in British Columbia.

What started as a tiny consignment shop in the indie district around King Edward Avenue has grown into the neighborhood’s premiere boutique for all things antique and secondhand. Find vintage leather clutches and bags alongside baby toys, kitchenware, printed stationery, and more.

In the Victorian neighborhood of Gastown, this three-story Native American art gallery showcases ceremonial masks and totem poles, limited-edition prints, and bentwood boxes. The beaded moccasins and hand-carved “talking sticks” make for great souvenirs.

This boutique in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood carries a carefully selected collection of jackets, knits, dresses, and other casual wear for women. The petite shop's tightly curated inventory means clothing is often stocked just one-per-size so popular items are snapped up quickly.

At the forefront of Main Street's growing reputation as a design Mecca, this quirky Mount Pleasant clothing boutique stocks locally made art-house designs with Socialist tendencies.

Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is the second busiest airport in Canada and welcomes millions of travelers each year. The airport is serviced by 68 airlines, which connect passengers to 121 destinations around the globe.

Mission Hill is one of the most impressive wineries anywhere—a reported $26 million investment by the owner of Mike's Hard Lemonade—set on a rise above Okanagan Lake.

Located pre-security on level three in the international departures wing of the Vancouver International Airport, this shop sells a selection of uniquely Canadian food gifts.

The iconic “five sails” of this waterfront, multi-use complex welcome thousands of arriving cruise-ship passengers on summer days—and also serve as a visual anchor for the city skyline.

Located in Kitsilano Beach Park on the edge of English Bay, this seasonal public pool features panoramic views of the downtown skyline backed by the North Shore Mountains.

Vancouver’s closest mountain for skiing and hiking sits eight miles north of Downtown, and it’s open year-round. A modern tram brings visitors to the summit, some 3,700 feet above the city (be sure to bring your camera—the views are stunning in every season).

North America’s oldest corporation—established in 1670!—Hudson’s Bay Company (known locally as just The Bay) has long been known for its iconic, cream-colored wool blankets, boldly striped in yellow, red, navy, and green.

Hike through the orchards of Merridale Ciderworks, seven miles south of Cowichan Bay. Rick Pipes and Janet Docherty make their cider from English and French heirloom apples and distill a fine Calvados-style brandy using a traditional copper still.

Set on the main drag of trendy Gastown, this high-end showroom carries contemporary furniture, lighting, and accessories from high-end brands like B&B Italia, Vitra, Carl Hansen & Son, Baccarat, and more.

Share a gelato while strolling the flower-carpeted 55 acres complete with traditional Japanese, Italian, and English rose sections.

This Prohibition-era inspired restaurant and bar overlooks the Maple Tree Square section of historic Gastown. Owned by a handful of bartending veterans, the intimate, neighborhood venue serves Asian-influenced small plates like bánh mì and gyoza.