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24 Things to do in Whistler in Summer (2021 Update)

Summer vacation in Whistler

Are you looking for things to do in Whistler in Summer? Look no further

this is your go-to list of whistler summer vacation inspiration. 

Of course, the best things to do in the summer in Whistler depend on what sort of summer vacation you are on. Maybe you want to cool off in a chilly mountain lake, shred the glacier for Whistler Summer Skiing, or spend some chill time outside with the kids.

From the peak to the valley, Whatever you are looking for, you cannot beat a Whistler summer.

Is Whistler Worth Visiting in Summer?

Whistler may be renowned for its skiing and snowboarding, but we can confirm that Whistler offers just as much fun during the summer months.

You could still see mountain peaks capped with snow, but it’s lush, green, and idyllic all season long in the Valley.

Are you looking for family activities in BC? Whistler is perfect for kids of all ages. Want something in the backcountry? Whistler has epic forests, mountain peaks, and waterfalls worth exploring. Need something more relaxed? Have you experienced the ambiance and food in the Village?

Summer officially kicks off here in June, and the warm temperatures last until September. Just like during the snowy months, you can expect crowds in the Village but lots of room to explore in the mountains and forests surrounding Whistler. 

The busiest times will be over the Canada Day, BC Day, and Labour Day weekends.

Whether you are here for a day, a weekend, or a month, you’ll never run out of summer activities. So let us help inspire your next Whistler Summer vacation!

24 Things to Do in Whistler in Summer

1. Whitewater Rafting

As the snow leaves us, the waters surrounding the Village run white and fast. If your group is full of thrill-seekers bursting to get their fix, riding these white waters is bound to give them just that. 

Take your choice from mild to wild, drifting through the Cheakamus, Green Elaho, or Squamish rivers. Be prepared to get wet and messy, but don’t fret. Tours include wetsuits, transportation, and professional raft guides to ensure the wildest of rides make it back to dry land safe and sound.

Book Your Whitewater Experience Here

2. Peak 2 Peak Gondola

As you can imagine, the ever-changing landscape that lies between the Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains presents a breathtaking view while dangling between the two. 

Sat safely in a gondola lift, you can enjoy 3.03 kilometers of postcard-worthy sights. The Peak to Peak Gondola is a Guinness World Record-breaking experience that dishes up 360˚ vistas from 436 meters above the ground. 

As the longest and highest Gondola lift in the world, riding the Peak to Peak will be worth it no matter what time of year you visit

3. Dig into the Foodie Scene

No trip is complete without dipping your taste buds into the local cuisine. Cuisine that you often don’t have the chance to try at home.

In Whistler, this kind of culinary delight comes in bounds as the area has built up quite the reputation for its farm-to-table dining. 

As many eateries have taken advantage of the farmland just a hop and skip away from Whistler, you will find menus that evolve with what is in season, as well as organic meats and comforting plates. 

A few local faves include Alta Bistro, Purebred Bakery, Bearfoot Bistro, and Bar Oso, just to name a few.

4. Air Con, Art, and Culture

Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre is the perfect reducational pit stop

Are you looking to escape the heat for a few hours? Want to introduce yourself to a bit of Whistler’s cultural heritage while blasted by air conditioning? 

Whistler contains not one but two world-class museums and cultural centers.

Check out Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre to dive deep into the local indigenous community history and cultures. Check their schedule for events, workshops, and tours through this beautiful facility.

For art buffs, you may also enjoy the Audain Art Museum near the Village parking lots. The building itself is a feat of architectural genius, but it’s what’s inside that we love most. They have a significant permanent collection showcasing more than 250 years of BC art history and an ongoing roster of temporary exhibits.

5. Ziplining Through the Cool Forest

This is one of the best family activities in BC. If your squad is game for fast-paced sport, ziplining is one of the best outdoor activities in Whistler in the Summer. 

Whistler is renowned for being the place for some of the best ziplining in the world. Adrenaline junkies and casual adventurers alike, there is a zipline for you all. 

Superfly Ziplines will show you the stunning Whistler landscape from the best viewpoint around – above (and through) the trees!

Book Your Zipline Experience Here

6. Learn an Olympic Sport at Whistler’s Sliding Centre

Built for the 2010 winter games, the Whistler Sliding Center is open all year round, including summer activities.

What better summer activity is there than learning the art of the bobsled? The Whistler Olympic Sliding Centre offers a summer bobsled experience, where you can experience the full track and hit speeds of up to 90 km an hour.

Want a slower-paced Olympic-themed activity? The Sliding Center is open for free sightseeing all Summer long.

7. Get on a SUP! 

The quintessential Whistler summer afternoon is spent on one of the area’s many lakes. Paddleboarding is suitable for people of all ages and abilities. 

Use this big floatation device as a platform for SUP Yoga, a crowd-free hangout with friends, or a way to cool down. SUP’ing on Whistler lake is a bucket list item.

Rent a SUP from one of Whistler’s many rental companies (Whistler Eco Tours and Kahuna Paddle Boards are two options). Then, slather on the sunscreen, fill your water bottle, and head out for a sunny afternoon on the lake.

8. A Round of Golf

Imagine teeing off surrounded by lush coastal rainforest and snowy mountain peaks—That’s what you get when you step onto the Fairmont Whistler Golf Course. 

With not one but two 18-hole courses and a 9-hole Par 3 course, there is something for everyone. You may even be lucky enough to see one of the local bears wander on course in the shoulder seasons. 

Book Your Golfing Experience here

9. Tree Top Adventures, Great for Kids

If the kids aren’t feeling a heart-racing zipline experience, you can still get them into the canopy. Located right next to Superfly ziplines is the tree-top Aerial Obstacle Course. 

A perfect thing to do with kids in the summer, everyone will be safely harnessed in before navigating a series of challenging elevated obstacles. Expect tight ropes, balance obstacles, and mini zip lines, all done in the canopy of the old-growth forests.

10. Get Out on The Lake

Beat the heat of the Whistler summer by diving into our pristine lakes.

Whistler’s lakes are cool and refreshing, with water fed straight from the glaciers and surrounding mountains.

Check out Alta Lake, Nita Lake, Alpha Lake, Lost Lake, and Green Lake. Take your dog to one of the many off-leash dog parks, bring a cooler for a day of beach lounging, or drag the kids to the playgrounds. Every lake offers something different.

Tag Whistler Rzr Adventure

What RzR adventure will you choose?

11. Rip it on Whistler RZR Tour

Discover Whistler or Blackcomb Mountain with a bumpy ride on a RZR. Fit for groups, couples, and solo travelers, you will be ripping along the backcountry for a thrill-seeking adventure amongst the beauty of Whistler in the summer. 

Choose to take on a leisurely ride or tackle the rugged terrain with many tour options available. No experience is required to hop on a quad, a professional will guide you through the trip at all times.

Book Your RZR Tour Here

12. Bear Watching 

Whistler is home to many black bears and cubs during the summer months.

The best way to see them is from a safe distance on a Bear Watching Tour. To ensure you encounter one of the 50 Whistler bears, expert guides track bear feeding patterns as they shift across the area. 

With a wealth of knowledge in their pockets, your guide will drive you in a 4×4 through their known areas to introduce you to Whistler’s flora and fauna, including the incredible black bears.

Book Your Bear Experience Here

13. Hike (and Then Hike Some More)

Whistler is a hiker’s haven, with many trails that accommodate adventure enthusiasts of all levels. No matter which path you head down, you are moments away from a lake, forest, waterfall, or picturesque viewpoint. 

Here are our picks for easy, intermediate, and challenging trails.

  • Easy: Lost Lake Loop

There is a free shuttle that takes you to Lost Lake Park from the Village. However, the walk from the Village is also not far. 

The Lost Lake Loop is the perfect choice to discover what you have on your doorstep. Complete in an hour or so, you’re in for views of the lake, Blackcomb and Whistler Mountains.

  • Intermediate: Overlord Trail

Brace yourself. You’re about to be gifted those iconic views of alpine wildflowers and snow-capped mountains that you have merely seen on postcards back home. 

This trial will take one to two hours and takes the Blackcomb chairlift up to the alpine vista.

  • Challenging: Garibaldi Lake

Have you ever visited a glacier-fed lake? Garibaldi Lake is surrounded by the most stunning mountain peaks and alpine meadows. 

Renowned for its beauty, many hikers choose to stay a little longer by reserving a tent pad for the night. The round trip takes four to six hours and begins at the top of the Rubble Creek parking lot.

Book a Hiking Guide Here

A man celebrates with hands up in the air at Forged Axe throwing

Who has the chops to win a round of axe throwing?

14. Axe Throwing With Your Crew

Get competitive and try out the invigorating sport of axe throwing. Our local experts, Forged Axe Throwing, can host groups, couples, and solo visitors. For those over the age of 19, you can now also enjoy a celebratory beer or two after you win!

Eyes on the target, folks! You will be competing in axe throwing tournaments, learn trick shots, or you can even have a bullseye derby.

Are you traveling with a big crew? You have the added option of being able to book the entire place for yourselves! 

Book Your Axe Experience Here

15. Whistler Summer Bucket List — Bungee Jumping

While it might be extreme for some, if you’re game, conquer your fears or test your bravery by bungee jumping from platforms high above the glacier-fed Cheakamus River. 

Whether you go it solo or in tandem, prepare for incredible views of Whistler’s iconic beauty. 

While cascading from sky-high, don’t forget to smile! Your bungee jump will be captured by local photographers, ensuring you have proof that you braved the most exhilarating activity in Whistler.

Book Your Bungee Jump Here

16. Disc Golf with Friends

Perfectly paired with a few beers and a good crew, Whistler boasts one of the most epic disc golf courses in BC, maybe even Canada. 

Sometimes referred to as the Powerline Course, this 27-hole disc golf course is a great way to spend a long afternoon. 

Accessed via the Spruce Grove Park, it weaves in and out from underneath the forest. It can get hot in Summer, so bring a carry cooler filled with your favorite refreshments.

A train wreck covered in grafitti in Whistler

An easy hike for families, dog walkers and more near whistler

17. Visit the Iconic Whistler Train Wreck

One of the unique things to do in Whistler in the Summer is a hike to the infamous train wreck. Amongst the fir trees that border the Cheakamus River, you will discover multiple mangled railway boxcars that have become a free public art gallery.

Park for free at Cheakamus, and take an easy bridge across the river connecting the train wreck. 

Don’t forget your camera. Local graffiti artists have transformed the wreck into a one-of-a-kind photo opp!

18. Whistler’s Craft Beer Scene

After all these outdoor activities in Whistler’s Summer heat, it’s time to quench your thirst by checking out the Village’s craft beer scene. 

There are two breweries in town that are just waiting for you to taste their latest drop; Whistler Brewery and Coast Mountain Brewing. 

We recommended trying a pour of their seasonal flavours, you won’t find them anywhere else in the world! 

19. Stock Up At the Farmers Market

Consider yourself a foodie or want to find that extra special souvenir to take home with you? With a new location, the Whistler Farmers Market is back and better than ever. 

Bring the family every Sunday through Summer at the Whistler Racket Club. Expect to find locally produced crafts, pottery, jewelry, fresh fruit and veggies, and food carts. What’s more, enjoy a host of family friend activities at the Racket Club.

20. Check Out a Summer Festival!

As one of the best Summer destinations in the world, it’s no wonder Whistler is fully booked with festivals.

Whether you’re here for a celebration, a mountain biking trip, or a family vacay, there is a festival for everyone. 

A few summer favourites include the Whistler Music Festival and the Whistler Village Beer Festival to Whistler Children’s Festival.

With a brief hiatus because of COVID-19, expect festivals to be ramping up again throughout 2021 and into 2022. Stay tuned to the Whistler tourism site for details on further events.

21. Rest and Relax with a Spa Day 

The Village isn’t just about getting active in the outdoors. Whistlerites know when some pampering and rejuvenation is due. The options for spas are an abundance of unparalleled relaxation. 

Expect lodges on pristine lakes, ancient eastern spa treatments worthy of royalty, and hot-cold nordic traditions.

Our top picks are Nita Lake Spa, Scandinave, Whistler Day Spa, and Taman Sari Royal.

22. Paddle the River of Golden Dreams

River of golden dreams by kayak in Whistler

A slow lazy paddle down one of our favourite rivers

A right of passage for all newcomers to Whistler is a summer paddle down the river of golden dreams. Grab a paddleboard, canoe, or kayak from one of the local rental shops in town, then sail at Alta Lake. Check out Whistler Eco Tours if you need a guide.

For several hours, you’ll wind your way through the valley until you exit at Green Lake. Bring snacks, water, and sunscreen. Most importantly, bring a life jacket. 

This is one of the few things to do in Whistler that is equally suited to a rowdy group as well as families with kids. 

23. Go Fishing!

When it comes to family activities in BC, many have dreamed about catching a salmon in a glacier-fed river. Make those dreams a reality all year long, including during Whistler’s summer months.

With a certified guide coaching you on the finer points of casting and bringing you to top-secret fishing locations, you’ll come away with a lifetime of memories.

What will you catch? The best times for Chinook are June to August, with the Sockeye starting up in August.

Book Your Fishing Experience Here

24. Summer Skiing in Whistler

Yes, Whistler summer skiing is a thing. So while everyone else is paddling around on a lake or shredding down the mountain bike trails, you’ll head up the peak. 

Horstman Glacier on Blackcomb Mountain offers epic, sunny summer skiing and snowboarding. With a pause due to the reduced services during COVID-19, we hope that summer skiing will open back up in 2022. 

Check the Whistler Blackcomb website regularly for updates and opening times.

Never a Dull Moment on a Whistler Summer Vacation

Locals and visitors alike have spoken! There is certainly no shortage of things to do in Whistler in the summer. You can stop your frantic Googling about the best family activities in BC — because they are all here in Whistler.

Spend your summer vacation in the mountains, on the lakes, and making memories in Whistler.

Whistler is a hiker’s paradise. Available throughout every season, you can hike trails of varying difficulty while at your own pace.