Sea to Sky | 16 Must Hit Activities
Bored in Vancouver? What about stuff to do in the Sea to Sky Corridor? It’s just one wild adventure all the way from the coast to the mountains easily accessible from Highway 99. Even if your final destination is Whistler, you may have to add extra time to your journey to take in the spectacular views of the Stawamus Chief and the Tantalus mountains.
If you are looking for adventure in the great outdoors, you have picked the right area, from Vancouver through to Pemberton you will not be short on activities to create lasting memories. And you know one trip through the Sea to Sky Corridor will not be enough.
Let’s start at the sea…and end in the mountains!
This water sport is an exciting activity for all ages and abilities. This should be on your list of Vancouver stuff to do. Tour around the Indian Arm fjord from Deep Cove in North Vancouver, or rent a kayak from Granville Island and enjoy the city and marine life all at once from False Creek in Downtown Vancouver.
On your way up north, you can try out sea kayaking from Porteau Cove, or head out into Howe Sound from Squamish and paddle with the view of the mountain all around you. And for a gentle family-friendly area try Alice Lake with picnic areas and launch sites around the lake. You could even swap your kayak and rent a paddleboard instead. Whistler also has a series of picture-perfect lakes to kayak along (the lakes one of the outdoor things to see in Whistler!)
2. Wind and Kite Surfing
This is a must-see and must-do activity accessed from the Spit in Squamish. Where the Squamish River enters Howe Sound you can take lessons in wind and kite surfing or even just sit back and enjoy the view from the Spit.
This activity is bound to get your adrenaline going and give your body a total work out. Lessons are available for all abilities and gear can be rented from Aerial Kiteboarding and Squamish Watersports.
3. White Water Rafting
White water rafting, it could be a gentle trip down class one or two rapids on the Cheakamus River or an adrenaline-filled day paddling class three and four rapids down the Elaho-Squamish River.
This is a must-do activity when visiting Whistler and with different rafting trips available, you can choose your adventure. For a family trip down gentle rapids check out the Squamish Rafting Company, and to rip it up on class four rapids head to Whistler Adventures. Prepare to get wet!
4. Stand Up Paddle Boarding
This not so new trend may look like a relaxing way to travel on water, but it can be a total workout for your core. Improve your fitness and balance by practicing your skills at Alice Lake, or rent a SUP from the Squamish Adventure Centre and head out into the estuary.
You could even take your SUP to Brohm or Cat lake, easily accessible off the Sea to Sky highway north of Brackendale. Remember to get ice cream from Alice and Brohm on your way back to town, homemade with fresh fruit, that makes it an almost healthy treat.
The Sea to Sky corridor has some of the most beautiful hikes. Take a steep hike up the Stawamus Chief to a breathtaking view of Squamish and Howe Sound. There are three peaks to tick off with exciting chains and ladders to gain the summit of each peak.
To avoid the crowds we would recommend heading up from the Mamquam FSR to Slhanay, then up onto the third peak. This summit cannot be missed. For a more gentle hike try the Four Lakes Loop from Alice Lake, or the Lost Lake Loop and Train Wreck hike in Whistler. For bigger hiking adventures, hire a guide to lead the way or check out our seasonal guide to hiking around Whistler.
6. Sea to Sky Gondola
If you still want the amazing views, but maybe not the leg work out, take the Sea to Sky Gondola up to summit lodge. Head along the Sky Pilot suspension bridge and look out to Mount Habrich, Sky Pilot, and Howe Sound. Rock Climbing, mountaineering, and backcountry skiing can also be accessed from the Gondola.
From the coast to the mountains you will have access to three world-class ski resorts. Just outside of Vancouver you will find Grouse Mountain which hosts an annual Spring 24 hour ski day or check out Cypress Mountain and visit one of North America’s largest cross country ski areas.
Travel less than two hours north on the Sea to Sky Highway and be blown away by 8171 acres of skiable terrain around Whistler and Blackcomb.
And if you want to leave the chair lifts behind, hit the backcountry of Squamish and skin up to Red Heather or tour around the Duffy Lake area northeast of Pemberton. Again, we recommend you hire a guide to travel the backcountry safely and to find the best stashes of powder.
8. Whistler Sliding Centre
Not just a winter activity. Over the summer you can bobsleigh like an Olympian with your friends or family and reach speeds up to 90km/h.
This is an adrenaline-filled activity, and during the winter you can up the speed to 125km/h heading through the tracks 10 turns with 4 passengers (including yourself) and a trained pilot. The is a great place to check out whatever the weather.
9. Rock Climbing
A mecca of rock climbing in Canada, and a world-class destination… Squamish has everything from the awe-inspiring granite faces of the Chief, to the alpine mountains and the boulders beneath.
If you are a seasoned climber, this is the place to test your skills, and if you are new, there could not be a better area to learn. Hire a guide from Squamish Rock Guides to take you up a classic route on the Chief, or join a Rock School lesson at Ground Up Climbing Centre to learn climbing basics. We must warn you, rock climbing is a highly addictive activity.
10. Mountain Biking
The Sea to Sky corridor is home to some of the best mountain biking in Canada. With over 200 kilometers of trails in Squamish alone, you will have enough to fill your visit. Add Half Nelson to your tick list then check out the trails between the Garibaldi Highlands and Alice Lake. Let’s head up to Whistler.
Once you have warmed your legs up on the trails in Squamish, it is time to shred it in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. You can rent gear and full-suspension mountain bikes from the village and spend the day (or several) ripping it up in the downhill park.
Last stop just 30 minutes north you can check out the downhill and cross country trails of Pemberton then refuel with a burger at Mile One when you are finished.
11. Paragliding and Skydiving
Take to the skies of Pemberton paragliding above the valley, or launch out of an airplane and experience the thrill of skydiving back to earth. You can paraglide in tandem and take a scenic tour of the Coast Mountains, or even learn the skills yourself to fly around the sky.
For skydiving, you will get to experience the beauty of the valley before experiencing the adrenaline of free fall. These activities are not for the faint-hearted.
12. Helicopter Tours
Another hot item on our Vancouver stuff to-do list spanning Vancouver to Pemberton is an all-out luxury. A Helicopter tour is another extraordinary way to view the beauty of the Coast Mountains in BC.
Blackcomb Helicopters can offer journeys all along the Sea to Sky Corridor, but you would not want to miss out on a trip taking off from Blackcomb Mountain, flying over the Blackcomb Glacier and above the Peak 2 Peak Gondola. You can get even more adventurous by taking a Heli-hiking tour or flying into a tranquil lake fort a yoga class. Are you confused about what things to see in Whistler? See them all from the sky!
13. Horse Riding
Trek on horseback through the rain forests of BC from Squamish Valley or head up to Pemberton and venture along the riverbanks of the Lillooet. This is horse country, and you do not want to miss out. From one hour rides to multi-day expeditions there will be a horse trek for everyone.
14. Zip Lining
Soar through the trees up to 200 meters above the ground on an exciting zip line tour with your friends. Superfly in Whistler has four dual zip lines connected by beautiful trails and boardwalks through the forest so you can experience every moment alongside a friend as you fly through the trees. Book your tour here!
15. Bungee Jumping
Even if you decide not to take the plunge, this tops the list of things to see in Whistler. For a pleasant approach to Bungee Bridge hike up from Brandywine falls and head through the trees along the trail. Remember to stop at the viewpoints on the way. But if you are pumped up and ready to jump, you can access the bridge from the Cal Chek forestry dirt road just off Highway 99. Take a leap of faith over Cheakamus Canyon, this is not to be missed.
16. RZR Tours
Prepare to get muddy and head off-road into the backcountry. Book yourself and a co-pilot onto an RZR guided tour that explores the forests of Whistler, with stunning views of the lakes and mountains along the way. This activity can run whatever the weather and offers different levels depending on experience. Bring your driving license, put on a helmet and strap in for a thrilling experience.
Bring your camera, sunscreen, and waterproof clothing so you are ready for whatever activity you choose. From the coast to the mountains, the Sea to Sky Corridor has you covered for adventure in the great outdoors.