Explore Whistler | Magical Evening Adventure
There’s no denying that Whistler is home to an abundance of award-winning restaurants. Why not while away an evening over gourmet food and drink. But other than dining and dancing, what other ways can you enjoy Whistler when the sun goes down? Last summer, a new evening attraction landed in town and it’s proven to be one of Whistler’s most popular adventures.
Vallea Lumina is a multimedia night walk in pursuit of hidden wonders. In the coastal rainforests of Cougar Mountains it’s only, a short 12-minute drive north of Whistler Village. Engross yourself in this 1.5km interactive forest trail that will lead you on an enchanted and truly magical adventure. Lights, sounds, projections and a whole host of innovative special effects will immerse you.
Vallea Lumina Whistler 2019 is open from late spring until mid-fall and it’s a must-do in Whistler for families, friends, old, young and everyone in between.
Top 5 Reasons to See Vallea Lumina
- An Inclusive Activity For All
If you’re struggling to find an activity that can be enjoyed by your whole gang, without age restrictions, required experience level, minimum weights and the like, then Vallea Lumina is your answer. As long as everyone in your party can walk 1.5km (the trail is unpaved and sometimes uneven, so it’s not recommended for people with reduced mobility) then this is a brilliant adventure for all.
- An Alternative Way To Enjoy BC’s Mountains
There is no denying that the towering Coast Mountains of British Columbia are strikingly beautiful. You’re probably used to enjoying them through activities such as skiing, biking, or hiking, but this multimedia night walk offers an alternative way to admire the landscape. Set off into the dark forest and let the adventure unfold.
- A Truly Magical Experience
It’s impossible to fully capture the magic of Vallea Lumina in words. Go see it for yourself and you’ll understand what we mean. This luminescent journey will transport you into an enchanted and otherworldly place, so book yourself a ticket and ignite your senses. You won’t regret it!
- A Fantastic Evening Adventure
Whistler by day is chock-a-block with activity choice. From summer glacier skiing and ziplining to bear watching and fishing, there are adventures galore to pick from. But after dark, you might be wondering if there’s anything else to do except enjoy the many bars and restaurants in this town. Vallea Lumina is an absolute must-do evening activity for any visitor to Whistler. Every night of the summer, the sun goes down and this adventure begins.
- One Of A Kind
Montreal-based Moment Factory, pioneers in lighting, sound, video and special effects, are the masterminds behind this incredible installation. Vallea Lumina was completed in 2018 and marked the eighth light show in their international series. The installations and story were crafted specifically for Whistler, so this is a one-of-a-kind experience that you’ll re-live nowhere else on Earth.
What to Expect Night Walking in Whistler
Vallea Lumina Whistler 2019 is open for business starting May 18 (weekends only in May) to late October. Every night starting at sundown (exact times vary as the time of dusk changes throughout the summer), the dense woodlands of Cougar Mountain come alive. Cutting-edge lights, projections, sounds and lasers combine to transport you into a world filled with enchantment. You will be guided along the magical trail by the story of two long-ago hikers and some cryptic clues. Retrace the footsteps of these ancient characters and watch in awe as the forest comes to life.
The undulating trail is navigated at your own pace, and the 1.5km route can take guests anywhere between 50 to 80 minutes. Our top tip is to take your time and not rush through it. Many of the installations are on a loop so stay at each one to witness the entire spectacle before moving on. In total, we’d recommend leaving two hours for the whole experience, including transport time.
Here’s what it will cost you:
- Adult (16+): $39.99
- Youth (6-15): $34.99
- 5 & U Child: Free
We’ve told you how wonderful this experience is, now it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty information before you book Vallea Lumina Whistler 2019.
How Do I Get There?
There is strictly no parking at Cougar Mountain. If you require parking, leave your car in the village, at the Whistler Village Day Lots. From there, it’s just a short walk to the shuttle location. The complimentary shuttle service will pick guests up from the main bus loop in town – the Gondola Transit Exchange. The 12-minute journey will take you to Cougar Mountain, where your adventure will begin. Afterwards, the shuttle will drop you back at the same spot in the village.
- There are no age restrictions. Anyone and everyone are welcome to enjoy this spectacle! Strollers, however, are not permitted because of uneven ground, so bring a baby carrier instead.
- If you have reduced mobility, this experience isn’t recommended. The 1.5-kilometre network of trails is partially levelled but not asphalted and there are short sections of relatively steep stairs.
- Unfortunately, pets are not permitted. You’ll have to leave your four-legged, furry friends at home this time!
What Should I Bring?
- We wouldn’t call it a hike, but you’ll certainly want to wear comfortable walking shoes (preferably closed toed) for the trail.
- Although it’s common to experience temperatures in the high twenties during summer in Whistler, when the sun drops behind the mountains the nights can be drastically cooler. So even if you’ve spent the day sunbathing at the lake, make sure you bring enough layers for your nighttime adventure.
- Summer at Cougar Mountain attracts a lot of visitors, but also a lot of pesky bugs. Pack some mosquito repellant so the insects don’t get in the way of your adventure.
- Pack a few snacks in a backpack, or grab a light bite from the Cougar Cafe, located at the entrance to the trail. Also, note that Vallea Lumina has a zero-tolerance alcohol and drug policy.
- You’re welcome to bring a camera, but flash photography is not permitted. In our opinion, the photos that you snap will never come close to the real thing.
- Although Whistler is usually blessed with few showers during summer, rain is still a possibility. The whole experience is outdoors, and the only weather that will stop the show is a lightning storm, so if it’s forecast to drizzle, pack a rain jacket. Umbrellas are not allowed, as they can interfere with other guests’ experience.
Anything Else I Should Know?
- Think of your ticket to Vallea Lumina as a ticket to a concert. If you don’t turn up, you can’t make any changes or get a refund. If you’re late, you’ll still be able to enter the trail, but if other showtimes are sold out, you may have to wait a while to start it.
- This attraction opened to the public last summer, and boy was it well received! It wasn’t unusual for Vallea Lumina to be sold out days in advance, so to avoid disappoint definitely plan ahead and book your tickets online.
- There are washrooms at the start of the trail. It’s a loop, so you’ll end up back at them too.
- If you suffer from epilepsy, be aware that strobe lighting is used in the show. Speak to a ranger before you begin.
Other Great Activities for Kids in Whistler
- Take A Flight!
There are few better ways to fully appreciate BC’s beautiful Coast Mountains than from the air. At Superfly Ziplines you’ll whiz high above the trees and marvel at the forest-lined valley below while travelling up to 100 kilometres per hour! Superfly offers a three-hour tour out of Cougar Mountain, which includes four distinct ziplines, connected by a network of boardwalks.
They operate all 12 months of the year – we love zipping in the summer, but it’s also beautiful during the snowy season, just be sure to wrap up warm! This activity is great for families. As long as your kids are at least seven years old and weigh in at over 60 pounds they can join in the fun! Who’s got more bottle, you or the kids?
- Throw An Axe
Another brilliant activity in Whistler for families is Forged Axe Throwing. If you’re on the hunt for a classic Canadian activity, get yourself down to Function Junction (a short 12-minute drive south of the village) and check them out. This is Whistler’s only indoor axe throwing venue and it’s the perfect place to keep the whole family entertained, especially on those rainy days!
Anyone over the age of 10 can participate, and whether you’re a first-timer or an experienced lumberjack these guys will teach you the ins and outs of how to safely enjoy this sport. Forged is open year-round, so pop in for an hour at any time of the year, learn the trick shots and try to hit the bullseye!
- Join A Sleigh Ride
Whistler is a dazzlingly magical place to be in winter. Why not add to the magic with a horse-drawn sleigh ride? Every day, at 5 pm, 6 pm, 7 pm and 8 pm, Blackcomb Sleigh Rides take guests on a stunning 50-60 minute tour. After meeting the two horses, you’ll ride up to a cosy cabin through forested trails covered in a blanket of snow. There, you’ll be offered a warm mug of hot chocolate to enjoy by a crackling fire.
Being able to meet and pet the huge, gentle horses makes this winter adventure a winner with kids. The ride costs $72 ($42 for children aged three to 12) and operates from the end of November until the end of March, providing that there’s still snow on the ground.
- Check Out Blackcomb’s Family Adventure Zone
If you’re looking for somewhere to let the kids burn off some energy take them to the Upper Village and check out Blackcomb’s Family Adventure Zone. Located at the base of Blackcomb Mountain, this area offers a plethora of kid-friendly activities for your little’ns to get excited about.
Choose between bungee trampolines, bouncy castles, glitter tattoos, mini golf, go-karts, and a whole lot more. Pick one activity for $12 or buy your child an Adventure Pass and let them go wild (5 activities for $50, 10 for $90, 15 for $120, 20 for $150)! They’re open for business June 15 to September 2, so pick a sunny afternoon and watch your kids be amused for hours.
There are oodles of adventure opportunities in Whistler for families, but the night walk at Cougar Mountain should be high up on your vacation bucket list. Vallea Lumina Whistler 2019 opens May 18, so secure your spot, bring a sense of wonder, and get excited for an enchanted adventure like you’ve never experienced before.