5 Vancouver Family Getaways
Whether your plan is to splash around at the beach, or strike out on family adventures, here are our five picks for great family getaways.
For an easy beach getaway, we like the kid-friendly environs of Qualicum Beach. Explore the ancient coastal forest in Milner Gardens, check out cheese making at Little Qualicum Cheeseworks, the Museum of Nature at the North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre, or experience the barnyard at Tiger Lily Farm. There are lots of dining options and shopping too, so nobody will leave disappointed.
Think fresh woodland scents, an extensive backyard, crackling fires and a social atmosphere. Bring the kids along and it gets a bit complicated, which is why we love Alice Lake. Close to Vancouver (it's right outside of Squamish), this campground is made for families with young kids. Adventurers will find four fresh water lakes, two great sandy beaches, lots of biking and hiking trails, and a large playground, too.
Bowen Island is a mere two miles off the mainland coast but is ‘other worldly' in every respect. It's the perfect place for kids of all ages and reminds us of the simpler times. Don't expect to see any fast-food chains and supermarkets on the island and be warned, your crackberry connectivity will be intermittent…and nobody there is too fussed about it. There's hiking, beaches and lots of good food so forget about life on the mainland for a while and enjoy some island living.
When you need to mix things up a little, plan a day to explore Port Moody. It's less than an hour's drive from most of the Lower Mainland and it's an outdoor mecca with some great facilities, lots of green spaces, covered picnic areas and bike trails. For older kids, rent a kayak, visit the skateboard park, browse Artists in the Park or visit the Port Moody Station Museum. And when it's time for a snack or meal, head to one of the popular eateries. Everyone will have a blast.
Make your ferry reservations, head to Victoria and stay overnight at the Royal Scot Hotel. A fun stop is the Bug Zoo which gives your kids a chance to see, touch and learn about some of the most exotic and ugliest creatures on the planet. If the weather is good, visit Cook Street Village for some small town fun. A ferry ride, unique entertainment and a break from household chores will give everyone a much-needed breath of Victoria fresh air.