5 New BC Experiences to Try in 2017

5 Ideas for your BC trip

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With abundant wildlife and cities on the edge of wilderness, British Columbia constantly inspires. Here are five ideas.

Go Baseboarding in Whistler

Ever heard of baseboarding? The snow sport has made its North American debut at Whistler Olympic Park.

Developed by former world champion and Olympic skeleton racer Kristan Bromley, baseboarding is like a cross between skeleton, bodyboarding, and tobogganing.

After taking a chairlift to the top of the Olympic ski jumps high above the Callaghan Valley, you’ll get instruction on how it all works. Then, lying flat on your stomach on the board, you’ll speed headfirst one kilometre (0.6 mile) down the slope, controlling your descent with your feet. Baseboarding is thrilling and easy to learn in a few runs. It’s available to adults and kids aged eight and up.

Explore the Alaska Highway on a Road Trip

A Caribou cow with her calf search for mineral salts along the highway.

A Caribou cow with her calf search for mineral salts along the Alaska Highway at Muncho Lake, in the Northern Rockies of British Columbia. Photo: Andrew Strain

Synonymous with grand adventure, the Alaska Highway is one of North America’s most iconic road trips. The year 2017 marks the 75th anniversary of its construction as part of the US war effort, and there’s plenty of rough-and-tumble history to tell.

From northeastern BC’s Mile 0 at Dawson Creek, the route stretches 2,451 kilometres (1,523 miles) to Fairbanks, Alaska, with quirky characters along the way. Other highlights include pristine fishing spots, serene hot springs, wildlife spotting, and dazzling northern lights.

Community festivals, car rallies, and other events will mark the Alaska Highway anniversary celebration.

Go Bear-Watching While Cruising the Great Bear Rainforest

A large sailboat sails past a grizzly bear standing in a rocky riverbed.

Bluewater Adventures sails to the Great Bear Rainforest, and a new yacht will debut in 2017. Photo: Tom Stoeri

On the north central coast, the Great Bear Rainforest is the only place in the world where you can see the white Kermode (Spirit) bear. A new expedition yacht from Bluewater Adventures takes you there in five-star style for an eight-day adventure.

The roomy, 82-foot-long motor sailor has six private cabins—each with ensuite bathrooms and two lower beds. The environmentally conscious vessel also sails Haida Gwaii on a marine wildlife tour.

Eat Through the Richmond Dumpling Trail

A dish of Xiao long bao dumplings.

Xiao long bao dumplings on the Richmond Dumpling Trail. Photo: Tourism Richmond

Fifteen restaurants. Dozens of dumplings. This is why Vancouverites wear yoga pants.

Tourism Richmond’s new Dumpling Trail is a welcome challenge for even the most dedicated dumpling lover. It also makes things easier for those excited about eating their way around the city. With over 400 Asian restaurants in Richmond, the Dumpling Trail nicely narrows things down, mapping out a self-guided walking tour of 15 restaurants with plenty of variety on the table.

Take a Craft Beer Tour on the BC Ale Trail

People sit at tables under a white tent, enjoying pints of craft beer.

Cumberland Brewing Company near Comox on Vancouver Island is a fun stop on the BC Ale Trail. Photo: BC Ale Trail

There’s a new blueprint for exploring BC craft breweries, and it’s designed by those who know the local scene inside out. The BC Craft Brewers Guild is behind the BC Ale Trail, an online guide that groups together notable breweries into seven suggested road trips.

Self-guided tours cover areas as diverse as the rugged Kooteney Rockies, the pastoral Comox Valley on Vancouver Island, and suburban Port Moody, with options for walking, biking, or bringing the car. Links to accommodations and local attractions round things out, as well as tips on signature pours for each brewery, plus beer-themed events.

Opening photo: Baseboarding at Whistler: Photo: Bromley Sports