Winter Sightseeing: 5 Easily Accessible Snowy Vistas

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You don’t have to hit the slopes or exert a lot of physical effort to enjoy the snow in British Columbia. From sleigh rides to elevated dining, here are five easily accessible places to enjoy beautiful snowy vistas.

 

PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola | Andrew Strain

PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola, Whistler

Whistler is world-famous for its slopes but it’s not just skiers who can witness the incredible views from the top of Whistler and Blackcomb mountains. Located two-thirds up Whistler Mountain, the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola is a marvel of modern engineering that stretches 4.4-km between the two mountains and gives riders 360-degree views of the mountain ranges and Whistler Village below.

Following the 11-minute ride, take some time to soak up the views and enjoy West Coast seafood at Christine’s on Blackcomb, a fine-dining restaurant that is open for lunch in winter.

Sleigh Rides

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Horse-drawn sleigh rides, Big White

Snowy sleigh rides are a romantic way to see the winter sights at Big White, an hour from Kelowna. Snuggle up under a blanket and sip a hot chocolate as the horse-drawn carriage glides through snowflake-sprinkled forest trails.

Choose from a simple sleigh ride through the trees or add on brunch in a cozy cabin in the forest. There’s also a “dinner and sleigh bells” experience for an unforgettable evening.

Mountainside View at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort | Reuben Krabbe

Eagle’s Eye Restaurant, Kicking Horse

Situated in Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, near Golden, Eagle’s Eye Restaurant is reached via the Eagle’s Eye Express Gondola. Make lunch or Friday/Saturday dinner reservations to experience an elevated dining experience at Canada’s highest restaurant (7,700ft), with views of five National Parks from the top of the Purcell Mountains.

Stay the night at one of the two Summit Suites and wake up to majestic mountain views, as well as the services of a butler and private chef.

View of Vancouver from Grouse Mountain | Pierre Leclerc/Getty Images

Grouse Mountain, Vancouver

Easily reachable from downtown Vancouver, Grouse Mountain is the city’s closest winter wonderland. Take the eight-minute gondola ride up to the Peak of Vancouver to eat local cuisine at The Observatory restaurant. Or, watch a show at the Theatre in the Sky to learn more about Grouse Mountain. Head further up the mountain to visit the Eye of the Wind—the only wind turbine in the world that you can go inside—for sweeping views of Vancouver and the North Shore Mountains.

Barkerville | Thomas Drasdauskis

Barkerville Historic Town & Park, Cariboo

Built during the Gold Rush of the late 1800s, Barkerville is a National Historic Site that is home to more than 100 historic buildings that are original structures and replicas of the 19th-century residences and businesses. Stay amid the snowy scenes in the restored B&Bs, Kelly and King Houses, or the 1890s style St George Hotel. Although the museums are closed in the winter months, it’s still possible to explore the snow-covered streets of the Gold Rush era town and take in the magical sights from bygone days.

Opening image: Eagle’s Eye Restaurant at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort | Ryan Creary

POSTED BY: Amy Watkins

From: Vancouver
Amy Watkins, a British-born travel and food writer, fell in love with Vancouver at the age of 18. She has travelled the world, but her steadfast love of the West Coast led her to move here in 2012. In the UK she worked as a features editor and freelance writer for 10 years, writing about travel for magazines and newspapers. She now writes about travel, food, and West Coast life for a variety of publications. When she’s not on her laptop, she can be found exploring Stanley Park or hiking in the rainforest with her bulldog, Rick James; tackling waves and tacos in Tofino; or eating her way around the province on a food-focused road trip. Amy has even been persuaded to eat kale chips and practise yoga—making her an honorary Vancouverite.