The charming ski village Whistler, in British Columbia, Canada, is one of my favourite places in the world. It’s most well known for its epic winter season with its world class mountainous ski terrain, and that’s definitely my number one reason to go there. That said, it’s also become a year round destination with many attractions to suit most needs. I’ve blogged about Whistler before, but today I’m going to focus on springtime in this loveliest of towns.
Let me begin by making clear that skiing/snowboarding in Whistler in early spring is still alive and well, and can sometimes be the best time to go because the lineups disappear and the hot weather comes out to play. If you can get time off during a weekday, it’s especially glorious, as you will often come across runs that are all to yourself.
The Four Seasons is by far my favourite hotel in Whistler, with the Fairmont coming in as my second choice (if you go with a very large group, renting a large chalet would be the way to go). The Four Seasons has the perfect mix of luxury and comfort, complete with fireplaces in the rooms and some of the best hot chocolate and fresh cookies ready for the taking at the ski valet (yes, they have a ski valet – it’s very convenient).
If you are the type who prefers more of a live-in situation and want to be able to cook and do laundry, Evolution in the Creekside village (smaller section about 5 minute drive from main Whistler village) is great because it has its own pool, hot tub, sauna and steam, and is legit ski in, ski out. Its neighbour Legends is decent, but they don’t have the sauna and steam and the rooms aren’t as new and nice as Evolution.
While you’re high above the sky enjoying your skiing or boarding (or simply just enjoying the view via the peak to peak), Rendezvous is a great place to have a drink and some food. They offer everything from lattés, to thai food to tacos and it’s all fresh and rather delicious.
If you don’t ski or snowboard but would like to see what the Whistler and Blackcomb mountain views are all about, buy a pass on the Peak to Peak. You literally travel from the peak of Whistler to the peak of Blackcomb via a gondola. Make sure you’re not afraid of heights of course because this one is high!
Golf is also a main attraction with numerous options, Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club and Nicklaus North Golf Course being the two I would recommend. Fairmont Chateau is full of rolling hills and the odd bear paw print (challenging and exciting!). Nicklaus is polished with smooth lines, beautiful mountain range views and chalet style homes. That said, my absolute favourite course in the area is Big Sky in Pemberton. About twenty minutes from Whistler, it’s worth the drive.
Walking and hiking options are also in abundance in Whistler. The Valley Trail is paved so it’s perfect for walkers, strollers and runners alike. It connects and weaves in and around all the neighbourhoods and is a great way to get from point A to point B. It goes along large rock formations, forests, rivers and lakes and is 40km’s long. There are many scenic spots to stop and have a picnic, and even take a dip in the lake, so you can make an entire day of it.
Scandinave Spa is also an absolute must whether you’ve just been skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking (Whistler has some of the best trails and terrain for it), golfing, or walking/hiking. An outdoor spa, Scandinave is nestled in the trees, with views of the mountains, and multiple hot tubs, cool plunge pools, sauna and steam rooms and relaxation rooms and patios (yes, you can get a really good tan on a sunny day – which there are a lot of in Whistler!). They also offer massages, and the waters are included if you book a treatment.
Lastly, if you end up skiing, golfing, biking, hiking, walking, sweating and exploring the village, you’re surely going to want to get into some good eats —-
Smoothest lattés and most delicious baked goods: Pure Bread
Cocktails and charcuterie: Bar Oso
Pizza: Creekbread (in Creekside Village)
Best overall meal: Rimrock Cafe (just outside the village on the main road, make dinner reservations for good wine, cozy ambience and quality game meat and seafood).