Whistler for the Active Family
Posted: Wednesday, March 12, 2014
6 Great Things To Do in Whistler For the Active Family
Traveling with your family creates opportunities to see the world with new eyes, to experience things in ways you never thought possible. It can also create stress, as you try to find things to do in a new environment that everyone will enjoy. Skiing is great, but there is so much more to this world-class resort.
To help you out, we thought we'd provide suggestions of 6 great super active things to do with your family in Whistler this winter.
Meadow Park Sports Arena
The Meadow Park Sports Arena is easily accessible from Whistler Village via the #1 Community Connector bus, or a quick drive along the highway -- 3 kilometres along Highway 99. It is also an easy walk along the valley trail. Again, 3 kilometres from the Village. This community centre really defies words. The aquatic centre alone is a great place for the entire family -- the Children's pool has a lovely, meandering feel to it, with a gentle sloping entrance to the water mimicking a beach, a "river", a very tall bear spouting water at swimmers and lots more. For slightly older kids (and adults!), there's a rope swing, an eight-foot slide and basketball net within the 25 metre, 6-lane lap pool. Again for the older set, there's also a hot tub, steam room and sauna. Towel rentals are available. You can also use the NHL sized ice rink, which has public skating hours, skating attendants, and a full rental shop as well. And, of course, there's a 4500 square foot fitness centre too. You'll be able to get a great workout on both free weights, machines, and the extensive cardio area. It costs $16.00 for a family drop-in fee. For $24.00, your family can come and go all day. Other rates, including a 10-time pass, and of course, individual rates are available. See the website for more details, and also to take the 360 degree virtual tour.
Whistler's climbing gym has great opportunities for families to climb together, or for parents to drop kids off for an hour or two to let them "burn off steam," as Core says itself. Sounds like a great plan. Hourly rates for kids start at $60/hour, but there is a sliding scale, with the second person costing $33, etc. down to $24/hour for the fifth person to climb. What sounds like an awesome opportunity, and is one of the most popular kids' programs in Whistler, is their dinner program. 3 hours of climbing with kids from all around the world, gear and a pizza dinner. This sounds like an awesome opportunity for mom and dad to go have a nice quiet dinner while the kids have a blast on their own. Cost for this program is $70.
CocaCola Tube Park
Whistler does everything big. Sledding at the CocaCola Tube Park takes the old toboggan ride to a new level. With blue, green and black tracks mimicking their ski run sisters, adults and kids alike can ride 1000 feet along perfectly groomed runs on tubes provided by the park. A conveyor lift takes riders back to the top in style. There are snacks available for purchase on site, a fire pit to warm up by, and heated washrooms are available. Weekend hours are 11:00 am to 7:00 pm. Rates start at $21/hour for adults.
Zip Trek Eco Tours
This is a great physical activity for families with older (6 years and up) children. The tour most recommended for families is the Bear Tour, combining five ziplines joined by a network of suspension bridges. You are ziplining over Fitzsimmons Creek, adding to the gorgeousness. There are over 33 acres of terrain including old growth rain forest, second growth rain forest, steep cliff faces and forest floor. Tours run in both summer and winter. You should remember to dress for the weather, and consider that your family should be physically fit. Pregnant women are not allowed to zipline, but can participate in the Tree Tour, which consists of suspension bridges alone, without the ziplines. Adult prices are $109, youth $89.
Another awesome idea for families with older children and a very adventurous spirit is bungee jumping. There is no minimum age limit, but the minimum weight is 45 pounds. (The maximum is 350 pounds.) People under 19 do need a parent or guardian's consent, so you should be prepared to sign a waiver for the kids. Once that is taken care of, however, nothing stops you from jumping off that bridge with the bungee attached. Spectators are allowed, too, so if not everyone wants to jump, it might be fun to just watch Dad or Mom take the plunge. Whistler bungee has a 17 year long perfect safety track record, and is the second most popular activity to do in Whistler, according to Trip Advisor. Cost is steeper than the other activities mentioned, at $130 per person. If you need transportation from the village, add in $10.
Rated the best thing to do in Whistler by Trip Advisor, riding the Peak2Peak Gondola has to make it on our list. You traverse 4.4 kilometres in just 11 minutes, the longest ride of its kind in the world. The ticket includes a look behind the scenes at how it all works, and the view, of course, is spectacular. You have unlimited rides, too, which, for smaller kids, might be quite the draw. You ride between Whistler's Roundhouse Lodge to the Rendezvous Lodge on Blackcomb Mountain, so you can easily take in lunch at either of these spots before heading down again. Cost is $48.95 for adults, $41.95 for teens, and $24.95 for kids 12 and under.
Photo Credit: Toshi Kawano