If you are planning a trip to Vancouver, you must add a day trip to Whistler to your itinerary. Whistler is a hugely popular ski resort town with 2 mountains - Whistler and Blackcomb - and stunning vistas. Even if you are not into skiing, a trip here is definitely worth the views. We did a day trip in August and loved the experience. It is only a couple of hours from Vancouver and it is such an exciting, scenic and fun trip that it would be a crime to miss it.
Whistler Village is at the base of the mountains and is home to several lodges, restaurants, cafes and bars. We went to the Whistler village, which is touristy yet pretty, and purchased the tickets to the "Peak to Peak 360 Experience". This ticket includes the gondola ride to the top of Whistler/Blackcomb mountain, then a gondola ride from the peak of one mountain to the other and another ride from that mountain top back to the Whistler village. It also includes an open chair lift to the "Cloudraker Skybridge", which is a 130m long cantilevered suspension bridge, set in the clouds (almost). Accessing the open chair lift requires a 10 minute walk on a gravel trail called "Peak Express Traverse" near the Roundhouse Lodge on Whistler Mountain.
We first took the Gondola ride to the top of the Whistler mountain. There was an open air restaurant at the top serving food and drinks with a great view. Due to the cloud cover, we didn't spend a lot of time here.
We then took the open chair lift to the "Top of the World Summit" on Whistler mountain and reached the "Cloudraker Sky bridge" that connects the Whistler Peak to the West Ridge. Sitting in an open chair lift at that elevation and walking on the suspension bridge that sways as you walk was exhilarating and the best part of the day for us. At that elevation, it does feel a bit like walking in the clouds.
|Open chair lift|
When we reached the other end of the suspension bridge, we had amazing views of the entire region. It was like a bridge to the paradise. There were several trails here which looked enticing. We would have loved to do a hike if my cousin's family weren't waiting for us in the Whistler Village.
We then took the popular peak to peak gondola to reach the top of Blackcomb mountain. The Peak-to-Peak Gondola runs along the 2.7 mile distance between mountains and is a 11-minute beautiful ride with great views of the green valley. There is a gondola option with a glass bottom which has a huge wait time, so we took the one without and were still happy with the views and didn't feel like we missed anything.
Once we reached the Blackcomb mountain, the views were even prettier. Again, we wanted to stay for a while but decided to take the gondola back and spend time with my cousin's family in the Whistler Village.
On our way back, a black bear greeted us (kind of).
We spent some time in the Whistler Village and went back to our cousin's home with them after an exciting day in the mountains.
Given its popularity, I don't think a visit to Whistler needs much convincing. Hope you get to "walk in the clouds" soon.