Whistler is about 2 hours north of Vancouver. We flew into Vancouver, rented a jeep, and then started our journey north. Whistler is an absolutely beautiful and fun little ski resort town with lots of shops and restaurants in walking distance.
Summit Lodge Boutique Hotel
We stayed at the Summit Lodge Boutique Hotel, and it was such a cute hotel, right in the middle of Whistler Village. We were able to walk everywhere. The hotel had very clean and newly updated rooms. The pool looked really nice as well, however, it was closed. We really enjoyed our stay, and we would stay there again in a heartbeat.
Whistler Olympic Plaza
Since we visited Whistler on July 3rd, it was Canada Day. This was a pleasant surprise to us, so there was so much to do in the city. They had a band playing a free concert, and people were all over the plaza. It was very fun and cute to walk around. We had a great time walking around the village where the 2010 Winter Olympics were held.
Joffre Lakes Provincial Park Trail is located an hour north of Whistler, and it is a beautiful hiking trail that has three bright blue glacier lakes that you get to see. We packed a backpack and headed out first thing in the morning, which we were so happy we did. On our way back down, the trail was packed, so make sure to go early if you decide to do this hike. We parked right at the trailhead parking lot, but many people had to park in the street miles from the trailhead.
We packed snacks for the day, layers of clothing, and then headed off on our 4 hour hike, which was 6.2 miles round trip. It was the furthest hike I’ve ever done, and the most elevation gain, and at times, I definitely struggled, but it was totally worth the beautiful experience. Since we went to early in the morning, the trail was relatively quiet, and it was just us and the beautiful surreal nature. The forest smelled amazing, there were multiple areas of waterfalls and running water, and of course the glacial lakes were amazing. The hike started off very cool in the morning, but near the end, we were definitely sweating. The glacial water was freezing as well. Once we reached the final lake and glacier, Mike was eating a snack and a bird landed in his head. Those birds definitely knew what they were doing. I loved being able to look at the glacier and see the frozen blue water in it.
Overall, the hike was so much fun and SO beautiful. I would highly recommend this hike!
Scandinave Spa Whistler
After our hike, Mike and I got day passes to the Scandinave Spa Whistler. The Spa was a hydro therapy spa, where you were supposed to rotate between hot areas, cold areas, and then relaxing. The spa included different hot baths, cold baths, steam rooms with essential oils, saunas, fire pits, and relaxation areas. I learned that I really do not care for Sauna’s because I cannot breathe in them. I mostly enjoyed laying out near the fire in my bathing suit. Mike took advantage of all of the different options the spa had to offer. This was very nice to do after our hike, and we were able to take showers after as well.
Squamish Sea to Sky Gondola
On our drive back down to Vancouver, we stopped at the Squamish Sea to Sky Gondola. The gondola climbs gondola climbs 2,800 feet in 10 minutes. The ride overlooks the Squamish River and the Howe Sound. Once we got to the top, there are multiple hiking trail heads to explore. We were hiked out for the day, so we enjoyed a drink on their beautiful 360 patio. There is also a suspension bridge, which is actually very scary. Since we visited on a Saturday, we were lucky enough to witness a wedding at the top as well. It was a beautiful and fun scene, and we would definitely recommend checking it out.
We only stayed in Vancouver for one night and then part of the next day. It was a very large industrial city. It reminded me a lot of San Francisco, but more flat. When I told people that we were going to Vancouver, multiple people recommended to me that we eat dinner at a restaurant called Miku. Miku is a high end japanese restaurant right on the water. We enjoyed our food, and then walked around the city a little after.
Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge
In the morning, we visited the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge in Lynn Canyon park. The park is located in North Vancouver, and there were many people on their morning jogs or walking their dogs. This suspension bridge was not as scary as the Squamish bridge, probably because this was not as long. This was also surrounded by trees, and had a waterfall and river below us. It was a beautiful and peaceful site. I really enjoyed visiting this park.
Stanley Park is located on the northwestern side of downtown Vancouver, and it is a very large public park that borders is almost entirely surrounded by waters of the Vancouver Harbour and the English Bay. We originally planned to rent bikes and ride around the island, but I was sore from the hike the previous day, so we drove around the island to see the many attractions. We saw the Coal Harbour, Totem poles, Brockton Point Lighthouse, Prospect Point, and Siwash Rock. We had a very enjoyable time in the park, and I can see why so many people from Vancouver would come here on the weekends.
One of my coworkers was from Vancouver, and told me to check out Gastown. It was a very cute and chic little area of the town with a lot of shops and restaurants. There is also a famous whistling Steam Clock there. I think this is a pretty touristy area, but I enjoyed it a lot.