There’s nothing better than enjoying local activities at a time when there are fewer tourists and shorter lines.

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Vacations in Whistler are often associated with ski season (after all, the town is famous for its killer slopes), but it’s lesser-known that the spring months are an ideal time to visit.

There’s no shortage of springtime activities, ranging from outdoor sports to a festival that offers music, sports, culture and dining. What more could you ask for? There’s nothing better than enjoying local activities at a time when there are fewer tourists and shorter lines.

Ready to plan your spring getaway? Here’s your guide to where to go and what to do in order to make the most of this beautiful season in Whistler.

Outdoor activities

  • Rent and ride a bike out to Rainbow Park, which offers stunning views across the lake of all the mountains in the valley from Whistler Creekside all the way to Mount Currie in Pemberton. It’s also an excellent spot to have a picnic on the grass, or even an early-season barbecue.
  • Opening in early June, Vallea Lumina is Whistler’s newest attraction. This guided multimedia night walk will lead you to hidden gems and it features an immersive light show in the forest surrounding Cougar Mountain. Appropriate for visitors of all ages, this is an ideal activity for a family vacation to Whistler.
  • GO Fest — Whistler’s Great Outdoors Festival runs from May 17 through May 20 and it’s the perfect way to ring in spring season in Whistler. GO Fest offers just about everything — sailing, clinics where you can learn anything from photography skills to how to throw an axe, free live music and street markets.

Sample the town’s food and drink offerings

No trip is complete without tasting the local cuisine and libations — and don’t hold back on indulging. It’s your vacation, after all.

  • Whistler is home to three breweries: Coast Mountain Brewing, The BrewHouse, and Whistler Brewing Company. After a day of hiking, biking, or sailing, kick back and watch the sunset with a local craft beer in hand.
  • Treat yourself to a meal at one of Whistler’s many great restaurants. Find comfort food to restore yourself after a brisk spring hike. Savor European-style bites al fresco. Or treat yourself to an unforgettable fine-dining experience for the very best the region has to offer.
  • For a completely different way of enjoying local fare, consider the Bici Gusti Gourmet Ride. This weekend ride through the Whistler and Callaghan Valleys offers spectacular views and gourmet local food. The 2019 event May 17-19 is a full weekend experience, limited to just 70 riders – so sign up early to secure your place.

Embrace the local arts and culture scene

Despite its reputation, Whistler isn’t all about the outdoors. The town also offers unique, fun opportunities for the arts, culture and history fans among us.

  • Opened in 2016, The Audain Art Museum was founded by Vancouver home builder and philanthropist Michael Audain and his wife Yoshiko Karasawa. The museum itself was designed by an award-winning architecture firm, so the building itself is a work of art — but that’s not all there is to see. The museum also features a permanent collection of artwork from British Columbia, in addition to rotating exhibitions from renowned museums all over the world. Don’t miss the collection of 19th century Northwest Coast masks or the gallery of Vancouver’s photo-based art.
  • If you’re interested in taking a creative class or enjoying live entertainment, add Maury Young Arts Center to your itinerary. Located in the heart of Whistler village, it’s considered the center of the town’s arts and culture scene.

Don’t forget about R&R

In between hiking and taking in the arts scene, consider treating yourself to a spa day. Scandinave Spa Whistler creates a unique experience, blending the benefits of heat, cold, relaxation and silence. Located in a beautiful, secluded setting, Scandinave Spa Whistler is most popular for its outdoor baths inspired by Finnish tradition. Enjoy a soak in the baths and add a massage if you’re really in the mood to experience some luxury — you won’t regret it.

Spring in the mountains is special. April and May serves up long days and as it warms up, the list of adventures grows fast. Check out our guide to spring in Whistler, with top tips for activities and events.