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Vancouver Recap: Weekend in Whistler (Part 1)

Hi there, I feel like I’ve been gone from this space for so long! While I had some scheduled posts go up last week, it’s not the same as posting real-time and interacting with you all through the comments.

Thank you all for the well-wishes for our trip and while I have so much to recap with you, I’ll probably split it into a few posts due to the large amount of text and pictures I have to share, and lots of eats!

You’ve been warned – this is very photo heavy!

What to Do In Whistler, Canada



As I had previously mentioned, Ed and I took a week-long trip to Vancouver, Canada, to celebrate our one year wedding anniversary, which also coincided with my birthday.

Today’s recap will focus on the first part of our trip in Whistler, a two hour drive north of Vancouver.

Whistler is a very popular winter destination for skiing and snowboarding, so we knew we would find some great mountains and hiking.

We love exploring the outdoors so it was a perfect match. 


The trip got off to a rough start as my checked bag didn’t make it to Vancouver after a long day of traveling. But, alas it was vacation so I didn’t let it get me down!

The weather felt absolutely amazing, and I can’t tell you how nice it was to be away from the humidity! We landed around 9pm PCT, picked up our rental car, and drove the two hours to Whistler.

We were exhausted by this point so went right to bed. 

Whistler breakfast

Friday morning started with breakfast at the Southside Diner, at the suggestion of our Air BnB host. I got the brie stuffed french toast with homefries and an Americano coffee.

Perfect fuel for a day of exploring.

What To Do in Whistler in Summer Season

southside diner

Day 1 in Whistler, BC

Then, we went to explore Olympic Village. The 2010 Winter Olympics were held in Whistler and Vancouver, and I could totally see this Olympic Village being the perfect area for athletes.

It was really big, but also quaint at the same time. We went for a little jog and explored.

We then took quick showers, grabbed some subs for our hike, and headed up the Whistler gondola.

Whistler hike3

And, obviously, we had to pose in front of the Olympic rings at the top!

Whistler Olympic Village

We spent the afternoon exploring the Whistler Blackcomb Mountains and experiencing the peak to peak gondola, which transports you from Whistler Mountain to  Blackcomb Mountain.

Apparently, the Peak 2 Peak Ride is a Guinness World Record for the world’s longest unsupported span for a lift of 1.88 miles, and the highest lift of its kind (1,427 feet). Pretty neat!


Peak to Peak

Those little red guys are what we rode in! I do not enjoy heights but I did enjoy all of this beauty. 

Whistler hike

Whistler hike

We opted to hike down the mountain, rather than take the gondola. By the time we got down, we got a call that my bag was being delivered so we headed back to our Air Bnb to get my bag, which fortunately arrived in one piece, and just like that, I had all my necessities back!

Friday night

We had dinner Friday night at Elements, an adorable, local tapas restaurant in the village. We loved everything we ordered, including the Canadian beer

. The service was great, and the atmosphere was cozy. My favorite dish was the deconstructed ahi tuna taco!

tuna tacos

After Elements, we explored more of Whistler Village, and ended up at an upscale cocktail bar called Oso.

They had 6 different gin and tonic choices (Ed’s favorite drink), so while he opted for one of those, I ordered the “Powder Day,” with bison grass vodka, Cointreau, fresh lemon and muddled ginger with one large ice cube (just how I like it). 

I liked my drink, but they were quite pricey, so we headed home after one.

Oso cocktails

Day 2 in Whistler, BC

After some much-needed sleep, we took Saturday morning easy. Ed ran out to Tim Horton’s (Canada’s local Dunkin Donuts’ equivalent) and brought back bagels and iced coffees, while I opted to sleep a little later.

We then headed back to Whistler Village for a 6 mile run around Lost Lake. It was gorgeous and there was a big loop around the lake, busy with runners, walkers, and cyclists.

Man, I would love to run this loop daily!

Lost Lake

Then, we stopped at Lake Garibaldi  on our way to Vancouver, which I read about, heard about from the locals and also from Danielle’s awesome blog (thanks Danielle!!!).

The roundtrip hike was about 18 km (~11 miles). The first 3.5 miles of the hike is very wooded with lots of switch backs.

switchback hiking

There weren’t many views going up. We really had no hint of an idea about the beautiful lake awaiting us, until it started opening up.


Then, we saw the lake’s beauty!


Garibaldi Lake

The photos can’t do the lake color justice. The color is breathtaking and was undeniably, the prettiest color I’ve ever seen!

Garibaldi Lake

Lake Garibaldi is massive, and surrounded by picturesque mountains in the background. The hike up is definitely worth the view. Once we arrived, we had a little picnic at the lake and obviously took tons of pictures.

We actually saw many people that were camping in the area for the night, which would have been pretty fun!

Lake Garibaldi Garabaldi Lake Garabaldi Lake

Garibaldi Lake, Vancouver

The hike down wasn’t any walk in the park, as my quads were screaming the whole way down, probably as a result of Friday’s hike as well.

Note: You will be sore for days after this hike! But man on man, I wouldn’t trade that hiking experience for anything!


Furthermore, the drive from Whistler back to Vancouver was the most breathtaking, spectacular drive I’ve ever seen along the Sea to Sky Highway (Highway 99). 

Sea to Sky

Seriously, I am overwhelmed by British Columbia’s beauty.

Next up, we spent a few days in Victoria, which I’ll recap next week.

I hope you have a great week! Linking up with Hoho Runs and MissSippiPiddin for the Weekly Wrap!

So, have you ever been to Canada or BC?

Do you find that hard hikes are worth the views?

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  1. Wow, this so makes me want to go back to BC. I went to Vancouver, but you found so many gems, that this would be a jaw dropping, breath taking trip. I LOVE all the photos. It looks like the mountains that I love so dearly, and the lake is just amazing! Wow, I can’t say enough about it; thank you for sharing all the beauty of your wonderful adventures.

  2. I have never been to Canada or BC, but, wow do I want to! Those views are incredible, thanks for sharing this recap. Totally putting Lake Garibaldi on my travel bucket list.

  3. I have seen so many Canada posts lately, and this one sent me over the top! I am totally planning a trip. It looks gorgeous and the food looks so good!!! Thanks for sharing. xx

  4. I was in Victoria as a stop off on an Alaskan cruise, but I definitely want to go back some day to do ALL THE HIKING. These pics are beautiful!

  5. Oh my gosh, the views!!! I’ve never been to Canada, but I’m dying to go to Quebec. I think hard hikes are usually worth the view. Unless, like in my family’s case, you hike the highest point along the North Atlantic seaboard, only for it to be so foggy you literally can’t even see 10 feet in front of you. And it just so happened to clear up basically as soon as we made our way down. But hey, we made some memories, so it’s all good. Enjoy the rest of your trip! I can’t wait to see more gorgeous pictures 🙂 .


  6. Oh sighhhhhhh. The mountains are just so, unbelievably beautiful. These photos are taking me back to my last west coast adventure with my family. I have definite plans to go back one day and make it more of a hiking and camping focused trip. I’m SO glad you experienced some of Canada’s beauty… and Tim Hortons!! Baha.

  7. Hiking views are certainly worth the work. It’s like getting the right lighting for photography is worth it for the beautiful picture. I’ve only been to Canada once, to Niagara Falls. It was fun, but I would never want to live there. Too cold in the winter.

  8. I love lots of pictures in blog posts, especially amazing pics like the ones you took! That lake especially, is absolutely stunning. I would love to visit Canada at some point. It looks like such a beautiful place!
    Hard hikes are totally worth of the view. It’s like a reward for all your hard work. Although, this past week a friend and I went on a really hard hike, but we couldn’t find the view, which was a bummer.
    I can’t wait for the rest of your recap! Keep the food and lovely scenery pics coming!

  9. Wow! Those pictures are breathtaking…yes I totally think a great view or something to run towards makes a hike/jog worth it. I sometimes trick myself when running by telling myself that there is something AMAZING waiting at the end. It usually works too! But I’ve never ran with views this beautiful! I am so glad you took some time to enjoy yourselves!

  10. Your photos are amazing!!! Our trip to Whistler was way too short so we didn’t get to explore as much as we wanted! Your hike to the lake looked so awesome! A local also told us that Joffre Lake was another must do hike. It’s a little outside of Whistler but on my list for next time!

  11. Wow, so beautiful!!! I can only imagine how breathtaking those views were. Especially that lake.
    Also the brie stuffed French toast sounds too good to be true!