[trip style = weekend getaway] [more pics below]
Whistler In The Summer There's nothing like summer in Whistler---other than epic winters, quiet autumns and fresh springs. Admittedly, I love all seasons at the world famous mountains. Attracting summer outdoor enthusiasts locally and from around the world, the resort town an hour and a half from Vancouver swells---both in temperature and population---every summer with bbq's a blazin', bikes a downhillin', hikers a climbin' and foodies a tastin.' In fact, thanks to a fishing resort opening in 1914 that has since closed, Whistler was a summer destination long before it was the number one ski resort in North America. Locals always laugh at the truth of the expression "I came to Whistler for the winter but stayed for the summer.”
Live Like a High-Roller, Pay Like a Local Being a well known resort and home of the 2010 Olympic Winter games means Whistler caters to the luxury seeking spenders and the low-key savers, but the best part about the town of 10,000 is the summer season affords both lifestyles. Here's how to live like a high-roller for locals prices:
- Whistler: Yes, you can pay around $195 to golf at any of the 3 highly acclaimed golf courses in Whistler, or you can play smart and take part in the Fairmont course's Wednesday Date Night where approx. $99 includes golf after 3pm and dinner for two people.
- Pemberton: Just a half hour from Whistler, Pemberton has 2 courses that offer just as breathtaking scenery and level of play for a fraction of the price. Play an executive course or a full round at Big Sky or The Meadows from $25. [pic of Big Sky below]
- Whether you take the Whistler gondola or the Blackcomb chairlifts up to either mountain, the hiking is breathtaking. Summer lift tickets can be purchased online for $39.95. If you'd rather hike for free, check out the Cougar Mountain trail (8km round trip) near Whistler, the Garibaldi Lake trail (approx 21km round trip) 20 minutes outside of Whistler or the extensive village trail system.
- Whistler's lakes offer a natural air conditioning from the summer's heat. Lost Lake and Alta Lake feature multiple parks and beaches with gradual water entry.
- Floating down Whistler's gentle-flowing River of Golden Dreams is a fun activity the whole family can enjoy. Many first-timers choose a canoe or kayak as their transportation of choice, whereas the seasoned drifters prefer inner tubes.
- Whistler has a lot of spas---it comes with the resort territory---but none are as unique and beautiful as the newly opened Scandinave Spa. Popular with men, ladies, couples and singles, Scandinave's bathing ritual combining hot-cold-relax repeat, hot-cold-relax repeat, is both healing and rejuvenating. It's easy to spend 2+ hours rotating between the sauna, cold plunge pools, relaxation rooms, outdoor chairs, hot tubs and eucalyptus steam room, all while staring into the distance at snow-capped peaks. Mineral baths from $58. Don't miss the 9am massage specials. [see pics below]
- Every Friday in the summer (and sometimes the fall), the Fairmont Chateau Whistler presents Fairmont Fridays where the Mallard Lounge offers a $5 beer option, a $5 cocktail option, free appetizers from 5.30-6.30pm and live music.
- Four Seasons
- Right now the Four Seasons' Fifty-Two 80 Bistro & Bar is offering 7 Days of Apres with different drink and food specials nightly. Three dollar beer is the bevvie of choice on Friday, but you'll have to get in line. A deal like this goes over well with the locals.
- Sitting across from the base of Whistler Creekside, Creekbread Flatbread Pizza Co offers great prices year-round, and Tuesday evenings donates part of its proceeds to a local non-profit.
- Farmer's Market
- Every Sunday during the summer from 11am-4pm, the Upper Village turns into a hippy-meets-high-end farmer's market. If you want to cook a gourmet meal a la Jamie Oliver you can pick up a wide variety of fresh, organic and locally grown produce, breads and nuts. Yum.
Stay Summer is a time when Whistler's population swells in the day but shrinks at night. In other words, day tripping is king leaving hotels and condo owners pining for guests. As a result, rates drop a lot. During the summer it's not abnormal to find a one-bedroom condo for rent on sites like alluradirect.com or ownerdirect.com starting in the $59 range. Renting a condo also ensures you can control your costs more with a kitchen, etc...
Pictures Big Sky Golf Club Pemberton
[Photos by @tripstyler]