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Top 12 Things to Do in Golden

The Top 12 Things to Do in Golden, BC on a Limited Timeframe

Whenever my friends ask me about the best places to travel in Canada, I always say Golden, British Columbia. And as expected, I’m always met with confused looks as the area, having only a population of 4,000, is often overlooked.

Sure, it’s no Kingston Harbour in Kingston nor a Bossard in Quebec, but Golden, BC is actually more awesome than it looks! White rafting, wildlife, adventurous hikes – it’s all here.

So, doing my duty as Golden fan, I’ve come up with this list of the best things to do in Golden, BC – rain or shine, solo or with a group!

Hang out with Boo the bear


Address: 1500 Kicking Horse Trail, Golden, BC V0A 1H0, Canada

Contact details: 1 (800) 258-7669

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

No trip to Golden would be complete without saying hi to Boo the Grizzly Bear! At Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, you’ll find the largest Grizzly Bear Refuge in the world. 

This means that in the winter, you can ski and snowboard past a (sleeping) grizzly!

Here’s the backstory: Boo’s mom sadly got shot when he was a wee cub of five months. Since then, he’s been living the chill life at the Grizzly Bear Refuge for the last two decades, becoming a bit of a legend around Golden and Kicking Horse Mountain. 

The place is open daily for tours ($35.95 per adult) during the summer. You can watch Boo doing his bear thing – hunting, scavenging, and honestly just goofing around in his wide, 20-acre space. 

And for those really wanting the inside scoop, there’s the Ranger Assist Program (RAP) you can get ($76.95 per adult). This gives you a chance to see how Boo gets his daily treats with a private tour.

Challenge yourself on the Via Ferrata


Address: 1500 Kicking Horse Trail, Golden, BC V0A 1H0, Canada

Contact details: 1 (800) 258-7669

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Another cool thing to do at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort is to try out the Via Ferrata. “Via Ferrata” is Italian for “Iron Road,” and that’s pretty much what it is, an iron path up the mountain!

This Via Ferrata is one of the best in Canada, with routes for beginners and advanced climbers alike. 

Your climbing route includes all safety gear such as harnesses, steel cables, and iron rungs. So, you can climb the mountain without worrying about falling. 

The toughest route, called the “ascension route,” is known to be one of the hardest in North America. It takes you up 465 meters to the summit of Terminator Peak, which is pretty epic! 

To give it a go, just sign up for Kicking Horse Mountain Resort’s Via Ferrata Adventure (starts at $92 per adult). It’s a full package deal that includes access to their Eagle’s Eye Restaurant, hiking trails, disc golf (bring your own disc), and even the Grizzly Bear Refuge.

Walk across the Golden Skybridge


Address: 503 Golden Donald Upper Rd, Golden, BC V0A 1H0, Canada

Contact details: +1 800-270-1238

Ever thought about strolling across Canada’s highest suspension bridges? That’s exactly what you can do at The Golden Skybridge – Golden’s newest attraction that just opened in the summer of 2021. 

It’s one of the most thrilling activities in Golden, suitable for all ages. After all, it’s not every day you get to walk 426 feet above a massive canyon. 

With the Columbia Valley surrounding you, crossing this skybridge while a river rushes below is an unforgettable experience. Not to mention the breathtaking views of the Rocky and Purcell mountain ranges. 

This could easily turn into a fantastic family adventure, as there’s a playground for the kids, a lovely outdoor eating area, and plenty of nature to explore. The whole experience typically takes only about an hour, leaving you with plenty of time to enjoy other activities in town.

Enjoy other outdoor adventures at the Golden Skybridge


Address: 503 Golden Donald Upper Rd, Golden, BC V0A 1H0, Canada

Contact details: +1 800-270-1238

If you can’t get enough of the Golden Skybridge, you’re in for a real treat! Beyond the breathtaking skybridges, there’s a whole lot more waiting to be explored. 

Take an exhilarating ride through the forest, along the canyon edge, and down the mountainside aboard the Railrider Mountain Coaster. 

You can also challenge yourself by climbing towards the clouds on their rock wall or try your hand at axe throwing.

For kids and families, the zipline offers an exciting adventure, with visitors racing across a 1,000-foot canyon. 

And with four tracks available, you and your besties can have a blast racing each other. 

To enjoy all these fantastic experiences, grab the full Golden Skybridge Adventure Pass, offering 3 to 4 hours of non-stop adventure.

Horseback riding along the Blaeberry


Address: 2054 Blaeberry Rd, Columbia-Shuswap, BC V0A 1H1, Canada

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Definitely one of the best activities in Golden, BC, is saddling up on a horse and enjoying a ride through the stunning region. Imagine lush forests, diverse plant life, unique wildlife, expansive green spaces, and fewer crowds!

While hiking along the Blaeberry is an option, exploring it on horseback takes the experience to a whole new level.

Through this, you can check out Bear Corner Bed & Bale for horseback riding tour options; hourly rates start at $90 per hour. You can enjoy 1, 2, and 3-hour guided trail rides along the Blaeberry River, in which guests can either ride their own horses or rent their horses.

This activity is great year-round, but there’s something magical about doing it on a crisp September morning, so we recommend booking around that time!

Trek the Iceline Trail


Address: 1000 Trans-Canada Hwy, Golden, BC V0A 1H1, Canada

Contact details: +1 250-344-8597

Operating hours: Open 24 hours

Love hiking? Check out the Iceline Trail, a fantastic hike close to town. Golden makes a perfect starting point for exploring this popular trail in Yoho National Park, just east of town. 

The 14.2 km trail is absolutely gorgeous, with waterfalls, glacier views, lakes, and colorful wildflowers if you hit it at the right time. 

It’s rated as moderate, so no crazy elevation gains or scrambling – but it’s a bit of a trek, taking around 6 to 8+ hours. If you prefer a more relaxed pace, there are campsites along the trail, but book ahead during the busy summer season. 

If you’re not up for solo wilderness adventures, consider hiring a guide. Self Propelled Adventures is one of the many options, they know their stuff and will ensure you have a safe and enjoyable hike.

Explore hidden Wapta Falls

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Address: Columbia-Shuswap, BC, Canada

Operating hours: Open 24 hours

If you’re into chasing waterfalls, you need to check out Wapta Falls in Yoho National Park. It’s not just any waterfall – it’s 18 meters tall and a whopping 107 meters wide!

To get there, you’ll need to take a short hike (5km round trip) with hardly any uphill climbing.

Just start from the gravel path at the south edge of the parking area in the park, and you’re on your way. The trail is marked with a sign from the National Parks, so you won’t lose your way.

The highlight of the trip is reaching the top of the falls. It’s an easy walk along a flat path for about 1.9 kilometers. 

There are a few lookout points from above, but it’s highly recommended to hike down to the base of the falls for the best views. 

If you want an extra thrill, climb up a small hill in front of the falls and feel the spray on your face. While summer is the prime time to visit, Wapta Falls is equally stunning in winter, when everything is covered in snow and ice.

Go white water rafting on the Kicking Horse River


Address: 1509a Lafontaine Rd, Golden, BC V0A 1H3, Canada

Contact details: +1 250-344-6521

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 8:00 AM – 9:00 PM

For those seeking thrilling adventures and not afraid to get wet, one of the best activities in Golden is white water rafting on the Kicking Horse River. 

This wild spot is beloved by kayakers for its Class II to IV rapids and offers some of the most impressive and scenic white water rafting experiences in all of BC.

The season for this activity typically runs from early June to mid-September, and you can book tours with Glacier Raft Company, starting at $100 per person. 

If you’re interested, they offer half-day and full-day tours divided into three sections: the upper, middle, and lower canyons. So whether you’re up for a challenge or prefer a more relaxed ride, they can tailor the rafting trip to suit your preferences.

Check out the Golden Museum and Archives


Address: 1302 11 Ave S, Golden, BC V0A 1H2, Canada

Contact details: +1 250-344-5169

Operating hours: Monday – Friday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

When the rain starts pouring and you find yourself wondering how to spend your day, why not take a leisurely stroll to the Golden Museum and Archives? 

Step inside and immerse yourself in three captivating exhibits. You can earn about the courageous CPR Swiss Guides, discover the rich heritage of the First Peoples, and delve into the golden years of the first Sikh Temple in North America. 

As you wander through the exhibits, you’ll encounter a treasure trove of artifacts, from captivating photographs to meticulously preserved plant specimens.

Best of all, admission is donation-based, making it accessible for everyone!

See the world’s largest oar

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Address: 2627 BC-95, Parson, BC V0A 1L0, Canada

Contact details: +1 250-348-2235

Operating hours: Open 24 hours

Have you ever wanted to see the world’s largest oar? Well, you’re in luck because you can find it right here in Golden! 

Located at the Columbia Wetlands Adventures facility, approximately 26 km south of Golden, this Guinness World Records-certified oar is truly a must-see. 

It’s fashioned after an actual paddle, so don’t miss the chance for an unforgettable photo op. Once you’ve taken in the sight of the world’s largest paddle, make the most of your visit by exploring the nearby Columbia Wetlands Outpost.

It’s a popular spot for visitors, offering stunning views and the opportunity to rent canoes, kayaks, or stand-up paddleboards (SUPs) for your own river and wetlands adventure. 

If you prefer a guided experience, consider joining a family-friendly float tour with them, where you can relax and enjoy the valley aboard a comfortable cataraft.

But if you’d rather stay on solid ground, feel free to kick back, relax, and take in the scenery from the cozy lounge on the dock.

Visit Northern Lights Wildlife Wolf Centre


Address: 1745 Short Rd, Golden, BC V0A 1H1, Canada

Contact details: +1 250-344-6798

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Northern Lights Wildlife Wolf Centre is all about raising awareness and supporting the conservation of wolves, offering you the chance to get close to these incredible animals. 

For just $15 per person, you can join a family-friendly, 25-minute educational tour of the nine resident wolves. During the tour, you’ll see the wolves up close in their enclosures and learn nteresting facts about them, their natural behaviors, and why conservation matters. 

If you’re lucky, you might even catch them enjoying a snack or serenading you with their beautiful howls. 

For a more personal experience, consider booking a private walk with a wolf – this is for adults only!

Lasting 1.5 hours and set in the scenic Blaeberry Valley, this guided stroll lets you walk alongside a wolf as it leads the way, offering plenty of chances to snap some amazing photos. 

Enjoy a meal in an igloo


Address: 427 9 Ave N, Golden, BC V0A 1H0, Canada

Contact details: +1 250-939-8807

Operating hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 12:00 PM – 10:00 PM

Tired of the usual dining experience? Why not book your very own igloo at Reposados and treat yourself to a cozy Mexican meal? 

Situated in downtown Golden, this restaurant is a must-visit after exploring all the exciting attractions Golden has to offer. 

The food here is simply irresistible, with a fresh and inventive twist on traditional tacos using fine produce. Every dish is crafted fresh daily, ensuring a burst of flavor with every bite, especially when it comes to their mouth-watering burritos. 

With only two igloos up for grabs, it’s wise to secure your reservation in advance. But don’t fret if the igloos are fully booked – Reposados also offers a charming outdoor seating area with domed seating, perfect for enjoying your meal during the cooler months.

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