How to Plan a Family-Friendly Vacation in British Columbia

How to spend Holidays in British Columbia

With stunning scenery, exciting cities and endless family-friendly activities, British Columbia is a top destination for an epic family vacation. From exploring Vancouver’s urban attractions to mountain adventures in Whistler, you’ll find nonstop fun for kids of all ages. Start planning your BC family trip with these tips on choosing the best locations, finding accommodations, building your itinerary and more for a vacation packed with lifelong memories.

With its breathtaking natural scenery, an abundance of kid-friendly activities, and a wide range of family-friendly accommodations, Vacation in British Columbia is one of the best places for an unforgettable family vacation. From exploring vibrant cities like Vancouver and Victoria to enjoying outdoor adventures in the Okanagan Valley and Whistler, there are endless options for family fun and memories to last a lifetime.

Planning a family trip to British Columbia can seem daunting, but a little preparation and research will go a long way. The key is choosing the right location and finding age-appropriate activities and attractions to delight kids of all ages. Focus on top family vacation spots like Vancouver, Whistler and Victoria which offer the perfect blend of city exploration and access to outdoor adventure. Take advantage of family-friendly resorts, campgrounds, hotels and vacation rentals across British Columbia for the ideal home base.

With a bit of planning, you can craft the perfect itinerary packed with kid-approved activities, while still allowing time for rest and relaxation. This guide will walk you through how to plan an epic family-friendly vacation in beautiful British Columbia.

Experience the Ultimate Family Adventure in Beautiful British Columbia

From majestic mountains and stunning ocean vistas to exciting cities filled with kid-approved attractions, British Columbia is a dream destination for an unforgettable family vacation. This Canadian province offers endless opportunities to create special memories together through incredible natural beauty, thrilling activities, and relaxation in world-class resorts.

Planning the perfect family getaway in British Columbia is easy and fun when you focus on picking the ideal location as your home base. The province is filled with family-friendly cities and resort towns that make excellent bases for exploration and adventure. Here are some top family vacation spot options:

1.    Vancouver

This lively coastal city has it all for a family vacation in British Columbia. Stanley Park provides green space for picnics and play while the Vancouver Aquarium delights kids. Enjoy urban sights like Science World, Granville Island Public Market and the Ferry to North Vancouver. Cap it off with a ride up Grouse Mountain to experience sweeping city views.

2.    Victoria

BC’s charming capital city on Vancouver Island wows families with its scenic Inner Harbour dotted with seaplanes, horse-drawn carriage rides, high tea at the Fairmont Empress and the interactive Royal BC Museum. Let kids run free in Beacon Hill Park and don’t miss Butchart Gardens with its magical floral displays.

3.    Whistler

This famous mountain resort enthrals families year-round. Ski and snowboard world-class runs in winter and ride the Peak2Peak gondola. Come summer, kids love activities like bungee jumping, zip-lining, hiking, biking and water sports on lakes and rivers.

With the right home base picked, you’re on your way to an incredible family adventure in beautiful British Columbia.

Finding Family-Friendly Accommodations

British Columbia offers a wide variety of accommodations suitable for families, from hotels and resorts to campgrounds and vacation rentals.

In popular cities like Vancouver and Victoria, good family hotel options include major chains that often provide kid-focused amenities like waterslides, pools, family suites and more. There are also unique boutique hotels with family rooms and central locations.

Lodges in British Columbia

For a resort-style stay, destinations like Whistler, Tofino and the Okanagan have family-friendly resorts with activities for all ages. Many feature large suites and adjoining rooms for privacy

Vacation rentals like cabins, cottages and condos can work well, providing amenities and space for the whole family to spread out. Services like Airbnb and Vrbo make it easy to find family-sized rentals.

Camping and RVing are budget-friendly options. BC has over 1,400 campgrounds including both rustic and full-service options with desired amenities.

No matter your choice, look for accommodations that offer conveniences like outdoor spaces, play areas, central locations and dining options to simplify family travel.

Finding Activities for All Ages

The key to a great family vacation is packing the itinerary with activities and attractions suited for kids of all ages. Luckily, British Columbia offers endless options for family fun and adventure.

For little ones, destinations like Science World in Vancouver have interactive exhibits and play areas tailored specifically for toddlers and preschoolers. Many cities have public playgrounds, splash parks and walking trails suitable even for infants in strollers.

Kids activities In British Columbia

School-age kids love educational attractions like the Royal BC Museum in Victoria and hands-on learning experiences like whale-watching boat tours in Victoria and Vancouver. Outdoor activities like hiking, biking and camping appeal to adventurous young kids.

Whale Watching In British Columbia

Pre-teens and teens can be harder to please but BC offers plenty of exciting options from mountain adventures in Whistler to exploring city sites using public transportation in Vancouver. These ages often enjoy water sports, amusement parks, ziplining and more thrilling activities.

Focus on variety, balance and flexibility. Mix high-energy adventures with plenty of downtime, snacks and room for spontaneity. With a bit of planning, you can build the perfect itinerary for kids of any age.

Finding Dining Options for the Whole Family

An important part of any family trip is figuring out where to eat. British Columbia offers lots of tasty, kid-friendly dining options to fuel your family adventures.

For little ones, choose restaurants with high chairs, kids’ menus, and quick service. Family-friendly chain restaurants often found in cities and resort towns are a reliable choice.

Seeking unique local flavours? BC’s cities have an array of cuisines featuring international options like sushi, tacos, pho and more. Try dishes kids will enjoy.

Dining Options in BC

For variety, visit public markets like Granville Island Public Market in Vancouver or Victoria Public Market. Let kids graze on samples and fresh local produce.

Save money by opting for accommodations with kitchens. Grocery stores carry ready-made meals and local goods for quick homemade family dinners.

Pack snacks, sippy cups, wipes and other feeding accessories to stay fed on the go. With the right mix of dining options, mealtime can be fun for the whole family.

Getting Around with Ease

Transporting a family and all your gear requires a bit of pre-trip planning. The good news is British Columbia offers family-friendly transportation options.

Driving can provide the most flexibility and access to attractions across BC. Plan your road trip route in advance and allow plenty of time. Bring entertainment and snacks to stay happy in the car.

Public transportation like buses, ferries, and SkyTrain can work well in cities like Vancouver and Victoria. Consider public transit passes or hop-on-hop-off bus tours to simplify sightseeing.

Transport Options In British Columbia

Taxis and rideshares provide transportation on demand but can add up costs. Useful as needed for short trips and tired kids.

No matter how you get around, pack light to ease luggage logistics. Bring car seats as needed and useful gear like strollers, baby carriers, and kid-sized backpacks.

With the right mix of transportation options, it’s easy to keep the whole family satisfied and comfortable during travels around beautiful British Columbia.

Crafting the Ideal Family Itinerary

The final step in planning your family trip to British Columbia is crafting a balanced itinerary filled with fun activities for everyone.

Consider your family’s ages, interests, energy levels and must-see attractions to build each day’s schedule. Include a mix of active adventures, educational activities, downtime, and flexibility for spontaneity.

Aim for a combination of city sightseeing, outdoor adventures, kid-friendly dining, and relaxing resort time. Don’t cram too much into each day—leave ample time to linger when having fun.

Adventures in British Columbia

Schedule activities matching optimal times—early for wildlife viewing, mornings for outdoor fun before afternoon heat, evenings for strolling city sights.

Build in family bonding time like picnics in scenic spots, swimming at lakeside beaches or game nights back at your accommodation.

Leave room for kids to pick 1-2 of their top activities per destination. This gives them ownership in the trip.

With the right balance of must-see attractions and flexibility, you can craft an incredible British Columbia itinerary loved by all ages. The memories of a lifetime await!

Packing Tips for Family Travel

Packing for a family trip can quickly get overwhelming. Make it easier with these tips:

  • Make a master packing list noting essentials for every family member including medications, travel documents, and electronics/chargers.
  • Use luggage organizers and cubic packing methods to optimize space. Bring collapsible bags for souvenirs.
  • Pack layers for changing weather and activities. Include sun protection like hats, sunglasses and child-safe sunscreen.
  • Don’t forget entertainment like books, toys, games, tablets loaded with movies and headphones.
  • Pack snacks, reusable water bottles and disposable placemats for eating on the go.
  • Bring all needed child gear like car seats, strollers, baby carriers and any special sleep items.
  • Have a separate “day bag” with essentials like diapers, wipes, a change of clothes and a first aid kit.

Follow these tips to effortlessly pack everything your family needs for an amazing British Columbia vacation!

Family Keepsakes and Memories

A family vacation is the perfect time to create lasting memories together. Capture the moments with these ideas:

  • Have kids make their own scrapbooks or photo albums of the trip. Gather maps, tickets and souvenirs to glue in later.
  • Start a family journal and take turns writing or drawing daily highlights and new discoveries.
  • Take lots of photos! Get the whole family together for posed shots plus candid moments of new experiences.
  • Buy matching t-shirts, hats or other souvenirs for a cute family photo op.
  • Gather natural souvenirs like shells, pinecones or pebbles and have kids make crafty souvenirs when you get home.
  • Let kids pick out postcards and stamps at gift shops to write to friends about the trip.
Family adventures in british Columbia

Simple gestures like these make for priceless lifelong memories of family bonding. Follow these tips to cherish your British Columbia family vacation forever!


A family vacation in beautiful British Columbia is sure to be an unforgettable experience filled with stunning scenery, exciting adventures, and precious bonding time. With kid-friendly cities, endless activities and resorts tailored for families, it’s easy to plan the perfect trip for all ages.

With a little preparation and planning, you can craft a British Columbia family vacation that will bring joy to kids young and old while checking off bucket list experiences together. The memories made will last a lifetime and leave your family wanting to return year after year. Start planning your amazing British Columbia family adventure today!

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