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6 best family ski resorts in British Columbia

Canada is undeniably one of the best places in the world to ski. With super soft powder snow, great off-piste activities and long runs followed by hot springs. And British Columbia has the best ski resorts if you’re travelling with kids.

PEAK 2 PEAK gondola, Whistler Blackcomb lift, British Columbia, Canada
The Peak to Peak gondola at Whistler Blackcomb. Credit: Shutterstock

With family skiing comes frozen toes and yellow snow. Bringing the kids adds a layer of complexity.

Read more: On the Rails – taking Canada’s best train trips by storm

Is the mountain too big and scary? Are there enough beginner runs? What about magic carpets and ski lessons? Kids clubs and snow parks? And the deciding question; how good is the hot chocolate?

Here are the 6 best British Columbia ski resorts for families.

Sun Peaks

The village charm, varied terrain and groomed slopes at Sun Peaks make Canada’s second largest ski resort the perfect place for a family ski trip. The slopes tend to be quiet during the week, and the village traffic free. If you love Tirol in Austria, this is your North American equivalent.

Picture: Sun Peaks Resort

Sun Peaks has multiple terrain parks for varying abilities. There’s also a heap of exciting off-mountain activities. You can join the Family Fun Race Camp, or ride in a snow limo. Give segwaying a go, or enter in the Big Air competition.

Riding the chairlift through an alpine forest in the Sun Peaks village. Picture: Harry Beugelink / Shutterstock

Runs: 135km
Ability: 10% Easy, 58% Intermediate and 32% Difficult
Longest run: 8km
Lifts: 10
Snowparks: snow park/ fun park


This boutique ski resort ticks all the boxes with an affordable price tag.

It’s known for top of the line rental equipment, comfortable slope-side condos and an accessible pedestrian village. You’ll find a bunch of super cool mountain pit stops, and some pretty damn good hot chocolate at the Mile One Hut. And we haven’t even mentioned the snow yet.

Picture: Heidi Korven

Just two hours from Banff, Panorama has more than 100 kms of runs – over 75 per cent of which are beginner and intermediate. The other 25% are a great challenge for families of mixed ability.

Panorama also has heli-skiing and hot springs for those after something a little different.

Picture: Heidi Korven

The resort also has a ‘discovery zone’ for beginners. Two magic carpets, a t-bar and a slow speed quad chair makes getting up the mountain that little bit easier. Panorama has a terrain park, a secret treehouse with a slide and kids activities held daily such as tie-dying, scavenger hunts and movie nights.

Picture: Heidi Korven

Runs: 100km
Ability: 20% Easy, 55% Intermediate and 25% Difficult
Longest run: 5.5km
Lifts: 8
Snow parks: Snow park/Fun park

Silver Star

Colourful and compact mid mountain villages, 115kms of varied terrain, consistent powder and snowfall, and a range of spectacular kids clubs. Silver Star is the ultimate British Columbia ski resort for families.

Forest skiing country in British Columbia. Picture: DAE Photo / Shutterstock.

For every chair lift in the resort, you’ll find at least one beginner/intermediate run that follows.

The beginners zone at the bottom is decked out with multiple magic carpets, and is super close to the village. Little snow troopers can give the slopes their all and head back without a long ride home.

Family walking through Silver Star Village, originally a Victorian Mining town. Picture: Gail Johnson / Shutterstock

Silver Star also boasts some of the best value offers for families. They often have Kids Ski and/or Rent Free deals. The ski resort is also home to a 16 acre multi-lane terrain park, and gondola lifted night skiing, There’s also tubing, ice skating and snowshoeing. Really, there isn’t much you can’t do at Silver Star.

Runs: 115km
Ability: 17% Easy, 44% Intermediate and 39% Difficult
Longest run: 8 km
Lifts: 7
Snow parks: Snow park/ fun park


The ungroomed and blissfully quiet slopes of Fernie are often overlooked.

It’s a resort full of village charm, alpine bowls and knife ridges. According to National Geographic, it’s the 8th best ski town in the world. And we think they’re on to something.

A view down the streets of downtown Fernie, British Columbia. Picture: Christopher Babcock / Shutterstock

Fernie’s slope range is spectacular; each run completely unique and suited to powder daredevils of all kind. It’s said that the snow fall at Fernie is more consistent than Whistler, and the temperatures better than Banff.

Skiers lined up patiently as they waited for their turn at the chair lift. Picture: Timothy Yue / Shutterstock

Be sure to check out the Holo Hike off the Deer Chair, a twisting blue run that runs through tunnels and between resort cabins. After a long day on the slopes, its a good idea to head the the Fernie outdoor skating rink or the indoor pool.

Sunrise over the clouded valley. Picture: Geoff Hardy / Shutterstock

Runs: 142km
Ability: 30% Easy, 40% Intermediate and 30% Difficult
Longest run: 5km
Lifts: 9
Snowparks: Snow park/ Fun park

Big White

This mega resort boasts some of the best quality snow in North America, as well as a spectacular array of on and off-slope activities.

Big White has fluffy snow, varied terrain and a fantastic kids’ centre. It’s no wonder it made out list of the best British Columbia ski resorts for families.

Snowboarders on chairlift at Big White Resort, British Columbia. Picture: W. Richard / Shutterstock

Lesson groups at Big White tend to be smaller than average, so ski and snowboarding lessons tend to be a lot more personal.

Accomodation is ski-in, ski-out, and for an additional fee, instructors can drop the kids at home after their lesson. Big White also has childcare available across the mountain.

Big White Canada
Family Tube time at Big White Canada. Picture: Big White

You have more than 20 restaurants to choose from at Big White, from al-a-carte to fast food. You can even have food delivered to your accomodation.

The Telus Terrain Park has a snowboard and ski cross course decked out with a rail and other trick features. If jumps aren’t your cup of tea, there’s an addition 25km of cross country trails to explore. Big White also has dog sledding displays, ice skating and night skiing.

Runs: 105km
Ability: 18% Easy, 54% Intermediate and 28% Difficult
Longest run: km
Lifts: 12
Snowparks: Snow park/fun park and halfpipe

Whistler Blackcomb

Whistler has always been at the top of the list for biggest and best of everything. But the two-mountains resort is also super accessible, and makes a great ski destination for families.

Picture: Alison Godfrey

The accommodation is ski-in, ski-out, and spits you out onto more than 200km of skiable terrain.

Only two hours from Vancouver’s international airport, Whistler has kid-friendly tree forts, tubing, and some of the largest terrain parks on the continent.

They’re also congratulated for their fantastic ski hire, which is consistently brand new.

Photo taken during an avalanche safety training course in the Whistler backcountry. Picture: Ryan De Jong / Shutterstock

This year, the Canada Epic Pass allows access to more than fourteen neighbouring mountain resorts. The deal is insane value, but a lot of people have caught on. Whistler Blackcomb is becoming more and more popular with this inclusion, so be prepared for bigger crowds.

Premier ski hire in Whistler. Picture: Alison Godfrey

Runs: 200km
Ability: 20% Easy, 55% Intermediate and 25% Difficult
Longest run: 11  km
Lifts: 26
Snowparks: Snow park/Fun park and Halfpipe

If you’re after tips for your family ski holiday, click here.

Read more

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Family skiing: how to choose the best skis

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