As summer winds down, the West Coast prepares for the most glorious season of all. Fall is almost here and we’ve got a list of 30 things to do in B.C. that you are definitely going to want to add to your Fall bucket list!
There’s so much more to Fall than wearing sweaters and sipping PSLs. Fall is meant to be explored, savoured and shared with friends. Whether this Fall you’re craving outdoor adventure, cosy nights in with friends or the chance to explore some far-flung corner of the province—our list is full of amazing things to do and see!
1. Wander the trails of Pacific Spirit Park at UBC
While the UBC Campus is bustling during the back to school frenzy, the park surrounding the campus is seriously idyllic in the fall. There are so many trails and beaches to explore and it’s only a 99 b-line ride away! See the colours of fall leaves, take pics and sip a PSL in the crisp autumn air.
2. Sip your way through B.C.’s most hipster craft breweries
Get cosy this fall at one of the many craft breweries, tasting rooms and pubs found all over the province. Try a beer flight, grab some snacks and relax because an afternoon at a brewery is time well spent. In Vancouver, check out the painfully cool 33 Acres in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood. Looking for beers in Kelowna? Vice & Virtue is new to the scene and has a sweet brewery, tasting room and restaurant.
3. Hike to Mystery Lake
Tucked up on Mount Seymour, Mystery Lake is a short distance away and a perfect mini-hike for a clear autumn day. It’s perfect for first-time hikers or those forest-curious city slickers. With a 150 metre elevation in just three kilometres, you’ll also work off some of that inevitable fall pumpkin pie.
4. Soak in the horseshoe-shaped cave at Ainsworth Hot Springs
Ainsworth boasts an incredible hot springs cave tucked into the heart of the Kootenay Mountains! The local indigenous Ktunaxa people have been coming to these healing hot springs for generations. Wade through the horseshoe-shaped cave and soothe your muscles after a day spent exploring the Kootenays.
5. Visit B.C.’s new gorgeous waterfront art gallery
The Polygon Gallery in North Vancouver is the most gorgeous waterfront art gallery in B.C. The entire bottom floor is see-through to create an unobstructed view of the Vancouver skyline just across the water. It’s actually even better if you can come on a super rainy Vancouver day to see the place enveloped in mist. The architecture of this place, along with the sick views of Vancouver and the art exhibits make this a must-see this fall.
6. Go apple picking in Vernon
Veron is home to pick-your-own orchards where you can harvest your own fall bounty! These heritage orchards are some of the most romantic and Instagram-worthy places in the province. Find a recipe for apple cider and fill your bucket of fall goodness! Can’t make it up to Vernon? Vancouver spots like the UBC Apple Festival and the Applebarn will help you get your fall fix of apples!
7. Get spooked on a Gastown walking tour
Fall is when Halloween rolls around, so the strange and mysterious seem even more intriguing than usual. Go on a walking tour of the historic heart of Vancouver and learn about the spooky and sinful past of the city. Try the Lost Souls of Gastown tour or the Vancouver Police Museum Sins of the City tour.
8. Bike the Kettle Valley Rail Trail
Squeeze in one last outdoor adventure before the ski season starts and bike the Kettle Valley Rail Trail! This is the largest rail trail bike path in the province extending from Hope to Castlegar. These decommissioned rail tracks are perfect for biking because the hills are gradual and easy to take. Explore the abandoned railway line and see the impressive colourful fall views along the way.
9. Spot celebs and be the first to see new films at VIFF
The Vancouver International Film Festival is a can’t miss for film lovers and movie buffs. Leaf through the +300 films on offer between September 27 and October 14 and pick which ones you just have to see!
10. Party German-style at an Octoberfest celebration
British Columbia might be a long ways from Bavaria, but we know how to celebrate Oktoberfest. Join in a local celebration of this German beer-and-sausage-fueled harvest celebration, raise a massive stein of beer and say cheers! Or, rather, Prost!
11. Go Surfing in Tofino
Everyone knows Tofino is the place to go in B.C. for surfing, but did you know that fall is the optimal time of the year for the best waves? Struggle into a wetsuit and get yourself on a surfboard ASAP.
12. Spend a weekend in an Official Ghost Town
Ghost towns dot the province thanks to our Gold Rush past, but none are as empty and yet cool to visit as Barkerville. Book a cottage or bed and breakfast at this cosy historic town and spend the day checking out museums, touring the old buildings and riding on stagecoaches!
13. Sip Lattes at these hidden French-inspired cafes
Fall is definitely the most romantic season! Play out your Parisian fantasies at one of these chic French-inspired spots hidden around Vancouver. Beaucoup Bakery has the best croissants in B.C. while the neighbourhood Le Marché St. George offers local artisanal goods and delicious food.
14. Escape from the rain and reality at a VR Lounge
Bored of escape rooms? Then check out VR! This new entertainment trend is just getting started in our province, but its already going to be the new place to take a group of friends or a date. Hideout from the rain and escape reality for a while at a VR lounge this fall.
15. Go Horseback Riding at Canada’s Oldest Guest Ranch
Plan a getaway to the Flying U Ranch, an actual dude ranch where you ride horses, sleep in log cabins and say things like “Howdy”. The Flying U is in 100 Mile House and it’s a five-hour drive from Vancouver. Their horses wander the grounds of the ranch freely. Imagine peeking out of your cabin in the early morning hours to see a horse nibbling on the grass!
16. Adventure to these hard-to-find magical hidden falls
These might be the most magical hidden falls in B.C.! Visit Fernie for an adventure to Matheson Falls where crystal clear waters cascade over moss-covered rocks in a hidden forest glade.
17. Enjoy Whistler without the touristy crowds at Junction Function
Junction Function is full of laid-back Pacific Northwest community cafes and shops. It’s the place to go to escape the crowds at Whistler Village. See the OG Whistler bakery Purebread that serves pour-over coffee and house-baked pastries. Don't miss out on the craft beer offerings at Whistler Brewing Company.
18. Tour wineries during harvest season in Osoyoos
Experience harvest time in Osoyoos wine country to get a behind-the-scenes look at how wine is made and be the first to try new seasonal varieties. Go on a wine tasting and split charcuterie share plates with your besties. Bonus: the cooler fall weather makes a rich glass of red wine seem even more inviting!
19. Rent a modern chalet and get away with your squad
You can rent this unique modern chalet for a quick getaway in the woods with your best friends this fall! This stunning chalet can fit up to eight people bringing your cost per person way down. Escape to this Airbnb, located along a river near Golden, for some secluded good times with friends.
20. Steep in local history and kitschy small-town vibes at Fort Langley
Fort Langley has a national historic site and a village where you can steep yourself in local history. Plus, there are plenty of amazing local shops, artisans and cafes to check out with friends. There’s even a sweet vegan spot for comfort food called Veggie Bob’s. Perfect for warming up on those cooler autumn days! Pro tip: Visit the historic fort on October 6 for FREE admission!
21. Eat as much pumpkin pie as possible
Don’t wait until Thanksgiving to get your pumpkin pie fix! Delight in the nostalgic flavours of pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg. It’s like an autumnal hug for your tummy. Plus, it’s a proven FACT that pumpkin pie can double as dessert and breakfast.
22. Hike up to the totally unreal Skookumchuck Narrows
Skookumchuck Narrows on the Sunshine Coast is where Mother Nature loves to show off. When the tide changes, these powerful rapids become swirling whirlpools that look like something out of a disaster movie! Thrill seekers without regard to safety can even kayak these crazy rapids.
23. Wander fields of sunflowers
Spot sunflowers around the province and visit a local sunflower field! Chilliwack is hosting a Sunflower Festival this year where you can get armfuls of sunny yellow autumnal flowers and some good shots for your Instagram feed!
24. Spend a night in a floating orb treehouse
Book a stay at the Free Spirit Spheres at Qualicum Beach for a totally unique experience of sleeping amongst the forest. These photogenic floating orbs are cosy AF and sharing one with your s/o or bestie would be an unforgettable time!
25. Go walking with wolves
Want to get up close with nature? Like, really really close? Visit the Northern Wolf Centre and you hang out with their actual pack of wolves. They even have a walking with wolves tour where you can join the wolf pack and hike through the wilderness alongside these amazing creatures.
26. Visit a Haunted House
Love Halloween? B.C. is full of halloween must-dos! Visit Potter’s House of Horrors and Fright Nights for seriously scary haunted houses. Get spooked, laugh out loud and have a great time making fun of your scaredy-cat friends.
27. Celebrate Fall Cultural Festivals
With fall comes not just Halloween, but also Diwali and Mid-Autumn Festival. In Vancouver, you can join the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival at Dr Sun Yat Sen gardens. For Diwali, the festival of light celebrations, check out the Diwali Festival happening in October.
29. Get lost in a corn maze
Spend a glorious sunny fall day getting lost in a corn maze in Chilliwack! This farm has a ton of fun and totally wholesome attractions like a pumpkin patch, tractor rides, outdoor games, farm animals and more.
30. Play board games at a nerd bar
Only the coolest of the cool know about Storm Crow! They have two locations in Vancouver and they are both totally dedicated to sci-fi/fantasy fandom and board games. Choose from hundreds of boardgames, order a butterbeer and get ready for good cozy fun with friends!