What does your family’s ideal vacation look like?
Outdoor adventure? Fascinating heritage sites? Quirky, one-of-a-kind attractions you won’t find anywhere else?
At 5,262 square kilometres, BC’s Hope, Cascades & Canyon region has it all … and then some!
Just 90 minutes east of Vancouver and 2 1/2 hours from Kelowna at the junction of Highways 1, 3, 5 and 7, Hope is a gateway destination for those heading in all directions! No surprise, the region’s visitor centre is among BC’s busiest, and what a story there is to tell! Rich history, thrilling adventures, talented artisans … it’s all right here.
With so much to see and do, the region deserves so much more than a daytrip. Good thing Hope itself is home to a wide variety of accommodations. You’ll also find charming B&Bs, glamping in the Fraser Canyon and a variety of accommodations from Manning Park to Bridal Falls!
1. Yale Historic Site – A great place to kick off your visit, “Yale really tells the history of the canyon, the river and down into Hope,” says Patrick Earl, executive director of AdvantageHOPE. Once the largest city north of San Francisco and west of Chicago, Yale was founded in 1848 as a HBC trading post, growing quickly with the arrival of 30,000 dreamers during the 1858 gold rush. This provincial heritage site includes an interpretive village, Creighton House’ Museum, their newly opened restaurant, Ward Tea House, and their latest signature experience, the Johnny Ward Guest House, a private character home available for overnight accommodations. The Yale Historic site also hosts a walking augmented reality tour, historic parks, pioneer cemetery and more.
2. Hell’s Gate Airtram – Head north along Highway 1 to Hell’s Gate, where waters from the awe-inspiring Fraser River are forced through towering rock walls only 110 feet apart. The airtram – one of the steepest fully suspended trams in North America – reveals spectacular view as it descends into the gorge, home to special exhibits … and rumour has it, a ghost or two!
3. Fraser River Rafting – Take your adventure to the water, experiencing some of the largest commercially rafted whitewater in North America. Majestic views, wildlife and cultural history await as you challenge the rapids at Scuzzy Rock, China Bar and of course, Hell’s Gate itself. Unforgettable!
4. Hope Mountain Centre – If two feet (or two wheels) are your preferred way to explore, this team is in the know. Responsible for trail development and maintenance, they can tell you where to go and what you’ll experience as you get there, or book a registered program. Highlights include HBC 1849 Heritage Trail, the Alexandra Bridge Trail and of course, the Othello Tunnels, part of the Kettle Valley Rail Trail leading to the Okanagan. Looking for maps of the extensive hiking and cycling trails for all skill levels in and around Hope? Visit the Hope Visitor Centre for the Trails of Hope guide.”
5. Manning Park Resort – Offering “fresh air experiences any time of year,” the park’s pristine lakes, alpine meadows and rugged mountains combine to make this one of BC’s most spectacular regions. Hike, fish, paddle and swim in the summer, before skiing and snowshoeing season arrives. And this fall, watch for a special dark skies festival!
6. Bridal Falls Resort and Campground – South of Hope is the community of Bridal Falls, home to spectacular natural scenery at Bridal Veils Falls Provincial Park, golfing, fishing and of course, the Bridal Falls Waterpark!
7. One-of-a-kind attractions – Looking for something … unique? Movie fans will recall Sylvester Stallone’s Rambo series, whose iconic first film was shot right here. (Hope recently welcomed 1,200 visitors for the 35th anniversary of the film!) Stop by the Visitor Centre for a map to your own Rambo Experience. While strolling the charming town, watch too for the chainsaw wood carvings dotting the city-scape – more than 70 today and growing! Other unique area “musts” to check out include Blue Moose, a destination coffee house, Kawkawa Lake, and the Othello Tunnels, old train tunnels and bridges cutting through solid granite walls and crossing the Coquihalla River.
Need more inspiration? Visit at hopebc.ca/visitor-centre or call 604-869-2021.