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Best ski resorts to visit in Canada

Updated On 13th March, 2023

Back in 2022, I had just finished travelling Australia in a van and was looking for my next adventure. After a long pandemic exploring the endless sunny beaches of Australia, I was itching for the icy cold temperatures and winter wonderland vibes of a ski trip. With my head in the clouds, dreaming up the best way to get my skiing fix, I found myself dreaming of skiing in Canada.

I spent many years skiing in Canada in my early 20s in Whistler, BC. However, in my four years living there, I had never really seen many of the other incredible ski resorts that I had heard so much about. So I began planning my new adventure – a trip around the best ski resorts in Canada or, more specifically, a winter road trip through the Canadian Rockies ski resorts. 

Then – I did it. Over the past few months, I have wound my way through 3000-something kilometres of the rocky and rugged mountains of British Columbia and Alberta. Braving blizzard storms, ripping up the mountain on bluebird ski days, devouring epic food and buzzing on the endless mountain activities at some of Canada’s most famed and celebrated resorts.

After a wild few months of experiencing the best that Canada’s resorts have to offer, I have put together this list of the best ski resorts in Canada to help you plan your next ski adventure in Canada. Let’s dive in!

P.s. if you’re on a road trip through Revelstoke, check out this 7-day hot springs itinerary that takes you through Revelstoke, it may give you some inspiration for your trip!

Best ski resorts to visit in Canada

When is the best month to ski in Canada?

The Canadian Rockies ski resorts’ winter season typically begins in late November and ends in April. However, many high-elevation resorts may operate for longer if there is a higher snowfall for that season. As such the best month to ski in Canada varies significantly. 

That being said, as a general rule of thumb, January is the best month to ski in Canada if you are planning a short skiing trip. By this point, the season is in full swing, and so this is often the best snow (both quality and quantity). Best of all, if you come toward the end of January, you have the bonus of missing some of the crazy Christmas crowds – win-win!

Where to stay in Revelstoke

Accommodation in Revelstoke is broken up into two areas: at the base of Revelstoke Mountain Resort and in the town of Revelstoke, British Columbia. The mountain itself is quite a short drive from the town, so you will not be at a disadvantage to stay in town. Especially with the Revelstoke Mountain Resort shuttle, which runs from 6 am until 11:30 pm daily. 

If you are planning on visiting Revelstoke mountain resort as part of a larger Canadian Rockies road trip, and travelling in a campervan, then you could look at the overnight parking. Revelstoke has a dedicated overnight parking lot where you can stay for free in a self-contained campervan for one night!

The Best Ski Resorts To Visit In Canada

A list of the best ski resorts in Canada would not be complete without mentioning Whistler Blackcomb. This mountain is located just 2 hours north of Vancouver, BC – the international hub of Vancouver international airport (YVR). Its central location is just one of many reasons for its growing popularity. This mountain is made up of two (huge!) mountains and offers endless opportunities for skiing regardless of whether you are just starting or an advanced rider looking to push your limits. 

In addition to unparalleled skiing, there are so many incredible things to do in Whistler, BC. Whether you’re a lover of late-night apres or zen yoga and delicious eateries, Whistler delivers. The town itself is quite large and can feel quite touristy during the busy season. However, the great dining and activities definitely make up for the busy vibe. This is the perfect mountain for anyone looking to be in the centre of the action.

1. Whistler, BC

One of the best things to do in Revelstoke is to watch a movie at the Roxy Theatre. Located conveniently in town, just a few minutes from Revelstoke Mountain Resort. The theatre offers a unique experience with its cozy atmosphere and comfortable seating, making it perfect for relaxing after a day of skiing or exploring the area.

With tickets starting at $12 per person and one cinema only, this is truly a small-town cinema at its finest. While I was visiting, there was even a 3D screening of Avatar, which cost a whole $3 more per person. Whether you’re visiting during summer or winter, catching a flick at the Roxy Theatre should definitely be on your list of things to do in Revelstoke, British Columbia.

See the ultimate Western Canada road trip guide here. 

Best ski resorts to visit in Canada
Best ski resorts to visit in Canada

2. Sun Peaks

Sun Peaks Resort is another top mountain resort offering some of the best skiing in Canada. The mountain itself is located 5 hours from Vancouver and is best known for deep steeps and powder stashes. That being said, it also has a huge range of beginner and intermediate-friendly terrain. While the skiing was epic, what truly captivated me about this resort (and what brought it onto this list of best ski resorts in Canada!) was the mountain village. This town looks like it was stolen from Europe and plopped on the side of this stunning Canadian mountainside. Wandering through the bavarian architecture-inspired town at night, lit up by sparkling fairy lights, was by far one of my most memorable experiences during my Canadian Rockies road trip

Top tip: For all you foodies out there, be sure to grab a coffee from Vertical Cafe, devour a Canadian-classic poutine from Chez Joe Poutine and check out Fondue Stube for a great night of fondue. Yum! 

Best ski resorts to visit in Canada

3. Revelstoke

If you are craving the best skiing in Canada for steep and deep turns, look no further than Revelstoke. This mountain town is located 6 hours from Vancouver and is revered as one of the steepest and most challenging mountains when compared to other top-tier Canadian Rockies ski resorts. While there is a beginner area, this mountain really is suited for immediate riders looking for a challenge and advanced riders looking for a wild and challenging playground to explore.

Of course, when considering the best places to ski in Canada, things like food and town vibe must be considered as well. Luckily, the town of Revelstoke is just a short ten-minute drive from the resort and is exploding with charm and things to do. Whether it’s grabbing a morning brew at the Modern Bakeshop and Cafe, unwinding at Halcyon Hot Springs, stopping by the Roxy Theatre for a classic small-town movie night or grabbing an apres drink at Monashee Spirits – there is plenty to explore beyond the mountain resort. 

Top tip: For more ideas on things to do, check out the full guide to the best things to do in Revelstoke.

4. Lake Louise

Chances are you have heard of Lake Louise (the lake), but Lake Louise ski resort is also one of the top Canadian Rockies ski resorts and one of the best places to ski in Canada. Just a short 2-hour drive from Calgary, this resort is best known for its spectacular scenery and as one of the largest resorts in North America. 

In addition to the great skiing, there is plenty to explore in the local area. When you’re not up on the mountain, one of the best things to do in Lake Louise is to head to Lake Louise (the lake) for some ice skating. In the winter, this majestic 70-metre-deep lake freezes over and becomes a mecca for tourists and locals alike to get out on the ice. Entry to the lake is free, and you can easily rent a pair from the Fairmont for around $23 CAD if you don’t have your own skates.

Best ski resorts to visit in Canada

5. Sunshine Village

Banff Sunshine Village is one of Banff’s “Ski-Big-3” and another one of the top Canadian Rockies ski resorts. Conveniently located just a short 20-minute drive from the charming town of Banff, this is easily one of the best places to ski in Canada for beginners looking for a scenic resort with mellow terrain. With a base altitude of 7200 feet, this resort also boasts the longest non-glacial season in Canada. As such, this mountain is hands-down one of the best places to ski in Canada later in the season without sacrificing light, dry snow! 

What struck me most about this resort is that it has two villages! One is located at the base where you load the gondola, and another is located at the mid-mountain where the skiing begins. This resort is also home to Canada’s only heated chair (yes, it is as divine as it sounds!), which is perfect for anyone not yet comfortable with the colder temps of downhill skiing. Overall, this mountain is perfect for beginners and intermediate riders looking for a cruisy mountain experience.

Best ski resorts to visit in Canada

6. Panorama

Panorama Mountain Resort is easily one of the best places to ski in Canada to avoid crowds without sacrificing on terrain. Making it an easy pick for the best ski resorts in Canada!

This resort is tucked away 20 minutes outside of Invermere, BC – around 3 hours from Calgary airport. Panorama is perfect for all abilities, all while boasting an incredible backcountry bowl (the Taynton Bowl) which is a dream for advanced riders chasing steeps.

Regardless of your ability, do not miss the chance to ride to the top of the summit chair and visit the Summit Hut. This little mountain hut offers a range of boozy and decadent hot chocolates and coffees that are a must. If that wasn’t enough, the views from this cosy cabin restaurant on a clear day are otherworldly – offering an almost 360-degree view of the surrounding peaks.

7. Red Mountain, BC

Red Mountain is a lovely, off-the-beaten-path resort tucked away in Rossland, BC – around 7 hours and 30 minutes from Vancouver international airport.

This mountain offers stunning views and epic terrain for skiers of all abilities and is one of the best places to ski in Canada for the whole family. Advanced riders can enjoy the challenge of riding the Motherload Chair – accessing the third steepest terrain in Canada (after Whistler Blackcomb). However, for me, the charm of Red Mountain wasn’t in the skiing but in the ultimate cosy, small-town vibe that this resort has to offer.

If you are here in January – March (easily the best months to ski in Canada), you can even join a pre-ski yoga class. Every Thursday, Keen Cafe hosts an early morning session to help skiers and boarders warm up before the first chair!

Best ski resorts to visit in Canada

There you have it, my list of the best ski resorts in Canada. Are there any other Canadian ski resorts or Canadian Rockies ski resorts that should be on the list?

Are there any other unique places to go skiing in Canada or other best places to ski in Canada that should be on this list of best ski resorts in Canada?

Where are your favourite places to ski in Canada?

Love as always and happy adventuring…

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