What to Do in Canada – According to Qantas Frequent Flyers

Whistler, Canada

Canada more than lives up to its reputation as a cold-weather wonderland with the powder-covered peaks making for epic skiing. But when the mercury rises there are plenty of other thrills to be had with raging rapids, pristine lakes and mountain bike trails drawing adventure-lovers from all over the world. We asked some recent visitors to Canada for their top travel tips.

“Summertime in Whistler is bigger than wintertime”
– Pip Moroney, Gold Frequent Flyer

Pip Maroney, Gold Frequent Flyer

“Some colleagues and I went to Whistler to do a photoshoot. I was lucky enough to fly Qantas from Sydney to Vancouver direct, 16 hours. The last time I flew was February 2020 – it was so nice to get back on a plane and feel the magic of aviation. The staff were wonderful and really made the whole trip so comfortable.

“Summertime in Whistler is bigger than wintertime. People go for mountain biking, kayaking, and hiking. I was blown away – I thought of Whistler as a winter destination. None of us had travelled for so long; it was just amazing to see different scenery. We even spotted brown bears!

“My two favourite spots were House Rock, where we were shooting right next to raging rapids, and picturesque Lost Lake. It’s possible to walk the entire perimeter of Lost Lake and there are long boardwalks and pontoons you can swim out to.

“It was funny – at Lost Lake it was 30°C and people were swimming. Half an hour later we’d taken the gondola to the top of Whistler and it was snowing. People were skiing!

“In the evenings we explored. My favourite restaurant was Araxi; the chef/owner was one of the pioneers around farm-to-table dining. The salmon and oysters were amazing, everything was super-local.

“We stayed at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler which is such a beautiful, grand hotel. We kept joking that work was getting in the way of our holiday.”

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“Wilderness, bears and log cabins: it was a very Canadian experience”
– Anne Sheen, Bronze Frequent Flyer

Anne Sheen, Bronze Frequent Flyer

“I went to British Columbia in October 2022 to go on a horse-riding trip, which meant flying to Vancouver and taking a one-hour flight north to Chilko Lake. I spent a week there on a ranch in the mountains riding beautiful horses around the Canadian countryside, which was organised through an Australian company called Globe Trotting.

“It was a very Canadian experience – absolute wilderness, log cabins, beautiful lakes and ginormous mountains. Every morning we were fed a hearty breakfast – bacon and eggs one day, or pancakes with bacon and maple syrup the next. Then our group of eight would go out for a six-hour ride through forests and wilderness. Almost every day we saw bears, just metres away, catching salmon in the lake.

Anne Sheen, Bronze Frequent Flyer

“I spent five days in Vancouver before flying back to Sydney. I absolutely loved it. I stayed in a gorgeous boutique hotel built in the 1920s which was covered in creeping vines. Every second place was a trendy little restaurant and it was really easy to get around. I also went whale-watching and saw orcas, humpback whales and lots of seals.

“I was very, very happy flying Qantas. From the minute I got on the plane to the minute I got off, I felt like I was being treated like I was at home… and they give you Tim Tams which never disappoint!”

“I skied for 23 out of 25 days”
– Sophia Robinson, Bronze Frequent Flyer

Sophia Robinson, Bronze Frequent Flyer

“Earlier this year, I spent a month in Whistler which is one of my all-time favourite places. I was there for 25 days and I skied for 23 of those days.

“I flew out of Sydney on New Year's and the Qantas staff were wearing little New Year's hats, which was really cute. It was my first time flying Business Class, which I booked on Rewards Points. I loved it! I arrived in Vancouver at 3pm and got straight onto a shuttle to Whistler, which takes around two hours.

“I stayed at The Marquise, a ski in, ski out lodge. Our apartment had a beautiful window and we’d often watch the snow fall in the morning while we were getting ready.

Sophia Robinson, Bronze Frequent Flyer

“We’d ski all morning and at lunchtime maybe go to the Crystal Hut where you get these massive waffles with chocolate, whipped cream and banana all over them.

“Most of the lifts start closing at 2.30pm, so we’d often go to après at Black's Pub, where I became obsessed with poutine. If you're looking for something really special, I'd recommend Il Caminetto. I had the lobster and saffron linguini, which was very good.

“In the evenings, Vallea Lumina is a light show where you walk through the woods with all these illuminations and audio. There’s also the Fire & Ice Show where they get really skilled snowboarders and skiers to jump through a ring of fire.

“For skiers who want to really get to know the mountain, I'd recommend Extremely Canadian, who do a ski lesson, and then they take you down all the unknown routes of Whistler. So you get to improve your skiing, but they'll also show you places that you wouldn't take yourself.”

Fringed by snow-capped mountains and the Pacific Ocean, with an ever-evolving dining scene, cultural hotspots and museums, there's something for everyone in Vancouver.

Discover more travel tips from Qantas Frequent Flyers.

Lake Whistler, Canada

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SEE ALSO: What to Do in South Korea – According to Qantas Frequent Flyers

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