After 11 years of bringing you local reporting, the team behind the Vancouver Observer has moved on to Canada's National Observer. You can follow Vancouver culture reporting over there from now on. Thank you for all your support over the years!

Wet and wild fun in Harrison Hot Springs

Watersports, boat tours, wildlife viewing, hiking, golfing, spas, agri-tours, fishing, festivals and events, waterfront accommodations and dining are all yours to enjoy at Harrison Village. The staff at Tourism Harrison provide their top recommendations of places to go and things to see.

Have fun on the biggest lake in Southwestern BC; Photo by Graham Osborne

Nestled against Southwestern British Columbia's magnificent mountains and the sandy beaches of Harrison Lake, Harrison Village is your local vacation destination filled with a rich history and natural wonders including the world-famous BC hot springs.

Drive away from the hectic pace of life and let your body and mind indulge in a diverse range of activities. Whether you seek an adventure with the kids, a romantic getaway or a fun-filled trip with friends, Harrison Hot Springs has what you're looking for. Water sports, boat tours, wildlife viewing, hiking, golfing, spas, agri-tours, fishing, festivals and events, waterfront accommodations and dining are all yours to enjoy. 

Fun with the family at nearby Hicks Lake.
 Photo by Graham Osborne

Lots of great hiking in and around Harrison Hot Springs. Photo by Graham Osborne

Sturgeon Fishing on the nearby Fraser River. Photo courtesy of Tourism Harrison

Besides its world famous hot springs, Harrison has always been a centre of Sasquatch activity. Little wonder, as the Sasquatch has been viewed as a special spiritual being to our neighbours, the Sts’ailes First Nations. The Harrison Sasquatch live and have been most often sighted near the caves of Mystery Valley on the West Side of Harrison Lake. Local lore says the Sasquatch hold a reunion every four years, beginning on the night of the full moon in July. For four nights in succession as the Sasquatch meet, signal fires are kept burning to help them find their way.

While the Sasquatch signal fires have not been spotted since 1940, we've gone ahead and planned our own reunion in honour of the Sasquatch. On June 7, kick off the summer season with Sasquatch Days. This historic event brings the local First Nations Band Sts’ailes back to the Village of Harrison Hot Springs for two days of games, fun and excitement. This intercultural celebration includes canoe races, traditional salmon barbeque, medicine walks, cultural boat tours, arts and craft activities, games and entertainment. Most importantly, the event features talks on the Sasquatch from Sts’ailes experts and local Harrison Hot Springs Sasquatch investigators.

Sasquatch Days photo courtesy of Tourism Harrison

All summer long, there’s wet and wild fun on the lake. You can go riding the waves on a banana boat, bouncing your way through the inflatable water park obstacle course to ripping along the thermals on your kite board. If your wild side prefers land, we offer various walks through old cedar forest where artisan masks guide your way to the more challenging grind up the mountain through forest and rock.

Biking the nearby Circle Farm Tour; Photo of Tourism Harrison

The 36th Annual Festival of the Arts takes place July 11th to 20th. This Festival is an event the whole family can enjoy, featuring music from all corners of the globe, as well as visual and literary arts, theatre, workshops and a large outdoor art and craft market. Experience the magic of live performances each evening in Harrison's Memorial Hall as well as music from around the world on the outdoor stage with the mountains and majestic lake as a backdrop. The Ranger Station Art Gallery houses the Festivals visual art exhibit while the juried art market featuring some of BC's finest artists and artisans takes place along the beachfront promenade. There’s even a Children’s Day for the young and young at heart.

Great outdoor music at the annual Harrison Festival of the Arts; Photo by Graham Osborne

Speaking of culture, take a step back in time and discover the lives of natives and the early settlers dating back to the 1800s. Several carefully preserved museums in and around Harrison Hot Springs are living links to otherwise forgotten times. Enjoy captivating stories of the past from guides dressed in historical period costumes. Explore rare BC treasures as you view farm tools, medical equipment and living quarters from more than a century ago, along with a large collection of native baskets, arrowheads and other Aboriginal artifacts.

Take your picture with our friendly neighborhood Sasquatch. Photo courtesy of Tourism Harrison

Get back to basics with a self-guided farm tour through the countryside. A 25 km route takes you through country roads dotted with charming farms and artisan shops, featuring everything from organic hazelnuts to roasted coffee and a pottery studio, this is a treat for all the senses.

Closing out the summer with a big bang, our 4th Annual Bands on the Beach takes place Saturday August 30th and Sunday, August 31st. Featuring some of the best bands in the Fraser Valley Harrison's own Todd Richard brings an array of bands to perform on the outdoor stage with the mountains and lake as their backdrop. Bring your lawnchair or blanket and spend the afternoon listening to country tunes.

From cultural history to cultured frozen yogurt Harrison Hot Springs has something for everyone.

Many people still debate whether the Legend of the Sasquatch is myth or reality. Some say they will only let you see them if they want to be seen. So, keep your eyes open.

Who knows, you just might just stumble upon one of these mysterious creatures in the breathtaking mountains surrounding Harrison Hot Springs.

Harrison Hot Springs….get in touch with your wild side.

Read More:

More in News

Views from a refugee camp: Who gets into heaven?

I have just returned to Vancouver Island from Greek refugee camps where I met a Yazidi man named Jason who told me about his escape from ISIS in Iraq.   His story begins on a desert road where a...

Vancouver's bicycle sharing grows as 15 new stations installed

Mobi bicycle by Shaw Go in Vancouver. Photo by Christopher Porter from Flickr Creative Commons

International Women's Day Concert celebrates female musicians who turned tragedy into triumph

Every March 8, on International Women's Day, we hear about the achievements of brilliant, talented women around the world. But how often do we learn about the physical and mental disabilities or...
Speak up about this article on Facebook or Twitter. Do this by liking Vancouver Observer on Facebook or following us @Vanobserver on Twitter. We'd love to hear from you.