Activities in Harrison Hot Springs
Although Harrison Hot Springs’ natural hot springs are a must on any itinerary, they really are only the beginning of a myriad of things to do. The choices are as varied as winter skiing and year round golf to horseback riding, summer festivals, and country Fall Fairs.
Families flock to Harrison Hot Springs in large part because of its safe swimming beaches, water sports, hiking trails and family-friendly atmosphere. Rent a quadra-cycle and just getting around becomes an adventure.
Add to these attractions such as Kilby Historic Site, Tugboat Junction Adventure Park, and the water slides at Bridal Falls, all within a 30-minute drive, and Harrison has all the makings for a memorable family vacation.
Harrison Hot Springs isn’t only about the kids, it’s about connecting with the landscapes in ways that fuel the imagination. The Circle Farm Tour, in particular, includes such a cross-section of farms, studios and heritage sites, that it should top any to-do list – even in winter. Highway 7, a scenic route that winds through much of the Fraser Valley’s agricultural country, takes in several Circle Farm stops.
Festivals have long been a part of Harrison’s charm and appeal, especially its Festival of Arts, which takes place throughout the village and along the beach every summer. By mid Fall, it co-hosts one of the Fraser Valley’s largest agricultural fairs and in winter, the Harrison River is a major venue for the Fraser Valley Eagle Festival.
Migrating birds often stop around Harrison Hot Springs’ protected waters and thus attract many bird-watching enthusiasts. When the salmon return to spawn each October they attract hundreds – sometimes thousands – of bald eagles to the trees above Harrison River. The area celebrates this cycle of life with the Fraser Valley Eagle Festival. Other area wildlife includes seals, Sitka black tail deer, beaver and the occasional black bear. And for many anglers, fishing for white sturgeon – the largest freshwater fish in North America – is the ultimate lifetime opportunity. For a unique tour that mixes facts, legends, and lore, check out Sasquatch Country Adventures and don’t forget your camera!
Harrison Hot Springs is an ideal base to explore further afield: skiing at Hemlock Valley or Manning Park; fishing the Fraser River; strolling around Minter Gardens; hiking the Othello-Quintette tunnels and driving up the Fraser Canyon to Hell’s Gate.
With Hemlock Valley Ski Resort only a 45-minute drive away, Harrison Hot Springs is an excellent spot for enjoying winter mountain activities and as an added bonus enjoy a soak in its hot springs after a day on the slopes. Hemlock Valley is the quintessential family-oriented resort and an affordable alternative to some of the region’s big-name mountains. It has 35 runs, a vertical drop of 397m/1,300ft for downhill skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, tobogganing and a tube park. Ski rentals are available.
The history of Harrison Hot Springs runs as deep as our famous springs. First experienced by members of the Salish First Nations, the soothing effects of our hot springs have drawn people to this area for hundreds of years.
In 1886, the first resort was built to welcome those from Vancouver seeking an opportunity to benefit from the natural mineral-rich water. In those early days guests traveled from the Pacific coast by riverboat or train and by coach from the nearby Agassiz station.