I remember back in the day before the ‘gram I was scrolling through blogs and saw it; the suspension bridge that made my dreams grow big! As I got older I kept exploring around, not really sure how to ever find one of these bridges. Then, boom. Instagram. Now, these pictures were swarming, people everywhere just suspension bridging IT UP! Why are there so many more epic people than me? Well, it happened. The day I typed in ‘top things to do in Vancouver’ and suspension bridges started filling my computer screen and before I knew it my dream was becoming a reality!
Let’s start by saying, Vancouver has a lot of suspension bridges. It’s a thing. Far more suspension bridges than we were able to make. But we made it to a few! I’m getting excited and can’t type fast enough… just know, you’re going to have so much fun!
Sea to Sky Gondola
Sea to Sky Gondola is located in a town called Squamish, about an hour north of Vancouver. The first part of your adventure in this epic place is a gondola ride up to the trails and bridge. Strap in, the higher you go the more mind-blown you will be! It’s like flying, in a plastic bubble, but basically flying.
At the top, you’ll immediately see the suspension bridge which spans across a canyon thousands of feet up with a panoramic view of the Rocky Mountains! It did sway a bit but we didn’t hit a very windy day. I’m sure it could be worse! Josh and Remy headed over first on their own and it was so fun seeing her hold tight to daddy’s hand as she punched any fear of heights in the face! Fierce little 3-year-old.
When I first walked over, the breeze took my breath away. Couldn’t stop smiling. As you reach the middle it feels a bit unreal as the swaying makes you realize just how high you are! As you reach the other side you’ll want to turn back and do it again. It is one of those once-in-a-lifetime types of things.
Other Attractions at the Top
The lodge is a perfect place to stop for some souvenirs, beer, food, and snacks! We hit up the hot chocolate and they even warmed up some soft pretzels for us even though they seemed to think it was a strange request… apparently they don’t do that in Canada? Be sure and take some time to sit and soak in the sights on the patio overlooking everything.
Also, plan time for the hikes at the top! They are all unique and beautiful in their own ways! We hit up Panorama trail, which as the name would suggest, has gorgeous views. Other hikes take you into the woods, but we didn’t have time. Feeling extra adventurous? There is also a hike you can do from the bottom instead of taking the gondola! So cool!
Bottom line, if you like big, awe-inspiring mountain views, with a great variety of activities and scenery, Sea to Sky Gondola will be your jam.
Capilano Suspension Bridge
What a unique experience you will get all in one location! However, when you do the research on the internet I wouldn’t say it’s the same experience when you get there. To me the pictures make it feel very open with very few people. When we were there it was packed, and things are packed into this park pretty close together. The first time over suspension bridge was like herding cattle. Cattle that is swaying… in mid-air. Don’t get me wrong, still an awesome experience, right outside of Vancouver, just not the big views we had just witnessed the day before at Sea to Sky Gondola.
The whole park is set up very well and extremely family friendly. From the many choices of restaurants, multiple coffee stands, fun photo props and a children’s scavenger hunt, your children will leave with a smile on their face! It was very educational as well. We loved walking around the ‘boarded’ walking trails feeling as if we were deep in the rainforest.
The treetop adventure was top on the list. Our three-year-old daughter even got into this as you can walk bridge to bridge… you guessed it, IN the trees! We took our time and really had fun with it. Remy, our 3-year-old, loved every minute of it.
This was probably our personal favorite at this location. You’ll find yourself on the side of a cliff just hangin’ out there. It’s a one-way walk so really get to see the right perspective and best views.
We didn’t stay this late but they also have a night walk with canyon lights! They had guided hikes as well as zip lining for an extra cost.
Note for people with kids:
At Sea to Sky, children are allowed to walk across while holding your hand or carried below the railing. At Capilano, they can walk freely. The bridges do sway so maybe warn your child that ahead of time. Here I was all worried and my three-year-old walked over way more confidently that I did!
In a pack? No worries, just be sure it sits below the railings… We have a pretty low pack for the back and no one said anything about it. If you have the ‘highchair’ one you may have to take your child out and walk them across or hold them.
I hope you have an amazing time with these bridges and locations! Be sure and soak in the once-in-a-lifetime experiences!