School is out for the summer and we have been looking for things to do together as a family. One of the perks of working from home in my own business is that we can take off randomly throughout the week on an adventure. After two years of essentially being in startup mode with my business, we haven’t had as much fun together as a family as I would like. I was worried my family felt neglected, so I wanted to do some fun things with them where we could just spend time together and reconnect. We went on a series of adventures that I definitely recommend trying out for yourself.
Britannia Mine Museum
My Papa actually worked at the Britannia Mine; my mom showed me a photo of him that his crew took this one time he fell asleep at his desk. He was a very hard working guy so his team was absolutely gleeful to have evidence that he was human too. We went to the Museum to get a better look at where Papa worked. I really enjoyed looking at the rock specimens inside, I used to collect gems and minerals as a kid. Liam really liked panning for gold. We have a family membership so we are really looking forward to coming back and exploring some more.
If’ you’re not familiar with the museum, it used to be a working mine and now it’s an award winning historical site. There are complimentary guided tours available with your admission and self-guided sections to explore. There is a mine train as part of the tour which is pretty neat. The site is 10 acres and includes 17 buildings so it’s actually bigger than you think. Parking here is free.
Hot tips: Bring a sweater, wear appropriate footwear, allow for a couple hours at least to fully soak it all in.
West Coast Railway Heritage Park
My son has always loved trains, we had a train table and so many trains everywhere in our house when he was little. He was excited to explore full sized trains for himself at West Coast Railway Heritage Park. I told him about when my Grandma and Grandpa took me on the Royal Hudson when I was little. One of the staff talked to us about the geothermal heating at the Park which my son the science lover was excited to learn about. He and my boyfriend went on a ride on the mini train.
The park is 12 acres and it has all sorts of railway equipment at various stages of the restoration process. It has a roundhouse with 5 vintage trains, including the Royal Hudson steam train. There are also some neat outbuildings and exhibits to explore like Brightbill House, a real blacksmith forge, a historic wash house, and a really neat vintage printing press. There are over 90 pieces of railway cars and artifacts. Parking is free.
Hot tip: If you’ve got a baby, consider a carrier vs a stroller to more easily explore the trains.
We are big animal lovers in our house so we were very stoked to spend some time hanging out at Maplewood Farm. I loved petting the livestock, like the cows and goats. We also really liked the variety of chickens. This attraction I think would be particularly fun for younger kids. My son loved climbing up on the tractor too.
Maplewood Farms is 5 acres of farm within North Vancouver city limits and is home 200 animals. Among those animals are donkeys, sheep, rabbits, birds, cows, pigs, goats, horses and more. It has picnic areas and along with summer family fun, it’s also a great place to host a birthday party. You can even feed some of the animals (there are signs, some need to be fed by farmers only, others are okay to feed!)
Cultus Lake Waterpark
We were floating in the lazy river and my son looked at me and said, “There must be a lot of science behind all this!” He loved sliding but he also loved spending some time pondering how it all works. We enjoyed mini donuts together and the music they played was so reminiscent of summer fun. We had a blast at Cultus Lake Waterpark and definitely want to come back soon before the end of summer. It has a spray park area where you can splash and play with the water cannons, tipping buckets, and other spray features, and moms and dads can warm up in the nearby Hot tub – while still keeping an eye on the kiddos! I love hot tubs 🙂
They have some special events coming up this summer too! Cultus Lake Waterpark’s Annual Night Slide & Concert is happening twice this year: on July 20th and August 17th from 8pm – midnight, and that means you can slide and listen to live music too. Cultus Lake Waterpark has been around since 1984 so they know what they are doing with summer fun, but they have kept the place updated so it still feels like modern fun.
Cultus Lake Adventure Park
My son and boyfriend really loved the rollercoaster and the fast rides, I am more of a Honey Pots and Carousel kinda gal. The boys soaked each other at the bumper boats. There are plenty of rides to keep your family busy and this is a place our son still hasn’t stopped talking about since we got back. He definitely wants us to BRING HIM BACK PLEASE MOM. Cultus Lake Adventure Park was a big hit for sure. It opened in 2014 so it’s really quite modern. It has more than 16 rides and attractions for the whole family, including 18 holes of Adventure mini-golf (fore!) Also, if you’ve already been, they have new rides this year, so there will still be new things to experience. It’s home to Fraser Valley’s only rollercoaster and Canada’s only 360 degree pendulum ride.
Hot tip: Use your Waterpark Ticket stub for big savings! You can score a $15 Unlimited Ride Wristband.
Soundtrack for Fun
One of the best parts of a road trip is the music. I have so many childhood road trip music memories. We decided to help our son make some memories of our own and we popped in Jessie Farrell’s new cd. She is a talented lady 🙂
We visited these attractions over the course of three days really enjoyed ourselves. I found my son has been extra cuddly since and when I asked him what that was about and he said, “Because you took me on adventures.” Family fun together without our phones is his love language and I was glad we could make it happen.
Disclosure: We were provided passes and a Jessie Farrell cd so we could create our own summer memories as a family. That said, all opinions are our own and we had so much fun together.