Whistler is the reason we chose Canada for our winter holiday so I would say this is the highlight of our trip. During winter, Whistler transformed into a Disneyland for skiers and snowboarders. It’s truly a world class resort with lots of terrain for both beginners and experienced skiers and snowboarders.
When it comes to travelling to countries during winter, our priority is to pick a place where we can ski and snowboard as we really want to seized any opportunity we have for the sport we love. I started snowboarding 5 years ago. Though it may sound like a long time, the mileage I clock for snowboarding on the mountains was very low. Not forgetting the 2 years we were grounded due to Covid-19. I typically spend only 3 to 5 days on the slopes each winter trip so I am still very much a beginner yet I am hopelessly hooked to the sport.
So I’ll be sharing mainly on snowboarding as a beginner and some nice dining spots in Whistler Village. Since this leg of the trip is mainly for the sport, we spent most days on the slopes and literally all the photos here were just quick snaps from my iPhone.
My First Snowboarding Experience
Let me just start by sharing my first (painful) snowboarding experience at Kamui Ski Links in Asahikawa, Hokkaido. It was painful because I fell like 174 times, suffered multiple bruises and literally took 2 hours to board down a rather short beginner’s green run when an experienced snowboarder could probably board down in 1 min. I’m not kidding. I have no clue on how to even stand up properly on a snowboard.
On my second snowboard trip to Niseko, I was determined to master the sport and took a Japanese-speaking beginner’s snowboard lesson because English-speaking lessons were so expensive in Japan. Sometimes I’m cheapskate like that. I thought I could just follow through by vision haha! Turns out I was lucky enough that my Jap instructor can speak basic English and he was very patient with me. I can confidently do falling leaves on heel edge in half a day and was enjoying myself for the rest of the days on the slope.
The reason I’m sharing my experience is to stress on the importance of taking a lesson if you are an absolute beginner.
Snowboarding Lesson in Whistler
Ski and snowboard lessons in Whistler are super worth to consider for a few good reasons. All the lessons are conducted in English and they have a wide range of lessons to chose from. Group classes are kept at max. 5 students per group. You will be split into groups of the same level so you and your course mates will learn at the same pace.
That’s not all, we also realised that by taking lessons, you are paying lesser then just buying the lift pass alone. For example, a 3-day beginners group snowboard lesson cost CAD558 where you get to learn from the professional and the package includes lift pass for those 3 days. Whereas a single day lift pass can cost around CAD180. So do the math. If you are a beginner or intermediate snowboarder looking to progress, taking the lesson in Whistler is definitely worth a go.
Showcase Women’s Snowboard Camp
For me, I signed up for this 2-day women’s snowboard camp and I had a blast! This is a speciality program created for women snowboarders to learn together in a supportive and motivating environment with the guidance from top-notch female coaches. These camps only happen on selected weekends and I was lucky enough to be there on the weekend the camp was held.
Before the camp start, the organisers will place you in a group with the similar level ability (from level 1 being absolute beginner to level 6 being advance rider). My group was a level 2 and we have 4 of us plus 1 coach. My coach was very supportive and incredibly knowledgeable! She ensure that each of us get equal attention and very goal oriented. Your coach will ask what you hope to achieve so she will try to help you achieve that goal. My goal was to be able to link my turns and by the end of the camp, I was able do so 🙂
I can go on and on about snowboarding but I think this should be a separate topic on another day. Even if you are not keen to snowboard or ski, Whistler has a lot of other things for everyone. For example you can take the gondola to the peak and take the PEAK 2 PEAK gondola which takes you from Whistler peak to Blackcomb peak and back. Check out their official website here. I’m sure you will be able to find something you like.
What to eat in Whistler
Whistler is a village itself where it is really convenient to get around to restaurants and bars. They are all located in the heart of the village.
Our first stop was dinner at La Brasserie. We didn’t expect much to be honest but the food was actually pretty decent. The traditional mussels with creamy white wine sauce and baguette was what pulled us in. It was fantastic and we mopped every bit of the sauce. The brass burger was delicious and you can sub your sides which we did for one with french onion soup. The seafood pasta was wonderfully saucy.
My breakfast before heading for snowboard lesson on day 1. This Avo Toast was really fresh and wholesome.
This ramen place was recommended by one of the Japanese instructor so of course we have to try. Pretty decent and I like that they have vegan and gluten-free options which is great for people who don’t like pork like my friend and for someone who is watching her cholesterol level and that is me. Clockwise from top is the Vegan Spicy Tofu Ramen, Spicy Miso, Creamy Vegan and Basic Miso. We also had a side of chicken karaage which was a dish we almost always order when it’s available.
We were in a gondola with another group of instructor with his students, where the instructor was sharing nice places to eat. Of course we have to pay attention too. Sushi Village was one of the top places he recommended so definitely a MUST try for us. The sushi were amazing especially the Hotate Nigiri Sushi which we went for a second order. And somehow we ended up with mostly karaage on the side but oh well, they were great with drinks. I especially love the Ika Karaage. The Tangy Agedashi Tofu turns out to be deep fried as well, sitting on a bed of beansprouts with a tangy soy based sauce, was really wonderful.
I’ve mentioned before that I have a love affair with French crepes and of course I can’t miss this place. I had the Seafood Crepe with scallops, baby shrimp, langoustina lobster meat and cheese in light cream sauce. I savour every bit of it. The Gratinated Escargot was very cheesy, garlicky and so satisfying. Crepe Montagne is very popular and busy. They do not take reservations so be sure to be there early or even odd dining hours if you can.
Situated right at the base of Whistler and Blackcomb gondolas, definitely the place to go for your Après-ski. Always bumping with music, this place is where good party happens. They almost always have a line especially from 3pm onwards where most skiers and snowboarders decide to call it a day and grab a drink or two or more… We manage to get a nice table on one of the days and ordered a few drinks along with this finger-licking delicious chicken wings.
The place to go for show-topping dinner. Check out my reel for a glimpse of the fiery performance.
How do I even begin. This place is heaven to me. I want to eat everything displayed on the counter! My friend first got me a ham & cheese croissant and a chocolate croissant for breakfast and I knew I have check out the bakery myself. The croissants were so good!
So I went to the bakery that very afternoon after my snowboard runs and packed a slice of chocolate loaf cake with coffee icing, a large sour cherry chocolate chip cookie and a nutter butter sandwich cookie. Oh mine they were all so delicious. Well, I didn’t stop there, so I went Purebread to grab my daily fix for the rest of my days in Whistler. Definitely check this place out when in Whistler or Vancouver as they do have outlets there as well.
For all sweet tooth and chocolate fans here. They make really good chocolate where you get to see some of the chocolate making process in the shop. I bought a caramel apple to try and boy it was good! Regretted not buying more of the chocolates home though. So don’t be like me.
Wintry night in Whistler was absolutely beautiful. It is worth to brave the cold for a stroll at the Olympic park after dinner.
Whistler was definitely the best part of our trip. I really don’t mind to be back again for snowboarding and perhaps to attempt off piste slopes. Till next time!
If you like this travel post, be sure to check out these as well:
Vancouver ~ First Vacation After 2 Years!