*Note from the Editor: As you’ll read below, British Columbia is one of Canada’s most magical and diverse places to explore in your RV.
It should be noted, however, that as of August 2021 there are still increased dangers and risks associated with travel to many parts of the province because of the intense and unpredictable spread of the wildfires.
We recommend postponing any leisure trips to the area until it is safe to do so, and not impacting rescue or recovery efforts as some hotels and RV parks are, and should be, used for residents and their families needing to evacuate safely. Always double-check your travel plans before and during your trip to make sure you stay safe and away from efforts to contain the fires.
Exploring rugged, mountain-backed British Columbia’s wild, low-hanging valleys, dotted with colourful fruit orchards and ocean-front wonders makes for an unforgettable escape. One of the best ways to fully immerse yourself in Canada’s westernmost province is to hop in your RV and make a road trip out of it. Even if you’re heading from the Canadian Rockies to the summer-ready Okanagan, or toward the salty ocean air on the mainland and beyond to the north’s rugged scenery, you’ll find an ideal spot or two that meets your vacation goals. Elevate your road trip to epic proportions by stopping at all the locations mentioned on this list. Read on to find the best destinations to go with your RV in B.C.!
1. Lamplighter Campground: Great Hiking in Revelstoke National Park
The Lamplighter Campground is a fantastic location for epic hikes in Revelstoke National Park, with a network of trails stretching directly into the unspoiled backcountry.
Hiking in Revelstoke National Park: Mount Revelstoke National Park may not be the most popular national park in British Columbia, but the views overlooking the Columbia Mountains and Columbia River Valley combine to create an incredible, worthwhile experience. You’ll also find a selection of hikes crawling out from the quaint town of Revelstoke itself. A super challenging hike in this area is the 15.8 km Mount MacPherson, which ascends 1,335 m elevation.
Camping at Lamplighter Campground: Expect top-notch facilities at Lamplighter Campground, with clean showers and bathrooms, laundry facilities, as well as games to keep you entertained, like horseshoes and volleyball courts. If you really want to stay connected, there’s free Wi-Fi. You’ll also find large pull-through sites equipped with hookups.
2. Mabel Lake Resort and Marina: Family-Friendly Fun in the Okanagan
Mabel Lake Resort and Marina is a great spot for family-friendly activities amid the lake and sun-drenched Okanagan Valley!
Family activities in the Okanagan: Whether you’re seeking lakeside fun, boating activities, vineyard views or orchard adventures, the Okanagan has you covered. While Mabel Lake is a little further from the action unfolding in Vernon (hello, Davison Orchards) and Kelowna (talk about epic water parks perfect for playing), the area still boasts memorable water activities. If you’re seeking an unforgettable water-centric vacation, this Mabel Lake destination will definitely fit your idea of a picture-perfect summer holiday. Another activity you can do is head 35 minutes to the Starlight Drive-In. The first movie is usually kid-friendly!
Camping at Mabel Lake Resort and Marina: This lake resort boasts 90 sites with full hookups for RVs that you can book daily, weekly, or seasonally! The lakefront location is also near to some pretty tasty ice cream spots
3. Alice Lake Provincial Park: Fantastic Spot for Water sports near Squamish
Alice Lake Provincial Park makes for an unreal place to revel in the lakeside, cove, and inlets that are tailor-made for paddle-related water sports.
Water sports around Squamish: Squamish sits along the twisting, oceanside Sea to Sky Highway about 45 minutes outside of Vancouver. If you’ve never heard of Squamish, think of it as a seaside version of Banff, where mountains back a quaint town that attracts avid climbers, hikers, and anyone seeking rugged activities in the Great Canadian Outdoors. Nestled between the peaks and along sandy shores, you’ll find popular waterfront locations, such as Howe Sound, where you can paddleboard, kayak and canoe in calm ocean waters. The area also boasts a collection of lakes. For instance, Alice Lake Provincial Park has four lakes! Other nearby fresh bodies of water are Cat Lake, Browning Lake, and Brohm Lake.
Camping at Alice Lake Provincial Park: As pointed out, this suggested campground overflows with four glistening lakes within the area! Alice Lake Provincial Park is a fantastic spot for RV drivers looking to step away from the steering wheel and immerse in a natural oasis flanked by mountains, lined with moody forests, and punctuated with shimmering bodies of water. The campground has 96 campsites, and most can fit an RV. However, it’s important to book in advance to ensure you get a spot that can fit your trailer!
4. Crystal Cove Resort: Relaxing Ocean-Front Location in Tofino
Nothing says bliss like parking your RV at the oceanfront, where you can spend your evenings admiring the blood orange and red sunsets creeping deep into the horizon while the waves brush the shoreline. Pair the stunning oceanside scenery with the fun vibes of Tofino, and you’ve got yourself a memorable vacation!
Ocean activities in Tofino: Head to Long Beach to surf! But don’t expect tropical waters—you’ll likely have to wear a dry suit to protect you from the cold. Boogie boarding is another option if surfing isn’t your thing! To put it simply: Long Beach is an excellent spot to chill for the day. But if you aren’t in the mood to leave your campground, that’s not a problem, as Crystal Cove Resorts hugs a beachfront paradise.
Camping at Crystal Cove Resort: That’s right! You can stay super close to the ocean at Crystal Cove Resort. As we mentioned above, this ideally located campground is located on Mackenzie Beach. Endless beach days, anyone? Yes, please. If you get bored of Mackenzie Beach, you can drive 5 minutes to Tofino or 15 minutes to Pacific Rim Provincial Park. The campsite itself offers picnic tables, fire pits, and 30 amp electrical plus water and sewer hookups.
5. Bunkhouse Campground Resort: Bask in Wild Landscapes in Haida Gwaii
If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of your everyday routine, take your RV to Haida Gwaii, where the unruly wild envelops. But try to leave it as you came, as this area remains a hidden, untouched gem that should never fall prey to human hands that might disturb the land.
The wild landscapes in Haida Gwaii: The scenery here remains a mystery to most. Still, the rainforest peppered with thousand-year-old trees, roaming wildlife, and historical nods to the Haida First Nations People creates the sort of imagery that deserves to forever remain untouched by human-made infrastructure. Haida Gwaii is a wild treasure that demands respect from anyone who visits. So, don’t expect fast-food franchises, chain stores, or massive hotels here. Come prepared to ditch city woes for days of appreciating Earth’s natural marvels. However, you’ll have to take a ferry from Prince Rupert to Skidegate, Haida Gwaii, which you need to reserve in advance for an RV.
Camping at Bunkhouse Campground Resort: Bunkhouse Campground Resort sits just 13 minutes from Skidegate, making it a great stop for anyone just wanting to drop their RV off after the ferry and explore Haida Gwaii. There’s even a chef and a place to dine at this campground! They only offer a small number of sites, so reserve in advance. RVs can expect 30 amp hookups, sewers, water, dump station, laundromat, internet, store, and more.
British Columbia’s scenery makes for an incredible road trip, with opportunities for whatever style of vacation you’re craving – whether that’s something more rustic, luxurious, or family-focused.
Our thoughts are with the province of British Columbia and the communities affected by the wildfires. We would also like to express our gratitude to the brave teams and those who have come in to help fight the fires from other provinces and countries like Mexico.