Looking for a beach vacation close to home? We’re lucky that British Columbia is blessed with oodles of beautiful lakes, swimming holes, rivers, and ocean beaches to visit on hot summer days.
To help inspire your next trip, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite nearby beaches for every kind of vacation. With the right drinks and beach setup you’ll (almost) forget you’re in Canada.
Looking for cool beach games and activities to bring with you? Check out our list: 10 Outdoor Games for Epic Beach Days.
The Best Beaches ...For Swimming
Tribune Bay, Hornby Island
With beautiful clear, warm water and a long white sand beach, it’s no wonder Tribune Bay is sometimes called Canada’s Hawaii. Just be sure to book ahead, because summer accommodation on Hornby Island goes fast.
Okanagan Lake Beach, Penticton
Okanagan Lake is perfect for a swim, with average water temperature in July ranging from 19-23 degrees Celsius. While there are many beaches on the lake, our favourite is Penticton’s, with awesome views, tons of sand, and convenient amenities.
Juniper Bay, Vernon
The whole Okanagan region is chock-full of great swimming spots, but one of our favourites is Juniper Bay at Kalamalka Lake Park. With it’s clear blue waters, sandy beach, and natural surroundings, taking a dip at Juniper Bay feels like a real vacation.
...For Family Fun
Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park, Parksville
The sand bars and shallow waters of Parksville seem to stretch for miles. Young kids love to run through the warm water and build sand castles here, while the town of Parksville itself has a ton of family-friendly activities and amenities, including an epic playground.
Second beach, Stanley Park, Vancouver
Kids can play at the playground, swim in the ocean or take a dip in Vancouver’s best public pool at Second Beach in Stanley Park. When the sun gets too hot, grab an ice cream then go for a nature walk in the park!
Skaha beach, Penticton
The pristine red sand beach of Skaha Beach, in Penticton, boasts warm waters with a ton of family-friendly amenities within its 21-acre park. You’ll find playgrounds, a water park, beach rafts and waterslides, ball courts, and more.
...For City Dwellers
Kitsilano Beach, Vancouver
Located right along the seawall and minutes from downtown Vancouver is ‘Kits’ beach, an urban oasis complete with an outdoor pool, playgrounds, picnic areas, and more. Fantastic shopping and restaurants are within walking distance, so you’re never far away from anything you’d need.
Jericho Beach, Vancouver
Jericho Beach is a little farther from downtown Vancouver, but faces north-east, with great views of the city and North Shore mountains. Checkout the sailing club to rent a boat, kayak, or board and get out on the water!
Hot Sands Beach, Kelowna
Hot Sands Beach is Kelowna’s downtown beach in Kelowna City Park. With a long stretch of sand, swimmable waters, grassy areas, and live music in the summer, you can create a beach vacation vibe without ever leaving the city.
...For Escaping to Nature
San Josef Bay, Cape Scott
Craving a little wilderness? Check out San Josef Bay on the northern tip of Vancouver Island. A 45 minute hike takes you to a stunning, isolated beach with white sand, sea stacks, and caves. Overnight camping is allowed here, too - just make sure to pitch your tent above the high tide line!
Mystic Beach, Vancouver Island
For a scene worthy of Instagram a little closer to town, drive 1.5 hours outside of Victoria to reach Mystic Beach, which features a small waterfall and a rope swing. It’s a 2km (45 minute) hike down to the beach from the parking lot.
Long Beach, Tofino
No list of BC’s best beaches could be complete without Tofino’s Long Beach. Located in the Pacific Rim National Park, Long Beach is a wild surf beach surrounded by ancient rainforests, unlike anything in Canada. Visit during the fall and winter seasons for storm watching and surfing, or give surfing a try in the summer.
Wherever you go this summer, make sure you pack the snacks and drinks you need to stay energized. With 16-20g of protein, 5g of fibre, 2000mg of Omega 3's, crazy delicious flavours, and plant-based or dairy options, Rumble Supershake is the perfect fuel for epic beach days - whether you're surfing or sunbathing.