Top 5 Off-The-Grid Swimming Holes Around The Lower Mainland
As we settle into our hottest month of the year, nothing sounds more refreshing than a quick dip in some crisp water to cool off. Unfortunately, because of their popularity, it can be difficult to snag a spot of prime real estate along our Vancouver beaches. Which is why we’ve done a little digging for you to find the top 5 off-the-grid swimming holes in the Lower Mainland. Plus, just like us at Vancouver Extended Stay, all these swimming holes are dog-friendly! So pack your favourite swimsuit, throw some extra sunscreen lotion in your beach bag, and let’s go swimming.
Unlike TLC, we recommend you do go chasing waterfalls. Especially the Bosumarne Falls. Despite being an easy 2.5 km hike away, we won’t be surprised if you end up staying all day. As you start your hike, you’ll come to a fork in the road – left to the lower falls, right to the upper falls. We recommend taking a pit stop at the lower falls first; then for the real adventure, you will definitely want to head right and cool off underneath the waterfalls.
About an 8 km roundtrip from the more popular Lindeman Lake, this hike isn’t for the faint of heart. Pack an extra water bottle and plan for an entire day, because once you arrive you won’t want to leave. With its turquoise waters, a waterfall and secluded ambiance, it’s no wonder Greendrop Lake is a must-visit.
Located at the tip of Belcarra, Jug Island Beach is an easy 2.5 km trail escape from the bustling city. Once you arrive, find a place to set up on the rocky beach. From there, you can take in the exceptional views of the Indian Arm, Quarry Rock and Jug Island. Seals frequent this area a lot, so if you’re lucky, you may get to see some while swimming!
Being one of the warmest waters (relatively speaking) on our list, it’s no mystery why Mystery Lake made our list. The lake is an easy 1.5 km round trip trail located on Mount Seymour. So while you won’t have to work up a sweat to get there, the plunge is still deserving. We suggest bringing some insect repellent, as the trail leading up to the lake can be a bit buggy.
We saved one of the best kept secrets (and most difficult to get to) for last! If you’re up for an adventure, crystal blue water, and a bit of a workout, Widgeon Falls is the swimming hole for you. The falls are only accessible by canoe or kayak so we suggest bringing your own, or renting one for the day. After about an hour of paddling across Pitt Lake, it’s only a short hike to the falls.
***Normally you can rent canoes from Pitt Lake Canoe Adventures which is set up at the edge of Pitt Lake, but due to COVID-19, they are currently closed. We suggest calling in advance for up to date information.