Live your best family life on a fun-filled adventure in beautiful Fernie.
Fernie has many free or inexpensive activities, making it easy to get the family out and enjoy the outdoors (and indoors) without breaking the bank.
When outdoor family fun is the interest for the day there are a wide range of free or inexpensive options:
- James White Park sits right on the picturesque Elk River and is home to the Lizard Range Disc Golf course which is free for public use. Just grab some discs from The Gearhub on the way through town and throw away! The park also offers free tennis courts to use, a ball diamond, picnic area and access to the river.
- Easy, sign-posted family nature and hiking trails can be found within the Community Trail System along the Elk River, Mount Fernie Provincial Park, Fairy Creek Falls and the ancient Cottonwoods Trail just out of town. The best trails for chariots and strollers are the Community Trails. A longer, but low-difficulty (not suitable for strollers) hike is the Coal Discovery Trail, starting at the Fernie Aquatic Centre or further along Coal Creek at the Archery Range.
- The Splash Park is perfect for outdoor water-time fun. Or hang out at Maiden Lake located adjacent to the Fernie Golf Course to play on the little beach, watch minnows swim around the dock, cool off in the water or walk the easy trails.
- Annex Park is home to the duck pond, a place little kids love to go and a great spot to run around or play the age-old game of throwing rocks in the river.
- Dirt Jump Park, Pump Track & Bike Skills Park - located adjacent to the Aquatic Centre this is a great spot for the kids to play around with their bikes, though it's great for big kids and adults too! The Skateboard Park is also close by.
- The Mountain Market on Sundays in July & August is another great place to go and is set up at Rotary Park, one of the best parks and playgrounds in town.
- There are several excellent playgrounds spread out around town to keep your little ones happy, from Rotary Park, the school playground at Prentice Park and Max Turyk Community Centre playground!
Island Lake Lodge is a summer mountain paradise, perfect for a family hike combined with lunch on the Bear Patio.
- The Lodge and amenities are open for summer from mid-June to early October.
- You don't have to stay overnight at the Lodge to enjoy the hiking, dining or spa. Hiking trails are always open; lodge facilities may be closed during special events (usually on weekends) — call ahead for details.
- There are numerous hiking options at Island Lake, starting with easy strolls around the lake, guided hiking or full day trips.
- A limited number of canoes and PDFs are available for a small rental fee so you can take a family float on the beautiful lake.
Historic Downtown Fernie is the hub of town with great dining and summer patios, unique shops and attractions. Throughout July & August, enjoy the Wednesday Evening Outdoor Concerts at Station Square with live music, beverage gardens, food trucks and free crafts for kids.
When you need to escape the summer sun, check out the latest movies and video arcade at the Vogue Theatre, head to Beanpod where chocolate and gelato are made from scratch, burn off some energy at the Fernie Aquatic Centre or head to the Fernie Heritage Library where storytime, craft sessions, and special events for kids are held regularly throughout the year, and all are FREE to attend!
Being an old mining town, Fernie has engaging history and heritage buildings in abundance. Fernie City Hall—built in 1905—is the home of the Miner's Interpretive Walk featuring local sculpture and challenges for kids. Start at the Fernie Museum—located in a former bank building—where two floors of interactive and engaging exhibits and displays will entertain the whole family. The museum offers regular guided walks throughout the summer, along with fun and engaging bus tours to local historical sites.
Fernie Alpine Resort is the ultimate mountain destination fun zone with 40+ hiking and biking trails including ridge-top hikes, XC trails and the Fernie Bike Park.
- Guided hiking and Mountain Bike Camps and Clinics are available all summer.
- For an inexpensive day out, take a scenic chairlift ride and bask in the mountaintop spectacle. The Elk Chair operates daily to the mid-mountain Interpretive Centre (daily complimentary guided hikes are available for lift-ticket holders) and the Timber Chair soars to Lost Boys Pass on weekends. Hike to one of Fernie's highest points, Polar Peak at 7050', or enjoy lunch at the Lost Boys Cafe.
- A mountaintop campout is a fantastic way to bond, and Fernie Alpine Resort has made it easy with everything included — from the tent to the campfire s'mores! There are even special campouts just for kids on select dates in the summer.
- The jewel in the resort's crown is definitely the Aerial Park. Older kids will love the treetop challenges, while smaller kids can enjoy free time on the Kids Aerial Playground. There's even a zipline for a quick adrenalin fix.
You will not be lost for things to do on a family trip to Fernie. Other great things to do for families include River Floats, Whitewater Rafting, Tennis and Golf, or check out our Events Calendar for great family-friendly events including the Summer Socials, Bibbity Bobbity Boo Children's Festival, Demolition Derby, Dirt Jump Jam and more! Add the small town atmosphere, friendly locals, and great family options for dining out, you've got your new recipe for a BC family vacation!
Start planning your trip to Fernie by checking out all the places to stay including great camping, and don't forget to see the latest Fernie hotel and lodging deals!