In December, Whistler turns into a twinkling winter wonderland with frosted trees, festive lights galore and plenty of holiday activities to embrace the festive cheer. Check out our latest blog, Whistler Festive Events Unwrapped, which covers all of the holiday happenings in Whistler, from skiing Santas to roving carolers, festive performances and holiday markets.
Say farewell to 2023 with a bang this New Year’s Eve at the season’s first Whistler Blackcomb Fire & Ice Show, which is returning to Skier’s Plaza at 7 PM on December 31 (complete with fireworks at 9 PM). The show continues every following Sunday evening until March 10, showcasing a spectacular display of ski and snowboard skills alongside dazzling pyrotechnics.
Here’s what else is happening in Whistler this December.
You’ll find us:
- Rejoicing the start of another ski season and having a blast cruising down Whistler Blackcomb on our skis or snowboards. If you’re looking for the best ways to set yourself up for success on the slopes, check out our video series, How to Get Ready for Skiing Whistler Blackcomb.
- Taking part in the classic Canadian pastime of ice skating in the great outdoors. The outdoor rink in Whistler Olympic Plaza is now open, with rental skates available. Glide around the ice and enjoy views of the surrounding mountains by day or the stars and thousands of festive lights by night.
- Planning epic days in the backcountry chasing untouched powder. For those who like to earn their turns, Mountain Skills Academy & Adventures offers a Powder Punch Card, a pass with three or five days of guided ski touring or splitboarding over the winter season. Or if you’d rather maximize your ski time and experience the ultimate ride up the mountains, book a day of heli-skiing with Whistler Heli-Skiing operating from December 9.
You’ll find us:
- Cheering on the best luge athletes in the world as they represent over 20 different countries at the Whistler Sliding Centre during the Eberspächer Luge World Cup Whistler on December 15 and 16. Spectating is $10 per person, per day and kids under 12 are free. You can also take to the track yourself, with Passenger Bobsleigh and Public Skeleton running from December 19 until April 7.
- Bundling up and going for a stroll to marvel at Whistler’s displays of festive lights and warming up our fingers along the way with a rich and decadent hot chocolate. Download the free, Go Whistler Tours app and choose from three different festive lights walking tours, including Whistler Village, Upper Village and Creekside.
- Revelling in the nourishing benefits of full-body listening at Yogacara’s Sound Bath Experience on December 12. The 75-minute session invites you to close your eyes and rest your mind during a guided meditation and a succession of different sounds and frequencies via crystal bowls, gongs, chimes and other instruments.
More ways to get outside.
You’ll find us:
- Grabbing our wands, putting on our robes and heading to the Audain Art Museum on December 2 for a Harry Potter Workshop. Participants of all ages will be immersed in the wizarding world as they craft wands, sorting hats and mini mandrakes.
- Gathering at the Four Seasons Resort Whistler on December 1 from 5:30 PM for their Tree Lighting Ceremony. Santa Claus will be there, alongside children’s entertainment and beautiful twinkling lights. Proceeds from goodies sold will go to the BC Children’s Hospital.
- Heading to the Fairmont Chateau Whistler to visit their Make-A-Wish Castle – a giant playhouse on the Croquet Lawn from December 16. It will be decorated for the holidays and open to the public by donation to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
- Celebrating winter and the holidays at Wintersphere, a family-friendly holiday extravaganza featuring festive activities, a holiday café, a signature holiday maze and photos with Santa Claus. It’s at the Whistler Conference Centre daily from December 23 – January 6, excluding December 25.
More family-friendly activities.
Arts & Culture
You’ll find us:
- Checking what’s on at the Whistler Film Festival which runs until December 3. Adaptation, a documentary about adaptive mountain biking, is closing out the festival with its Western Canadian premiere, screening on December 3 (virtually on December 4). Weak Layers, a comedy film about life in a ski town, has just added an extra screening on December 3 after its initial two screenings sold out.
- Voting for the festive film we’d like to see at Arts Whistler’s The People’s Film, and heading to the Maury Young Arts Centre on December 20 to watch the winning film.
- Celebrating the Adele Campbell Fine Art Gallery‘s 30th anniversary at their 30th Annual Art of Winter exhibition. The exhibition celebrates uniquely Canadian artwork and the talents of their artists with over 50 emerging and and established Canadian artists represented from all across the country.
- Checking out local artist Andrea Mueller’s solo exhibition with Arts Whistler called Inconsistent Memory at the Maury Young Arts Centre from December 6 until January 27. The artworks on display will take you on a journey through the fractured fragments of childhood recollections, diving into the artist’s personal experiences and memories. Join the opening party on December 8 from 6 to 9 PM.
Eating, Drinking & Shopping
You’ll find us:
- Putting on our ugliest sweater and heading to The Raven Room from November 24 to check out their bar pop-up, Miracle. Get in the holiday spirit and try something from the themed Christmas cocktail menu like the Christmapolitan or Christmas Cricket amidst a holiday oasis that features kitschy, festive décor.
- Browsing for some unique, handmade holiday gifts at the Creekside Village Christmas Market on December 3. There’s also a vintage and craft holiday pop-up market at ALIGN Whistler on December 8 and the Bespoke Market at the Audain Art Museum on December 9 and 10.
- Gearing up for the winter at one of Whistler’s great retail outlets. If you’re in the market for a new kit to look and feel your best on the mountain this winter, check out our blog, Insider Tips for Buying a Ski Jacket in Whistler.
Save the Date
Be a Responsible Traveller: Don’t Love It to Death
- Whistler is bear country. Take a read of our Bear Aware blog post so you can act responsibly on behalf of these beautiful, wild creatures. Remember, a fed bear is a dead bear.
- Help keep Whistler green by choosing tap water over bottled water, avoiding single-use plastics, leaving the car at home, choosing active transportation and sorting garbage properly to reduce your waste.
- Be AdventureSmart and always practice Leave No Trace principles.
- Consider our Responsible Travel pillars, Respect Nature, Think Environment, Don’t Love It to Death and Support Local.
- Whistler Alert is the official emergency notification system used by the RMOW to communicate with residents and visitors during emergencies via text message, phone and email. We encourage you to sign up for it while you’re here (just in case). When you register, you will be asked to provide your contact number and the date you plan to leave Whistler so that you don’t receive alerts when you’re back home.
If You’re Driving . . .
- Take a read of Go Car Free: 8 Reasons to Ditch the Car on Your Whistler Trip in case we can convince you that you don’t need your car!
- Winter tires or chains are required on the Sea to Sky Highway from now until March 31. Make sure to check you have these, especially if you’re using a rental car. Read more on our Road Conditions page.
- Help reduce congestion on the highway by travelling during non-peak times. Peak travel times on the Sea to Sky Highway to Whistler include Friday afternoons and evenings, weekends and holidays. To avoid this busy time, plan to visit Whistler midweek when the highway and the resort are typically quieter. Extend your weekend – plan to arrive on Thursday night and leave on Monday morning to avoid the weekend traffic. If you’re visiting Whistler only for the day, plan on staying for dinner to avoid the rush of day traffic leaving the resort after the mountain closes.
- Always check DriveBC for current road conditions before getting on the road. Follow @DriveBC on Twitter and listen to MountainFM for the latest updates.
- Paid parking is in effect in all the Day Lots although there is complimentary parking from 5 PM to 8 AM. Overnight parking is now allowed in the Day Lots, but no overnight camping or sleeping in vehicles. Please check the RMOW website for more information on parking.
- Marketplace parking has new tariffs; $1 first 30 minutes and $2 first hour (15-minute, storefront parking remains free). For shopping at Fresh St. Market, register your license plate in the machine prior to shopping and they will reimburse you for 1 hour with a minimum $25 purchase.
Book your winter trip now to secure up to 25% off lodging, 65% off lift tickets and 45% off rentals. Come experience Whistler Blackcomb’s extensive terrain and adventure at every turn to see why we're known as one of the best resorts on the planet. Secure your winter getaway with Whistler.com for Flexible Cancellation and our Price Match Guarantee. Want to win a winter trip for two to Whistler? Check out our Drop In to Winter contest.