New spiral Malahat Skywalk attraction near Victoria to open this month

Jul 2 2021, 12:31 pm

The southern end of Vancouver Island will soon gain a new major outdoor recreation-based tourism attraction, just in time for BC’s restart and peak summer travel.

Operators of Malahat Skywalk announced this week their attraction — located about a 30-minute drive from Victoria and one hour from BC Ferries’ Swartz Bay terminal — will open on Thursday, July 15, 2021.

It features a 32-metre-tall (105 ft) outdoor spiral observation tower, perched on the edge of the Cowichan Valley — about 250 metres (820 ft) above the inlet below.

From the top deck, the tower offers panoramic views of points of interest in BC and Washington State, including Finlayson Arm, Saanich Inlet, Saanich Peninsula, Gulf Islands, San Juan Islands, Mt. Baker, and the Coast Mountains.

A new short access road from Highway 1 leads to the parking lot for the attraction, which includes a welcome centre, cafe, and gift shop. Parking is complimentary, including spaces for RVs and tour buses.

malahat skywalk construction

Construction progress on the Malahat Skywalk in Spring 2021. (Malahat Skywalk)

malahat skywalk vancouver island

Attraction map of Malahat Skywalk. (Malahat Skywalk)

Admission rates are set at $31.95 for adults, $28.95 for seniors, and $18.95 for children between the ages of six and 17 (children age five and under are free), with tickets offering flexibility to guests as they are valid for one-year from the date of purchase. Reservations and timed entry are not required. Family passes and annual passes are also available.

The attraction’s operating hours are between 10 am and 6 pm, 365 days a year.

“As Canadians return to travel this summer, we are so excited to open our doors and welcome guests,” said Ken Bailey, general manager of Malahat Skywalk, in a statement.

“We hope locals and visitors alike include Malahat Skywalk in their summer travel plans and find a sense of pride in what we’ve created, bringing their family and friends to visit this world-class tourism experience in their own backyard for years to come.”

malahat skywalk construction

Construction progress on the Malahat Skywalk in Spring 2021. (Malahat Skywalk)

From the welcome centre, a 650-metre-long elevated walkway above the forest, with interpretive features throughout, leads to the observation structure, which is accessible by the gentle accessible walking ramp that spirals upwards. There is also a 750-metre-long natural trail at ground level through the forest.

For daring guests, the spiral tower also features an “adventure net” partially suspended across its centre, providing a breathtaking perspective of the structure below, before returning to the ground with an option to take a ride down a 20-metre (66 ft) slide.

Operators partnered with the Malahat First Nation on incorporating Indigenous elements into the visitor experience. Construction on the $17 million project began in 2019.

A similar spiral walk, with a height of 34 metres (111 ft) and a 2.5-km-long elevated walkway through the trees, is also planned as an expansion feature of the Sea to Sky Gondola near Squamish. It was set to open in Spring 2020, but the start of construction has been postponed due to the acts of sabotage on the gondola line.

malahat skywalk construction

Construction progress on the Malahat Skywalk in Spring 2021. (Malahat Skywalk)

Kenneth ChanKenneth Chan

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