Good news everybody: the days of manipulating your way into an invite to a friend of a friend of a friend’s cabin are over. With the awesome Canadian-made website CottageCountry.com, anyone can rent their own cabin just as easily as they’d book a hotel room. Now we’re talking! To get you started, we’ve hand picked the five best places outside of Vancouver to rent a cabin this summer. After all, it’s t-minus one week to Victoria Day long weekend (but who’s counting):
Surrounded by the spectacular Coast Mountains scenery and boasting the title of “Outdoor Recreation Capital of Canada,” Squamish (under an hour’s drive from Vancouver) is rated as one of the 10 best places in the world to kiteboard and windsurf. Garibaldi Provincial Park is also in the area.
Situated on the southern tip of Vancouver Island (just an hour from Victoria), Sooke was once a favourite subject of artist Emily Carr. Located right near two world-renowned Pacific oceanfront routes—the Juan de Fuca Trail and the West Coast Trail—this is a hiking and mountain biking haven. Sooke also boasts a strong arts community, and specializes in artisanal baking: be sure to check out Stick In The Mud, the area’s beloved coffeehouse and specialty roaster.
3. Salt Spring Island
Salt Spring is known for its open-air markets (especially the Saturday farmers’ market) and assortment of specialty food and drink producers, such as Salt Spring Fine Ales and Salt Spring Roasting Company—one of Canada’s leading micro-roasters of fair trade and organic coffee. Just over an hour drive and ferry from Vancouver.
Located midway along the eastern shoreline of Okanagan Lake, Kelowna is at the forefront of the Thompson Okanagan food and wine revolution. Surrounded by bountiful farms, orchards, and 29 vineyards, the area. Rent a cabin here, attend wine tastings and take a few cooking classes…Not too shabby. Under three hours’ drive from Vancouver.
5. Sunshine Coast:
Just outside of Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast stretches 180km along the southern coast of mainland British Columbia, cabins and vacation homes for rent on the Sunshine Coast are tucked among the coastal mountains, old growth forests and over a dozen quaint oceanside communities. The Sunshine Coast is home to the highest per capita population of artists, artisans and crafters in Canada.
Its beaches are some of the most scenic in B.C. and offer the opportunity to scuba diving a WWII wreck and go windsurfing and sport fishing amid towering fjords. For canoeists and kayakers the region’s Powell River Canoe Route is a favourite while the renowned Sunshine Coast Trail offers awesome rock climbing.
Or, if these places don’t float your boat, do some digging of your own. Hint: use CottageCountry.com‘s driving distance search feature to find cabin rentals in Vancouver’s backyard.
Weekend getaway ideas from Mara Sofferin, the leading lady behind CottageCountry.com
Photo credit: CottageCountry.com