Harrison Hot Springs, day trip from Vancouver

Harrison Hot Springs, day trip from Vancouver

Harrison Hot Springs is a village and vacation area in the Fraser Valley at the southern end of Harrison Lake. Visitors and locals alike are drawn by the picturesque lake, the beach and hot springs, and more recently, the sand sculpture contests on the beach.

The village is compact so walking is the easiest way to get around. Hot Springs Road is the main street out of town and Esplanade Ave, along the beach, has many of the motels and restaurants.

Things to do:

Not surprisingly, many of the activities in Harrison Hot Springs revolve around water -- relaxing in the hot springs, swimming, kayaking, cruising the lake, to name a few. But there's plenty more you can do if you want to stay dry.

- Harrison Public Hot Pool, corner of Hot Springs Rd and Esplanade. Indoor pool open to the public with water piped in from the source of the hot springs. $8.50.
- Enjoy a refreshing dip in the glacier-fed waters of Harrison Lake. If you want something warmer than the lake but cooler than the Hot Pool, try the lagoon in the beach.

On the Lake:
- Take a cruise on Harrison Lake.
- Rent a "boat" -- motorized or kayak -- and tour the lake yourself.
- Windsurf. Winds are highest in the afternoon.
- If you have your own boat, there is a boat ramp at the eastern end of Esplanade Avenue.

Other Activities:
- Rent a bicycle or quadracycle and pedal around town. The quad bikes are particularly good for a laugh with four people providing the power and two steering. The various pedaling machines can be rented by the hour from:
*Jamie's Quadracycle Rentals, corner of Lillooet and Hot Springs Road. Rents out quadracycles and bicycles.
*Harrison Scooter Rentals, 439 Lillooet Ave. Rents out a seclection of bicycles, quadbikes, mountain bikes and scooters.

- There are many hiking trails in the area.

The area and hot springs were first known to and used by the Chehalis First Nations people. Low-key resort development began after the Canadian Pacific Railway was built through Agassiz, making the area more accessible. Development has increased, but the village is still small (less than 2000 people). It remains a popular spot to get away to and can be very busy on summer weekends.

Getting there:
From Highway 1, exit at Highway 9 (exit 135) and follow it north to Agassiz. From there, follow Hot Springs Road north to the lake. If you're on Highway 7, turn onto Hot Springs Road in Agassiz. The drive from Vancouver will take about 1.5 - 2 hours, depending on traffic.

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