Weekend Getaway to the Harrison River Valley

If you’re seeking an unforgettable escape from the chaos of everyday life, Harrison River Valley is an enchanting destination and the perfect choice for a memorable weekend getaway. With its majestic mountains, pristine forests, and the serene Harrison River flowing through, it offers a tranquil haven for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike.

A wood barrel sauna at the Lodge on Harrison Lake.

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Guide to the Harrison River Valley

We recently were invited to spent three days exploring the natural beauty of this hidden gem and completely fell in love with all it had to offer. I’m excited to share how to spend one weekend or a mid week getaway in the Harrison River Valley! 

A woman sitting on a dock at Harrison Lake at sunset.

Make sure to check out the sample 3-day Harrison River Valley at the end of this post! It’ll make your planning extra simple! 

A view of Harrison Lake in the spring.

About Harrison River Valley

Nestled within the picturesque landscapes of Southwestern British Columbia, Canada, the Harrison River Valley is a hidden gem that captivates visitors with its natural beauty and serene charm. 

The Harrison River Valley.

Stretching from Harrison Mills to Agassiz and up to Harrison Hot Springs (about 23 km between these three communities), you’ll find a harmonious blend of rugged mountains, lush forests, and the meandering Harrison River. 

Swimming in Harrison Lake at Harrison Hot Springs.

The Harrison Valley is an outdoor lover’s paradise known for its picturesque hiking trails, exciting water adventures, and soothing hot springs. 

When is the Best Time to visit the Harrison River Valley?

The best time to visit the Harrison River Valley depends on your personal preferences and the activities you wish to partake in. 

Spring (March to May) is a fantastic time to witness the valley come alive with vibrant wildflowers, and it’s ideal for hiking and bird watching. You will likely find cheaper prices and fewer crowds during this time. Many would agree that this is an ideal time to visit. 

A fire pit at the Lodge on Harrison Lake.

Summer (June to August) offers pleasant temperatures, making it perfect for outdoor activities like kayaking, fishing, and exploring the region’s trails. This is peak time so be prepared to pay a bit more for accommodations and things to do. 

Golfing at Sandpiper in Harrison Mills.

Fall (September to November) showcases the stunning colors of changing leaves, creating a picturesque setting for scenic drives and photography. Leaves start changing towards the middle of September. 

Winter (December to February) brings a serene ambiance and opportunities for snowshoeing and relaxing in the hot springs. 

Harrison Lake at sunset.

Ultimately, the best time to visit the Harrison River Valley is subjective, and each season offers its unique beauty and activities to enjoy. We visited at the beginning of May and were met with pleasant temperatures, affordable pricing, and few crowds. 

Where to Stay during Your Weekend in the Harrison River Valley

The Harrison River Valley offers a range of accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets. We broke our 3-day weekend into two different stays as outlined below (spoiler, we LOVED both stays). 

A wood barrel tub at Rowena's Inn luxury cabins at Sandpiper Resort.

Regardless of where you choose to stay in the Harrison River Valley, you’ll be surrounded by stunning natural beauty and a tranquil atmosphere, ensuring a memorable and rejuvenating experience.

Rowena’s Inn on the River (Nights 1 & 2)

We stayed at Rowena’s Inn in Harrison Mills for the first two nights. This charming hotel offers a unique blend of luxury and historic charm, set amidst lush greenery and overlooking the serene Harrison River. 

A woman at the Oak Cabin at the new Rowena's luxury cabins.

You can choose between staying in the Colonial Inn Rooms, the RV sites, or one of their many luxury cabins. We stayed in the new Oak Cabin and had the absolute best time. The cabins themselves are beautiful, but I especially loved relaxing in the luxurious cedar barrel tub!

Inside the Oak Cabin at the new Rowena's luxury cabins.
Looking out the window at the Oak Cabin at the new Rowena's luxury cabins.

Some of the cabins are even dog-friendly, so there’s no need to leave your furry best friends at home! 

A woman in the bedroom in the Oak Cabin at the new Rowena's luxury cabins.
A woman in the wood tub at the Oak Cabin at the new Sandpiper and Rowena's luxury cabins.

The Lodge on Harrison Lake (Night 3)

For our last night in the Harrison River Valley, we enjoyed all Harrison Hot Springs has to offer with a stay at the famous Lodge on Harrison Lake. In addition to having the most breathtaking waterfront views, the rooms are immaculate and so peaceful. 

Inside the Lodge on Harrison Lake cabin.
In the luxury tub at the Lodge on Harrison Lake.

Guests can stay in the main property, the carriage house, the guest suites, or one of the two luxury nature cabins. We stayed in the brand-new Cabin 2, which was complete with a modern kitchen, private bath, cozy bed, and bathtub overlooking the lake. All rooms are pet-friendly as well! 

Outside In the luxury Lodge on Harrison Lake.
The barrel sauna at the Lodge on Harrison Lake.

Things to do in the Harrison River Valley

Whether you’re seeking outdoor adventures, relaxation, or a taste of history, the Harrison River Valley offers diverse activities to suit every interest, making it a perfect weekend destination for nature lovers and explorers alike.

Sunset at Harrison Lake.

Things to do in Harrison Mills

Golf at Sandpiper Golf Course

Tee off at Sandpiper Golf Course, an award-winning Fraser Valley course known for its breathtaking views and challenging fairways. Enjoy a round of golf amidst towering mountains, lush forests, and the gentle sounds of the Harrison River flowing nearby.

Golfing at Sandpiper Resort in Harrison Mills.

Tip! It’s in the same resort as Rowena’s Inn (where we stayed for nights 1 and 2). 

Sandpiper Golf Course.

Visit the Kilby Historic Site and Kilby Provincial Park

Step back in time at the Kilby Historic Site, a living history museum in Harrison Mills. Explore the beautifully restored general store and farm, learn about early pioneer life, and enjoy interactive exhibits that depict the region’s history. Open hours and days vary based on season, so check out their website before visiting. 

Historic Kilby site store.
Photo credit: Kilby Historic Site.

Kilby Provincial Park is tucked away in a rural pastoral setting and is characterized by its scenic riverfront location. Kilby Park is a popular location for enjoying the beach, fishing, and boating activities.

Sheep and a goat at the Historic Kilby Site.
Photo credit: Kilby Historic Site.

Paddle from Harrison Hot Springs to Harrison Mills

Starting in Harrison Hot Springs, you can actually paddle all the way to Harison MIlls via the rivers and lakes.  It’s about an 18 km paddle that will take you between 3.5 and 4.5 hours (one way). 

Kayaking in Harrison Lake.
Photo credit: Tourism Harrison.

Plan to end your trip at the Kilby Historic Site or The Sandpiper Resort, which are equipped with boat launches.  You can rent a kayak, e-bike and more at Harrison Eco Tours right in Harrison Hot Springs! 

The town of Harrison Hot Springs.

Take a Hike

There are several different hiking trails in Harrison Mills that range in difficulty. We choose to go for an evening hike to Mount Woodside. It was a beautiful 9 km hike that led to some of the most beautiful 360 views of the Fraser Valley. If you have a 4×4, you can also drive to the top of this trail. It’s an excellent spot to watch the sunset! 

Hiking in Harrison Mills.
Hiking at Mount Woodside.
The view from Mount Woodside.

Circle Farm Tour

The self guided Circle Farm Tour is a celebration of all things farming in the Harrison River Valley. A self guided tour is the perfect way to spend an afternoon. See cows roaming the fields, and watch artisan cheese and hand-crafted pottery in the making. If you are a fan of smelling fresh coffee being roasted and tasting homemade dishes with locally sourced products, then this tour is for you.

A sign at Harrison Mills.

Things to do in Agassiz

Experience Agassiz Speedway

Thrill-seekers can head to Agassiz Speedway, a high-octane motorsports facility that hosts stock car racing events. On select nights, you can feel the excitement as cars zoom around the track, creating an exhilarating atmosphere for racing enthusiasts.

At the Lodge on Harrison Lake.

Discover Bridal Veil Falls Provincial Park 

Just 9.6 km south of Agassiz, visitors will find the epic Bridal Veil Falls Provincial Park. This park showcases a majestic 60-meter waterfall cascading down a granite cliff face. Take a leisurely stroll to the falls and enjoy a picnic amidst the serene beauty of the park. The park is closed during the winter months (Mid-October- Mid-April). 

At Bridal Veil Falls.

Things to do in Harrison Hot Springs

Explore Sasquatch Provincial Park

While visiting Harrison Hot Springs, be sure to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Sasquatch Provincial Park. It’s home to picturesque lakes (Hicks Lake is a favourite), hiking trails, and stunning mountain vistas. The park is located just 7.5 km from downtown Harrison Hot Springs. 

While visiting, you can discover hidden waterfalls, enjoy a picnic by the lake, take a peaceful canoe ride, try your hand at fishing, or embark on a scenic hike amidst old-growth forests. Leashed pets can join in on the adventures. 

Sitting with the Sasquatch carving at Harrison Hot Springs.

Soak in the Harrison Hot Springs

 If you didn’t already guess based on the name, the community is famous for its natural hot springs. Make time during your weekend in the Harrison River Valley to relax and rejuvenate at the Harrison Hot Springs Resort or local public pool. 

The pool at the Harrison Hot Springs Resort.
Photo credit: Harrison Hot Springs Resort.

At the resort, you can soak in the therapeutic mineral waters (5 natural pools available), pamper yourself with spa treatments, or simply bask in the tranquility of the lakeside beach. Hotel guests can only use the pools, so if you are not staying at the resort, you can check out the public hot spring pool in the center of the village to get your hot springs fix. 

Harrison Lake Floating Waterpark

How fun is a floating waterpark?! Unfortunately, we visited Harrison Mills in May, and therefore it wasn’t open yet. But, if you find yourself in the valley from June 24 to September 4th, you’ll be able to cool off while playing at this massive waterpark. My brother used to be a lifeguard there and it is a lot of fun.

Swimming at Harrison Lake at sunset.

You can sign up for 2-hour time slots via their website. It’s also important to note that no matter how hot it is outside, Harrison Lake is glacier-fed and will be chilly. There are wet suits available to rent on-site!

Hiking

For novice hikers that want to explore the forest and enjoy a beautiful viewpoint. The Spirit Trail, is a 1 km loop trail that only takes about 20 minutes to complete.

Harrison Lake in the fog.
Photo credit: Tourism Harrison.

For a moderate hike, you can take the Bear Mountain Flats trail. It is a 4.3 km loop trail perfect for running or walking.

For those that want more of a challenge. The Harrison Grind is one to consider. This out-and-back trail takes about 6 hours to complete with an amazing view from the top.

A fire pit at the Lodge on Harrison Lake.

Where to Eat in the Harrison River Valley 

In addition to the ample amount of outdoor adventures, Harrison River Valley is also home to a wide variety of unique restaurants. 

Muddy Waters at Harrison Hot Springs.

During your weekend in the Harrison River Valley, indulge in the region’s culinary delights by visiting local restaurants and cafes. Sample fresh seafood, farm-to-table dishes, and artisanal treats, all while enjoying the Harrison River Valley’s stunning views and friendly hospitality.

Black Forest Restaurant

Experience a taste of Germany at Black Forest Restaurant, known for its authentic German cuisine. From hearty schnitzels and sausages to delectable strudels, this charming eatery offers a cozy ambiance and flavorful dishes that will transport you to the heart of Bavaria.

A Sasquatch statue at Harrison Hot Springs.

Muddy Waters Cafe

Enjoy a relaxed and casual dining experience at Muddy Waters Cafe, a popular spot in Harrison Hot Springs. This cozy cafe offers a diverse menu that includes breakfast favorites, sandwiches, wraps, and homemade baked goods. Grab a cup of artisanal coffee and savor your meal while taking in the laid-back atmosphere. We enjoyed breakfast here on our third day! 

Dinner at Muddy Waters Cafe in Harrison Hot Springs.

Clubhouse Restaurant at Sandpiper Resort

Nestled within the scenic Sandpiper Golf Course, the Clubhouse Restaurant provides stunning views of the surrounding mountains and fairways. This restaurant offers a diverse menu with options ranging from gourmet burgers (they were delicious) to fresh salads and delectable seafood dishes, making it a perfect spot for a leisurely meal after a round of golf. I highly recommend trying the tuna rice bowl! 

Lunch at the Clubhouse at Sandpiper Resort.

Harrison Corner Cafe

Delight in a charming and friendly atmosphere at Harrison Corner Cafe, a local favorite in Harrison Hot Springs. This cozy cafe serves hearty breakfasts, delicious sandwiches, and homemade pies to satisfy your cravings. Its welcoming ambiance and tasty comfort food make it an ideal spot for a relaxed and satisfying meal.

Rowenas Inn.

Basecamp Burger Joint 

For all you burger connoisseurs out there, it doesn’t get much better than a juicy burger at the Basecamp Burger Joint. We ate here for dinner on night three and enjoyed the wide selection of burger options. They have the classics, but also Veggie and Beyond Meat patties. 

Basecamp Burgers in Harrison Hot Springs.

Rocky Mountain Chocolate

You can’t go to Harris and not stop at Rocky Mountain Chocolate for some chocolate Sasquatch feet! Perfect for a treat or taking home to share.

Chocolate sasquatch feet from the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory in Harrison.

Sample 3-night Itinerary for the Harrison River Valley

As you can see, there are SO many things to do while visiting the Harrison River Valley. I have put together (what I believe to be) the best 3-day Harrison River Valley itinerary based on my experiences. 

Day 1: 

  • Do: Visit the Kilby Historic Site, hike to Bridal Veil Falls, and take a sunset hike to Mount Woodside
  • Eat: Picnic Lunch, Dinner at Black Forest
  • Stay: Rowena’s Inn on the River 

Day 2: 

  • Do: Paddle from Harrison Springs to Harrison Mills and an evening golf round at Sandpiper Course 
  • Eat: Brunch at Muddy Waters Cafe & Dinner at the Clubhouse 
  • Stay: Rowena’s Inn on the River 

Day 3: 

  • Do: Hike and fish at Sasquatch Provincial Park, play at the Floating Waterpark, and end the night with a soak in the public hot spring pool or a spa treatment at the resort. 
  • Eat: Breakfast at Harrison Corner Cafe, picnic Lunch, dinner at Basecamp Burger Joint
  • Stay: Lodge on Harrison Lake 
At the lake with and a fire pit.

Whether exploring the region’s hiking trails, touring historic sites, or indulging in the soothing hot springs that dot the area, this British Columbia gem provides a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. We enjoyed our weekend getaway in the Harrison River Valley, and I want everyone to experience the same sense of tranquility that permeates the air!

The view from Mount Woodside.

No matter how you spend your three days in the Harrison River Valley, it promises an unforgettable experience for those seeking serenity and connection with nature. I hope you found this guide to the Harrison River Valley extremely helpful. Happy exploring! 

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Bella Bucchiotti

Bella Bucchiotti is a storyteller, food lover, dog mom and adventure seeker living on the Pacific coast. She shares her passion for food, dogs, fitness, adventures, travel and philanthropy, in hopes of encouraging followers to run the extra mile, try new recipes, visit unfamiliar places and stand for a cause. Bella lives with Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease.

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