A year-round outdoor lights show, Vallea Lumina shines on Cougar Mountain with multimedia displays that turn the Whistler forest into a magical adventure.
To learn all about the attraction, continue reading or check out the official Vallea Lumina website.
Vallea Lumina Night Walk on Cougar Mountain
Hosted by The Adventure Group, Vallea Lumina is one of the most stunning late-night activities in British Columbia. The experience is set entirely in the forest with visitors making their way through trails surrounded by all sorts of lights and sound. There are video projections, original music and other kinds of special effects that make Vallea Lumina a larger-than-life, technologically theatrical production.
The walk is designed by Moment Factory, a Canadian-based studio. There are only a dozen such night walks in the world, making this a fairly unique experience to explore.
Where is Vallea Lumina?
The Vallea Lumina attraction is located on Cougar Mountain. The journey begins at The Adventure Group’s Basecamp which is about a 10 to 15-minute drive from Whistler Village. From there, the entire show takes place amongst a series of trails and staircases in the woods.
The venue’s address is Sixteen Mile Creek Forest Service Road. Coming from Whistler Village, drive along the Sea to Sky Highway and turn left onto Cougar Mountain Road near the northeastern tip of Green Lake. Cougar Mountain Road turns into Sixteen Mile Creek Forest Service Road. If you keep going you’ll find Vallea Lumina and Basecamp for The Adventure Group’s other activities.
Other attractions you’ll find at the same place are Superfly Ziplines and the Aerial Obstacle Course. The Adventure Group also offers RZR Tours (on all-terrain vehicles) and Whitewater Rafting opportunities in warmer months, and Snowmobiling Tours in winter.
For full details about all the activities offered by The Adventure Group click tagwhistler.com.
Vallea Lumina Dates
There are both summer and a winter versions of the show which makes it a year-round event. The summer show runs from May until October while the winter show runs from November until April. They are similar. The winter edition has snow on the ground and starts earlier in the day (because the sun goes down earlier). You also have to dress for the cold. Both versions are magical.
For 2021, the summer show ran from May 21st until October 11th. From June 24th to September 12th Vallea Lumina was open every night. At other times, it’s closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. The winter show runs on most days between November 26th in 2021 and April 18th in 2022.
Hours and Admission
Throughout the summer, the time of the first show changes depending on when the sun sets. In June and July in 2021 the event kicked off at 10:00 pm. By October, that had changed to around 7:30 pm. No matter when it starts, new shows begin from the main camp about every 20 minutes.
The full length of the summer show is between around 45 and 60 minutes. The winter show is shorter at around 30 to 45 minutes. Of the two, the summer show is a bit more expensive, but also longer and with more things to see.
Tickets for the summer show in 2021 were $35 for adults (ages 16+) and $30 for youth (ages 6-15). For the winter show the tickets are about $30 for adults and $25 for youth. Children ages 5 years and younger are free year-round. It’s recommended that you buy tickets in advance online.
For tickets and full details, see the Vallea Lumina website.
What to Expect
Expect a wonderful experience when you visit Vallea Lumina. The light shows are subtle, but impressive. It’s not at all overwhelming. It’s all done very tastefully, creatively and with a magical kind of touch.
When you arrive at The Adventure Group’s Basecamp it’s dark (unless you go earlier in the day to do Superfly Ziplines, the RZR Tours, Snowmobiling or the Aerial Obstacle Course). At night the gravel parking lot is lit, and there are lights along the path to the entrance. At the Basecamp area there are often a couple of campfires with chairs around them. There is also a snack bar.
From the Basecamp you follow the signs to the night walk lights attraction. After passing under an illuminated gate with Vallea Lumina written on it you climb a set of steps. It’s pretty dark at first, but the path is lit up. For the next 30 or so minutes you walk along paths and up and down stairs. Along the way you see all kinds of light displays and magical scenes. Beautiful music plays in the background.
At Vallea Lumina, in different places, there are lanterns, projected videos, sparkling lights and glowing trees. You’ll also see artificial flashes of lightning, story-like scenes and sparkling imitation fireworks.
In between various displays, in parts, there is almost complete darkness (but never 100%). There is always just enough light to see where you’re going and where to step. In some areas the illuminations are quite subtle, and in others they are bright and all around you.
During your walk guests follow a one-directional path. You can go at your own pace. 30 to 40-minutes later you make your way back down to the Basecamp where you originally started. You feel like you’ve had a bit of exercise and that you’ve experienced something magical.
Vallea Lumina Video
To give you an idea of what Vallea Lumina looks like in winter when there’s snow on the ground check out the following video. The video was taken in January of 2022. As you’ll see there are stairs on the route, but fewer than in the summer (when the route is about 50% longer). Also as you’ll see, the place looks beautiful at night with the snow. It looks even more magical after a fresh snowfall when the trees are covered too. It’s a pretty special place!
To see a video of Vallea Lumina in the summer see the article about the attraction on the website Vancouversbestplaces.com.
Tips for Visiting
Below are some things to keep in mind when visiting Vallea Lumina.
TIP #1: The show runs regardless of the weather (unless there’s a real risk of danger, like a serious storm). So if it’s raining, bring a rain jacket and have some fun regardless. An important note: umbrellas are not allowed as they can block other peoples’ views.
TIP #2: During the winter especially, it’s important to make sure you stay warm. Bring some extra layers as you’ll be outside for a while!
TIP #3: The attraction isn’t recommended for those with limited mobility as there are multiple steep staircases. Strollers are not allowed. The summer show’s path is around 1.5 km and the winter show path is around 1 km. Although not suitable for everyone, most people should be able to handle both routes with no problems. You will, however, get some exercise going up and down the stairs.
For more information about the attraction visit The Adventure Group website.
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