Part of the Metro Vancouver Regional District, Langley is dissected to the east and west by the Nicomekl River. The early European settlement city was developed along Old Yale Road; a historic early wagon road that served the Fraser Valley region. Today, it is a sprawling city that is made up of six main neighbourhoods.
Langley is a great place for outdoor lovers, what with its 17 different public parks. It is also a great destination for foodies, being home to some great vineyards and fabulous restaurants. Let’s not forget about its historic sites, zoo and horses. If you are visiting Vancouver and want to escape the big city for a few days, Langley is a great place for this. These are the 15 best things to do in Langley.
1. Taste wine
Being located in the Fraser Valley region means that Langley is home to some fabulous vineyards. There is no better way to sample all of these wines than to go wine tasting.
Most vineyards in and around the city offer tastings, and you don’t have to be a wine connoisseur to enjoy them. It may even be possible to take a tour of winery to see the vines, how the wine is bottled and even visit the wine cellar.
If you don’t have time to visit all, Chaberton Estate Winery is the one not to miss. This is Langley’s first ever winery in the region, and addition to offering tastings and tours, also has a phenomenal bistro.
2. Ride a horse
Langley is actually known to be the ‘Horse capital of British Columbia’, having many places to buy horseback riding equipment. There are also numerous equestrian centres where visitors can ride or learn to ride a horse.
Head to Glen Valley Stables and you will have the opportunity to ride along one of three scenic horse trails. Travelling with small kids? Langley 204 Horseback Riding offers 30 minute pony rides!
There also happens to be a couple of therapeutic equestrian centres that offer horseback riding for children and adults of varying abilities. Horseback riding has been known to help improve ones physical, mental and emotional well-being.
3. Visit the birthplace of British Columbia
This is what the Fort Langley National Historic Site is commonly referred to as, as it was the main depot for fur trade starting in 1829. Construction of the trading post started in 1827, which sat four kilometres away from where Fort Langley is today.
Any visitors interested in history should make sure to visit the historic site and go on an audio tour to learn everything that they can about the site. There are also live demonstrations, hands on activities and children’s activities.
You can even stay at the Fort Langley National Historic Site, as it features a heritage themed camping experience where you sleep in an A-frame cabin with a tented roof. Accommodations are completely waterproof, spacious and fun.
4. Go to the zoo
No visit to Langley is complete without going to the Greater Vancouver Zoo. The 120 acre zoo is home to 140 animal species that live in various ecosystems. Plus, the zoo is dedicated to education and conservation, and is home to many rescued and orphaned animals.
Animals that can be seen here include the Nile monitor, American flamingo, emu, bison, chinchilla, red panda and Burmese python. The zoo is also home to big cats like the cheetah, lion, Northern lynx and Siberian tiger.
In addition to looking at animals, the zoo also offers experiences like talks, behind the scene tours and train rides. It’s even possible to have a zoo sleepover or to visit after dark for a night tour.
5. Look at planes
This can be done at the Langley Regional Airport. But not only can you watch helicopters and charter planes fly by, but you can also ogle at historic aircraft.
The Canadian Museum of Flight is located at hangar 3 of the airport and displays a collection that is significant to Canadian aviation. It is a small museum, but has a generous collection.
Aircrafts that can be seem here include the Canadian designed Avro CF-100 Canuck Mk. 3B, Canadair CT-114 Tutor, De Havilland DH 100 Vampire, Lockheed CF-104D Mk. 2 Starfighter and Nelson BB-1 Dragonfly. There is also a collection of aircraft engines on display.
6. Spend a day at a farm
Or on many farms, as there are a few in Langley, making it easy to spend a day going from one farm to the next. Go on a self-guided tour to some of these farms and get the chance to pick, taste and buy fresh products.
Pick berries, see how cheese is processed or watch farm animals go about their day. You can even purchase fine quality alpaca clothing, fresh homemade pies and old fashioned ice cream.
If you’re visiting Langley with the kids, then Aldor Acres Farm is the best option, as they offer plenty of family-friendly activities. These include farm tours, hayrides and the chance to actually pet some of the animals.
7. Race a car
Not a real race car, but a go kart, which is what Fast Track Indoor Karting is all about. This is a fun, heart pumping, safe thing to do, especially on a rainy day.
The great thing about this place is that they have two separate tracks; one for all ages and one for those under four feet tall. This means that everyone can have fun driving one of these super-fast karts around the track.
All karts are new Sodi RT8 karts that go as fast at 75 kilometres per hour. Plus, they have adjustable seats and pedals, making them extremely safe and extremely fun.
8. Celebrate Canada Day
You have to be in the city on July 1st to do this, but if you are you are in luck, as Canada Day in Langley is a memorable event. Actually, it is many events, as there is much to do on this revelled day.
Start the day off with a pancake breakfast at Krause Farms, followed by cultural activities and ceremonies at Fort Langley. If you are on a family holiday go to Willoughby Community Park to enjoy face painting, mini-golf, live music and a mini farmers market.
Blackwood Lanes Vineyard and Winery is the place to have a romantic Canada Day evening, where you will get exceptional food, live music and a glass of bubbly. Canada Day ends with a fabulous fireworks display.
9. Take in a game
There are both national and provincial teams in Langley, making it easy to take in a game while you are here. Many of them are based out of the Langley Events Centre, which is the largest sports and recreation centre in the city.
The biggest ticket is probably to see a Vancouver Stealth game of the National Lacrosse League. The Vancouver Giants of the Western Hockey League is also a great team to watch. Even though these are Vancouver teams, their home stadium is the Langley Events Centre.
Other smaller teams in Langley include the Langley Rams of the Canadian Junior Football League and the Langley Rivermen of the British Columbia Hockey League. You can also make a trip to Vancouver to watch the NHL’s Vancouver Canucks, the CFL’s BC Lions or the Vancouver Whitecaps FC of the Major Soccer League.
10. Have fun in a park
Langley is home to 17 public parks that range from small neighbourhood parks to larger ones complete with trails. No matter which one you choose, you are sure to have fun.
If you are travelling with kids in tow, go to Brydon Park, which features an adventure playground, and a lagoon with turtles and waterfowl. There is also City Park and its children’s waterpark, playground and picnic tables.
Adrenaline junkies will enjoy mountain biking at Penzer Action Park, while those looking for something a little bit calmer will enjoy walking the trails at Nicomekl Park.
11. Stop and smell the flowers
Visit the 3.67 acre Sendall Gardens and be surrounded by beautiful plants and flowers, some of which you can stop and smell. A nature trail passes through the gardens, with benches along the way to stop for a rest or a selfie.
The garden is also home to two duck ponds and a greenhouse that is filled with exotic plants. If that is not enough, birds, geese and swans can be seen wandering around the garden grounds.
If possible, avoid visiting on the weekend, as it is a popular spot for wedding photos. It is also used for special events, like wedding, family functions and corporate parties.
12. Cruise along the river
Take a scenic cruise in a paddle wheeler along the Fraser River and see the area from a different view. Cruises leave from The Quay at New Westminster, which is around a 30 minute drive from Langley’s city centre.
There are night cruises and day cruises, as well as cruises on special events like Christmas and New Year’s Eve. It is also possible to charter a boat and go on a private cruise along the river.
Go on a pub night cruise and enjoy a dance party on the water, or enjoy a full day cruise compete with lunch, a historic tour of the river and a visit to the Historic Fort Langley Site. Or opt for a three hour sunset cruise that includes a 3-course dinner.
13. Play a round of golf
Or play two, three or even four rounds. There are numerous golf courses in the Fraser Valley region, all of which can be reached from Langley in less than 30 minutes!
The oldest golf course in the area is the Fort Langley Golf Course, which has been open since 1968. The course is a hidden gem that sits along the banks of the Fraser and Salmon Rivers.
One of the most well-known courses in the area is the Northview Golf & Country Club, which features two Arnold Palmer Signature Design championship golf courses and has hosted the PGA tour a number of times. The 18-hole Championship Course at Newlands Golf & Country Club is also top notch.
14. Head to the mountains
British Columbia is famous for its mountains, and no holiday to Langley is complete without visiting them. The best access from the city is probably the Golden Ears Provincial Park, which happily, is open year round.
The park is home to the Golden Ears Mountain that is known for its challenging hikes and climbs. Those that are less fit can just stick with one of the park’s less challenging hikes.
It is also possible to just head to Alouette Lake to go swimming, canoeing, water skiing or fishing. Those that want to really immerse themselves in nature and the mountains can stay overnight in one of the park’s camping sites.
15. Stand at the border
The USA border is just a 20 minute drive south of Langley. It is here where you will find the Peace Arch Provincial Park.
The Peach Arch was built right on the international boundary between Canada and the United States in 1921 to commemorate lasting peace between the two nations. The historic landmark and surrounding park is maintained by both British Columbia and Washington State Parks.
The park is quite beautiful, what with its manicured gardens and lawns. It is a great place to have a picnic, enjoy a leisurely stroll and snap holiday photos.