It's a happy fact that western Canada's coolest, swankiest, and gay-friendliest ski town, Whistler, is also one of North America's best gay winter hideaways, a modern and stylish community rife with gay-friendly hotels, boutiques, and restaurants, all just steps from one of the world's biggest - and most exciting - ski resorts, Whistler Blackcomb. In fact, there's as much to do here for non-skiers as for fans of boarding and skiing - during the annual Winter Pride and Ski Festival (fka Whistler WinterPride), there's typically everything from cooking classes and blow-out parties to Ziptrek ecotours and dog-sledding.
The dates this year for WinterPride and Whistler Gay Ski Week are January 23 to January 31, 2016.
Events kick off in Whistler on Saturday, January 23, where guests pick up information and can buy tickets at WinterPride's hospitality center and Pride House inside the hip Aava Whistler Hotel. Then throughout the week there's skiing, apres ski hobnobbing, dances and parties (including the always-packed Splash Pool Party at Meadow Park Sports Centre and a rollicking cowboy party at Buffalo Bill's). And there are a number of events appealing to nonskiers that typically include snowmobile tours, dog-sledding, dine-arounds, tubing, a Zipline eagle tour, wine tastings, cooking classes, and plenty more - check out the full list of events, including the Snowball party with Israeli DJ extraordinaire Yinon Yahel on January 30 .
For all of the events, activities, and parties held throughout the week you can buy tickets online.
Whistler Blackcomb Central Reservations is your one-stop for booking WinterPride lift-ticket and accommodation packages, and there are some terrific deals. In fact, Whistler Blackcomb Central Reservations always has a ton of great packages and deals throughout the season, everything from lift tickets and dining to accommodations.
Be sure to check out WinterPride's page on booking accommodations. This year's official WinterPride host hotel is swish and trendy Aava Whistler. There are several other properties participating in WinterPride as official "Preferred Hotels" - these include the Hilton Whistler, Fairmont Chateau Whistler, Westin Resort & Spa Whistler, and ResortQuest Whistler.
For more information on the gay scene in Whistler, check out the Gay Whistler Trip Planner and About.com's Whistler Gay Guide and Gallery and Whistler Gay-Friendly Hotels and Resorts Guide. Also take a look at the excellent GLBT page produced by the city's official tourism organization, Tourism Whistler. Also note that Canada has a second very fun LGBT winter ski celebration in mid-March: Jasper Pride Festival and Gay Ski Week takes place March 17-20, 2016.