Looking for a place to relax and unwind? The Sunshine Coast is the perfect spot to rejuvenate your mind, body, and spirit. Soak up the laid-back vibe and enjoy your favourite wellness activities in a beautiful setting. Read on for some trip ideas and inspiration to plan the perfect getaway.
Spend Time in Nature
Feel the stresses of everyday life disappear as you paddle the coastline and calm lakes, zip down mountain bike trails, explore local beaches, or cast a line to do some fishing. Consider booking a Talking Trees walking tour with Talaysay Tours to learn about the sacred relationship local Indigenous Peoples have to the land. And Nature with Haida offers forest bathing (shinrin-yoku) sessions, which have been shown to help lower blood pressure, reduce stress hormones, and improve mental health.
Local Spas & Classes
Sometimes you just need an extra dose of pampering or a yoga session to help you unwind. You’ll find a variety of spas and spa experiences (including mobile services) here on the Sunshine Coast, such as hot stone massages, facials, body scrubs and wraps, and saunas. There are also yoga studios and gyms that offer regular classes, so you don’t have to stray far from your routine during your getaway to the Sunshine Coast.
For some people, a little retail therapy goes a long way towards improving moods. The joy of finding a unique gift or getting a great bargain can give your brain an emotional boost. Shopping is also a great way to get to know the local community better. Treat yourself to a one-of-a-kind treasure at art galleries such as Artique in Powell River, or stop by a studio on the Purple Banner Tour to chat with artists and find the perfect piece to bring home. Spend some time browsing the boutique shops in downtown Sechelt or Gibsons Landing.
The social benefits of events and festivals are less visible, but they are key to relaxation and rejuvenation on several levels. They foster community pride, encourage social connections, allow people to share their passion for hobbies and interests, and ultimately strengthen relationships.
The Sunshine Coast offers events and festivals for all tastes and interests. Local breweries and cideries regularly host events where you can enjoy live music while you sip on cold beer or cider. There are also annual music events like the Townsite Jazz Festival and Music in the Landing where you can soak up the sounds of both local and out-of-town musicians—and maybe even let off some steam by showing off your dance moves.
Plenty of local events are geared towards more specific interests. Classic car enthusiasts can check out events like the Sleepy Hollow Rod Run; the Texada Annual Fly-In is a well-loved aviation event that draws pilots from all over the region; and the Sunshine Coast Festival of the Written Arts is a treat for those with a love for literature and writing.
Food and Drink
Nothing quite fits the vibe of relaxing and unwinding quite like comfort food, which is all about inducing happiness. Enjoy dishes such as the Beurre Blanc Mac & Cheese at Coastal Cookery, sushi rolls and tempura from Mama’s Japanese Kitchen in Madeira Park, or some pizza fresh from the oven at Buono Osteria in Gibsons.
And when it comes to beverages, try the locally roasted coffee at 32 Lakes Café & Bakery in Powell River, Strait Coffee in Sechelt, or Beachcomber Coffee in Gibsons. Order your coffee to go and enjoy it on a leisurely walk or find a bench in a scenic spot to enjoy some quietude. Looking for something a little stronger? Try an artisanal cocktail at El Segundo in Sechelt or Lunitas Mexican Eatery in Gibsons.
Where to Stay
Consider staying at a cozy cabin or a seaside resort such as Pender Harbour Resort. Think along the lines of relaxing by a wood stove, enjoying a soak in a hot tub or pool, and sitting by the window with a good book (which can be all the more relaxing if it happens to be raining outside, there’s just something about the sound of the rain).
There are also a handful of Sunshine Coast accommodations that offer on-site spa services to help you unwind. These include Shades of Jade Inn & Spa, Painted Boat Resort Spa & Marina, and Beyond Bliss Spa & Suites.