British Columbia is home to so many amazing destinations, there is something sure to attract every type of traveller. An added bonus is that everywhere you go, you’ll likely find a local brewery—or several.
The BC Ale Trail is the definitive resource for anyone interested in exploring the extraordinary world of craft beer in beautiful British Columbia. Each ale trail includes recommended itineraries featuring an array of craft breweries, pubs, restaurants, liquor stores, outdoor activities, sightseeing, accommodation and more.
With more than 20 ale trails covering much of the province, the BC Ale Trail website and app are ideal tools for planning your next trip. Here are some suggestions for adventures along the BC Ale Trail this summer!
Maple Ridge Ale Trail
Tucked between the Golden Ears Mountains and the Fraser River, Maple Ridge is a scenic, forested community with remarkable natural beauty — and a bounty of local craft breweries, taphouses and restaurants. Both Maple Ridge and nearby Pitt Meadows offer plenty of opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to hike or bike along nearly 200 kilometres of accessible trails offering views of majestic mountains, rolling farmland, refreshing streams, rivers and lakes, and wildlife, including eagles, hawks, herons and cranes. After a day outdoors, quench your thirst at any of these four local breweries, Foamers’ Folly Brewing, Maple Meadows Brewing, Ridge Brewing and Silver Valley Brewing.
Northeast & Northwest BC Ale Trails
Talk about an epic road trip! From Prince Rupert on the northwest coast to Valemount near the Alberta border, there are a dozen breweries to visit across Northern B.C. The diverse geography inspires exploration and discovery — from mist-shrouded coastal areas to towering mountains, sweeping glaciers, rivers, lakes, hot springs, valleys, rolling prairies and rich agricultural lands. Nestled in this wild landscape are vibrant communities offering endless outdoor activities and, of course, popular local breweries where you can celebrate your accomplishments and toast the next day’s challenges.
North of the Fraser Ale Trail
The four municipalities of New Westminster, Burnaby, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam are aligned in many ways—not just by geography, but also through their bustling craft breweries.
New West’s long love affair with beer began in 1860 and continues today with Another Beer Co. and Steel & Oak Brewing. Meanwhile, Burnaby’s dynamic brewery scene showcases three distinctly different breweries, Dageraad Brewing, Steamworks’ William Street Brewery & Taphouse, and Studio Brewing. Nearby, a burgeoning beer scene has exploded in Coquitlam, home of Mariner Brewing, and Port Coquitlam, where four new breweries have opened since 2018, Boardwalk Brewing, Northpaw Brewing, Patina Brewing and Tinhouse Brewing. Cyclists and pedestrians can visit all of these breweries along the 25-kilometre Traboulay PoCo Trail, which encircles the community.
Port Moody Ale Trail
Back in 2014, it seemed like a quirky twist of fate when two breweries, Yellow Dog Brewing and Moody Ales, opened on the same street in what at the time was considered a sleepy suburb. When Twin Sails Brewing joined the original duo on Murray Street, now affectionately known as “Brewers Row and friends,” folks began to take notice. Now with five unique operations on Brewers Row, including Parkside Brewery and Bakery Brewing — an off-shoot of Moody Ales, and with Fraser Mills Fermentation nearby, beer lovers agree that Port Moody is anything but sleepy — it’s a destination. All of these breweries have tasting rooms and outdoor patio spaces, offer some dining options and typically have food trucks parked out front on Murray Street.
South of the Fraser Ale Trail
Richmond, Delta, Surrey and White Rock are distinct communities linked by their locations south of the Fraser River. Richmond is home to Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks, whose motto is “Keeping Beer Weird,” and Monkey 9 Brewing, which is attached to a bowling alley. Travel through the tunnel to Delta where you can get your fill of tacos and beer at Four Winds Brewing, and visit Barnside Brewing, which was founded by neighbouring farmers who collectively grow their own barley and hops. Surrey’s beer scene is anchored by Central City Brewers & Distillers and Russell Brewing, which is finally opening a tasting room. The beachfront community of White Rock has a burgeoning craft beer scene featuring three breweries, 3 Dogs Brewing, Galaxie Craft Brewhouse and White Rock Beach Beer.
Southern Interior Ale Trail
Across the Southern Interior there’s an ideal attraction for every visitor, whether that’s an outdoor adventure, farmyard experience or urban exploration. While Merritt’s resident brewery, the Empty Keg Brew House, provides the incentive to exit the highway, a wide variety of outdoor activities encourages you to stay. Then head off to discover the rolling hills and fragrant sagebrush of Kamloops, which encourage a sense of adventure for both urban and outdoor explorers. After a day of exploring, indulge in a craft beer at Red Collar Brewing or Iron Road Brewing, or dive into a scratch-made meal paired with beer at Bright Eye Brewing or the Noble Pig Brewhouse. Nearby is Crannóg Ales, B.C.’s first certified organic, farm-based brewery. Your next stop on this leg of the Ale Trail is Barley Station Brewpub in Salmon Arm, located on the shores of sparkling Shuswap Lake. Last, but certainly not least, Vernon’s distinct charm is well reflected in its popular and attractive downtown brewpub, Marten Brewing.
Sunshine Coast Ale Trail
Explore the Brewers Coast. The Sunshine Coast is on a peninsula located less than 30 kilometres from downtown Vancouver, but because getting there requires a ferry or flight, it has the vibe of an island unto itself. Some of British Columbia’s most distinctive breweries call the Sunshine Coast home and the town of Gibsons boasts three of them, Persephone Brewing, named for Nick’s boat in the iconic TV series, The Beachcombers, Tapworks Brewing, a community hub in the heart of Gibsons, and the 101 Brewhouse & Distillery, a welcoming spot offering craft beer, small-batch spirits and locally inspired food. Sechelt is home to Batch 44 Brewery & Kitchen, which offers craft beer alongside delicious food. Up in Powell River is Townsite Brewing and, with a Belgian brewer at the helm and an eclectic style that embraces PowTown’s folksy urban ex-pat mentality, there really is no other brewery quite like it.
Vancouver — Brewery Creek & Yeast Van Ale Trails
One of the most cosmopolitan cities on the continent, bordered by sea, forest and mountain peaks, Vancouver really has it all — and that includes a beer scene finding fame across the world. Thanks to exponential growth in the past decade, there are 25 amazing breweries split between two unique ale trails, Brewery Creek and Yeast Van. Named for the historic stream where Vancouver’s earliest breweries were based, Brewery Creek showcases Mount Pleasant’s diverse range of breweries, restaurants and taphouses along with the city’s downtown brewpubs. Meanwhile, Yeast Van is the playful nickname for East Vancouver’s innovative craft beer community, which remains true to that region’s industrial and multicultural roots. Both of Vancouver’s ale trails are easily explored by bike, foot or transit, as well as through guided bus tours.
BC Ale Trail Tasting Passports
Watch for Tasting Passport promotions coming up in communities around the province throughout the year. These month-long events encourage residents to collect stamps at their local breweries and then enter completed passports in a draw to win prizes.