Tucked amid other Vancouver-area municipalities, Langley is home to the landmark Fort Langley National Historic Site, a fur-trading outpost where British Columbia was first declared a province. Go back in time to try blacksmithing, barrel-making, panning for gold, and even camping within its fortifications. The pioneering spirit is also found on surrounding Fraser Valley farms and in agricultural experiences, including a newer harvest of small wineries, craft distilleries, and cideries.
West Along the Fraser River to Richmond Follow the flow of the Fraser River west (on Highway 1 or the Trans-Canada) and then cross it into New Westminster to discover heritage buildings and a historic pier. Continue west to where the Fraser splits into two branches and enfolds the vibrant city of Richmond, a hotspot for ethnic fare (and even a few urban wineries) that you can sample on the Dumpling Trail or at the bustling stalls of the Richmond Night Market, the largest such market in North America. Coast Mountains and Lake Country North of Langley and the Fraser River, the Coast Mountains rise steeply into backcountry wilderness. Easy access is found in Rolley Lake Provincial Park and Golden Ears Provincial Park, named after an ears-shaped double-summit massif. There’s camping, hiking, canoeing, climbing, and swimming at Alouette Lake, as well as at Hayward Lake and the man-made reservoir of Stave Lake. White Rock and Crescent Beach Go southwest 30 minutes to reach the Pacific Ocean, whether the historic pier and boardwalk of White Rock, mere minutes from the US border, or the sandy stretches of Crescent Beach to beachcomb among driftwood logs and swaying grasses. From here, you can watch ferries come and go at the nearby Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal, the disembarkation spot for the Gulf Islands and Vancouver Island farther west.
Langley’s attractions are open year-round with mild but wet weather from November to February. Some provincial park camping sites are all-season, but summer is the most popular and busiest time of year. Winter offers storm watching on the coast, while snow brings skiing opportunities higher in the mountains.
- Most provincial parks take site reservations in advance (recommended throughout the high season of summer) and give an early priority booking window to BC residents. - The Trans-Canada Highway, which runs through Langley and neighbouring municipalities, is the main thoroughfare in and out of the city. It gets jammed with traffic during weekday rush hours and holiday weekends, so plan around these peak commuting times. - Although the Coast Mountains fall within city limits, they are no urban walk in the park. Be prepared when venturing into the backcountry, even within park boundaries, by packing extra food, water, and emergency shelter supplies.