Blessed with heavy snowfall, family friendly Big White offers affordable accommodation and great skiing...
With an incredible 7.5m of annual snowfall, Big White ski holidays should certainly not be lacking in the white stuff. The snow's easy to get to too: the village's location right in the heart of the mountain makes skiing to and from your accommodation delightfully simple, with runs and lifts snaking through its centre.
And out on the mountain, there's a good range of runs for everyone from first-time skiers to expert snowboarders.Families love the resort's three nursery areas, as well as the relatively mild temperatures for Canada and the quality of the snow - dubbed “hero snow” by locals because it makes you look so good.
But away from the nursery slopes, most of the mountain is covered in trees with rolling pistes that make this a good choice for mixed ability groups.
Resort height: 1,755m
Big White also has a well-equipped terrain park, complete with rails, jumps and a border cross course that anyone who has attained at least an intermediate level on skis or a board can have a go at, as well as night skiing and plenty of powder for experts looking for those off-piste thrills.
However, the numerous trees mean that the resort lacks the wide, open powder fields found in the Alps, for example. And while the lift system in Big White has improved dramatically in recent years, fans of the resort - the second biggest in British Columbia - fear that the marketing that has come alongside the investment will result in Big White becoming increasingly crowded.
It takes about four and a half hours to get to Big White from Vancouver airport by road...
Alternatively, you can take an internal flight to Kelowna airport, which is about an hour away from the resort.
With three nursery areas, Big White's relatively empty and beautifully groomed slopes are a great place to learn to ski...
Snowboarders and skiers alike will also enjoy the resort's grippy, natural snow.
Big White is a cheap, well-designed resort with limited après-ski but lots of activities for non-skiers...
Big White has a laidback, family atmosphere rather than a fully charged party vibe. However, there is some après-ski action to be found. Try Snowshoe Sam's for a pub atmosphere with live music or a DJ, Sante Bar & Grill for a more sophisticated evening, and the Moose Lounge at Happy Valley for family-friendly après - sometimes with live entertainment. The resort has several well-priced “bar and grill” type restaurants, but for a treat, head to 6 Degrees Bistro or the Globe Café and Tapas Bar.
Snowmobiling, swimming, sledging (or tubing) down the resort's “Mega Snow Coaster”, ice skating or ice-climbing; as a non-skier, you can take your pick. You might find the evenings a bit lonely if the rest of the group decides to get involved in night skiing, though.
Cost of living 9/10
The cost of the accommodation in Big White is a lot lower than in big European ski resorts. It's also about half the price of the more famous Canadian resort Whistler, for everything from food and drink to ski hire.
Attractiveness of resort 7/10
Big White is a purpose-built resort that is highly functional, but may not be to your liking if you prefer your ski holiday with a bit of history. The trees around the town, known locally as "snow ghosts", look stunning when covered with a heavy coating of pure white snow. But the flipside of all that white stuff is that the resort is often covered by snow clouds, and can suffer from poor visibility as a result.