Expensive reader: This text accommodates hyperlinks to services and products that I could also be compensated for, at no additional value to you.
Abbotsford is the biggest metropolis in British Columbia exterior of Better Vancouver. “Abby” lies on the coronary heart of the Fraser River Valley, a area identified for its industrious and pious individuals, sunny climate, and fertile plains.
Solely an hour’s drive from Vancouver and spitting distance from america border, Abbotsford is surrounded by attractive rural surroundings and unbelievable views of immense Mt. Baker within the US. As soon as an essential hub on numerous railway strains, at the moment far too many go by it of their rush to get to Vancouver or the inside of BC; talking as an Alberta, Abbotsford is without doubt one of the many worthwhile stops on the drive from Calgary to Vancouver.
The easiest way to expertise Abbotsford is by visiting its many farms, wineries, fruit markets, or the annual Agrifair. Town can be one of many nation’s most ethnically various; 1 / 4 of the inhabitants is of South Asian descent, and it’s dwelling to the oldest Sikh temple in North America.
My grandparents have lived in Abbotsford for many of my life, so we go there on vacation virtually yearly and it is sort of a second dwelling to me. On our previous couple of journeys we visited with our youngsters; right here’s my extra family-focused information to issues to do in Abbotsford with children. You might also need to see my favorite issues to do in Chilliwack, the following metropolis over!
On this article, I’m going to provide my private suggestions for one of the best sights, wineries, breweries, parks, fruit markets, eating places, and different issues to do in Abbotsford. I’ll additionally advocate some day journeys from Abbotsford, which embrace a number of the finest weekend getaways from Vancouver, on the finish.
Spend a while in Abby, ideally in summer season (or early April to see its many cherry blossoms!), and I can virtually assure you’ll love the town as a lot as I do!
Prime 10 Abbotsford Sights
I’ll start this text with a number of the prime historic sights and cultural sights within the Abbotsford Metropolis Centre. It’s positively price spending a day eating, procuring, and exploring the city centre earlier than heading out into the nation, the place the true magic lies.
Historic Downtown Abbotsford
Abbotsford’s historic downtown, additionally known as the Rail District, is positioned simply west of the railway line that travels south to america. The center of it’s positioned on Montrose Ave. between George Ferguson Method and South Fraser Method.
The buildings in downtown Abbotsford principally date to the Fifties and 60s, when it was a bustling metropolis centre. At this time, many have been renovated and now home atmospheric cafés, eating places, bookstores, outlets, and different companies price exploring.
There are additionally some pretty painted murals downtown, particularly within the alley between Montrose Ave and W. Railway Road; you could find the doorway reverse Sure Chef.
See right here for an entire itemizing of companies in downtown Abbotsford.
The place to remain in Abbotsford: When you’re spending the night time, I like to recommend Sandman Lodge & Suites (see on Reserving / Agoda / TripAdvisor). Sure, it’s a series lodge, nevertheless it’s centrally positioned inside strolling distance of downtown they usually have rooms with kitchenettes.
Gur Sikh Temple
Gur Sikh Temple is the oldest still-running Sikh gurdwara in North America. It was based in 1911 by early Sikh settlers who got here to work on farms within the space. At this time it’s a Nationwide Historic Website and was even visited by Justin Trudeau in 2017.
From the skin, the picket gurdwara seems to be extra like an early 20th century store widespread to the world. The underside ground homes the langar (kitchen for getting ready communal meals) and a small museum. If the door is locked, inquire for the important thing. The prayer corridor is on the second ground. There are additionally some statues exterior and a really tall flag pole.
Sikhs are extremely welcoming; I’ve visited the Golden Temple in India, a very powerful temple within the Sikh faith, 3 times, and I can personally attest to this.
Guests at Gur Sikh Temple are warmly welcomed; simply make certain to cowl your head earlier than getting into the prayer corridor. Scarves are supplied simply exterior the door on the second ground, and footwear ought to be eliminated earlier than getting into.
Worldwide Friendship Backyard
The Worldwide Friendship Backyard is a Japanese-style backyard inbuilt 2008 to commemorate Abbotsford’s relationship with its sister metropolis, Fukagawa, Japan. The backyard honors Abbotsford’s cultural variety.
It’s a small however dense walled-on oasis of greenery in entrance of Clearbrook library and a department of the College of the Fraser Valley.
The centrepiece of the backyard is the Farm Staff’ Memorial Statue, a golden tree with the faces of three South Asian farm staff who died in an accident in 2007.
When within the space, it’s additionally price taking a stroll previous the flower gardens and synthetic ponds round Abbotsford Metropolis Corridor.
The Attain Galley Museum
Additionally close to Abbotsford Metropolis Corridor, The Attain Gallery Museum is Abbotsford’s premier artwork gallery and museum.
The small gallery options rotating exhibitions overlaying native tradition, historical past, and artwork. Entrance is by donation, with a urged donation of $10 per grownup and no payment for youths.
Clayburn Village Sweet Retailer
Clayburn Village was the primary firm city in British Columbia, constructed by the Clayburn Firm within the early 1900s.
A number of of the village’s buildings stay at the moment. One of the best one to go to is the Clayburn Village Retailer. The house owners have restored the constructing and transformed it right into a nostalgic sweet retailer.
There you’ll discover lots of upon lots of of candies you keep in mind out of your childhood, in addition to scrumptious caramels made in-house, some baked gadgets, and extra.
The village is a 5-minute drive north of the Abbotsford metropolis centre.
Plant fanatics will love Tanglebank Gardens simply off Mt. Lehman Highway northwest of central Abbotsford. All method of flowers, houseplants, and small timber are on the market.
There’s additionally a small reward store on web site, whereas Tanglebank Gardens Brambels Bistro does healthful meals in a vibrant and informal setting.
When you’re within the space, don’t miss the gathering of wineries additional north on Mt. Lehman Highway (see Finest Wineries part beneath).
Fort Enjoyable Park
When you’ve pushed previous Abbotsford on the TransCanada Freeway en path to Vancouver, you’ve most likely noticed Fort Enjoyable Park.
The castle-like amusement park is ideal for a half day of enjoyable with the youngsters. Indoor and out of doors amenities embrace go karts, bumper vehicles, children’ bowling, laser maze, mini golf, batting cages, and a big arcade.
Having visited when my children had been very younger, I might say that older children (7+) will benefit from the park extra. Costs are per sport, so you possibly can play as little or as a lot as you need.
Abbotsford Farm & Nation Market
Abbotsford’s very personal farmers’ market takes place each Saturday morning (9 am to midday) from the start of Could to the top of October in Jubilee Park, simply west of downtown.
Anticipate finding native produce, cheese, beer & wine, honey, treats, native crafts, and extra. Conveniently for marketgoers with children, there’s a playground proper subsequent to the market.
See the official web site for a full checklist of distributors.
One of many prime Abbotsford occasions is the annual Agrifair, an enormous weekend honest celebrating the area’s agricultural roots.
Apart from the agricultural tools on show, you can even look forward to finding livestock, agricultural demonstrations, a halfway with rides, native crafts, and extra. There’s additionally a schedule of wilder occasions, comparable to motorbike leaping, demolition derbies, concert events, drive-in films, and fireworks.
If I can brag just a bit, my grandparents had been lively members within the AgriFair for a few years; I’ve fond reminiscences of my Grandpa drawing crowds together with his cream separator demonstrations.
The Agrifair normally takes place on the lengthy weekend at the start of August on the Abbotsford Exhibition Park. Usually there’s a small entrance payment; in 2021 the occasion was free however nonetheless required a ticket reservation.
Abbotsford Worldwide Airshow
Abbotsford’s different occasion of the yr is the Abbotsford Worldwide Airshow. The occasion has been held yearly since 1962 and attracts 100k+ onlookers. It has been known as one of many top-10 finest airshows on the earth.
Count on to see all forms of plane portray patterns within the skies above Abbotsford over the course of the three-day occasion.
In 2021, observers might buy an area for a automotive and as much as 6 individuals to observe the occasion on the Abbotsford Worldwide Airport.
Finest Parks and Strolling Trails in Abbotsford
Abbotsford is blessed with quite a few parks and inexperienced areas. Lots of them are linked by the Abbotsford Discovery Path, a community of strolling and biking trails spanning the town from west to east.
Mill Lake Park
Mill Lake Park is Abbotsford’s most well-known park. Surrounding Mill Lake within the metropolis centre, the park options strolling trails and boardwalks across the lake, a number of playgrounds, Centennial Out of doors Pool, and proper subsequent to it, the town’s finest spray park.
Trethewey Home, a historic dwelling courting to the Twenties, can be discovered within the park.
Abbotsford’s Discovery Path consists of dozens of kilometers or strolling and biking trails connecting quite a few parks in Abbotsford.
The western portion of the trail begins at Fishtrap Creek Park in western Abbotsford, stretching north to MacLure and Clearbrook Parks, then east to Outdated Riverside Park.
From there, the japanese portion of Discovery Path stretches all the best way to the bottom of Sumas Mountain east of city.
Fishtrap Creek Park
Fishtrap Creek park is a quaint oasis of ponds in western Abbotsford. The ponds are sometimes lined in vegetation and residential to many species of chook.
A community of strolling trails are constructed across the ponds, with picket pavilions constructed offering views of wildlife.
Willband Creek Park
Willband Creek Park is one other city wetland, positioned a brief drive north of the town centre. The two.5-kilometer straightforward strolling loop is finest walked within the early morning. Varied birds, geese, and even bats are a standard sight.
Albert Dyck Park
You may hit the seashore, go for a swim, or strive quite a lot of watersports proper on the town at human-made Albert Dyck Park, which is positioned subsequent to the Abbotsford Worldwide Airport.
Matsqui Path Park
Nice strolling trails and picnic spots are discovered alongside the Fraser River at Matsqui Path Park, reverse Mission.
For a extra severe hike, strive Sumas Mountain Path in japanese Abbotsford. There are a number of simpler and mid-range hikes on the mountain, too, principally accessed from communities on the slopes of the mountain.
I actually loved this path, which truly follows a collection of mountain biking trails on the mountain with some loopy jumps (be careful if strolling!) The path included a reasonably epic view trying down on Abbotsford farmland and Freeway 1.
Farm Experiences in Abbotsford
The Fraser Valley, through which Abbotsford is positioned, is without doubt one of the most essential agricultural areas of British Columbia.
Round Abbotsford, there are dozens of farms providing customer experiences, from produce gross sales and U-Decide to full-blown household and college journey experiences.
Visiting one or a number of of those farms is without doubt one of the finest methods to get a style (each figuratively and actually) of Abbotsford’s farming tradition. Most of them additionally function venues for weddings or different occasions.
One of the vital in style farms within the space, Maan Farms has a petting zoo, sunflower pageant, yoga with goats, a zipline, giant playground, U-pick berries, and extra.
Earlier than you allow, make certain to strive their wonderful fruit wines and do-it-yourself samosas.
Birchwood Dairy Farm
This dairy farm gives full excursions, however let’s be trustworthy: most individuals make the journey to Birchwood Dairy Farm to strive a number of scoops of their tremendous creamy ice cream.
The small store additionally sells meals for the youngsters to feed to the livestock on web site.
Taves AppleBarn Pumpkin Farm
Come to Taves Household Farm in late summer season and early fall when the apples and pumpkins are in season and probably the most issues to do are on provide, together with a sunflower maze.
The farm can be a cidery, with scrumptious alcoholic and non-alcoholic variations accessible from the tasting room. The aged cider wine is very good, whereas the apple slushies are good on a scorching day.
Campbell’s Gold Honey Farm
For all issues honey, together with mead, honey wine, beeswax cleaning soap, and extra, head to Campbell’s Gold Honey Farm west of city close to Aldergrove.
Tuscan Farm Gardens
Though their visiting season is brief, Tuscan Farm Gardens is price a go to from mid-June to late July to see their stunning lavender gardens. In addition they promote quite a lot of lavender-infused merchandise, together with ice cream.
EcoDairy is one other in style dairy farm that’s particularly academic for youths or anybody seeking to find out about how trendy dairy farming works. They do additionally, after all, promote ice cream and different recent dairy merchandise.
Wineries in Abbotsford
The Fraser Valley gives appropriate circumstances for rising grapes (although not as appropriate because the a lot better-known Okanagan wine area). Abbotsford is more and more changing into identified for its wines.
There are 4 small, family-run wineries in Abbotsford. They specialise in crisp, fragrant white wines and native takes on traditional reds. As a result of their manufacturing is smaller in scale, a few of them mix grapes with associate farms within the Okanagan.
The primary three wineries beneath are positioned round Mt. Lehman street northwest of city, an exquisite agricultural space and ideal place to spend a day within the solar, sipping on native vino.
As a result of my grandparents lived for years within the space, simply down the street from these wineries, I really feel a private connection to this location and these wines.
Seaside Pearl Vineyard
The tasting room at Seaside Pearl Vineyard seems to be like a chapel, fairly the shock as you drive in between two rows of grape vines.
We cease in each time we’re on the town, and particularly love their Charlotte Property Petite Milo (akin to a sauvignon blanc) and their Magnolias Property Rosé.
SingleTree Vineyard stands out for its pretty tasting domes, good for a date or non-public wine tasting or intimate gathering with mates. We actually loved their Siggy (Siegerrebe) and the glowing model of it.
In addition they promote some scrumptious (and surprisingly low cost) domestically made cheese, with flavors comparable to mustard, stinging nettle, and truffle.
Mt. Lehman Vineyard
Mt. Lehman Vineyard is the primary one you’ll encounter when driving up from city. They do refreshing native takes on widespread whites and reds.
This vineyard has a number of the most budget-friendly choices of the three wineries, and there’s a stunning patio on the finish of a storage room stuffed with wine barrels.
Ripples Property Vineyard
East of city and south of the TransCanada Freeway, Ripples Property Vineyard focuses on fruit wines, together with a port-style wine constituted of blueberries and glowing blueberry wine.
There’s a superb patio, and moreover wine additionally they serve quite a lot of inventive cocktails.
Breweries in Abbotsford
Lovers of superb craft brews now have a handful of selections to help when in Abbotsford.
Abbotsford actually used to develop giant quantities of hops earlier than the trade moved elsewhere.
At this time, hop crops are returning, and native breweries make use of them, together with domestically grown barley, fruits, and different components, to make a staggering vary of refreshing and artistic brews.
Area Home Brewing
Area Home Brewing is the best-known craft brewery in Abbotsford. Nothing beats a chilly one loved on their “beer garden” alongside within the Rail District southeast of the historic downtown on a summer season afternoon.
Area Home specializes at distinctive and fruit-infused takes of traditional beers alongside the likes of melon IPA, peach-passion fruit beer spritz, pineapple bitter, and toasted coconut black lager.
Ravens Brewing is one in every of three brewery taprooms positioned in western Abbotsford simply off the TransCanada and Fraser Freeway.
Indigenous-owned, the brewery helps the local people in numerous methods, to not point out they produce some superb beers utilizing as many domestically sourced components as doable.
The seasonal jalepeno mango beer stood out as actually particular for me, whereas I might drink the Outdated Acquainted English darkish delicate all day. Smoking Gun Espresso Roasters, which now operates in Chilliwack, was once positioned right here within the brewery.
Outdated Abbey Ales
You may pull up a chair as I did and peer into the room “the place the magic occurs” at Outdated Abbey Ales, an open loft-like tasting room with quite a lot of tempting brews on provide.
The Sippy Chai Aye, a chai-flavored beer, was so scrumptious that I purchased armfuls to take dwelling with me.
Loudmouth Brewing solely does a half dozen forms of beer at a time, however they do them properly. Friends rave about their meals.
Buying and selling Submit Brewing
This wonderful Abbotsford restaurant serves beers crafted on the Buying and selling Submit brewery in close by Fort Langley.
The place to Eat in Abbotsford
Apart from my suggestions beneath, I might additionally counsel getting some Indian meals whereas in Abbotsford! With almost 1 / 4 of the inhabitants being South Asian, there appears to be an Indian restaurant on each avenue in Abbotsford.
Bow and Stern
When you love seafood like we do, then I personally advocate Bow and Stern in downtown Abbotsford. They serve up recent seafood galore, sparing locals a visit to the coast in Vancouver. In addition they have a protracted checklist of wines, cocktails, and craft beers on faucet.
Banter Ice Cream
Banter Ice Cream in Jubilee Park subsequent to downtown has a number of the finest ice cream on the town. It’s all made in-house, with inventive flavors comparable to Earl Gray, Blueberry Basil, and vegan choices.
We cherished our mango cheesecake bingsu (Korean shaved ice dessert) and matcha bubble tea at 2Scoops, simply across the nook from Banter (oh, the alternatives!) Having lived in East Asia for over a decade, this introduced again reminiscences for me.
Restaurant 62 is a extremely rated farm-to-table institution making use of hyper-local components.
Produce Markets in Abbotsford
Abbotsford is surrounded by produce farms, and native individuals understandably can’t get sufficient of their fruits & greens. There are some wonderful produce markets the place you possibly can refill; listed here are however a number of to select from:
- Lepp Farm Market (north of city on the best way to Mission)
- Howard Wong Farms (on the identical street, even nearer to Mission)
- Neufeld Farms (southwest of city)
- Nature’s Pickin’ (southeast of city)
Day Journeys from Abbotsford
Abbotsford is well-positioned between Fort Langley and Chilliwack on the centre of the Fraser Valley. There are numerous day journey prospects in all instructions, together with the mountains to the north.
I gained’t even get into day journeys to Vancouver, which is however an hour away. In the meantime, america border is only some kilometres to the south!
Cultus Lake, Chilliwack
The most well-liked lake within the area is for sure Cultus Lake in Chilliwack, about 45 minutes by automotive from central Abbotsford.
Cultus Lake Provincial Park has a superb seashore for swimming, whereas the docks on Cultus Lake Marina provide superb views.
There are additionally a number of campgrounds across the lake, whereas Cultus Lake Journey Park and Cultus Lake Waterpark draw households from afar.
Harrison Scorching Springs
Harrison Scorching Springs is a relaxed scorching spring village on pretty Harrison lake, northeast of Abbotsford within the Fraser Valley. That is one of the best place to go for a scorching spring soak inside straightforward driving distance of Abbotsford. The springs can primarily be loved on the Harrison Scorching Springs Public Pool or the favored Harrison Springs Resort, however there are a number of different lodging choices on the town.
The city can be an excellent base for quite a lot of out of doors actions, together with a small waterpark in summer season. Harrison Scorching Springs is a 30 or 50 minute drive northeast of Chiliwack or Abbotsford, respectively.
Cascade Falls & Davis Lake
To get off-the-beaten monitor and get misplaced in nature, I like to recommend taking a drive north to Cascade Falls Regional Park, the place a brief path leads by authentic forest to a suspension bridge and beautiful waterfall.
There are additionally picnic spots with entry to swimming holes downstream from the waterfall.
Proceed north to Davis Lake Provincial Park, my household’s favourite lake. There’s no signal, however as soon as the street is adjoining to the lake (on GoogleMaps; you gained’t be capable to see it), park simply after the bridge over a small waterfall. An unmarked path (warning: it’s fairly steep in components) follows the creek all the way down to a shocking alpine lake. Come on a weekday and there’s an excellent probability you’ll have all of it to your self.
On the best way again, go to the attractive Westminster Abbey in Mission earlier than crossing the Fraser River again to Abbotsford.
Golden Ears Provincial Park
For beautiful mountain surroundings, climbing trails, blue-green rivers, and seashores on large Alouette Lake, head to Golden Ears Provincial Park. It’s an hour’s drive northwest of Abbotsford.
Fort Langley Nationwide Historic Website
Heading in the direction of Vancouver, it’s price stopping in Fort Langley for its namesake fort, a Nationwide Historic Website. You may be taught in regards to the space’s previous at this former fur buying and selling publish. There are a great deal of different issues to do in Fort Langley, rounding out a full day journey.
Different Concepts for Issues to Do in Abbotsford
When you want much more concepts for enjoyable issues to do in Abbotsford, listed here are extra enjoyable locations to go to on the town:
- The Guide Man is a superb used bookstore, full with resident cat and cat adoption program. There’s one in Chilliwack, too.
- Go sky diving at Skydive Vancouver, which is definitely positioned in Abbotsford
- Strive mountaineering at Undertaking Climbing Centre
- Store for treasures at Abbotsford Flea Market, open Sundays from 6 am to three pm
- Tee off at one in every of Abbotsford’s three golf programs
- Catch a Fraser Valley Symphony efficiency at Matsqui Centennial Auditorium
- Store until you drop at Excessive Road Mall, one of the best mall on the town, together with an excellent out of doors playground
- Play board video games with a drink at Boardwalk Café & Video games downtown
- Strive an escape room expertise at Exit A
- Go for an evening of bowling at Galaxy Bowl
Effectively, that brings us to the top of this Abbotsford journey information. I hope you’ve discovered greater than sufficient issues to do in Abbotsford, British Columbia. Let me know within the feedback beneath how your journey goes!