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The Ultimate Day Trip to Fort Langley

Ranked by Amazon back in 2014 as one of the most romantic cities in all of Canada, this charming riverside town is steeped in whimsy, history, and fun! From an eclectic mix of independent shops and restaurants to trails, museums, and cozy cafes, a quick visit can easily turn into a day trip – no matter the time of year!

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I am fortunate to live just minutes away from this idyllic village, which is a convenient retreat from the monotony of the suburbs. As one of the few B.C towns left that have managed to keep its old-world charm, I always feel as though I’ve been whisked back in time – or to the set of a Hallmark movie, which I often spot being filmed along the main strip.

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Kristyl Clark is a former Black Press Media reporter and contributor, and the founder of the award-winning family blog ValleyMom.ca.

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anytime, but for this article the focus is on fall & winter

Winter

Time needed

Half Day

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expect wind near the river.

comfortable walking shoes

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The Ultimate Day Trip to Fort Langley


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A journey through time

I’ve taken my kids here more times than I can count and relatives from England, but no two visits are ever the same. As a self-professed history nerd, I love coming to this historic site to experience what it must have been like to live in the middle of a thriving Hudson’s Bay Company Fort in the 1800s. It is here where you get to see where Hudson’s Bay Company fur traders mingled with California gold prospectors and hear First Nations Interpreters tell century-old stories. It’s walkable from the main strip and you’ll conveniently pass Blacksmith Bakery on route. If it’s a sunny day, pack a blanket or plastic table covering for a picnic. It’s fully fenced by those towering palisade walls

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A journey through time

Purchase admission at:

Hosted by Fort Langley National Historic Site

A trendy artisan café steeped in history

Buckle up….err, coffee-up, you’re about to embark on a full day of fun, adventure, and tasty eats. I always like to start my visit to Fort Langley with a trip to Black Smith Bakery—a trendy artisan bakeshop, café, and pizzeria that is popular with tourists and locals, alike. Built on the original site of Reid’s Blacksmith Shop, circa 1910, this Instagrammable haven is no Starbucks. Here, you’ll find real-food using traditional artisanal methods, baked fresh daily, on-site, in their open-air kitchen using locally sourced and seasonal ingredients. From the hand-forged viennoiserie and patisserie to cakes, savories, and my personal favorite – chocolate croissants, made daily – it’s worth

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A trendy artisan café steeped in history

Get coffee and a sweet or savoury treat at:

Hosted by Blacksmith Bakery

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Discover one of B.C.’s premier fruit wineries

Sadly, there are no wine-tastings during COVID-19, but it’s still worth paying a visit to this premier fruit winery. Set on rural, lush farmland just minutes away from Fort Langley, there’s a great selection of dessert and berry wines to choose from. Hello holiday hostess gifts! The winery was founded back in 2001 by tugboat captain and cranberry farmer Wade Bauck. With positive feedback of the first cranberry wine, the varieties expanded to include other local berries such as blueberries and raspberries. Nine years later, with the support of friends and family, the Fort Wine Co. now produces 11 different wines while supporting local berry farms and fruit farmers all over British Columbia. I’ve

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Discover one of B.C.’s premier fruit wineries

Find out more at: Fort Wine Co.

Hosted by Fort Wine Co.

Elvis and ice cream and burgers, oh my!

When visiting Fort Langley with my children, they always beg and plead for an ice cream from this iconic ‘50s diner. Situated smack dab in the heart of the city, across from the rainbow crosswalk, you can’t miss it. There are not shortages of spots along the main strip for an icy treat, but this particular spot serves up a double scoop of fun and nostalgia. Stepping inside, I always feel as though I’ve been transported to that 50s diner on the movie Back to the Future—with a jukebox at every table and the big colourful vinyl booths, it’s definitely a blast to the past! I can spend hours admiring all the Marilyn Monroe, Coca-Cola and Elvis Presley memorabilia, and wall of fame peppered with s

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Elvis and ice cream and burgers, oh my!

Grab a burger and milkshake at: Planet Java 50s Soda Fountain Café

Hosted by Planet Java 50s Soda Fountain Café

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Enjoy a Scenic River Walk

One of my favourite fall activities is to grab a coffee and head for a scenic walk along the river. This 4.9mile dog-friendly trail (8km roundtrip) connects the Fort Langley National Historic Site with the site of the original fort near Derby Reach Regional Park. It’s bustling on the weekends with tourists and locals, but is yours for exploring during the week. The trail is relatively flat, so I’d bring my double stroller or carrier back in the day with no issues. Now we bring our bikes and enjoy a family ride while soaking up the spectacular water views. If you need to take a break during your trek, there are several small wooden pierces offering scenic views of the nearby water.

Enjoy a Scenic River Walk

Stroll and roll

Hosted by Fort to Fort Trail

Where you can meet your makers

If I happen to be in Fort Langley on a Saturday, I always make time to visit to this outdoor market. There’s just something to be said about meeting the people who grow your food or savouring produce at the peak of freshness. From hand-made soaps, creams, and essential oils to artwork, paintings, cards, and knitting, follow the one-way red arrows around the market to find that special gift for that special someone on your Christmas shopping list. This event usually wraps up for the fall season in late October, it will continue through Dec. 19, accommodating shoppers like myself who appreciate being able to shop outdoors during the pandemic. And while the market, which runs Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 3

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Where you can meet your makers

Find out more at: Fort Langley Village Farmers’ Market

Hosted by Fort Langley Village Farmers’ Market

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Where history meets farm to table fare

After all the exploring of the Fort, you're probably going to work up quite the appetite. I have the perfect spot for lunch locale that you are going to love. When the mercury rises, live music, laughter, and the delicious aroma from Beatniks’ kitchen waft out into the street, enticing those passing by to take a load off and unwind on their inviting five-star patio. Come fall, the cozy warmth and ambiance of the restaurants provide a welcome respite from the autumn chill, as does their tasty farm-to-table hearty fare. Take it from me, you’ll want to try their signature Beef Dip, washed down with a refreshing glass of Gasoline Alley Lemonade. From countless anniversaries and date nights to most rec

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Where history meets farm to table fare

Check out their menu at: Beatniks Bistro

Hosted by Beatniks Bistro

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