Take a Hike

Prince Rupert has a compact geographic footprint and is a great place for walking. Starting from Cow Bay and extending both east and west, the waterfront is a popular in-town destination, especially on those long northern summer evenings when the sun never quite seems to set.

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Hiking above Prince Rupert. Image by Shayd Johnson

For an easy loop in town, take a stroll down Rushbrook Trail. You’ll find the trailhead just behind the Bob’s on the Rocks building. This is a wide gravel trail suitable for most abilities that skirts steep cliffs at the very edge of the water. Newly renovated in 2018, it features three impressive suspension bridges and stunning views up the harbour as far as Tuck Inlet. You’ll emerge in Seal Cove, where you can watch the seaplanes taking off and landing, before walking back along the trail to Rushbrook Floats.

If you’re looking for a mid-level trail to explore, be sure to explore Butze Rapid Interpretive Trail, a well-maintained 5km loop that will take you down to the water’s edge, including a viewpoint of the spectacular reversing tidal flow that the trail is named for. Popular with trail runners and families with strollers alike, be prepared for some steep sections.

For more of a challenge, check out Tall Trees Trail. Approximately 4.5 km one-way, Tall Trees is an out-and-back trail. The start of this recently updated trail is just a couple hundred meters past the Butze Rapids parking lot, on the opposite side of the road. This hike will take you 450 meters up the side of Mount Oldfield and on clear days provides stunning views of Prince Rupert harbour and the surrounding mountains. The first section is wide and relatively flat but quickly becomes steep, making this a moderately difficult hike.

Hiking here does require safety precautions—this is a rugged landscape and the Rupert weather is known for rapid changes. Make sure you have a good map, appropriate clothing, and safety equipment before you head out.

For a full listing of local hiking trails, download our hiking trail brochure here.

On the Water Side

Prince Rupert is literally surrounded by water, providing ample opportunity for boating and paddling. Not only is the ocean right at hand, but there are numerous lakes nearby that are great for canoeing and kayaking. Rent a kayak or paddleboard in Cow Bay and explore the Prince Rupert Harbour for another perspective on our small coastal community. For cycling enthuisists, try out the hydrobikes available for rent on the Public Breakwater and peddle your way across the harbour!

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Keeping it reel. Image by Jeremy Koreski

Paddling around Prince Rupert is probably the best way to get to know this coastal city. Rupert is on an island—Kaien Island—and getting out on the water means experiencing the marine landscape that has helped this city grow from its humble beginnings back in 1910. Plus, you’ll have wildlife experiences you’ll never forget. The shallows along the rocky coastline are peppered with interesting aquatic life—starfish, mussels, crabs, a massive array of fish—and the curious heads of seals frequently pop up, checking out the colourful boats passing by. Whales are not uncommon—orcas and humpbacks being the most regular visitors to the north coast.

Adventure in Every Season

Like most coastal communities, Prince Rupert offers a variety of outdoor adventure options depending on the season. In the spring and summer (and sometimes even into the fall!), golf is a popular attraction right inside the City limits. For golf enthusiasts, it’s uncommon to play a round at the Prince Rupert Centennial Golf Course without a wildlife sighting. Always lush and vibrant, the scenic course is admired for its natural beauty and strategic challenge. Outdoor tennis and basketball courts are also scattered throughout Prince Rupert’s downtown, for those looking to hit the court.

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See you on the slopes of Shames Mountain. Image by Andrew Strain

In winter, Prince Rupert is only a short drive down the Skeena from Shames Mountain, an incredible mountain cooperative offering deep powder, chair access, and amazing panoramic views of the majestic Coast Mountain Range. Just a little farther down the road, cross-country skiers can find groomed trails at Onion Lake, with a cozy cabin to warm up in at the end of the day.

There are fewer people here, more animals, and bigger, emptier landscapes. Whether you’re looking for an adventure on the water or a hike with a view, you’ll find it here.

Related Businesses

Plan your Prince Rupert itinerary by discovering the unique businesses that operate here.