Village Of Radium Hot Springs Holiday

We baited the kids with the promise of ice cream. Our plan was to walk the main street as a big group and for the rest of the week they associate a stroll here with treats. For the adults it is no different, and when you’re on holidays, hey, that’s what you do; you allow yourself to enjoy the place. Lazy coffees, on sunny outdoor patios, lead to more shopping and a surprisingly good selection of souvenirs for such a small place has us playfully thinking of whom we could gift a pair of moose pajamas to. We pick up a perfectly intact game of Monopoly at the thrift store for $3, which we promise to play with our eight year old after a swim at the famous Radium Hot Springs just up the valley.

We all exclaim in awe at the vertical rock walls of Sinclair Canyon the first time we drive through them to the Hot Springs. The orange and red hues of the walls stand in stark contrast to the towering peaks of the Purcell Mountains far above our heads. We are following a pilgrimage to this registered Canadian Historic Site that people have been enjoying for centuries. These days, there’s large hot pool and a good sized cold pool with a diving board. Our group ventures back and forth between the two while also taking the time to soak up sun on the lounge chairs. Tricks are elevated as the dads join the impromptu diving board competition spawned by ambitious nine year old boys. Three-sixties, back flips and a few body slaps are intertwined between young first timers getting coaxed off the edge by encouraging parents. The fun goes on and on until it is backlit by the evening sun that blankets a yellow light on the sprawling stone walls. It’s a relaxing thought to imagine the countless moments of enjoyment that have happened here and the activity has helped our group find peace within the moment.

The next day a few of us stroll to the Radium Hot Springs Visitor Centre where both Kootenay National Parks and the Radium Chamber of Commerce employees cater to the questions of thousands of tourists a year. It’s a good spot for kids as there are several interpretive stations that educate and entertain at the same time. Miraculously, as we admire a statue of some mountain sheep in the outdoor plaza, a herd of real mountain sheep leisurely saunter by. It’s a thrill to be so close to such majestic animals and even the teenagers have their phones out to snap the moment. We remark that we have something to tell the other adults who have gone to play golf. They are challenging themselves against one of the two courses in town on back-to-back mornings.

Our final destination is the mini-golf course up the canyon. As far as difficulty and aesthetics go, the course has got some game. Eventually we make our way back down the hill to our motel. Fifteen minutes later, we’re packing our swim bags for another quick dip in the hot pools. If that doesn’t tire them out, then we’ll have to make good on a round of Monopoly. Such is life on vacation.

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