When you travel from your home, you visit the home of someone else. It’s all fun and games while you’re here, there’s plenty to do and after all, you’re in the mountains. What could be better? That’s great. We’re glad you’re having a good time.
But, before you get caught up in it all, consider the impact you might have on a place when you visit it, from local shops to conversations with locals and interacting with nature. As well as what this place has meant to people long before you visited.
Here are a few points on how to travel respectfully in Golden.
Before you lose yourself in all of the fun, take a second to think about the community & nature you're visiting.
Golden is a small community. We’re off the beaten track, which is partly what makes us so unique. But it also means that our community infrastructure isn’t the same as communities that are in the vicinity of big cities. Our grocery stores and local shops can get overwhelmed during high seasons, and our restaurants and activity providers also get incredibly busy.
You can mitigate your effect on this by planning ahead so that Golden is prepared for you when you get here. Do this by:
- Booking your accommodation before you arrive. Many accommodations get booked up in the high seasons of winter and summer, don’t expect to arrive in Golden and find something cheap and available at the last minute.
- Booking your activities. Like accommodations, guided activities can get booked up early. Consider what you might like to do before you arrive in Golden and book where and when you can. Use the Golden BC app to scroll through things to do.
- Making reservations. Meal times can get hectic in Golden during the high seasons. Restaurants get filled up and sometimes people struggle to find a table. Make your reservations to ensure you get a seat and so that the staff know what to expect, and consider eating at non-peak hours, like supper at 4 pm instead of 6 pm.
Dining at Eagle's Eye Restaurant, the highest restaurant in Canada
Visit during slower seasons.
Spring and fall in Golden are incredibly unique and underrated. Spring is when the world awakens again, you can watch wildlife stirring and the wetlands fill up with spring melt. Spring is for new exploration, bird watching, paddling, and the first bike runes. Fall is a second summer, there are cooler temperatures but still enough daylight to go on big adventures. All of the highest alpine hikes are open, colors are starting to change and the town is a bit quieter.
Walking along the Rotary Trail in autumn
Maur Mere Media
Learn the Culture
Learning about the community that you visit not only enhances your experience but is also a sign of respect for the locals who reside there. Golden’s culture and history are long and deep, here’s a few quick facts:
- There is a rich connection to this land with multiple Indigenous cultures: the Ktunaxa, Secwepemc, and the Métis Nation.
- Golden is home to North America’s first Sikh temple.
- Golden is considered the birthplace of mountaineering in Canada.
Head to the Golden Museum to learn about Golden through the ages. Visit our Indigenous Peoples page to learn more about the Indigenous Nations who have a connection to this land.
Respect the Land
Golden holds meaning for not only people but flora and fauna too. We’re not in a National Park, which means there’s no one to clean up after you when you spend time in wild places or camp at recreational sites. It also means that you have to use your judgment when interacting with nature. We’re lucky to have access to such beautiful landscapes and we need to treat them with respect in order for them to be healthy and to endure. Keep these notes in mind when you recreate:
- Leave No Trace. You brought it in, it’s up to you to pack it out. Clean up litter, don’t take home rocks and foliage, and stick to designated trails when you’re hiking and biking to avoid disturbing sensitive ecosystems.
- Don’t Stop Your Car to Take Photos of Wildlife: how would you feel if hundreds of people pulled over to take photos while you were eating your breakfast? Many roadways go through habitat and feeding grounds, particularly in the spring. Please be respectful and give wildlife their space, if you have to stop your vehicle to look please stay inside to avoid harm to yourself as well as the wildlife.
- Be Bear Aware: Reducing the chance of a negative encounter with a bear prevents harm to you, your group, and the bear. Carry bear spray, travel in groups, make noise when you’re in the woods, and follow responsible camping ethics like storing your food away from your sleeping area.
We hope you have a wonderful time exploring Golden, there’s so much culture here and so many activities to fill your time. You can use www.tourismgolden.com to plan your trip, visit the Visitor Centre during the summer, and download the Golden BC app to keep up to date on events, access trail maps, and more.