Recreation Areas & Visitor Centres

Recreation area reopening plan

Our recreation areas closed in late March due to a high concentration of visitors, and we're now taking a staged approach to safely reopen these sites and campgrounds across the province. We've begun reopening day-use recreation site and facilities that allow for physical distancing, but due to public health and safety concerns, some higher use recreation areas and campgrounds will remain closed for the time being. We'll share updates on recreation sites reopening as they become available.

View the current status of our recreation areas

Sun setting behind mountains at Jones Lake Reservoir

Visiting our recreation sites


We've developed and maintain a wide range of recreation areas as one part of our efforts to balance the province's energy needs with the preservation of the natural environment.

See the chart below for information on our recreation sites – such as Hayward Lake – and our visitor centres and the activities and features of each. We've also included driving directions and site-specific information to help when planning your visit.

Remember that these areas are located at or near working dams and power stations that contain both natural and man-made hazards. Please play safe and adhere to all posted signs and warnings.



A closer look at Hayward Lake


Camp at Strathcona Dam


Explore Buntzen Lake


Take a drive to Bridge River


Expand view

Aerial video of Bridge River

Bridge River

North of Pemberton

Nestled into the range of the Coastal Mountains, you'll find the winding waters of the Bridge River flowing over 120 kilometres. The system is home to three of our dams and two recreation areas offering a selection of outdoor activities.

Image of a kayaker at Buntzen Lake
Lower Mainland

Buntzen Lake

Port Moody

With one visit to Buntzen Lake, you'll understand why it's our most popular recreation site. This picturesque lake is encircled by trails spanning through the forests ranging in difficulty from easy to challenging.

Image of Stave Lake
Lower Mainland

Hayward Lake


Hayward Lake is part of the Stave River hydroelectric project. Bound between the Stave Lake Dam and the Ruskin Dam, the reservoir is one of three located along the river.

Strathcona Dam
Vancouver Island

Strathcona Dam

Campbell River

In the shadow of Strathcona Dam, a BC Hydro recreation area is more than a free campground with 11 first-come, first-served sites. It's a base for exploring Strathcona Provincial Park - B.C.'s oldest - that's riddled with hiking options, fishing for trout and Dolly Varden char, snow-covered peaks and spectacular Della Falls.

Alexander Mackenzie's Landing at sunset

Alexander Mackenzie's Landing

Near Mackenzie

On June 11, 1993, BC Hydro and the residents of Mackenzie dedicated this recreation site "Alexander Mackenzie's Landing" in recognition of the two hundredth anniversary of Alexander Mackenzie's historic journey.

Ferry on Arrow Lakes

Arrow Lakes Reservoir

Revelstoke area

In the valley between the Monashee and Selkirk mountain ranges is the Arrow Lakes reservoir. A great waterway for boating, it runs 230 kilometres from near Revelstoke in the north, to Castlegar in the south.

The Clayton Falls recreation area - the only ocean-front park in the Bella Coola area

Clayton Falls

Near Bella Coola

The Clayton Falls recreation area is the only ocean-front park in the Bella Coola area. The Bella Coola Valley stretches from the Pacific Ocean in the west, to the Chilcotin Plateau in the east.

John Hart Dam with waterfalls
Vancouver Island

John Hart

Campbell River

BC Hydro's John Hart Generating Station is on the Campbell River, just a few minutes from the town of Campbell River.

The view at Jones Lake Reservoir
Lower Mainland

Jones Lake

East of Chilliwack

BC Hydro's Jones Lake Reservoir serves not only as a source of hydroelectric power, but also as an attractive public recreation area.

Kootenay Canal Generating Station

Kootenay Canal


Along the Kootenay River, between Nelson and Castlegar, a canal diverts water to BC Hydro's Kootenay Canal Generating Station. Running parallel to the canal is a gentle, level walking trail.

The view of Pend d'Oreille Reservoir

Pend d'Oreille


BC Hydro's Pend d'Oreille Reservoir serves not only as a source of hydroelectric power, but also as an attractive recreation area for the public.

Swimmers at Puntledge River
Vancouver Island

Puntledge River


The Comox Lake Dam Picnic Area is situated on the Puntledge River, at the outlet of the Comox Lake Reservoir. The recreation area offers a parking lot, beach, pit toilet, viewpoint, information displays and a small picnic area.

Aerial of Revelstoke Dam

Revelstoke Dam Visitor Centre


With guided or self-guided tours, guests can take in a breathtaking view of the dam and the Columbia River Valley from the dam crest at 175 metres above the river.

Ruskin Dam powerhouse
Lower Mainland

Ruskin Dam


In the north central Fraser Valley is BC Hydro's Stave River hydroelectric project. The Stave Lake reservoir is bounded by the Stave Lake Dam. Downstream is the Hayward Lake reservoir and the Ruskin Dam.

Shuswap Falls recreation area

Shuswap River


In the beautiful North Okanagan region of B.C., the Shuswap River is ideal for public recreation. Boating, fishing and swimming are only some of the activities that can be enjoyed in the area.

Stave Falls Powerhouse
Lower Mainland

Stave Falls Visitor Centre


The Powerhouse at Stave Falls has a way of engaging a wide variety of visitors, from individuals to families and school groups

View of the Stave Lake reservoir
Lower Mainland

Stave Lake


In the north central Fraser Valley is BC Hydro's Stave River hydroelectric project. The Stave Lake reservoir is bounded by the Stave Lake Dam. Downstream is the Hayward Lake reservoir and the Ruskin Dam.

WAC Bennet at sunset

WAC Bennett Dam Visitor Centre

Hudson's Hope

From the Visitor Centre, you'll get a wonderful view of the Williston Reservoir, the largest reservoir in the province. The reservoir is held back by one of the world's largest earth-fill structures, our W.A.C. Bennett Dam.

Aerial view of Williston Reservoir

Williston Reservior

Hudson's Hope

In northeast British Columbia, near the towns of Hudson's Hope and Mackenzie, is Williston Reservoir, seventh largest in the world by volume. The Peace River flows out of the eastern edge of Williston through the Peace River Canyon.

We don't have any recreation sites matching that criteria.

Northern Region
Alexander Mackenzie's Landing - boat launch open, campground closed        
Clayton Falls - closed                
Peace Canyon Dam Viewing Area - closed                    
WAC Bennett Dam Visitor Centre - closed              
Williston Reservoir - closed
Southern Region
Arrow Lakes Reservoir - closed                    
Bridge River - closed                  

Gun Creek Campground - closed


Naxwit Picnic Area - closed


Seton Lake Reservoir - closed

Kootenay Canal - closed                      
Pend d'Oreille - bost launch open, campground closed        
Revelstoke Dam Visitor Centre - closed                 
Shuswap River - closed              

Sugar Lake Dam Viewpoint - closed

Lower Mainland
Buntzen Lake - closed        

Buntzen Lake Trails - open

Hayward Lake Reservoir - closed
Jones Lake Reservoir - closed
Ruskin Dam - closed                  
Stave Lake Reservoir - closed

Stave Falls Visitor Centre -  closed


Reservoir Boat Launch - closed


 Lodge and Campsite - closed

Vancouver Island
John Hart - open                  
Puntledge River - open              
Strathcona Dam - closed