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Sunshine Houseboats & Marina: Waterpark

A one of a kind experience in the Kootenay’s, Sunshine Houseboats’ floating waterpark is a day trip like no other. Climbing, balancing, sliding and jumping off the inflatable structures floating in a sheltered cove is sure to bring out the kid in everyone!

The structures are surrounded by docks, providing everyone easy access to the fun, and offering those who chose not to partake in the action a clear view of it. In addition to the water park, the Dockside Cantina opened in 2018. The cantina provides snacks, refreshments, and full scale meals, making food and drink one less thing to think about when you load up the family and head out for the day.


If you’re looking for something a little more calm and relaxing, Sunshine Houseboat &Marina also has a number of stand up paddle boards and kayaks available for rent. Gold Creek enters Lake Koocanusa just a short paddle across Gold Bay from the marina. Moving silently across the water, this is an excellent way to see loons, eagles, and other wildlife that frequent the mouth of the creek… but beware, you don’t want to fall in at the estuary: the water temperature is drastically different in the creek from the rest of the lake!


Want to explore the area beyond just a day trip? Sunshine Houseboats is, as its name would suggest, a houseboat rental company. They have a number of houseboats that can accommodate groups from 10-22 people. Rent a houseboat, explore Lake Koocanusa at your own pace, and experience life on the water.


With all that Sunshine Houseboats has to offer, it’s a true hidden gem. After a morning paddle, grilled cheese sandwich for lunch, afternoon play in the water park, and an ice cream cone for the ride home, one small child was heard saying, “Dad, this was the best day ever!”

Know Before You Go!

~ Take extra time to research and plan your trip in advance. Many of our tourism businesses and services have adopted new COVID-19 protocols and changes to their schedules or policies to ensure your safety. You’ll want to become familiar with them ahead of time.

~ If you normally travel with extended family or with several friends, consider travelling in a smaller group this summer. Travelling with fewer people makes it easier for you to practise physical distancing in public, and may have less of an impact on the destination.

~ Consider a slower travel pace this summer to help curb the spread. Instead of checking in and out of multiple destinations during one trip, choose one or two destinations and one/two accommodation properties for your entire trip (and explore all the things to do & see nearby).

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~ Family Adventures On & Off the Beaten Track
~ Family-Friendly Backcountry Adventures in the Kootenays
~ Multi-generational Family Hiking in the Kootenays
~ Paddling Adventures in the Kootenays
~ What’s Open in the Kootenay Rockies? (2020 Summer/Fall)

Photos and story by Kyle Hamilton

Kyle is a local Kootenay photographer who ended up settling in Fernie, BC.  He has love for the mountains and it has led him to focus on photography of mountain inspired activities.  You could find him on a side of a mountain in -25C winter conditions with snow blowing around him shooting a heli-skiing event or next to a gentle mountain in the summer with one of his wedding clients… either way you could see him out exploring the areas around Fernie.

Please tag your images with #KootRocks on Instagram to be featured in future stories.

(Original Story shared in August 2018.)

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