The Village in winter

Free & Low-Cost Winter Fun In Big Bear

Posted: 01/17/20

This winter season, we want to bring you more affordable tips for having fun in Big Bear Lake!

During the winter months, popular activities like skiing, snowboarding, and tubing spring to mind for winter vacay options. We want to share with you some more affordable ideas to make your next vacation even more memorable!

Snowshoe It!

Snowshoeing is a wonderful winter activity for couples, friends or the entire family! With miles of forest trails, snowshoeing provides both excellent exercise and an up close experience with nature. Rent equipment at Goldsmith's Board & Ski Rental or Bear Valley Bikes.

A man walks his dog in the snow

Tube It!

Tubing and sledding down snowy hills in a mountainous landscape is what winter memories are all about! Big Bear offers tubing, tobogganing and sledding….with people movers! Big Bear Snow Play and Alpine Slide offer a $35/per person all day pass to fill your day with snow play. If the kids are under 6, they are free.

For the more adventurous, grab a shovel to create a DIY sled hill in your backyard. Building your own sledding hill might be just what the kids need to stay entertained while you enjoy a cup of coffee by the fireplace. Just remember, Pay-n-Play areas are free of potentially dangerous street traffic and have plenty of snow all winter long!

Hike It!

If you got the waterproof shoes - and some YakTrax - take to trails on foot. Big Bear offers miles and miles of trails on National Forest territory for you to explore and enjoy. Just make sure to purchase an Adventure Pass if you decide to park on US Forest Service property - such as any trailhead). Adventure Passes are available at the Big Bear Visitors Center and costs just $5 for an all-day pass. Remember to check snow conditions and weather before heading out on any on-foot adventure.

Lift & Lodging in a snowy Big Bear winter

Ski It!

For many, skiing and riding is still a must for any Big Bear getaway and there are affordable ways to enjoy time on the slopes whether you're a beginner or a pro! Big Bear Mountain Resort offers the best deals on tickets midweek and off-peak. Lift & Lodging Packages also help curb costs while bundling what you want most. Also check out half-day tickets if you aren't looking to ski/ride all day.

Indulge In It!

The dining options in The Village and throughout the Valley are endless and provide enough variety to make everyone happy. From Nepalese, Thai, American, Vegetarian, and dessert, there isn't anything you won't find. Check for deals at restaurants before you pick.

Discover It!


The Big Bear Discovery Center is co-operated by the Mountains Foundation and the U.S. Forest Service. Discovery Center programs promote hands on learning for all ages to make everyone a more responsible caretaker of the forest. The new Nature Discovery Zone, recommended for kids ages 2-7, allows kids and parents a hands on approach to learning about the forest, animals, enhance nature play and exploration as well as forest preservation. The Discovery Center also has many classes such as storytime, animal tracking, and FREE Nature Walks on the weekends. Most of the classes are free with donations accepted or a minimal cost starting at $3. Visit their website for a full schedule and costs.

See It!

The Big Bear Alpine Zoo is a unique and renowned facility offering wild animals a safe place to heal or permanently stay if they are unable to make it in on their own. Snow leopards, grizzly bears, snowy owls, bald eagles and foxes are just some of the beautiful residents that call the sanctuary home. Admission is just $12/adult, $9/child or senior, and free to ages 2 and under! Admission goes directly to the care of the animals and operation of the Zoo.

Grizzlies at the Zoo

Nightlife It!

Vacation getaways don't have bedtimes so be sure to check out a variety of affordable nightlife including concerts and glow bowling! The The Cave in The Village features live music every weekend with popular acts like Pennywise, Yachtley Crew, Ted Nugent, and an array of top-notch cover bands.

Click here to learn more about winter activities in Big Bear Lake.

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