Big White vs Revelstoke: Which Ski Resort is the Best?


Big White and Revelstoke are two of the most popular ski resorts in British Columbia, Canada, but which is the best?

In this article I’ll directly compare these two resorts in terms of their slopes, snow quality, weather, price, ski school, accommodation and other activities so you can decide which to spend your ski season at.

Revelstoke vs Big White Summary

Big White is a better ski resort for families whereas Revelstoke is the best option for advanced skiers and snowboarders. Revelstoke has a larger skiable area and more slopes for experts, whereas Big White has cheaper lift tickets, more varied terrain and is more accessible from most locations.

The ski season in Big White typically lasts from mid-November to mid-April which is slightly longer than the ski season in Revelstoke which usually spans from late November/ early December to early April.

Aspect of the ResortBest Resort
Beginner/ Intermediate TrailsBig White
Expert TrailsRevelstoke
Ski VillageBig White
Ski SchoolBig White
Lift Ticket PricesBig White
Accommodation OptionsRevelstoke
Easiest to Travel ToBig White
Big White vs Revelstoke for skiing
Revelstoke Mountain Resort

Ski Map and Pistes

Revelstoke is a bigger ski resort compared to Big White with more skiable terrain. Revelstoke has 3121 acres of skiable terrain and a 5620 ft vertical drop whereas Big White has 2765 acres of skiable terrain and a 2550 ft vertical drop.

Big White is typically better suited to families compared to Revelstoke as it has a good mix of beginner, intermediate and advanced trails. Revelstoke on the other hand has more advanced trails and longer runs so tends to be better suited to more advanced skiers.

StatisticsBig WhiteRevelstoke
Skiable Terrain2765 acres3121 acres
Vertical Drop2550 feet5620 feet
Total Trails119 trails40 trails
Green Circle Trails (Beginner)18%12%
Blue Square Trails (Intermediate)54%43%
Black/ Double Black Diamond Trails (Expert)28%45%
Longest Run7.2 km15.3 km
Number of Lifts165
Big White vs Revelstoke mountain statistics

Snow and Weather

Both Big White and Revelstoke typically have similar levels of snowfall and have similar average temperatures throughout the ski season. The snow quality in both resorts is pretty comparable, although Big White tends to be a bit better at the very start and end of the ski season.

MonthTemperature in Big WhiteTemperature in RevelstokeSnowfall in Big White Snowfall in Revelstoke
November-3.8°C (26.2°F)-3.4°C (25.9°F)11″9″
December-8.0°C (17.6°F)-7.6°C (18.4°F)66″64″
January-6.9°C (19.6°F)-7.2°C (19.0°F)57″56″
February-9.0°C (15.8°F)-6.0°C (21.2°F)59″44″
March-4.7°C (23.5°F)-1.4°C (29.6°F)57″47″
April-0.3°C (31.5°F)2.7°C (36.9°F)21″18″
Data from climate-data.org and onthesnow.com
Revelstoke Mountain Resort

Village, Restaurants and Other Activities

There’s a huge range of restaurants and other activities available at both Big White and Revelstoke.

Big White is a true ski resort with the vast majority of activities, accommodation and dining all being located very close to the slopes. Revelstoke Mountain Resort has a smaller selection of amenities available on the slopes, but is close to the town where you’ll be able to experience more.

If you’d rather have everything on-site then Big White is the best option but if you want to do a bit of exploring then Revelstoke gives you more freedom.

ActivityAvailable at Big WhiteAvailable at Revelstoke
Resort Dining20 locations5 locations
Spas/ Massages2 locations1 location
MuseumsNone2 locations
Dog Sled ToursYesYes
Fat BikingYesYes
Ice Fishing (Guided)NoYes
Horse Drawn Sleigh RidesYesYes
Ice SkatingYesYes
Helicopter SkiingNoYes
Snowmobile ToursYesYes
Snowshoe ToursYesYes
Yoga ClassesNoYes
Axe ThrowingNoYes
TubingYesYes
Hot SpringsNoYes
Cat SkiingYesYes
Big White vs Revelstoke activities and ski villages
Big White ski resort

Ski School

Both Big White and Revelstoke offer a range of lessons to suit all ages and abilities. Here’s a breakdown of the most popular lessons on offer.

Costs are based on the most recent ski season at the time of writing and are subject to change. Please check the resort websites for up to date prices. Prices are in CAD.

Adult Lessons

At the time of writing, Revelstoke is not advertising any group lessons for adults, only private lessons which can make things pretty expensive. Big White on the other hand offers competitively priced adult group lessons with a choice between either a 2-hour or 4-hour session.

The group lessons in Big White are split into “discover” and “next steps” categories. “Next steps” lessons cannot be booked unless you have already completed the “discover” session. In Revelstoke, the lessons are more flexible and you’ll be put into a group with more mixed abilities and no prerequisites.

Big White offers private lessons which are a fixed price but up to 3 people from your party can be involved. Revelstoke offers a similar system however the 6-hour private lesson can also be charged per person, making it more cost-effective if you’re only in a group of two people.

The prices are the same for adults and children private lessons within each resort.

Lesson TypeBig WhiteRevelstoke
Beginner 2-hour Group Adult$119N/A
Beginner 4-hour Group Adult$150N/A
Intermediate 2-hour Group Adult$194N/A
3-hour Private (All Ages)$335-$440 (up to 3 people)$389-$479 (up to 3 people)
6-hour Private (All Ages)$675-$750 (up to 3 people)$649 (up to 3 people) OR
$189 per person
Big White vs Revelstoke ski school adult lesson prices

Child Lessons

Big White split their child group lessons into “discover” and “next steps” to separate ability levels. You cannot attend a “next steps” lesson unless you have already completed a “discover” lesson. The lessons are slightly cheaper for children in Revelstoke and abilities are more mixed with no prerequisite lessons required.

The group lessons for children are longer in Revelstoke which improves the value for money. The private lessons are slightly cheaper in Big White, unless you have a party of less than 3 where it will work out cheaper in Revelstoke.

Lesson TypeBig WhiteRevelstoke
Beginner 2-hour Group Child$105-$111N/A
All Levels 2.5-hour Group ChildN/A$89-$99
Beginner 4-hour Group Child$159N/A
Intermediate 2-hour Group Child$162N/A
All-Levels 6-hour Group ChildN/A$159
3-hour Private (All Ages)$335-$440 (up to 3 people)$389-$479 (up to 3 people)
6-hour Private (All Ages)$675-$750 (up to 3 people)$649 (up to 3 people)
OR $189 per person
Big White vs Revelstoke ski school child lesson prices

Accommodation

Big White has a range of accommodation options including 3 hotels, 25 town house complexes, 244 cabins/ holiday houses and a youth hostel. On average, accommodation for 2 adults in January for one week will cost roughly $1800-$3000.

Revelstoke Mountain Resort has 2 on-site hotels but there are also plenty more accommodation options available in Revelstoke town. On average, accommodation for 2 adults in January for one week and will cost approximately $1200.

Prices are in CAD.

Check out the following links to accommodation options and availability:

Big White Ski Resort

Location and Traveling

Kelowna’s International is the closest major airport to both Big White and Revelstoke:

  • Big White is 56 km (55 minute drive) from the airport and Revelstoke is 191 km (2 hours and 20 minutes drive) from the airport.
  • Both resorts offer a shuttlebus to and from the airport.

If you are driving to either resort you’ll be pleased to know that they both offer free parking. Here are the average drive times from key locations to each resort.

LocationDrive to Big WhiteDrive to Revelstoke
Calgary7 hours 30 minutes
655 km 
 4 hours 45 minutes
410 km
 Vancouver5 hours 15 minutes
455 km 
 7 hours
630 km
 Kelowna55 minutes
60 km 
2 hours 30 minutes
200 km
Kamloops2 hours 45 minutes
215 km 
2 hours 30 minutes
210 km
Seattle6 hours 30 minutes
 560 km
 6 hours
460 km
Driving time and distance to Big White and Revelstoke ski resorts

Additional Costs

Day lift passes are cheaper in Big White compared to Revelstoke for both adults and children. However, equipment rental is slightly cheaper in Revelstoke.

Please see the tables below for more information to help you plan your trip.

Remember that you can get deals though when you are booking accommodation so make sure you consider all the options available to you rather than just the daily rates.

Costs are based on the most recent ski season at the time of writing and are subject to change. Please check the resort websites for up to date prices. Prices are in CAD.

Ticket Price Day Lift (Peak Season)Big WhiteRevelstoke
Adult$134$159
Youth$123$123
Child$104$123
Senior$123$123
Big White vs Revelstoke day lift ticket prices
Equipment Rental (Daily)Big WhiteRevelstoke
Skis and Poles/ Snowboard$49$37
Boots$27$20
Helmet$10$5
Skis, Poles/ Snowboard and Boots$54$49
Big White vs Revelstoke ski and snowboard equipment rental prices

Which Resort is Best?

Both resorts are brilliant and you’re likely to have a great time at either Revelstoke or Big White, but there are some key difference between them making them more suitable for certain visitors.

If you’re planning a family ski trip then Big White is the best option in my opinion. It has more trails suitable for beginner and advanced skiers, is easier to get to (from most places), has cheaper ticket prices and a more self-contained ski village.

However, if you are looking for best experience for advanced skiers and snowboarders then Revelstoke will be the preferred option. It has a greater total skiable terrain, larger vertical drop and more of a focus on expert runs making it the ideal place for those looking for a challenge.

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Rosie

I have been a keen skier for a number of years, skiing in different locations around the world, and have a real passion for snow sports. My favourite ski resorts are Lake Louise in Canada and Obergurgl-Hochgurgl in Austria.

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