Big Bear is pretty much our go to place when we want to get away from it all. We love to visit the mountains of Colorado and Utah, however being so far away we hit up a much closer destination. Big Bear is our most often visited spot when we head to the mountains. The ability to get out in nature and enjoy the fresh air and being so close to our home has us visiting all the time. In both the winter and summer, there is a ton of things to do in Big Bear. So, if you are looking for a southern California vacation away from the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles? We highly recommend snagging a Big Bear Airbnb or even a posh Luxury Cabin and heading up to Big Bear. Here are our top 21 things to do in Big Bear!
Bear Mountain, otherwise referred to as Big Bear Mountain, is one of the most popular winter destinations for the people of Big Bear. It is one of the closest skiing and snowboarding spots to Big Bear Lake. Skiiers love the steep mountain runs while snowboarders enjoy the Superpipe facility. Big Bear is filled with great hills to grab your sled and just slide on down the mountain. We had some great hills right next to our Big Bear cabin that were a blast.
The Alpine zoo is definitely one of the things to do in Big Bear. There aren’t very many alpine zoos in the U.S., meaning the Big Bear Alpine Zoo is something special. This permanent zoo includes a wide range of mountain animals. We highly recommend taking the time to visit Moonridge Animal Park, which is a small section of the zoo that helps rehabilitate animals that are sick and injured so that they can eventually move back out ino the wild.
While you’re staying in big bear, make sure to check out the Action Zipline Tours. This full-certified zipline company provides visitors with zipline tours of Big Bear’s first and a number of high-quality rope-climbing workshops. Each workshop lasts three hours and you get to enjoy all of their top-notch equipment. Magic Mountain is probably one of the most popular things to do in Big Bear. It not only has tubing. Magic Mountain is a beloved local spot that features rides, slides, and mini-golf. One of the biggest attractions at Magic Mountain is the Alpine Slide, which people of all ages can enjoy all year long. This is another prime option for families with young kids. I highly recommend getting to this place early as it gets very busy, especially on the weekends.
Within Big Bear Valley lies the Big Bear Discovery Center. This educational facility provides people of all ages with engaging activities and shows to enjoy. It’s the perfect stop for families with kids. They have cool nature walks during the warmer seasons, where visitors can look at the local animals and plants. When it comes to taking in serious views, there is no better way to do so than with a helicopter tour. There are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to Big Bear’s Helicopter Tours and most of the passengers that fly are flying for their first time!
Cruising down Lakeview Drive, it’s hard to miss the massive red barn on the side of the road. The Bowling Barn is a great place to bowl, whether you’re just trying to practice or you’re ready to compete with some of the locals. They have weekly glow bowling as well, which turns the entire barn into a glow-in-the-dark bowling extravaganza. If the weather doesn’t permit outdoor activities, we recommend heading on over to the Funplex. The Funplex is an indoor park that sits on the shores of the lake. Here you’ll find laser tag, a skating rink, an arcade, and so much more. They have a conveniently-placed pizza parlor for when the munchies creep in as well. One of my favorite free things to do in big bear is stargating. Thanks to the fact that Big Bear sits separate from the lights of Los Angeles and other larger areas in San Bernadino County, it is a prime spot for stargazing. Make sure to pack some blankets and head up to some of the city’s best stargazing spots.
The Big Bear Historical Museum was established back in 1881 and has a wide variety of fascinating artifacts and exhibits that date back to the early development of Big Bear. Walk into a fully-furnished log cabin exhibit that shows you how settlers in 1875 lived. If you want to get a better sense of California’s frontier lifestyle, there is no better place to go than the museum.