If you’re looking for fun things to do in Big Bear Lake, California, you’ve come to the right place. The small town sits on the banks of the beautiful Big Bear Lake and is famous for its two popular ski resorts, Bear Mountain and Snow Summit. The village itself is home to many attractions, and the San Bernardino National Forest surrounds the lake.
Time Bandit pirate ship
Earlier this year, a replica of a 16th century Spanish galleon known as the “Time Bandit” was pulled into the lake by a storm. Its owner vowed to raise the vessel in time for Holloway’s Marina’s 100th anniversary. On Thursday, the ship set sail on its maiden voyage.
The Time Bandit has a maximum capacity of 25 passengers. For larger groups, pontoon boats can be attached to the ship for extra space. It is recommended that guests reserve the vessel for two hours at a time; rentals start at $240 an hour. Whether you’re looking for an exciting lake adventure or a quiet getaway for a family reunion, the Time Bandit is the perfect way to see Big Bear.
The Time Bandit is an authentic one-third scale replica of a 16th century Spanish galleon. It was originally constructed by a father and son team and used in the 1981 film “Time Bandits.” It also served as a tour boat in L.A. Harbor and the Newport Beach Fun Zone before being rebuilt as a pirate ship. These tours take place every day of the year.
The Time Bandit’s sinking was caused by severe weather, including heavy rain, sleet and intense winds. Although the boat was winterized, most electronics were not. The biggest losses were a $2,500 inverter and a few small items. Fortunately, it appears that the Time Bandit will be able to be raised. The crew will use air bladders and lifting bags to pump the boat into the air. The Time Bandit is expected to be back on the lake by mid-April.
Gold Rush Mining Adventure
Gold Rush Mining Adventures is a fun activity for the whole family. It’s located at 40016 Big Bear Blvd. and offers gold panning, fossil and pearl panning, and geode experiences. Gold Rush Mining Adventures guarantees that the treasures that you find are genuine! Visitors can find parking nearby.
Big Bear was once a bustling gold rush town. After the discovery of gold by William Holcomb, the town resurrected in an effort to exploit the gold. Many people staked claims in hopes of finding the elusive mother lode. Today, this eerie ghost town has a unique personality and is still an interesting place to visit.
Off-road driving tour from Big Bear Jeep Experience
The Big Bear Jeep Experience offers off-road driving excursions in Jeeps. Choose from kid-friendly to advanced routes to enjoy the beauty of the area. The guides know the terrain well and will make sure you have an unforgettable off-road driving experience. The tours vary in difficulty, but they are all safe. There are also tours for families with children.
Off-road excursions begin with a brief orientation at the Big Bear Jeep Experience office. Drivers are taught about the safety features and equipment on board, such as lockers and a two-way VHF radio. They are then released to begin the tour, which will take them through Johnson Valley, a part of the Mojave Desert. Once on the trail, guides instruct drivers on how to disconnect the sway bar, and show them how to drive over small obstacles.
Big Bear is home to five black-diamond trails and a double-black diamond trail. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced off-roader, these challenging trails are not for everyone. The John Bull Trail, for instance, is not for the faint of heart. You will need to be fit and have the proper equipment to tackle the difficult terrain.
Swimming in Big Bear Lake
Big Bear Lake is a beautiful place to swim. However, there are some rules to follow when swimming here. If you are not a proficient swimmer, don’t go swimming in areas with large waves created by boaters. Instead, head to the designated swim beach at Meadow Park, operated by the Big Bear Valley Recreation and Park District. Here, you can swim and enjoy the beauty of Big Bear Lake for a few hours.
Big Bear Lake is California’s third largest lake and is part of the San Bernardino National Forest. It is nearly 30 miles long and has an average depth of 85 feet. Big Bear is also a popular kayaking destination. The lake offers different challenges, and you can even kayak in winter months.
There are many great swimming spots along Big Bear Lake. The water level at the beaches varies, so be careful where you dive in. You can also climb a rock formation behind China Island, also known as Garstin Island. You can even jump from there if you are very adventurous. But remember that you must stay within 50 feet of shore.
Big Bear Lake is colder than many people think. During winter, water temperatures can drop to -2.6 degC (27.3F). If you don’t wear a life jacket, your survival time will be drastically reduced. Cold water can decrease your body’s heat up to 25 times faster than cold air. In addition, it can cause you to lose control of your breathing, so it is imperative that you wear a life jacket.
Hiking trails around Big Bear Lake
Hiking trails around Big Bear Lake can be a great way to exercise your mind and body. Located in a beautiful valley surrounded by mountains, this area is a hiker’s paradise. The trails range from easy to moderate, with a few challenging options. Regardless of your level of experience, you’ll enjoy the scenery and crisp mountain air. In addition to hiking, biking around the lake is a fun way to get in touch with nature. You’ll pass by a variety of different types of trees, such as Jeffrey Pines and Lodgepole Pines.
The most popular hike in Big Bear is the Castle Rock Trail. This 2.5-mile hike begins steeply but flattens out quickly. The trail provides panoramic views of Big Bear Lake and the surrounding valley. As you continue on the trail, you’ll encounter beautiful trees, streams, and a waterfall.
The Butler Peak Trail is a hidden gem and is one of the least-visited hiking trails around Big Bear Lake. It offers panoramic views of the lake and surrounding area and features a lookout tower. In addition to its beautiful views, the tower also features the Osborne FireFinder, which has been used for over a century to help firefighters find wildfires.
Hiking trails around Big Bear Lake can be dangerous if you don’t follow signs, so it’s important to bring the right gear. Wear hiking boots and bring water or snacks. You’ll also want to check whether you need an Adventure Pass before setting out on a hike.
Restaurants in Big Bear Lake
Big Bear Lake has several restaurants offering a wide variety of cuisines. There are several restaurants that serve American fare. For breakfast, try the Teddy Bear Restaurant, where you can get a hearty meal from a menu that includes home-made pies. The staff is friendly and you’ll love the atmosphere at the diner. Recommended dishes include the chicken pot pie and pastrami hash brown mix. Saucy Mama’s Pizzeria serves pizza and other items as well. This pizza shop has a fun rock and roll theme and thick crust.
If you’re looking for a more casual dining experience, there are several options for you. The Big Bear Lake Brewing Company serves American food, including grilled cheese sandwiches, chicken tenders, and breakfast sandwiches. There’s live music here on the weekends and house microbrews are available for purchase. Another American restaurant is Oakside Steakhouse, which features filet mignon and calamari. It also has a balcony and patio where you can enjoy a view while enjoying your meal.
The Pines Lakefront, a romantic venue with beautiful lake views, is an excellent place to dine with your significant other. The restaurant serves lunch and dinner Monday through Friday and brunch on the weekends. The Pines also has a large wine list, offering both local and international wines.