Top 5 Axe Throwing Places in Vancouver & the Lower Mainland
Axe throwing has been taking the recreational sporting industry by storm in the past ten years.
Originating in a Toronto backyard, the wonderful sport has made its way all the way out to the beautiful west coast. Backyard Axe Throwing League (BATL) was revered by many in its start-up years and has been recreated across the world.
Whether you need an exciting corporate party, a new league to join or a way to fill a rainy afternoon, axe throwing has you covered.
The idea for organized axe throwing originated in a backyard in 2006 with BATL: Backyard Axe Throwing League, which now has over 20 locations across Canada. BATL was influential in the creation of IATF, the International Axe Throwing Federation that has standardized the sport and rules across the globe. So yeah, it’s a thing now.
What to Expect Going for Your First Time?
Every axe-throwing establishment you go to will have fun, knowledgeable staff who love their job. Let’s just say, the sport attracts a certain type of person to host the activity. Even if you’ve never picked up an axe, you’ll leave being able to throw one (no guarantees on accuracy!) Staff will walk you through safety and any methods of throwing.
Once you’ve mastered the basic technique, let the games begin! Whether you’re looking for a competitive night just want to chill, the staff will introduce you to games that will cater to your needs.
Where Can I Throw Axes In and Around Vancouver?
All you really need for axe throwing is a unit, a few passionate coaches and a lot of axes. Since it’s a simple concept, they’ve been popping up all over with the rustic, lumberjack theme but each with a unique touch. Read on to find some of the best axe throwing in Vancouver and surrounding areas.
Forged Axe Throwing, Whistler
Whistler is one of the most epic places to visit in the Sea to Sky Corridor, and as of 2016, you can chuck axes around. Forged Axe (thats us!) opened its doors in a one of a kind space and has since doubled its size and targets. Surrounded by breweries, coffee shops and of course the mountains, Forged is a perfect activity if you’re in Whistler for a stag, are bored one afternoon, or want to get involved in a league.
Forged also has a mobile cart you can hire that will come to you. The mobile set up frequents events in town like Whistler Village Beer Festival and lets you try the sport for free. If you google Forged or look it up on TripAdvisor, Expedia, etc, the most common comment is praising the staff. Fun, energetic and knowledgeable, everyone from seasoned league players to guests who have never picked up an axe, Forged staff made their experience one to remember.
Whistler is a premium resort, and along with it comes premium pricing for just about everything, and Forged is, unfortunately, no exception (the damn rent prices!). You’ll find slightly more expensive rates but it’s still well worth it.
- Hours: 7 Days a week, 12pm to 8pm
- Address: 1208 Alpha Lake Road Unit 1
- Drop in Rates: Monday to Thursday $37.99 per person, Friday $39.99 per person, and Saturday-Sunday is 43.99 per person.
- League Rates: League is your best value if you’re a local, or even if you drop by every now and then. $99 for eight weeks including playoffs, Monday and Wednesday nights
- Private Event Rates: Three-hour venue buyout starting at $2499 for the group
- You always get a coach to teach you all the throws, run games and make sure you get the most out of your time. They’re more like party hosts and will cater to what your group is looking for (beginner, competitive, etc)
Fraser River Lodge, Fraser Valley
The Axewood crew offers custom experiences for each event and works in partnership with Fraser River Lodge. They can host you at the beautiful Fraser River Lodge or they can come to your backyard. The Axewood Crew was created as a passion project and has a mission to “reconnect with our rustic coastal roots and bring our woods closer to home.” A fun way to do it!
Fraser River Lodge is a great getaway that offers a variety of activities. Make axe throwing one of many weekend experiences.
- Hours: Vary based on personal bookings
- Address: 7984 McDonald Road, Agassiz
- Notes: Private, outdoor and mobile events
- Rates: Rates vary and can be arranged at time of booking
- Can host at other partner locations as well
Bad Axe Throwing, Surrey
Bad Axe Throwing was the second brand to franchise after BATL, and the first of the two to set up shop in B.C. Surrey is lucky enough to be the home of Bad Axe Throwing and has even been frequented by celebrities Hugh Jackman, Charlie Hunnman and Charles Barkley.
Bad Axe is great because you can walk in without an appointment. Even by yourself if you want as there is no minimum group size. Just check the website a few hours before as the walk-in hours can change (Hugh might have the place booked out!)
- Hours: Open 8am to 11pm daily
- Address: 8132 130 St Unit 109
- Notes: Bring your own food/drink
- Drop in Rates: Walk-in rates: $26.99/pp/hr
- Large Group Rate: minimum of 31 people, $40/pp, two hours, two targets, two coaches
- Bad Axe Package: minimum of eight people, $45/pp, two hours, two coaches, two targets
- HERO rates apply for active military, nurses, firefighters, etc.
- If you’re booking a group for your birthday, you get to throw free!
AcademieDuello, Downtown Vancouver
Like the above Fraser River Lodge, AcademieDuello partners with Axewood crew in a convenient Vancouver location. If you’re into history and the weapons of the times, AcademieDuello is the spot for you. Explore sword fighting, duelling, archery, warrior battles and of course, axe throwing. They host organized classes so it’s best to inquire ahead of time.
- Hours: Monday-Friday: 11-8 pm, Saturday 10-5 and closed Sunday
- Warrior museum on-site open Monday-Friday 11-5 pm
- Address: 412 West Hastings Street, Vancouver at the Academie Centre for Swordplay
- Rate: Private bookings available, prices starting from $45-60 per person
- Notes: Sessions are 90-120 minutes, Can accommodate up to 100 people
- Offers courses to learn all of the above activities to earn certification
Urban Axe Throwing, Port Coquitlam
Urban Axe Throwing is a rustic space turned into an epic afternoon in Port Coquitlam. Hosting 8-week leagues played every Monday night, Urban Axe is your go-to if you can’t get enough of the sport. A reasonable price of $125 will get you a minimum of 40 throws each Monday with a convenient 7 pm start time. They have a variety of leagues to suit your skill level and desires including regular, big axe and dual style. 320 throws over two months will have you throwing like the pros!
Urban Axe has a simple booking system to book online or sign up for the league. The league takes over Monday nights, but the rest of the week is free for walk-ins, private events and buy-outs.
- Hours: Vary so check the website to confirm.
- Address: Unit 104 1611 Broadway Street
- Notes: Bring your own snacks and drinks
- Rates: Walk-ins for 1-3 people start at only $23/hour per person and if you have more than three you can share two targets and create your own competitions
- Group Rates: A group of six or more will get you throwing cheaper with $20/ph/pp
- Private Event Rates: If you want the place to yourself and have a max of 29 people, rates start at $600/hr
- No walk-ins on stat holidays
What to Bring Axe Throwing
As you read, most axe-throwing venues allow you to bring your own food and drink. It’s all about a chill vibe and enjoying yourselves and that means having your favourite snacks. There are also a few guidelines to make sure that everyone has the best time possible and stay safe-you are hucking around pretty strong weapons!
- Closed-toed shoes are a must. Makes sense right? Flip-flops and axes don’t really mix.
- Snacks and drinks (non-alcoholic-if the venue has a license you cannot bring your own alcohol, if they don’t, you still can’t)
- A plaid shirt if you really want to get in the spirit
- Comfortable, athletic clothes. It’s a simple concept but requires mobility so you want to be able to get a full range of motion
Prices for most venue walk-ins are per person, per hour. You’ll get coaching, a lane with a target and all the axes. An hour of axe-throwing is a ton of time to perfect your skills! Most recreational venues, as you read, also have leagues for the avid dart thrower. Leagues give you the best value for the most axe throwing and is a great way to let off steam!
Most places love to accommodate your walk-in, but It’s best to give the venue a call ahead when you’re planning to walk in to avoid disappointments as buy-outs are common across all axe-throwing (for good reason!) Whether it’s a birthday party, stag or stagette, corporate team building, a rainy day, date night or time to get back into some competition, axe-throwing is the activity of the decade!