Days one and two: The Gulf Islands
With this 10-day itinerary you’ll be flying out and in the multicultural seaport metropolis of Vancouver. Forty-five minutes from downtown Vancouver is Tsawwassen terminal, the place a 55-minute ferry crossing takes you to Galiano Island, a 17-mile stretch of forest and seashores that lies off the coast of Vancouver Island. Here, eagles swoop overhead and whales flip their tails by way of the strait of Active Pass. Feast on native produce at Pilgrimme in a wood cabin beneath the cedars. Hike the Tapovan path, devoted to world peace advocate Sri Chinmoy, or paddle a kayak from Montague Harbour Marina.
While smaller islands are reached by personal boat or chartered seaplane service, Salt Spring Island is a 45-minute journey from Galiano by BC Ferries. You can take in the famously laid-back vibes by looking farmers’ markets, mountaineering Mount Maxwell, taking a drop-in kundalini yoga class and snacking on the deliciously creamy native goat’s milk cheese.
Days three and 4: Vancouver Island
Head to the principle affair, Vancouver Island, and make for Port Renfrew with its unspoiled seashores, storm-blasted Sitka spruce, and dense forests. See “Canada’s gnarliest tree” in Avatar Grove, hike the Botanical Beach Loop Trail on a boardwalk by way of old-growth forest to the black basalt and sandstone seashore. Here, as waves pound the seashore, you’ll be able to discover tidal rock swimming pools whereas plumes of rainforest mist rise above the timber.
Drive north by way of the Cowichan Valley, a treasure trove of wineries, craft shops and galleries. Learn extra in regards to the Quw’utsun’ First Nations in Duncan, on a tour of their 70+ intricate hand-carved totem poles. Stop for a Nanaimo bar (a very scrumptious triple-layered baked deal with) in Nanaimo earlier than taking the ferry to Horseshoe Bay.
Days 5 and 6: The Sunshine Coast
Back on the mainland of south-western BC, expertise North America’s quickest tidal currents at Skookumchuck rapids, one of many nice whitewater wonders of the world, the place the tide adjustments twice each day and waves might be greater than 2.5 metres excessive. Take a ship journey or when you’re an skilled surfer or kayaker, journey these rapids! Try scuba diving and see when you can spot Canada’s first underwater statue at Mermaid Cove in Saltery Bay provincial park, and discover the colorful marine ecosystem that has established itself within the scuttled HMCS Chaudière, a second world battle Royal Canadian Navy escort destroyer sunk by the Artificial Reef Society of BC. Relax in a waterfront villa surrounded by purple cedar and arbutus timber on the Painted Boat Resort Spa and Marina in Madeira Park, ebook a Pacific seaweed spa treatment, then benefit from the spa backyard’s glacial rainforest showers and waterfall scorching tub beneath the swaying conifers.
Paddle out on the Salish Sea with a cultural ambassador from the Shíshálh (Sechelt) or Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) First Nations on a storytelling ocean journey with Talaysay Tours to be taught extra in regards to the Indigenous peoples of this space.
If you have the time, absorb a two-day beer path additional northwest – comply with the Sunshine Coast Ale Trail the place you’ll be able to sip craft brews at Persephone Brewing. You also can take a self-guided tour across the “beer farm”, with hop yards, an orchard and market backyard, or enroll as a volunteer for a piece celebration.
Days seven and eight: The Okanagan area
The drive into the inside to the Okanagan from the Painted Boat will take six hours and features a ferry journey, however the breathtaking journey by way of the mountains is value it. Kelowna might have family-friendly seashore and water enjoyable, however it additionally has a wild facet: for a slice of pure Canadiana, embrace your interior lumberjack on the Axe Monkeys axe-throwing vary, or attempt virtual-reality high-jinks on the Arcadia VR Lounge. Strap on a jetpack and take a look at powerboarding on the lake with HydroFly throughout the summer season, or zip, swing and climb by way of the treetops at Myra Canyon Adventure Park.
Travel south to Naramata for wine-tasting with Experience Wine Tours, which has sommeliers as guides: go to vineyard eating places and eat overlooking the vines. Plan forward and be part of native meals heroes Joy Road Catering for a long-table dinner among the many vines in a vineyard or ebook a Paisley Notebook pop-up dinner for Anglo-Asian chef/storyteller Aman Dosanj’s adventurous and scrumptious tackle Okanagan delicacies.
Pedal the deserted Kettle Valley Railway on an all-day 80km journey by way of Myra Canyon trestles and Chute Lake, or take it simple with a calming Spirited Brews Cruise taking in distilleries, breweries and historic railway trestles.
Smell the sagebrush as you hike the South Okanagan Grasslands Protected Area looking for mule deer and massive horn sheep. Learn in regards to the Okanagan First Nation on a Swiws Spirit Tour of Spotted Lake and the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre. Cool down on Osoyoos Lake paddle-boarding or kayaking, and go to fruit stands to style the sweetest, juiciest peaches.
Days 9 and 10: Kootenay Rockies
Backcountry adventures and breathtaking mountain views await on this nook of BC, wealthy in mountain tradition and quirky small cities. Visit ultra-hip Nelson with its 350 heritage buildings, full of life music scene, and extra eating places per capita than Manhattan. Check out cult espresso roasters Oso Negro and gasoline up on tacos at Cantina del Centro, earlier than discovering Nelson’s very good mountain biking path community.
Cross from Balfour to Kootenay Bay on the longest scenic free ferry journey within the world, a dreamy 35 minutes of unspoiled mountain and crystal-clear lake views.
Hike your adrenaline ranges on the Kicking Horse by way of ferrata within the Purcell mountains, climbing 2,300 metres above the Columbia valley. After all that motion, nothing beats soaking in scorching springs surrounded by pristine mountains. Enjoy the therapeutic waters at Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort, as the world’s Ktunaxa individuals have finished since time immemorial; your muscle groups will thanks.
On your manner again to Vancouver, why not cease by at a few of British Columbia’s provincial parks? At Cody Caves, British Columbia’s first underground park, you’ll be able to get pleasure from a subterranean journey by way of historic limestone. And at Gladstone and Cathedral provincial parks, you’ll be able to take a break at amongst hemlock and cedar forests, and lake-side alpine meadows.
Discover extra of British Columbia’s final adventures with Canadian Affair