Great Western Parks
Experience the amazing beauty of the Canadian Rockies, British Columbia's High Country and Coastal regions on this 19 Day driving tour of Western Canada's Greatest Parks.
Transfer upon arrival in Vancouver to your chosen hotel, and the rest of the day is yours to discover this beautiful coastal city. Vancouver is Canada's third largest metropolitan centre, and a busy port with a multi cultural ambience. The city's spectacular setting invites you outdoors to explore it's multitude of diverse restaurants, shopping, galleries, museums and much more.
Experience the Grouse Mountain Skyride and Capilano Canyon and Suspension Bridge. Later you can discover the city's highlights such as Stanley Park, Chinatown, Historical Gastown, the markets of Granville Island and the famous shopping of district of Robson Street. Don't miss the Flyover Canada - a virtual reality experience which will transport you all around Canada without leaving your seat! This has been described as a 'must do' in Vancouver and will tempt you to explore Canada all over again! Finish off the day watching the sun set over English Bay.
Depart Vancouver today and travel through the Coastal Mountains and Manning Provincial Park, where you can walk on the remnants of the Dewdney Trail or the Rhodendendron Flats.
Later arrive at the town of Penticton, which lies at the lower end of Okanagan Lake amidst the lush orchards and vineyards of the Okanagan Valley.
Explore the stunning Okanagan Valley. Perhaps take a tour of one or more of the regions vineyards or alternatively spend the day relaxing on the beaches of Lake Okanagan.
Enjoy a relaxing morning in Penticton and a last chance to explore the Okanagan Valley before you depart for the Revelstoke area. Enjoy a leisurely drive past spectacular waterfalls, toweing peaks and beautiful lakes en route.
Cross into the Province of Alberta, over the Great Divide and enter Yoho National Park, whose name is derived from the Cree Indian language. Enjoy sights along the way such as 380 meter high Takakkaw Falls, Kicking Horse Pass and the Spiral Tunnels of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Marvel at the emerald green waters of aptly named Emerald Lake on your way to Banff.
Explore the lovely Mountain town of Banff and the surrounding area. Check out the Cave and Basin National Historic Site and the Banff Gondola, where you will see a panoramic view of the Bow Valley. Enjoy a dip in the hot mineral springs at Upper Hot Springs. Meantime, in the town itself you'll find excellent shopping, museums and many cafes, bars and restaurants.
Take the short drive from Banff to Lake Louise. Choose the Bow Valley Parkway, beside the Bow River with an option for you to take a stop at Johnston Canyon and walk along the paved footway to either the lower or upper falls. Continuing on to Lake Louise and Moraine Lake your scenic drive takes you through the spine of the Canadian Rockies. View a never ending procession of mammoth mountains, jagged peaks and over 100 glaciers as well as emerald colour lakes. Along the way you will sights such as Sarbach Glacier, Peyto Lake and Bow Lake with the Bow Glacier providing the backdrop. Arrive at the Columbia Icefield for an Ice Explorer ride out onto the glacier. Leaving the Athabasca Glacier, your camera should be ready to capture the majesty of Athasca Falls prior to your arrival into Jasper.
Explore this charming mountain village close to many terrific scenic highlights. Take a tram ride up Whistlers Mountain, or visit Maligne Lake, one of the most photographed lakes in the world.
Clearwater/Wells Gray Provincial Park
This morning set out for Wells Gray Provincial Park along the scenic Yellowhead Highway and take in the breathtaking vistas of the steep-walled gorges and crashing falls of the North Thompson River.
Make an early start today after breakfast and begin your day by travelling via 100 mile house to the gold rush town of Cache Creek. Here you will make a stop to visit the historic hat Creek Ranch, which literally takes you back to the days of the gold rush. Continue your journey south to Lillooet, known as the land of the Gold Rush Trail and was 'Mile Zero' of the Old Caribou Wagon Road during the Gold Rush years. Now the area is home to the largest Canadian producers of the medicinal plant, Ginseng.
Departing Lillooet, travel the Duffey Lake Road to Whistler. On the upper elevations of this route you will enjoy breathtaking views of Joffee Glacier and snow capped Mount Currie that rises to a height of 2596 meters (8,518 feet). Continue on to the mountain village of Whistler.
This charming alpine resort is nestled between world renowned Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains. Enjoy an extensive range of summer activities from golf on one of the 4 championship golf courses, endless water activities on any of 5 lakes or numerous rivers to mountain top dining.
Experience the beauty of Whistler Blackcomb's alpine environment via the newly opened Peak Adventure on Whistler Mountain. Take the Whistler Gondola to Whistler Mountain's sub-alpine and then rise again over 7000 feet via the open chairlift.
At the top of Peak Chair, guests will be treated to unbelievable views of glaciers, extinct volcanoes, snow capped peaks and more.
At the end of the day you can just sit back and relax enjoying some of the many fine café's and restaurants in this European inspired alpine village.
"67 miles & Ferry"
Depart Whistler at your own leisure along the scenic Sea to Sky Highway to Horseshoe Bay. Highlights along the way include the cascading Shannon Falls and the Stawamus chief Rock where climbers from all over the globe migrate to climb the granite cliffs. At Horseshoe Bay you will sail for 1hr 45 min on the BC Ferries service to Vanocuver Island. This scenic cruise takes you through fjord like waters with mountains blanketed with virgin forests and glaciated peaks.
Depart Parksville for Tofino on the rugged West Coast. En route, picture stops should be made at Cathedral Grove to enjoy the splendour of 800 year old Douglas Fir and Cedar as well as the Mars Water-Bombers at Sproat Lake used for sole purpose of putting out forest fires. After the Mars Water-Bombers, drive the through the majestic Sutton Pass and the Sawtooth Range of the Cascade Mountains to arrive in Tofino around mid afternoon.
You may wish to walk along the famed Long Beach, with it's miles of pristine sandy beach and pounding surf, or explore the rain forests on a slection of well groomed trails. Mid afternoon kayak through the sheltered waters of Clayoquot Sound, or enjoy a 3 hour Whale Watch Cruise revealing sensational scenery and wildlie such as Gray Whales, Sea Lions, Porpoises and Killer Whales. The area is also known for it's variety of birds, including tufted puffins and resident bald eagles.
Travel back to the East Coast of Vancouver Island and head south to Victoria. Stop en route at the artist community of Chemainus, where you can admire the giant murals which adorn the exterior walls throughout the town and also Duncan, the 'City of Totems'. Here you can visit the Cowichan Native Village which provides an insight into the lives of the northwest coast people.
Explore lovely Victoria, with it's turn of the century architecture, British traditions such as high tea and shops full of woolens and china. You may also want to visit the world famous Butchart Gardens with it's 50 acre display of magnificent colour.
After a leisurely morning and some last minute souvenir shopping, leae Victoria and drive north to Swartz Bay Ferry Terminal for the 90 minute ferry ride to Tsawwassen. On board your BC Ferries vessel you can enjoy the scenery of the Gulf Islands as you cross the Strait of Georgia. From Tsawwassen continue on to Vancouver Airport where you will drop off your hire car and catch your overnight flight home.
- Direct return flights from London (please ask about other departure airports)
- 18 nights accommodation and room tax
- Fully insured compact car hire for 2 drivers
- A detailed and comprehensive travel pack with a day by day itinerary, driving instructions, maps and other information
Daily Departures 01 June to 30 September.
We can also offer this itinerary in a wide range of other accommodation types, including superior hotels, character properties such as lodges and small inns.