Discover the great outdoors in the wilds of western Canada, home to mile upon mile of enchanting scenery, ...
... world-class skiing and mesmerising national parks. Journey from easy-going Vancouver to vibrant Calgary, exploring the turquoise lakes, snow-covered forests and rugged gorges of the spectacular Rocky Mountains along the way.
Some of the highlights included are:
- Discover cosmopolitan Vancouver and delve into its lush rainforest
- Treat your palate to a dinner tour of Whistler’s finest restaurants
- Soak up the picturesque scenery at Lake Louise
- Explore Banff and take a Gondola Ride
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- International flights
- 9 nights in 4–5* hotels
- 9 days car hire (one way fee not included, paid locally)
- Vancouver Harbour Cruise
- Finer Things dinner tour in Whistler
- Explore Banff Tour including Gondola Ride
Need to know+
- Arrives: Vancouver International Airport (YVR)
- Time difference: GMT-8
- Visa requirements: British passport holders do not require a visa
- Language: English, French
- Currency: Canadian dollar (CAD)
- Flying time from UK: around 10 hours direct
- Plug type: 2 flat pins
- Voltage: 120V
Fly from UK to Vancouver
Start your Western Canada adventure in cosmopolitan Vancouver, an oceanfront, mountain-backed city frequently voted the most liveable in the world. With a mild climate and breath-taking landscapes right on its doorstep, Vancouver is a great base for exploring the national parks and rugged scenery of British Columbia. Try the blooming flowers of Queen Elizabeth Park or the waterways of Stanley Park. Back in town, be sure to savour the top-notch cuisine, covering everything from succulent wild salmon to pan-fried Japanese gyozas.
Welcome to Whistler, king of the ski resorts and a perennially popular weekend getaway for Vancouverites. It is adventure galore among the mountain passes, with downhill and cross-country bike trails, rock climbing and even zip lining all up for grabs. In the evening, numerous cosy pubs and sunny patio bars bring a lively atmosphere to the après hike festivities, and the restaurant scene is first-rate. Why not top off a day of sightseeing in Whistler with a lavish dinner tour of the village, dining on four delicious courses in four award-winning restaurants – what a treat!
Nestled among forested hills and twinkling lakes, Sun Peaks is a sporty town offering stacks of fun-filled outdoor activities. Take your pick from the list which includes skiing, snowboarding, dogsledding and snowshoeing in winter, and golf, canoeing, mountain biking and horse riding in summer. Sun Peaks is a lively place, with numerous restaurants and cafés lining the leafy streets, while if you fancy a spot of culture take a look around the collection of vintage photographs in the nearby Kamloops Museum.
Head onwards to majestic Lake Louise in the heart of the spectacular wilderness of Banff National Park. You’ll be staying right on the lake itself, at the iconic Chateau Lake Louise. It’s a romantic spot, surrounded by snowy mountains, a gorgeous turquoise-tinged lake, a carpet of deep green alpine forest and the odd grizzly bear. The town itself is dotted with teahouses and coffee shops, but your best bet if you fancy a cuppa is to follow the relatively easy forest trail to Lake Agnes, where you can sit down to an aptly named high tea and admire the stunning views.
It’s less than an hour’s drive to Banff, access point to the mountain peaks, glaciers, lakes, waterfalls and canyons of the remarkable Rockies. Activities here are the stuff of adventure, with skiing, ice hiking and helihiking all on offer. For the less energetic, ride the gondola up 2281m Sulphur Mountain, then sit back, relax, and enjoy the sweeping vistas. For further thrills, don your snowshoes and explore the dramatic limestone gorge of Marble Canyon in Kootenay National Park, part of a World Heritage site. And while you’re in town, don’t forget to try the hot maple taffy, a Canadian delicacy.
Head to the foothills of the Rocky Mountains and discover the vibrant city of Calgary, a diverse metropolis that attracts a younger crowd to its well-tended parks, sophisticated restaurants and designer shops. But it’s also popular with families, drawn by a conservation-focused zoo, a fascinating science centre and various sports clubs. If you are lucky enough to visit in July, be sure to join in the party as Calgary hosts the annual Calgary Stampede, a rodeo extravaganza complete with colourful stage shows, parades and concerts.
Depart Calgary and return to the UK
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