03 September 2018
Canada’s huge landmass makes it a challenging country to traverse in a short amount of time. Concentrating on one area of the country is a smart way to experience Canada without having to take cross-country flights or spread yourself too thin on the ground. Luckily, British Columbia has more than enough to do, see, taste and experience. With direct flights from Australia’s eastern seaboard to Vancouver, BC is more accessible than ever before. Here are 5 unforgettable experiences to put on your list:
See orcas in the wild off the coast of Victoria
BC’s capital of Victoria is the ultimate spot to launch into sailing adventures and cruises in pursuit of wonderful wildlife encounters. From seeing orcas on a day cruise, to spotting sea birds on a peaceful multiday expedition aboard a private yacht, and looking for black bears along the shores on a boat ride from Vancouver Island, seeing British Columbia’s wildlife is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences that should be at the top of every traveller’s list.
Take in the view from the top on Whistler’s PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola
The longest and highest lift in the world joins Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains, enabling skiers and sightseers to see these epic mountain ranges from above without having to hire a helicopter. The 4.4 kilometre journey reveals spectacular views of classic Canadian alpine terrain in an 11 minute ride. Although this gondola provides a convenient way for skiers and snowboarders to get from one mountain to another, you don’t need to be a snow sports enthusiast to take a ride. A top activity for people of all ages, waiting for a glass bottom gondola is recommended if keen on seeing straight down into the valleys below.
Stay at the historic Fairmont Hotel Vancouver
Known as the ‘Castle in the City’, the instantly recognisable Fairmont Hotel Vancouver is a classic accommodation option filled with grandeur and elegance. Rumoured to have a resident ghost that often walks the halls, this character-filled hotel is conveniently located in the downtown area of Vancouver. Spending a few nights here is the ideal way to be introduced to the history and character of this special city. Sit in the beautifully-decorated lobby bar and watch the world go by with a drink in hand, take a dip in the heated pool and spend some time enjoying breathtaking views from your hotel room window. A hotel that has stood the rest of time, the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver is timeless.
Take a summer stroll around Emerald Lake in Yoho National Park
Found in the eastern part of the state, Yoho National Park is one of Canada’s most photogenic national parks. Filled with more than 60 brilliant blue-green lakes and ponds, thundering waterfalls and mountains studded with deep green forest, Yoho National Park is one of those perfect places that seems too good to be true. Open all year round, Yoho National Park reaches its beautiful zenith in the warmer months when the snow melts and wildflowers spring to life. Taking about one hour or so, an easy walk around the Emerald Lake is a great way to take in the scenery without breaking too much of a sweat. 5.
Enjoy a wine weekend in the Thompson Okanagan
An emerging wine destination, the Thompson Okanagan is home to more than 120 wineries. Many international travellers don’t associate wine-production with a country like Canada, but the Thompson Okanagan region is the perfect place to savour pinot noir, merlot and chardonnay. Whether choosing to stay in boutique accommodation at a vineyard or a quaint, family-owned bed and breakfast, this region is the place to go to wine tastings at cellar doors and enjoy long lunches at eateries that specialise in paddock-to-plate fare.