Western Parks, Peaks and Vineyards
- 11 Days
- 11 Days
- Prices From:
- US$ 1,914
FIRST CLASS | SELF-DRIVE: The road from Calgary to Vancouver crosses five distinct geographical areas, and this itinerary offers an intriguing combination of Rocky Mountain grandeur and the lesser travelled southern route through the interior of British Columbia. More intimate travel experiences are an integral part of this trip, as well as highlights such as the wonderful Okanagan wine region, often referred to as Napa North.
WESTERN PARKS, PEAKS AND VINEYARDS - WH
This 11-day carefully-curated self-drive tour takes you from the prairie landscape of Calgary, Alberta, to the wilderness of the Canadian Rockies, and on to sunny Vancouver. Less-touristy experiences are an integral feature of this relaxing journey as you follow the less-travelled southern route through the British Columbia interior. Highlights include the stunning Rocky Mountains, wild Banff National Park, Radium Hot Springs, historic Nelson in the Kootenays, and Vernon, your gateway to Okanagan wine country. Enjoy two days in British Columbia’s premier grape-growing region before driving through the lush Fraser Valley to the remarkable coastal city of Vancouver, and the Pacific Ocean.
Depending on your time of arrival in Calgary, you might book a visit to the Calgary Tower observation deck which offers a spectacular 360° view of the bustling city and the Rockies in the distance. Or visit Heritage Park Historical Village, Canada’s largest living history museum. Treat yourself to a steak dinner at one of Cowtown’s many award-winning grills, brewpubs, and steakhouses.
Leaving Calgary behind, travel through the foothills and into Banff National Park, where the snow-peaked Rocky Mountains welcome you in all their glory. No words can describe the beauty of this park and the pretty resort village of Banff. Spend two days exploring, while keeping an eye out for the sight of elk strolling down Banff Avenue or along the roadsides. Visit the Luxton Museum, take a dazzling gondola ride to the top of Sulphur Mountain, or try river rafting on the Bow River. Hike the park trails through evergreen forests, admire the Banff Springs Hotel, or take a boat tour on glacial Lake Minnewanka (“Water of the Spirits”). The choices are almost overwhelming.
Head west over the Rocky Mountains on Day 4, crossing the provincial border through stunning, photo-worthy mountain passes. Arrive at Radium Hot Springs, an idyllic mountain town in Kootenay National Park, set between the towering peaks of the Canadian Rockies and Purcell Mountains. Rejuvenate your spirits in a Radium Hot Springs pool, or treat yourself to a spa day. Overnight in lovely little Invermere on the Lake.
Take the less-travelled southern route past the vineyard village of Creston, with a stop at one of the valley’s wineries, before spending the night in Nelson. Take the next day to explore this historic town, known as Canada's best small arts and culture town, and its many galleries, museums, and historical buildings.
Travel through the heart of British Columbia’s most bountiful agricultural region to lakeside Vernon, home to family-run boutique vineyards and world-class wineries. On your second day here, enjoy a scenic guided sampler tour through Okanagan wine country, visiting several renowned wineries for wine sampling. End with dinner at a local steakhouse, or at romantic Intermezzo Castle Bistro, or their award-winning Restaurant and Wine Cellar.
The final leg of the journey traverses the coastal mountains, with rest stops in the village of Harrison Hot Springs, or pastoral Chilliwack in the Fraser Valley. Arrive in Vancouver just in time to explore the city’s incredible fine dining: the Greater Vancouver area boasts hundreds of award-winning restaurants, brewpubs, and fine dining venues.
Spend Day 10 exploring this diverse multicultural city on the shores of the Pacific. Explore the quirky Yaletown or Gastown neighbourhoods, take a sky tram to Grouse Mountain, take a horse and carriage ride in Stanley Park, visit the Vancouver Art Gallery, or indulge in some shopping at Robson Street’s boutiques or the high-end home decor shops on upper Granville.
Your final night’s dinner may be the hardest choice on this exciting tour: try Asian fusion, a Canadian steakhouse, award-winning Mediterranean cuisine, or a seafood hot pot or cedar plank salmon at the Sandbar restaurant by Granville Island Public Market. The next day, make your way to Vancouver International Airport for your flight home, unless you are lucky enough to enjoy an extended stay.
- 11 Days
- 11 Days
- Prices From:
- US$ 1,914
Arrive in Calgary
Arrive at Calgary’s International Airport and transfer independently to your hotel. The Roadbook you received has all the information needed for your trip. Depending on your time of arrival, you might visit Heritage Park Historical Village, Canada’s largest living history museum or go up the Calgary Tower’s observation deck which offers a spectacular 360° view across the bustling city, the majestic Rocky Mountains, rolling foothills, and expansive prairie landscape. Alternatively, you can always browse the boutique shops and other attractions of the downtown area.
Calgary to Banff (127 km / 79 miles)
Leaving Calgary behind, the magnificent Rocky Mountains soon come into view. Feel the majesty of these mountains as you first travel through the foothills and then enter Banff National Park where the craggy peaks loom larger the closer you get. After arriving in the bustling town of Banff, the remainder of the day is free to explore its charms, including the sight of an elk strolling down main street as you are checking out the boutiques, shops, and restaurants.
The entire day is free to tour Banff and the surrounding area. We suggest a visit to the Luxton Museum, or perhaps a gondola ride to the top of Sulphur Mountain. Local walking and hiking trails make for a day of discovery under ancient boughs. You may also wish to try river rafting on the Bow River or take a boat tour on beautiful Lake Minnewanka.
Banff to Radium Hot Springs / Invermere (136 km / 85 miles)
Strike out west over the Rocky Mountains today and cross the provincial border into British Columbia. The mountain passes with their endless vistas of peaks and forests create mesmerizing memories and are a photographer’s dream. Arrive at Radium Hot Springs, famous for their mineral-enriched waters bubbling to the surface. The village is nestled idyllically in the pine forests, among the dramatic elevations of the Kootenay region.
Radium Hot Springs / Invermere to Nelson (373 km / 232 miles)
The road leads south to the less travelled area of the province. Hidden gem communities such as the lush farm and vineyard village of Creston and the bucolic small-town markets and shoppes of Cranbrook make for ideal stops on today’s journey. These stopovers serve as the perfect preview to the destination of Nelson and a quiet end to a day of exploration.
Although a small city, a disproportionally high number of galleries, museums, historical buildings, and other attractions make this lakeside community a true treasure of the interior. The Victorian-inspired downtown area, set on terraced hillsides, create a glorious streetscape already used in several Hollywood movie productions.
Nelson to Vernon (338 km / 210 miles)
Today you are travelling through the very heart of the province’s most bountiful agricultural region. Endless verdant fields of crops in tidy rows create a lovely sense of peaceful serenity and Vernon surprises travellers with some of the most delightful beaches in the province stretching out beside the tranquil waters of an inviting crystalline lake.
Discover what makes this region the envy of any farmer and winemaker on a scenic guided sampler tour through the Okanagan’s Wine country. Visits to several renowned wineries showcase how these New World vineyards effortlessly employ Old World techniques to create some of North America’s finest vintages. This tour includes several tastings.
Vernon to Vancouver (440 km / 273 miles)
The final leg of the journey to the coast traverses the mountains that stand guard over the temperate, Pacific climate of the seaside region. Stops in iconic villages such as Harrison Hot Springs and Chilliwack make for a day of living the laconic West Coast lifestyle. Arrive in Vancouver just in time to, perhaps, explore the city’s incredible fine dining.
This fabulous city on the shores of the Pacific effortlessly fuses British heritage with vibrant international flair, including Asian-influenced restaurants, spectacular urban parks, and near-endless local attractions Take the day and explore the city at your own pace, maybe neighborhoods such as Yaletown or Gastown, Grouse Mountain, world-renowned Stanley Park or follow the meandering pathways along the ocean, visit a gallery, or indulge in some shopping on Robson Street.
When it’s time, make your way to Vancouver International Airport for your flight home unless you plan to extend your stay.
Daily departures: May 1 - October 22, 2023
- 11 days Intermediate Car Rental with unlimited mileage (Toyota Corolla or similar)
- Customized Self-Drive Roadbook (Digital version)
- 1 night first-class accommodations in Calgary
- 2 nights first-class accommodations in Banff
- 1 night first-class accommodations in Copper Point / Radium Hot Springs
- 2 nights first-class accommodations in Nelson
- 2 nights first-class accommodations in Vernon
- 2 nights first-class accommodations in Vancouver
- Shared 4-hour East Kelowna Bench Tour
- Car rental insurance
- Travel insurance
- International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
- Entrances fees to sites not explicitly listed as included
- National Park Fees - All visitors to Banff and/or Jasper National Parks are required to obtain a National Park Visitor’s Pass. The pass can be obtained either at the airport or at the information centers in Banff, Lake Louise and Jasper. If arriving by car the passengers may obtain the pass at the park entrance gate.
- Meals and beverages not mentioned
- Road tolls
- Items of a personal nature
- Visa fees if applicable
TERMS AND CONDITIONS:
Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request. Additional terms and conditions apply for car rental - please inquire.
9 Oct 2023