The Wild West
- 14 Days
- Prices From:
- US$ 3,213
MODERATE | SELF-DRIVE Fascinating landscapes, off-the-beaten track backroads and exciting urban discoveries are all part of this amazing trip. Enjoy the picturesque tranquility of both British Columbia’s and Alberta’s national parks, the brilliant turquoise lakes of the Rockies and the breathtaking Pacific coast. Plus, look forward discovering one of the most fabulous cities anywhere in the world, Vancouver, and a gem with lots of European flair, Vancouver Island’s capital Victoria.
This 14-day trip offers urban excitement, out-of-the-way backroads, and some of the world’s most iconic national parks.
After arriving in Vancouver, stroll along one the lovely pedestrian path that lines Coal Harbour, where you can admire lovely parks, gleaming white boats and wondrous mountain views. Check out the Vancouver Art Gallery or try the shops along Robson Street before enjoying a fine meal in Yaletown or Gastown.
The next day you can follow the Gold Rush Trail, alongside the roaring waters of the Fraser River. At Hell’s Gate or Boston Bar you can explore the canyon by air tram. Passing through dry, desert-like landscape, you’ll pass through Merritt and head to Kamloops.
From Kamloops it’s on to the breathtaking vistas of Wells Gray Provincial Park as you follow the beautiful North Thompson River. Stop at Clearwater’s Yellowhead Museum for a taste of frontier life.
After an overnight at the park, enjoy a wide range of activities at Wells Gray Ranch, including fishing, hiking or river rafting.
The truly remarkable Rocky Mountains are next on your list. Enjoy social media-worthy views of Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies, and inhale the scent of sweet pines as you head to Jasper, Alberta.
Get an overview of Jasper the next day by taking the Jasper Skytram, then explore the town before heading south on the magnificent Icefields Parkway. Stop to admire the glittering waters of Peyto Lake and Moraine Lake, then head to iconic Lake Louise, a turquoise lake surrounded by rugged, snow-capped mountains. From there it’s just a short ride to Banff.
In Banff, visit Bow Falls or take a boat tour on beautiful Lake Minnewanka. Stroll the pedestrian friendly streets, or sip a cocktail at one of the great restaurants in town. Don’t miss the wonderful hiking trails.
The drive from Banff to Radium Hot Springs in British Columbia is marvellous. Stop at Yoho National Park in B.C. to admire towering Takakkaw Falls, or take a canoe ride on stunning Emerald Lake. In Radium Hot Springs, soak your tired bones in hot spring waters and experience total relaxation.
The next day is yours to enjoy outdoor activities on and around Lake Windermere, including boating, windsurfing and bird watching. The Invermere museum is home to cool pioneer artifacts.
From there it’s through the quiet, rugged Kootenay Rockies, passing the Purcell and Selkirk Mountain ranges. You’ll take the world’s longest free ferry ride in the world on Kootenay Lake before finishing up in the lovely mountain town of Nelson, B.C.
The scenic adventure continues as you head from Nelson to Penticton, crossing towering mountain passes and skirting past sparkling lakes. Grand Forks has a fascinating history, having been settled by Russian pacifists in the early 1900s.
Penticton has more than 15 wide, sandy public beaches you can enjoy, not to mention around 80 wineries and tremendous hiking and dining.
On the way to Manning Provincial Park, stop in at the Osoyoos Desert Centre to learn about the only true desert in Canada.
Afterwards, you can explore Manning Provincial Park. The day’s highlight comes after an extensive hike along the trail network, a picture-perfect view of Three Brothers Mountain and Thunder Lake.
- 14 Days
- Prices From:
- US$ 3,213
Arrival in Vancouver
Following your arrival at Vancouver International Airport, transfer independently to your downtown hotel. The Roadbook you received has all the information needed for your holiday/trip/journey. Enjoy the rest of your day exploring some of the city’s vibrant nightlife in neighborhoods such as Yaletown or Gastown, venture along the meandering pathways along the ocean, visit a gallery, or indulge in some shopping on Robson Street.
Vancouver to Kamloops (357 km / 222 miles)
Leaving Vancouver behind, drive out to the vast ranch lands of British Columbia’s interior and follow the Gold Rush Trail, alongside the mighty Fraser River. At Hell’s Gate or Boston Bar you may decide to briefly explore the imposing Fraser Canyon by air tram, or visit Lytton, one of the villages made famous by the Gold Rush. Passing through Merritt, you continue to Kamloops - one of the main hubs of central British Columbia.
Kamloops to Clearwater (124 km / 77 miles)
Your journey to the breathtaking vistas of Wells Gray Provincial Park leads you along the scenic Yellowhead Highway through the water and lava-shaped valley of the North Thompson River. You won’t want to miss a visit to Clearwater’s Yellowhead Museum for a taste of frontier life, or a stop at Spahats Creek Park where the volcanic origins of the area are still in evidence.
Enjoy your day at Wells Gray Ranch, a ranch that offers a wide range of activities such as hiking, fishing and river rafting.
Clearwater to Jasper (318 km / 198 miles)
Leaving the peaceful delights of Wells Gray behind, you can now look forward to the unforgettable splendor of the Rocky Mountains. One of the highlights en route to Jasper are the panoramic views of Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies.
Jasper to Banff (288 km / 179 miles)
Start your day with a ride on the Jasper Skytram, giving you a bird’s eye view of the town and the surrounding parklands. Afterwards, depart along the Icefields Parkway, meandering through a landscape of peaks and glaciers, before pausing to admire the picturesque alpine waters of Peyto Lake and Moraine Lake. The sparkling, turquoise colors and the impressive glacier of Lake Louise are next on your not-to-be-missed list. The Trans-Canada Highway leads you to Banff, the famous year-round resort region that will treat you to spectacular wilderness scenery, outdoor sporting activities and international dining.
Banff National Park (155 km / 96 miles)
Banff is yours to discover today. You can visit the Cave and Basin and Bow Falls and take a thrilling gondola ride to the summit of Sulphur Mountain. Other activities offered in the park include river rafting, biking, horseback riding and hiking.
Banff to Radium Hot Springs (152 km / 94 miles)
Today’s drive through Kootenay National Park lets you discover a landscape dominated by lofty peaks, glaciers, deep valleys, and crystal-blue lakes. Make sure you visit to the park’s hot springs or the Radium Hot Springs Resort which offers numerous activities and services. Wildflowers decorate the alpine meadows, while grizzly bears, moose and mountain goats roam the park.
Overnight Radium Hot Springs
Radium Hot Springs
Spend a full day in Invermere, a summer paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Enjoy a myriad of activities, such as hiking, fishing, bird watching, boating, and windsurfing on Lake Windermere. You can also visit Invermere’s museum housing pioneer artifacts and local archives.
Overnight Radium Hot Springs
Radium Hot Springs to Nelson (373 km / 232 miles)
Respected by backpackers as a wilderness oasis of towering mountains, fresh air and abundant wildlife, the remote area of the Kootenays through which you are driving today is a traveler’s dream… no crowds and no pollution. The area has been shaped by gold-seekers; a heritage celebrated in historic Fort Steele. Enjoy the vistas of the Purcell and Selkirk Mountain ranges as you take the world’s longest free ferry ride across Kootenay Lake to Balfour. In the afternoon spend some time to explore Nelson, the reputed heritage capital of Western Canada.
Nelson to Osoyoos (261 km / 162 miles)
The scenic adventure continues outbound from Nelson, parallel to the American border, across Bonanza Pass and Gold Canyon. Boasting towering mountains, gentle valleys and sparkling lakes, this area is a haven for hikers and canoeists. Visit Grand Forks on the Kettle River reliving the period of Russian settlement or enjoying some excellent fishing.
The local area offers plenty of things to do. Penticton boasts over 15 wide, sandy public beaches to relax and lounge on. Of course, since the area is famous for its grapes, a tasting tour at one of the 80 local wineries will provide a day of delectable indulgence!
Osoyoos to Abbotsford (247 km / 153 miles)
On the way to the sub-alpine meadows in Manning Provincial Park, you might want to drop into Oliver Park, the only true desert in Canada. Alternatively, you might enjoy a hike through pristine Cathedral Provincial Park. Afterwards, you can explore Manning Provincial Park, known for its meadows and diverse vegetation. The day’s highlight comes after an extensive hike along the trail network, a picture-perfect view of Three Brothers Mountain and Thunder Lake.
Abbotsford to Vancouver (75 km / 47 miles)
Today the road takes you back to Vancouver, a relatively short drive. You can either head for International Airport to catch your return flight or check into your hotel if you plan to extend your trip.
Daily departures: May 1 - September 27, 2024
This trip is also available as a 21-day itinerary. Please call for further information.
- 14 days Intermediate Car Rental with unlimited mileage (Toyota Corolla or similar)
- Customized Self-Drive Roadbook (Digital version)
- 1 night accommodations in Vancouver
- 1 night accommodations in Kamloops
- 2 nights accommodations in Clearwater
- 1 night accommodations in Jasper
- 2 nights accommodations in Banff
- 2 nights accommodations in Radium Hot Springs
- 1 night accommodations in Nelson
- 2 nights accommodations in Osoyoos
- 1 night accommodations in Abbotsford
- Admission to Jasper Skytram
- Independent hiking at Manning Park Resort (Abbotsford)
- 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.
1 Sep 2024