Embrace wonder in BC, Canada

By Jennifer Ennion 28 February 2024
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From the shores of the Pacific Ocean to the peaks of the Rocky Mountains, travelling through British Columbia’s diverse landscapes is the quintessential Canadian journey.

This article is brought to you by Adventure World.

See nature at its most spectacular as you cross valleys and grasslands, skirt rivers and lakes, journeying via road, rail and trail from the rainforest to the Rockies.

Vancouver vibes

As one of Canada’s most picturesque cities, and the arrival point for the majority of Australians, harbourside Vancouver is an easy place to immerse yourself in British Columbia’s art, food and outdoor lifestyle. Join locals on their daily jog through the leafy oasis of Stanley Park or go for a bike tour that will have you cruising around the park’s seawall, and learning about the biodiversity of the temperate rainforest and the history of the city’s First Nations people.

Vancouver, Canada. Image credit: Destination Vancouver/Albert Normandin

Explore popular Granville Island, a fantastic example of urban renewal and where you can sample BC-grown and -made produce from the Public Market, as well as pick up authentic art. When you return to the heart of Vancouver’s downtown precinct, you can experience some of the world’s most awe-inspiring landscapes on the virtual FlyOver Canada multi-sensory journey.

Vancouver is brimming with art galleries, hiking trails and must-visit restaurants, but what you really want to make time for is a visit to Vancouver Island. It’s easy to catch a ferry to the island, home to the impressive Malahat SkyWalk, a tower that rises 250 metres above sea level, through rainforest, to offer magnificent views over the Salish Sea.

If you’re travelling with Canadian tour specialist Adventure World, lap up the thrill of a seaplane flight to BC’s ultimate playground town of Whistler, where you will find yourself atop a glacier dining on wild BC salmon.

Vancouver Island; Exploring Whistler. Image credits: Destination BC/Reuben Krabbe, Tourism Whistler/Justa Jeskova

Vancouver is also where you can join the famous Rocky Mountaineer, an extraordinary rail journey through ever-changing landscapes. Pack a good book but don’t be surprised if you fail to open it as you find yourself captivated by the green fields of the Fraser Valley, and the river, canyons, forests, golden fields, waterfalls and mountains that pass by your train window on your way to the Rockies.

The Okanagan Valley’s wholesome charm

Venturing east from the Pacific Coast, you will travel from rainforest and cityscapes to Kelowna, in the Thompson Okanagan region of BC. It’s only 4.5 hours’ drive from Vancouver, but you’ll feel a world away as you embrace country living in this fertile valley.

If you’re setting your own pace on a customisable Adventure World itinerary, it’s worth taking a pause here so you can slow down and begin your days walking the waterfront boardwalk, wandering the town centre, and popping in and out of cosy cafes and boutique stores.

Kelowna is also where you can tour some of the province’s best breweries, vineyards and restaurants, or sprinkle your itinerary with a decent dose of hiking, biking and paddling.

Image credit: Destination BC/Jordan Dyck

Kelowna to Jasper via Mount Robson

If you’re embarking on a road-trip of a lifetime from coastal Vancouver to the soaring Rockies, one of the highlights will surely be the mountain town of Sun Peaks, a skier’s dream in winter and mountain biker’s realm the rest of the year. It’s also where people come to frolic through alpine wildflowers on Adventure World’s 10-day Road Trip to the Rockies itinerary. Enjoy a guided hiking excursion that starts with a chairlift ride to the top of the resort, making it accessible to travellers of various fitness levels. It can be hard to farewell Sun Peaks, but by the afternoon you will have laid eyes on Mount Robson, the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies, and one of the most magnificent sections of your BC rainforest to Rockies adventure.

Approaching Mt. Robson on Highway 16 in the summer. Image credit: Destination BC/Stephen Shelesky

Rainforest to Rockies by rail

Without a doubt, one of the best ways to truly appreciate BC’s white-capped mountains, lush forests and stunning lakes is to travel along its railways. You can forget about driving on the right-hand side of the road and truly relax while enjoying fine dining and fine service on the Rocky Mountaineer. But it doesn’t have to all be about riding the rails. Adventure World’s Mountain Peaks Rail Loop, and its other customisable itineraries allow for plenty of off-train exploration. You can become acquainted with Vancouver’s North Shore and learn about Pacific salmon, or set off without a guide for a mini choose-your-own-adventure afternoon. No matter whether you decide to travel by rail or road, or both, one thing is for sure: the iconic rainforest to Rockies Canadian journey will only be the start of your love affair with this magnificent country.

Yoho National Park in eastern BC, Aboard Rocky Mountaineer rounding a corner through a mountain pass. Image credits: Destination BC/@nomadasaurus

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This article is brought to you by Adventure World.