Victoria with British flair
According to topschoolsintheusa, Victoria, the provincial capital, is on the southern tip of the Pacific island of Vancouver Island. The English influence is more pronounced in this city than anywhere else in Canada: Victorian and neoclassical buildings such as the Fairmont Empress Hotel and the impressive Houses of Parliament in the waterfront are dotted throughout. The natural history, historical and ethnological Royal British Columbia Museum provides an overview of the history of the province, among other things. Also worth seeing are the Maritime Museum of British Columbia, Thunderbird Park, Victoria Harbour, China Town and Craigdarroch Castle. Whale watching tours depart from Victoria. Anyone who enjoys watching whales, seals and sea lions has found a good starting point in Victoria.
The Butchard Gardens are 20 km north of the city and offer walkers a paradise in English, Japanese, Mediterranean and Italian gardens as well as the rose garden. The 150-mile Golf Trail begins in Victoria, with 11 scenic golf courses along the way. Goldstream Provincial Park is home to a rainforest and is a great place to watch the salmon return from mid-October to early December.
Haida Gwaii Native American culture
The Queen Charlotte Islands are a two-hour flight north of Vancouver. In the south of the island, the UNESCO World Heritage Site Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site is a unique area of rainforest with remnants of the Haida Gwaii culture. Traditional Haida Gwaii longhouses, canoes and totem poles stand in the rainforest, which is covered with a thick carpet of moss. Accessible by BCFerries services from Prince Rupert in northwestern British Columbia, the remote archipelago is ideal for hiking, kayaking and fishing. Around 1.5 million seabirds make their home here and 20 species of whales regularly swim off the coast of the park.
Vancouver is Canada’s third largest city and is located in the southwest of the province on the Pacific fjord Burrard Inlet. The mountain range of the Coast Mountains rises behind the important port city. The business district is home to the second largest Chinese district in North America. Of the many museums and galleries, the best known are the Museum of Anthropology, dedicated to British Columbia’s Native Americans, the Vancouver Police Museum, the HR MacMillian Space Center and the Maritime Museum. Among the most beautiful visitor destinations in and around Vancouver are the extensive Stanley Park, the Vancouver Aquarium and a cable car ride up Grouse Mountain (4,000 feet) for unique views of the city, Pacific Coast, and mountains to the west on a clear day. Grouse Mountain is an outdoorsman’s paradise in the summer and a popular skiing spot in the winter. Jaunts to the Southern and Northern Gulf Islands and Gulf Islands National Park are highly recommended. There are ferry connections with BC Ferries.
In the land of bears
British Columbia is bear country. Since bear hunting was banned in British Columbia in late 2017, the Canadian province has been a safe home for the predators of the genus Ursus. However, the furry fellows may still be hunted as a photo motif. However, before spotting bears in the wild, everyone should first familiarize themselves with important safety rules on site and then follow them. This is the only way to keep the encounter with Master Petz in good memory. Keeping your distance, not feeding and not running away if you meet them directly are the most important rules. Neither humans nor bears want to suddenly and unexpectedly be right in front of each other. Loud singing and storytelling warns the bears from afar that humans are nearby.
Popular areas for bear fans looking to view the animals in the wild include Wells Gray Provincial Park, Glacier National Park, and country roads around Kamloops and Merritt.
Rainforest in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve
The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is located on the west coast of Vancouver Island. You can swim and ride waves on the sandy beaches. Hiking trails such as the West Coast Trail lead through dense, mountainous forests and the Nuu-chah-nulth Trail at the Long Beach Unit through the coastal rainforest and offers insight into the culture of the Nuu-chah-nulth at various stations. Macmillan Provincial Park has 800-year-old Douglas firs. More than 300 species of birds can be seen in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Naturalists, anglers, mountain bikers, canoeists, storm chasers, whale watchers and fans of geocaching are in their element here.
National Parks in the Rocky Mountains
Located in the Rocky Mountains of eastern British Columbia, the sprawling Yoho, Kootenay and Glacier National Parks offer hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, fishing, rafting and excellent winter sports for skiers, snowboarders and backcountry skiers. Of the 100+ glaciers that once existed, only 25 now form the dramatic alpine landscape of the Columbia Mountains and feed the crystal-clear rivers of Glacier National Park. British Columbia’s largest national park is bear country and home to the rare wolverine, mountain goats, herds of caribou and golden eagles, as well as some 180 other bird species. In Yoho National Park Canadian natural wonders such as gigantic mountain peaks reaching over 3000m into the sky, waterfalls and clusters of fossils can be seen. The nearly 100km Banff-Windermere Highway winds through Kootenay National Park along a scenic mountain backdrop past campgrounds serving attractions such as Radium Hot Springs, Sinclair Canyon, fossil beds at the foot of Stanley Glacier, the Rockwall and the North American Continental Divide can be hiked.
Alaska Highway: A scenic route
An impressive route through the wilderness is the Alaska Highway, which leads from Prince George and Dawson Creek via Fort St. John through Muncho Lake Provincial Park to the Yukon and on to Alaska. At the Alaska Highway House in Dawson Creek, those interested can learn all about the historical background of the Alaska Highway. The former fur trade route provides easy access to Stone Mountain and Muncho Lake Provincial Parks, which have basic accommodation for exploring this rugged and awe-inspiring landscape. Alpine mountain scenery, hot springs, vast, lonely and untouched nature, forests, mountain lakes and occasional wild animals such as bears, moose and bison, but also the occasional lodge and campsite line the road.
Guided deep-sea fishing boat tours depart from Nanaimo, the island’s largest commercial port on Vancouver Island’s east coast, which is served by BC Ferries. Vancouver Island is also one of the most popular places in the world for salmon fishermen in the fall. Salmon then swim up the Gold, Stamp and Campbell Rivers to their spawning grounds. Trout anglers will also get their money’s worth on the Cowichan River, among other places.
Trout and bass also abound in the crystal clear mountain lakes of the Kootenay Rockies’ Rocky Mountains.
Abundant fishing grounds abound in the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast region, both in the Pacific and in the more than 8,000 lakes and rivers that collectively flow 10,000 km through the region.
More than 200 lakes surround Kamloops on the Thompson River in the Thompson Okanagan region. The abundance of fish and the abundance of species make this region a popular destination for anglers.
Winter sports in British Columbia
The ski areas in the Rocky Mountains and in the Coast Mountains offer excellent conditions for winter sports enthusiasts. Some popular ski resorts are located in provincial parks such as Cypress Mountain Resort, Manning Park Resort and Mt. Seymour Resorts. Whistler, just north of Vancouver, is an outdoorsman’s paradise in the summer and one of the top ski resorts in the winter. The Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics were held in Whistler, among other places. Other popular ski areas include Fernie, Red Mountain Resort, Kimberley Alpine Resort, Sun Peaks Resort, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort and Big White Ski Resort.
Snowboarding, cross-country skiing, heli-skiing and glacier skiing are also popular winter sports in British Columbia, which can also be practiced in the summer.