Northern British Columbia Wilderness and Grizzly Bears

Northern British Columbia Wilderness and Grizzly Bears

Our 14-day Northern British Columbia Wilderness and Grizzly Bear tour takes you through some of Canada’s most pristine wilderness on two rail journeys. VIA Rail’s overnight ‘Canadian’ train starts in Vancouver and climbs up through the towering Rocky Mountains to Jasper, while the ‘Skeena’ trundles through forests and the rugged interior of Northern British Columbia to the Pacific Coast mountains of Prince Rupert. Tour the Rockies along the scenic Icefield Parkway, visiting the Columbia Icefields, Lake Louise and Banff. Sail through the Inside Passage and past enchanting islands from Prince Rupert to Port Hardy, before flying by seaplane to Great Bear Nature Lodge in the Great Bear Rainforest for a three-day bear watching adventure.

This tour departs on set dates from the UK; June 2019 - 20, 24; July 2019 - 4, 8, 18, 22; August  2019 - 1, 5, 15, 19, 29

Vancouver Holidays
    DAY 01

    UK to Vancouver

    Vancouver

    Upon arrival at Vancouver Airport, you will be transferred to your downtown hotel. If time permits we recommend you take a stroll to the waterfront and Gastown for dinner. Accommodation Options

    Vancouver Holidays
      DAY 02

      Train Journey Aboard VIA Rail’s ‘Canadian’

      Vancouver

      Explore Vancouver at your leisure. Take the Hop-On Hop-Off bus tour which showcases most of Vancouver’s highlights at over 20 stops along the route. Highlights include Vancouver’s beautiful Stanley Park and a ferry ride to Granville Island. Late afternoon make your way to Pacific Central Station where you will board the ‘Canadian’ train for your overnight rail journey through the Canadian Rockies to Jasper.
        DAY 03

        Train Journey Through Canadian Rockies to Jasper


        Wake this morning to views of the North Thomson River and the Cariboo Mountains. By lunchtime you will be climbing high up into the Canadian Rocky Mountains, passing Pyramid Falls, the Albreda Icefields and Mount Robson along the way. Cross over Yellowhead Pass and the border into Alberta to arrive in Jasper late afternoon.

        Accommodation: Sawridge Inn

        Banff
          DAY 04

          Jasper to Banff Including Ice Explorer and Glacier Skywalk

          Banff

          Travel along the Icefields Parkway, one of the world’s most scenic drives on your day tour from Jasper to Banff. You will visit the Columbia Icefield and drive up on to Athabasca Glacier and gingerly walk along the glass-floored Glacier Skywalk, suspended high above the valley floor from the cliff face. Photo stops are made at Athabasca Falls, Bow and Peyto Lakes and Lake Louise before arriving at Banff. Accommodation Options

          Banff
            DAY 05

            Banff Sightseeing Including Banff Gondola

            Banff

            Visit Banff’s highlights including Bow Falls, Surprise Corner where you have views over Bow River to the castle-like Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. Your scenic tour visits the glacial-fed Lake Minnewanka before finishing at Banff Gondola where you ascend to an altitude of 2,281 metres in eight minutes. Enjoy 360-degree views from the rooftop observation deck and follow the Sulphur Mountain Boardwalk to scenic outlooks. Return to Banff at your leisure. Accommodation Options

            Banff
              DAY 06

              Banff to Jasper

              Banff

              The morning is at your leisure to explore Banff town before your afternoon express coach transfer back to Jasper.

              Accommodation: Sawridge Inn

                DAYS 7 - 8

                Jasper to Prince George Aboard Via Rail's 'Skeena' Train


                Today, board VIA Rail’s ‘Skeena’ for a wondrous rail journey through Northern British Columbia’s Cariboo Region. Pass Mount Robson before descending through forests of spruce, fir and pine to British Columbia’s rugged interior plateau. Trundle through remote farming communities such as Dunster, with its quaint general store. The railroad follows the northern arm of the Fraser River to Prince George where you will spend the night.
                  DAY 09

                  Ferry from Prince Rupert to Port Hardy

                  Port Hardy

                  Today you board B.C. Ferry’s Northern Adventure on your journey through the Inside Passage. Departing Prince Rupert at 7:30am, you will spend all day on board as you sail through this maze of enchanting islands, always keeping a lookout for wildlife and watching the ever-changing vistas as you pass fjords and densely forested shorelines. You are scheduled to arrive in Port Hardy, Vancouver Island at 11:30pm. Accommodation Options

                    DAY 10

                    Port Hardy

                    Port Hardy

                    You have a full day to explore Port Hardy at your leisure. We suggest an early morning stroll along Storey’s Beach and along the seawall of Hardy Bay for spectacular views of the ocean and British Columbia’s coastal mountains. Take a guided tour of the hatchery at the Quatse Salmon Stewardship Centre or try and catch a fish along the shore or nearby rivers. Accommodation Options

                      DAY 11

                      Port Hardy to Great Bear Lodge

                      Great Bear Rainforest

                      A leisurely morning can be spent in Port Hardy before your afternoon scenic seaplane flight over Queen Charlotte Strait to Great Bear Nature Lodge. Travel by boat to one of the estuary viewing sites or by bus along a wilderness track to one of the river viewing sites in search of Black and Grizzly bears. Return to the lodge for a gourmet dinner. Accommodation: Great Bear Lodge Accommodation Options

                        DAYS 12 - 13

                        Great Bear Lodge


                        This morning you will head out to one of the viewing sites in the estuaries or along the river where bears have been most active on previous days. Each viewing session is typically three hours, depending on bear sightings. After you have had lunch at the lodge you can relax or join an interpretive rainforest walk before heading out on another bearviewing adventure. Bears are most active early morning and late afternoon so your bear-watching activities will be scheduled for these times. This afternoon you may prefer to explore the glacier-carved inlet looking out for bears and marine wildlife such as otters or birdlife including bald eagles. Travel by boat to one of the estuary viewing sites or by bus along a wilderness track to one of the river viewing sites in search of Black and Grizzly bears. Return to the lodge for a gourmet dinner. Accommodation Options

                          DAY 14

                          Port Hardy to Vancouver


                          This morning will be a last opportunity to explore the wilderness in search of Black and Grizzly bears before boarding your seaplane for your return flight to Port Hardy and onwards by scheduled aircraft to Vancouver connecting to your homeward flight.