Best of British Columbia
SELF DRIVE TOUR
VANCOUVER | WHISTLER | VERNON | INVERMERE | NELSON | OSOYOOS | VANCOUVER
Explore the very best of British Columbia on this fantastic tour from vibrant Vancouver and the year round alpine resort of Whistler to the beautiful vineyards of the Okanagan Valley and breath-taking Yoho National Park. Stay at the extraordinary Emerald Lake Lodge on the shores of exquisite Emerald Lake and witness the magnificent Kootenay Rockies.
- Visit cosmopolitan Vancouver and the alpine resort of Whistler
- Explore the beauty of Yoho National Park and stay at Emerald Lake Lodge
- Enjoy a winery tour in Osoyoos
Best of British Columbia
Day 1-3 : UK - Vancouver
Upon arrival in Vancouver transfer (not included) to your downtown hotel. You will have 2 days to explore Vancouver at your leisure on your own. Canada’s third-largest metropolitan centre, Vancouver is a busy port city with a thriving multi-cultural ambiance. The city is located in a spectacular setting with the Coast Mountains across Burrard Inlet to the north, and the waters of the Strait of Georgia to the west. Restaurants, shopping, nightlife, a mild climate and a cosmopolitan atmosphere make Vancouver a favourite tourist destination.Pick rental car up on Day 3.
Day 4 : Vancouver to Whistler (122 km/76 mi)
Depart Vancouver along the scenic Sea-to-Sky Highway to Whistler. Highlights along the way include the cascading Shannon Falls and the Stawamus Chief Rock where climbers from all over the globe migrate to climb the granite cliffs. Arrive into Whistler by early afternoon.
Day 5 : Whistler Exploring with Peak 2 Peak Gondola Ride
This charming alpine resort is nestled between world-renowned Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains. Enjoy an extensive range of summer activities from golf on one of the 4 championship designer golf courses, water activities on any of the 5 lakes or numerous rivers, to mountain top dining or just relax and enjoy some of the many fine café’s and restaurants in this European inspired alpine village. Experience the beauty of Whistler Blackcomb’s alpine environment via the Peak Adventure on Whistler Mountain. Take the Peak 2 Peak Gondola (included) to Whistler Mountain’s sub-alpine and then rise to over 7,000 feet via Whistler’s premier open chairlift. At the top of the Peak Chair, guests will be treated to unbelievable views of glaciers, extinct volcanoes, snow-capped peaks and more. Gondola dates of operation: May - Sep, Summer dates are subject to change due to factors such as weather and snowpack, if gondola is not operating a refund will be issued.
Day 6 : Whistler to Vernon (419 km/260 mi)
Begin your spectacular drive on the Duffey Lake Road where you will see breathtaking views of Joffre Glacier. Continue on through Lillooet known as the land of the Gold Rush Trail and onto Cache Creek where you stop to visit the Historic Hat Creek (included) From here travel towards the sun & vineyards of Vernon. With over 2,000 hours of sunshine and only 13” of precipitation annually this allows for a wide range of outdoor activities and grape growing for various wines.
Day 7 : Vernon
Today is yours to experience serenity and well-being at Sparkling Hill Resort, a European-style BC resort spa and world-renowned wellness destination or tour around the Okanagan Valley visiting some of the vineyards that the valley is becoming quite famous for; most are open to the public, and do sell wines on the spot. They can arrange shipment home for you too. If you prefer a little more activity, try one of the many golf courses this region has to offer.
Day 8 : Vernon to Field - Emerald Lake Lodge (348 Km/ 216 mi)
Your destination today is Yoho National Park. The word Yoho is the Cree word expressing awe. This 1313 sq. km (507 sq. miles) national park is filled with gem-coloured glacial lakes and waterfalls, snow-covered peaks and dense forests of western red cedar and western hemlock. Historic railroads, spiral tunnels within mountain sides and steep rock faces where mountain goats roam are just some of the sights to be seen. Other Yoho marvels include a natural rock bridge over the Kicking Horse River, Hoodoos, some of Canada’s highest waterfalls and the Burgess Shale fossil find where over 120 marine animal species dating back as far as 530 million years were discovered.
Day 9 : Emerald Lake Lodge
Built of hand-hewn timber and featuring massive stone fireplaces, the Lodge includes a formal dining room, quiet reading and sitting rooms. From the upper or lower large verandahs, enjoy the serene views of this wilderness landscape.
Day 10 : Emerald Lake Lodge to Invermere (177 Km/110 mi)
Today your destination is Invermere, which borders Kootenay National Park and the mighty Columbia River, and offers guests a recreational playground unparalleled in beauty and amenities. The Columbia River Valley is home to dozens of golf courses, endless hiking and fishing opportunities, and the breathtaking scenery of both the Rocky Mountains to the east, and the Purcell Mountains to the west. Situated along the shores of one of the warmest lakes in the valley, the town of Invermere is all about sun and fun. People come here to relax, spend summer afternoons at the beach, go boating, river rafting and golfing. There are spectacular parks in the area, offering hiking, fishing and even wild hot springs.
Day 11 : Invermere to Nelson (363 Km/225 mi)
Highway 95 will lead you to Cranbrook, the ‘Key City to the Rockies’. Along the way visit Fort Steele Heritage Town, a local settlement whose name was changed in 1888 to honour Superintendent Samuel Benfield (Sam) Steele of the North-West Mounted Police, who peacefully reduced tensions between the Ktunaxa and the white and Chinese settlers who were relatively new to the area. In Cranbrook, the Canadian Museum of Rail Travel is famous for the restored complete set of the TransCanada Limited, a million dollar train set built in 1929. Continuing on the way into Nelson, take a short detour over to Harrop and back to experience the Harrop Proctor Cable Ferry. Surrounded by the Selkirk Mountains, set on the shores of Kootenay Lake and clustered with some 350 heritage buildings, Nelson’s storybook charm and stunning scenery create the quintessential small town setting. Perhaps enjoy an evening cruise on the S.S. Moyie paddle wheeler.
Day 12 : Nelson to Osoyoos (261 Km/162 mi)
Today continue traveling westward to Osoyoos, winner of the “Best small town museum in BC”. Osoyoos is Canada’s only desert town, with a unique interpretive centre to experience this phenomenon. With expanses of orchards and vineyards, lake swimming and boating, this area has all the amenities a visitor could ever want.
Day 13 : Osoyoos - Hop On / Off Winery Tour
Today enjoy a winery tour of the Osoyoos and Oliver region and visit wineries along the Black Sage bench and the Golden Mile. This tour will include 5 of the following wineries: Adega on 45th, Burrowing Owl Vineyards, Cassini Cellars, Castoro de Oro Estate Winery, Church & State Wines, Desert Hills Estate Winery, Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery, Hester Creek Estate Winery, La Stella, Maverick, Mooncurser, Nk’Mip Cellars, Oliver Twist Winery, Road 13 Vineyards, Silver Sage Winery, Stoneboat Vineyards, Tinhorn Creek Vineyard. Gourmet lunch is included.
Day 14 : Osoyoos to Vancouver (398 km/247 mi)
An amazing trip awaits you today, travel via the Okanagan Connector to the Coquihalla Highway. Along the way stop at any of the roadside stalls offering cherries, apples, apricots, pears, peaches, grapes and plums for sale during the long summer days. Turning onto the Coquihalla Highway climb to an elevation of 1244 metres where over 10 metres of snow can fall in an average winter. You will witness incredible feats of engineering as you travel through the Great Bear snow shed, crossing the Dry Gulch Bridge (over 280 metres long and 175 metres high). Begin descending from the summit pass through some of the most beautiful landscapes in the province. This dramatic change of environment is always exhilarating, as you go from bright sunlight on the high rock faces to misty coastal cedars and tall firs in half an hour. Approaching the Pacific Coast, the canyon opens into the broad, fertile Fraser Valley. Upon arrival into Vancouver drop
Day 15-16 : Vancouver - UK
Your journey through British Columbia ends today upon check out of your hotel and travel onwards to the UK.