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Canada Vancouver Island and the City of Vancouver

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This Self Drive (OR Independent Non Self Drive) tour for the independent traveller starts in Vancouver and takes you by ocean ferry across the Straits of Georgia to Victoria and Vancouver Island. Vancouver Island stretches for 460 kilometres, from the ornate colonial capital of Victoria in the south to Cape Scott’s windswept beaches and rocky headlands at its northern tip. Along with the Gulf...

This Self Drive (OR Independent Non Self Drive) tour for the independent traveller starts in Vancouver and takes you by ocean ferry across the Straits of Georgia to Victoria and Vancouver Island. Vancouver Island stretches for 460 kilometres, from the ornate colonial capital of Victoria in the south to Cape Scott’s windswept beaches and rocky headlands at its northern tip. Along with the Gulf Islands, this rugged paradise combines old-growth forests, snow-capped mountains, and untamed shorelines to create one of the planet’s most diverse ecosystems. Experience world-class whale watching, birding, and fishing, or just let your worries drift away in the waves of the Pacific.

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Customisable trip itinerary

This tour idea is fully customisable

The itinerary has been created by our local agency with one idea in mind: to inspire you. Every element can be adapted to your needs and interests, from duration to accommodation and activities.

Day 1: Arrive in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Arrive in Vancouver and transfer to your city centre hotel by taxi or by the fast, convenient and inexpensive modern Skytrain commuter train directly from the airport terminal. The rest of the day is free to explore your immediate surroundings by foot.

Visited:
Vancouver British Columbia
Accomodation
Night at Sandman Vancouver Hotel (Vancouver)

Day 2: From Vancouver to Victoria,the capital city

Pick up your rental car and head to the ferry terminal to take a scenic ferry ride crossing the Straits of Georgia to Vancouver Island. The route takes you past the Gulf Islands and you can see the slow pace of life on these small islands. Often, orcas and other marine wildlife are seen on this ferry crossing.

Activities of the day:

Explore Victoria harbour front.
OPTIONAL: Royal British Columbia Museum


Distance (km) : 120 kms/ Length (hours) :  4.0 hrs

Visited:
Vancouver Victoria
Accomodation
Night at Royal Scot (Victoria)

Day 3: Whale watching tour from Victoria, Butchart Gardens and Nanaimo

This morning experience a whale watching tour of Victoria and the Gulf Islands, which is the home of pods "J", "K", and "L" numbering approximately 90 orca whales in total. The crew will introduce you to these magnificent mammals and share with you the myriad of other natural wonders abundant in this pristine marine environment. Afternoon tour the Butchart Gardens.

Activities of the day:

Whale watching tour
Butchart Gardens
Distance (km) :  140 kms/Length (hours) :  5 hrs 

Visited:
Victoria Butchart Gardens Nanaimo
Accomodation
Night at Hotel Coast Bastion (Nanaimo)

Day 4: Drive to Tofino on the wild western Pacific coast of Vancouver Island

Drive to Tofino stopping to see the impressive old growth forest at Cathedral Grove and the town of Port Alberni with its attractive water front. Driving west, you will arrive at the coastal road that runs along the west coast of Vancouver Island and enter the Pacific Rim National Park. Stop at the Kwisitis Visitor Centre before continuing to Tofino.

Activities of the day:

MacMillan Provincial Park
Kwisitis Visitor Centrre


Distance (km) : 210 kms / Length (hours) :  5 hrs

Visited:
Nanaimo Tofino
Accomodation
Night at Hotel Best Western Tin Wis Res (Tofino)

Day 5: Experience Tofino, British Columbia

You will travel 32 km from Tofino to the north end of Clayoquot Sound where stops include a sea cave, black bear viewing, an eagle’s nest and a seabird nesting island depending on the time of season. You will then travel to a series of thermal rock pools. 

Activities of the day:

Hot Spring and Nature Tour
Whale  watching tour

Visited:
Tofino
Accomodation
Night at Hotel Best Western Tin Wis Res (Tofino)

Day 6: Drive from Tofino to Campbell River

Drive back from Tofino along the scenic route and then north on the Island Highway to the quant seaside town of Campbell River. Along the way, spend some time in Port Alberni and in the village of Coombs to visit the grocery store with live goats on its roof.

Activity of the day:

Explore Campbell RiverDistance (km) : 270 kms/ Length (hours) :  4 hrs.

Visited:
Tofino Campbell River
Accomodation
Painter’s Lodge (Vue jardin) (Campbell River)

Day 7: Drive from Vancouver Island to the mainland of British Columbia

Drive south down the Island Highway to the ferry terminal in Nanaimo and board the ferry  with your car to Horseshoe Bay on the mainland. From Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal, it is only a short drive to the Vancouver city centre. 

Distance (km) : 240 kms/ Length (hours) :  5 hrs


Visited:
Campbell River Nanaimo Horseshoe Bay Vancouver
Accomodation
Night at Sandman Vancouver Hotel (Vancouver)

Day 8: Vancouver sightseeing

Included today is a Hop-on-Hop- Of Pass. Travel at your leisure on a turn of the century San Francisco style trolley bus with 23 stops including 16 of Vancouver's major downtown attractions. Take the entire tour in two hours or spend the whole day experiencing this beautiful city. Included is a Vancouver Harbour Cruise, Fly Over Canada experience,  and the Look-out viewing tower.

Activity(ies) of the day:

Vancouver Hop On Hop Off Tour
Vancouver Harbour CruiseFly Over Canada Experience

Visited:
Vancouver
Accomodation
Night at Sandman Vancouver Hotel (Vancouver)

Day 9: Departure from Vancouver

Depart from Vancouver. Vancouver International Airport, rated best in North America for several years running, is only a quick 20 minutes ride from the city centre by the local Skytrain. 

Visited:
Vancouver

Vancouver British Columbia Victoria Butchart Gardens Nanaimo Tofino Campbell River Campbell River Horseshoe Bay

Price details

This tour idea is fully customisable

The price reflects this specific tour itinerary and is designed to give you an idea of the budget required for this destination. Throughout the trip-planning process, our local agency will tailor your itinerary around your budget.

Approx. £1,350 / 9 days
Excluding international flights
02 pax
Price per person £1,350

Included in price:

  • Accommodation in twin/double room in mentioned hotels (or similar)
  • The excursions planned in the program
  • Visits to highlights as indicated specifically in itinerary
  • 24-hour agency support
  • 8 days intermediate group car rental

Not included in price:

  • Applicable taxes (usually 5% GST)
  • International flights
  • Meals and activities  not mentioned in the program
  • Beverages
  • Options and extensions
  • Tips for guides and drivers
  • Visa fees

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