Pack your bags for an astounding 20-day tour of Canada! On this holiday you will see and experience this big, beautiful country from the Rockies to Quebec, an amazing journey of 3,429 km.
Your Canadian adventure commences in scenic Vancouver on the west coast. With three days to enjoy in British Columbia at your leisure, take on the Grouse Mountain Grind challenge. Known locally as Mother Nature’s Stairmaster, a series of wooden steps takes you 2,500 feet up into the mountain. Not for the faint-hearted, perhaps, but nonetheless every year 100,000 people try the Peak of Vancouver, giving the Grouse the distinction of being the most hiked mountain in the world. Sleigh rides, ice-skating, ski limos, theatre in the sky and skiing—what more would we possibly need to say? Perhaps, another few words to tempt your imagination — mountain ziplines and terrain parks.
However, if you wish, the Skyrider is a huge airborne gondola that departs four times an hour.
On the second day, do something really different…a tour of Vancouver’s food trucks, sampling a range of the different cuisine available on the streets, and finishing with a visit to Finest At Sea, one of the city’s most important sea fishing companies.
Next, it’s all aboard the Rocky Mountaineer, the famous train that journeys through the mountains, to Jasper, stopping for the night at Kamloops. A remarkable change of scenery is in store, from lush green valleys, forested hills, deep river canyons, to the desert-like interior of British Columbia.
At Jasper, you will enjoy a trip to Jasper National Park. The following day it is onwards to Lake Louise, stopping for an exploration of the Athabasca Glacier on an Ice Explorer, learning about the geology of this awe-inspiring sight.
In the morning, wander the streets of Lake Louise. This charming alpine-like town is nestled in a superb natural setting. The afternoon brings another exciting activity, the national park, Yoho. Here, Mother Nature provides the entertainment — the Spiral Tunnels, Emerald Lake, and a natural rock bridge that crosses the Kicking Horse River. After the Yoho experience, the tour carries on to Banff.
In Banff, jump on the Banff gondola. In less than ten minutes, you’ll stand atop Sulphur Mountain. Visit Lake Minnewanka (Water of the Spirits in Nakoda), a glacial lake located in eastern Banff National Park. Bow Falls is a must-see. This major waterfall is located on the Bow River in Alberta. Next stop is Kananaskis for an amazing helicopter flight over the Rockies. Then it’s onward to Calgary, situated at the confluence of the Bow River and the Elbow River.
Scheduled the following day is your flight to Toronto. Spend the day at your leisure. Sight see or enjoy your luxurious hotel, resting up for the next full-day excursion to Niagara Falls.
From Toronto, you travel to Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, on the south bank of the Ottawa River, with a wealth of things to do and explore. See the city from the water on the only amphibious sightseeing trip. Want to hold a solid gold bar worth over $750,000? Stop by the Royal Canadian Mint for a guided tour and learn more about how coins are made. Off the beaten downtown path, on the outskirts of New Edinburgh and Vanier, is Fraser Café, boasting an amazing décor, a great place to grab brunch or dinner.
From Ottawa, you make your way to Montreal. Sights to see include the Notre Dame Basilica, the Harbour, the old town, and Mount Royal Lookout.
Lastly, your trip takes in Quebec. Founded by Samuel de Champlain in 1608 as a small French outpost, Quebec, like New York, is the name of both a city and a province. If you enjoy great castles and fortresses, then wandering the cobbled streets of Old Quebec is for you! Quebec is the only walled town north of Mexico. Little cafes and antique shops line the streets. Visit Montmorency Falls on the St. Lawrence River. See the Citadel, the largest British-built fortress in North America. A guided tour of the Citadel is offered, and a visit to the fortress’ museum, containing a huge collection of military artefacts, is well worth your time.
This article only scratches the surface of what is, by any standards, a truly amazing three weeks, and a holiday you will tell your grandchildren about.