Vancouver to Prince Rupert
Discover the myriad of culture and wildlife across BC
Take the journey of a lifetime and travel from city to island to the northern shores of BC. Experience a wide range of environments and landscapes that lend themselves to every recreational activity imaginable. Be exposed to the rich culture of each area, and of each First Nation.
Nanaimo is a harbor town with a wealth of recreation and shopping options. Walk the Cedar Yellow Point Area trail located at the south end of Nanaimo a short distance from downtown. The trail has a number of artisans, galleries, and restaurants to experience.
Port Hardy is a four and a half hour drive from Nanaimo along Highway 19. This historical community was originally settled by the Kwakwaka’wakw First Nations whose culture is still a significant part of the town. Explore the world’s fastest navigable tidal rapids and surrounding wilderness in the company of Aboriginal guides with Nakwakto Rapids Tours.
Take a ferry from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert. This is a full-day journey up the fjord-like waters of the Inside Passage. Prince Rupert is home to many of the Tsimshian First Nations people, as well as members of other First Nations bands in the north, and is a major transportation hub with container and cruise ships visiting from around the world. The Museum of Northern BC, housed in a magnificent, Northwest Coast-style longhouse, is a must-see.
If wanting to travel to Haida Gwaii from Prince Rupert, take a ferry or fly with Inland Air. Haida Gwaii is a series of islands at the most westerly point of Northern BC made up of rainforests, inlets and beaches. The Haida House at Tllaal specializes in all-inclusive tours, authentic Haida experiences and adventures as well as lodging. In Skidegate, the Haida Heritage Centre invites you to explore the fascinating history and living culture of the Haida, while Haida Expeditions offers whale watching, boating, fishing, hiking and walks.
From Prince Rupert, head east on Highway 16. On the way to Prince George, stop in Hazelton, a community surrounded by forests and First Nations culture. Fishing, boating and hiking are all popular activities in Hazelton. Visit the ‘Ksan Historical Village and Museum. As a replicated ancient village, ‘Ksan illustrates many features of a Gitxsan village from the distant past.
Further along Highway 16 is Prince George, the largest city in Northern BC and a place with urban living and the wilderness live side by side. Visit the Exploration Place for hands-on learning about a variety of subjects, or strap on some skis and explore one of the regional ski hills.
Head south on Highway 97 and stop in Quesnel and visit Northern Dog Sled Adventures, who offer dog sled tours ranging from a few hours to overnight camping experiences.
Further south on the way to Williams Lake is the Xatśūll Heritage Village located along the Fraser River at McLeese Lake. The Village invites visitors to watch food cooked in a fire pit, learn how to cure hide, and listen to the Xat’sull elders share stories passed down from generation to generation.
Continue south to Williams Lake, a ranching town that is the jumping off point for a variety of recreational activities. Hikers and mountain bikers have access to an unparalleled trail system in the nearby hills. Cariboo Chilcotin Jetboat Adventures offers river tours on the Fraser River. Take in the beautiful sand dunes and wildlife while learning about Aboriginal early explorers and the gold rush history of the region. The Coyote Rock Golf Course is a nine-hole Master’s-length course on Secwepemc traditional territory that has stunning views from every tee box, as well as full-service RV and tenting facilities.
Kamloops is a three-hour drive south on Highway 97 and Highway 1. Sandstone canyons, forest and grassland play host to incredible mountain biking and hiking. Visit the Secwepemc Museum and Heritage Park and experience the rich cultural history of the Secwepemc People. Cultural displays extend into a 5-hectare Heritage Park located on the banks of the South Thompson River.
Continue west along Highway 1. From Hope, travel southwest via Highway #7 to Agassiz and visit the Sasquatch Crossing Eco Lodge in the Sts’ailes Territory. Originally built in 1903, the B&B features nine unique guest rooms, a library, living room with a fireplace, dining room and more. Relax at the B&B or visit the nearby town of Harrison Hot Springs.
Drive south until reaching Highway 1 and drive west through to Chilliwack for freshwater fishing, river rafting and hiking. Cultus Lake Provincial Park is a popular spot for swimming and camping.
Head back to Vancouver a little over an hour west along Highway 1.