A Travellerspoint blog

Tour by car around Western Canada

Wonderful round tour to do by hire car

British Columbia, and what a beautiful part of the world it is!

We came from Australia, hiring a car at Vancouver and then hit the road to see the fantastic scenery, flora and fauna.
Some times we stayed 2 days at one town and did a day trip out.

DAY 1 & 2
Vancouver - Staying at the Holiday Inn Hotel, quite nice and in a good position near the Burrard Bridge.
We had 2 days here, and both of them were completely full. Vancouver was a lovely city that reminded me of cities in Australia.

Day 3
We departed Vancouver and headed to Richmond to see the beautiful Buddhist Temple.

Then, it was onto White Rock, a pretty seaside town, and to the Peace Arch on the American/Canadian border. From here we followed back roads to Abbotsord, passing through nice farm land, with lots of Horse studs, Cows, Sheep, and Blueberries & Vineyards. We called into Mission and went onto Chillawick, stopping off at the beautiful Minter Gardens. I thought these were nearly as good as Butchart gardens on Vancouver Island.
Our final stop was at the town of Hope, here we stayed at the Holiday Motel & RV Resort for 2 nights.

Day 4
Hope, the chainsaw carving capital of British Columbia. So many, so well done!
A round day trip from Hope today, starting with the Othello-Quintette Tunnels where the walk took us beside a raging gorge - its a lovely, pretty walk.
Next stop was at Merritt which is the country music capital, then back to Hope via Spences Bridge, Lytton , with a stop at Hells Gate and Alexandra Bridge.

Day 5
On our way again, this time making our first stop not far from Hope at the "HOPE SLIDE" A huge section of Mountain fell away and killed four people. We then entered Manning Park, this is where we saw some White tail Deer, Chipmunks, and Mule Deer. We passed through the pretty Similkameen Valley where we saw a huge Copper Mine, then a little further on, the interesting old goldmining town of Hedley, not a lot here, but a town I liked as it was old and interesting to me! Keremeos was nice, a largefruit growing area.
Osoyoos was a pretty spot we were pleased we came t, even though it meant doubling back. It has the warmest lake and the only Desert in Canada! On the return trip we passed through many grape & fruit growing areas on the way to Oliver located by the Okanagan River.
We stayed the night at Gallagher Lake for 1 night.

Day 6
Today, is what I called a drive along a valley of Lakes.
From Gallagher Lake, we went to the small township of Okanagan Falls which was located on the edge of Skaha Lake. The road followed the lake, so we had great lake views all the way to Pentiction, Summerland, Peachland, Westland and Kelowna where we stopped at a B&B for 2 nights.

Day 7
Was spent in Kelowna. We visited the Mission Hill winery, Knox Hill, Elysium gardens,Kasugai Japanese gardens, did some lakeside walking, and visited historical sites.

Day 8

Time to leave Kelowna and follow the road to Vernon, passing by the beautiful green coloured Kalamalka Lake and onto Falkland, a small, pretty country town. At Shuswap Lakes, we visited the towns of Chase, Sorrento, Salmon Arm and Sicamous.
Our overnight stop was at 7Acres B&B at Revelstoke

Day 9
We had hoped to drive to a top of a Mountain here [The Meadows to the Sky Parkway] but couldn't as the road was still closed through snow, this was 4th June. Never mind, we headed on, passing through Rogers Pass and to Golden where we drove up the mountain to check out the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort. We stopped at the beautiful Emerald Lake, the water was a beautiful emerald green, then we checked out Natural bridge, this was another wonderful area! Our final stop and location for the next 3 nights, was at Odenthal's B&B in Banff. Alberta.
We spent 6 days in Alberta and saw wonderful scenery around Jasper, interesting scenery at Drumheller, visited Calgary and Fort MacLeod before returning to British Columbia.

Day 15
We have arrived in Sparwood, home of the World's largest dump-truck and now are following highway 3, which leads us through Fernie and Cranbrook and onto Creston, another apple growing area that was quite pretty, we stayed for 2 nights.

Day 16
Today, a wonderful scenic drive from Creston. We went to the towns of Salmo, Trail, Rossland, Castlegar and Nelson, seeing some wildlife and fantastic scenery along the way, this was an excellent day's drive!

Day 17
We left Creston today and made our way to Cranbrook where we stopped at Jim Smith Lake. Lots of nice reflections, and lots of Mozzies! Our next stop was Kimberley, a town built in German Bavarian style. Marysville Falls were good, Canal Flats, Lake Columbia, and the Purcell Mountains were all scenic. We stopped and had a look at Fairmont Springs, then headed onto Windermere and onto Invermere where we stayed the night.

Day 18
Heading through the Kootenay National Park today and find the mountain scenery breathtaking. These mountains were different to others we had seen on this trip. Radium Hot Springs was next, then onto Sinclair Canyon and a drive along the scenic Icelands Parkway to Jasper in Alberta. After spending another 3 rainy days at Jasper in Alberta, it was time to head back into British Columbia and back to Vancouver.

Day 21
YES, You guessed it, a nice sunny morning the day we departed Jasper, this was after 3 days of miserable weather! Moving on, we passed through the Yellowhead Pass and onto Mount Robson which we couldn't see properly, as its head was in the clouds! Evidenty the mountain is often covered in cloud. A boring drive from Jasper to Clearwater, mile upon mile of Pine forest.
At Clearwater, we went to the beautiful Wells Gray National Park, one well worth visiting, plus there was plenty of wildlife around here. We saw heaps of Black Bears!

Day 22
Moving on, our road follows the valley where the Thompson river runs, the scenery is horses and hay before the road climbs the mountain to Lac Des Roches.
We saw more Black Bears and lots of Pine dying because of Pine Beetles. Lone Butte, aptly named as a Butte is here. A stop at 100 Mile House for lunch, then to Painted Chasm which was pretty, and I liked the hoodoos on the way to Clinton and Ashcroft. The drive to Lillooet along the scenic Duffy road was slow goingas it was a windy, scenic road, one not to be missed if your out this way. Our overnight stay was at Pemberton.

Day 23
As we leave Pemberton we see heaps of Black Bears, I think this area was where we saw the most on the trip. The scenic drive led us all the way to Whistler and Squamish where we stayed, it was a much cheaper option than Whistler.

Day 24
From Squamish, we travelled down the "Sea to the Sky" highway to Horseshoe Bay where we caught the Ferry from Horeseshoe Bay to Vancouver Island and stayed the night at Nanaimo. The next morning we drove to the town of murals, Chemainus, a really gorgeous town that I liked, then we drove onto Victoria, finally stopping at the wonderful Butchart Gardens before catching the ferry back to Richmond where we stayed the night.

The final day we returned our hire car to the company in Vancouver.

A fantastic trip with oodles of wonderful scenery and wildlife!

Posted by balhannahrise 23:43 Archived in Canada Tagged landscapes waterfalls lakes animals parks history national road trip Comments (0)

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