Discover A Tour Just Right For You!
Vancouver Island (Featuring Black Bears, Grizzlies and Whales)
Ranked as one of the world’s best islands to visit by most travel publications, the natural beauty of Vancouver Island must be seen to be believed!
Available Booking Dates
- Flights with Air Canada Rouge
- Moderate hotels
- Full breakfast daily, 7 dinners and 3 lunches
- Per person, double occupancy, from Toronto - $5,397.00
- Single supplement - $1,190.00
- Ottawa or Montreal - add $90.00
- Halifax - add $290.00
- Winnipeg - deduct - $100.00
- Calgary, Edmonton or Vancouver - deduct - $300.00
All Senior Discovery Tours Include
Home pick-up and drop-off (from most Canadian cities)
All airfare and airport taxes
*Airline baggage fees are not included
Carefully selected accommodations
All gratuities (for hotels, drivers, guides & cruise staff)
Insurance for cancellation and health while outside Canada
Services of one of our cheerful experienced Tour Managers
All prices guaranteed in Canadian funds (All taxes included)
From Victoria - BC’s historic capital, to the rugged wilderness around Tofino on the west coast, “The Island” as it’s known locally has one of the world's most diverse ecosystems: rainforests, marshes, meadows, beaches, mountains, oceans, rivers and lakes. This diversity provides habitats for a huge variety of wildlife species, and so visitors to the island are assured of a wide range of opportunities to experience spectacular natural beauty and wildlife viewing. The beauty and tranquility of the island has also long been a draw for artists and artisans - there are countless art galleries, studios and shops selling unique, locally produced arts and crafts throughout the island.
A highlight of this tour will be our Grizzly Bear Expedition (with Discovery Marine Safaris) in a region known as the “Great Bear Rainforest”. Viewing these amazing animals up close in their natural habitat is an experience that you will never forget. There will be an additional cruise along the west coast of the island to view black bears and other wildlife like heron, eagles, harbour seas and porpoises in their natural habitat.
This region is one of the world's premier locations for whale watching, as we will discover on our marine wildlife viewing adventure. There will be many other opportunities to enjoy a wide variety of wildlife viewing.
Vancouver Island is also home to many resilient First Nations communities. We will learn about the natural and cultural traditions that have been passed down through the generations.
A Naturalist will travel with us throughout the tour, and local guides will join us as well in order to provide more detailed insight.
* This tour is suitable only for the fit and active traveller.
Day 1: Victoria
We fly to Victoria, and upon arrival transfer to our hotel. There will be an afternoon Program Orientation discussion, before our Welcome Dinner.
Day 2: Marine Wildlife Cruise / Victoria
This morning we enjoy an informative talk about the wildlife and ecosystems found along BC’s southern coast, before embarking on a nature walk to Beacon Hill Park with a naturalist guide. After our included lunch we board a vessel for an exciting marine wildlife viewing adventure along the southern coast of Vancouver Island and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Keep your eyes peeled for possible sightings of seals, sea lions, eagles and other marine birds, porpoises and even orcas!
Day 3: Chemainus / Courtenay
We begin the day with a scenic drive up the coast to the quaint fishing village of Cowichan Bay, where we learn about the lifecycle of salmon and marine habitat preservation. We then stop in the charming town of Chemainus, once home to the largest enclosed sawmill in North America. The town is now known for its beautiful murals, which you may explore during our free time. We continue to Courtenay for a 3-night stay. Dinner this evening is at a local restaurant.
Day 4: Deep Bay / Courtenay
We visit the Deep Bay Marine Field Station where we learn more about marine biology and ecosystems. After an included lunch we’ll proceed to the Courtenay Museum for a talk and visit.
Day 5: Grizzly Bear Expedition / Courtenay
Today we set off in a comfortable marine vessel to see Grizzly Bears along the Orford River – home to one of BC’s largest concentration of Grizzlies. Our journey will take us through the exciting Seymour Narrows and the Hole in the Wall, past many scenic islands, with icefield capped mountains in the background. Wildlife viewings en route could include Orca, dolphins, seals, sea lions, bald eagles, otter and mink. Once we reach the Orford River we are welcomed by our hosts, the Homalco First Nations, for whom these are historical lands. They will shuttle us by minibus to a series of viewing areas strategically placed throughout the salmon spawning grounds, where the Grizzlies are fishing and feeding. The bears can come within 10 feet of our platforms, providing once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunities.
Day 6: Tofino
We continue to Errington and visit the North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre. This non-profit, volunteer facility provides care and medical attention to injured wildlife from all over Vancouver Island. After our visit we proceed to Coombs – a farmers market where goats live on the roof of the moss covered store. Then it’s on to the fabled town of Tofino on the wild west coast of the island. With its ancient rainforest, vast stretches of white sand and massive waves pounding in from the Pacific Ocean, Tofino boasts one of Canada’s most breathtaking locations.
Day 7: Wild Pacific Trail / Tofino
We travel to Ucluelet to join a local naturalist who will lead us on a walk along the Wild Pacific Trail, where we’ll learn about the region’s unique flora and fauna. Whales are often spotted from this location as well. Later we’ll stop at the Kwisitis Visitor Centre, which focuses on the natural and cultural heritage of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve.
Day 8: West Coast Black Bears / Nanaimo
Abundant to the West Coast of Vancouver Island, the Black Bear makes its presence known when the tides are low. They roam the shores in search of their favourite delicacy, the Rock Crab. Cruising through these scenic passageways allows for many opportunities to view other wildlife like herons, eagles, harbour seals and porpoises in their natural habitat. All the while the crew will entertain you with interesting facts about wildlife and the surrounding area. After our cruise we’ll enjoy free time in Tofino before continuing to Cathedral Grove – an old growth forest of Douglas Fir, Western Red Cedar, Western Hemlock, Broadleaf Maple and Balsam Fir. Some trees are estimated to be 800 years old. We then travel to the east coast of Vancouver Island and the city of Nanaimo for our overnight stay.
Day 9: Victoria
We head south and stop in Duncan, famous for its Totems. Then we arrive back in Victoria, and enjoy a city tour before checking into our hotel. This evening is our Farewell Dinner.
Day 10: Home
We fly home from Victoria.