In search of bears and whales

  • Starting location: Vancouver
  • Ending location: Vancouver
Highlights
Meal options

Full-board

Accommodation

Private room

Enjoy fabulous encounters with black and grizzly bears and go looking for whales on this wildlife break - the ideal addition to a self-drive tailor-made touring holiday.

Fly by float plane and stay in Knight Inlet, a spectacular fjord carved by glaciers in British Columbia's coastal mountains and a pristine wilderness renowned for its excellent grizzly bear viewing.

Go humpback and grey whale watching off British Columbia’s rugged Pacific west coast, then travel back to Victoria ‘the City of Totems’ on Vancouver Island’s east coast for more exhilarating trips to search for orcas, minke whales, porpoises and harbour seals. This is the ideal addition to a self-drive tailor-made touring holiday.

Highlights

  • Bear viewing tour for the ultimate wildlife encounter
  • Whale watching
  • Scenic float plane transfer

What's included:

  • 6 nights accommodation and local taxes
  • BC Ferries tolls for vehicle and passengers
  • Meals at Knight Inlet Lodge
  • Return float plane transfers
  • Grizzly bear viewing at Knight Inlet
  • Whale watching tour or black bear viewing in Clayoquot Sound
  • Admission to Burchart Gardens
  • Whale watching tour in Victoria
  • Travel documentation, maps, driving instructions
  • Lonely Planet Guide of Canada

What's excluded:

  • Flights
  • Car hire
  • Road tolls
  • BC Ferries reservation fees
  • National Park entrance fees

Holiday Itinerary

Day 1

Your destination today is the town of Campbell River, known as the ‘Salmon Capital of the World’ with Strathcona Provincial Park as the backdrop, Desolation Sound, Mount Washington and Robinson Bright providing the drama. You will leave Vancouver for Horseshoe Bay and sail for 1 hr 45 min on BC Ferries to Vancouver Island.

Day 2

Today’s destination is Knight Inlet Lodge which is not accessible by road so you’ll fly by float plane. A thrilling 30 minute flight will bring you to Glendale River where Knight Inlet Lodge floats on large cedar booms. Bring your camera – it’s time to go grizzly bear watching! Overnight in Knight Inlet Lodge.

Day 3

Early morning, return to bear viewing platforms before departing to Campbell River by float plane. Collect your car and head south-west to the rugged west coast. En-route a picture stop at Cathedral Grove to enjoy the splendour of 800 year-old Douglas Fir and Cedars. Arrive in Tofino mid-afternoon.

Day 4

Today enjoy a whale watch cruise in search of grey and humpback whales, sea lions, sea birds and resident bald eagles. Or a bear viewing cruise in search of black bears who head for the closest food source – the ocean!

Day 5

Travel back to the east coast of Vancouver Island and head south for Victoria. En-route stops if time permits at artists community of Chemainus, Duncan the ‘City of Totems’ and Quw’utsun Heritage village, which provides an insight into the lives of the northwest coastal peoples life.

Day 6

This morning depart for an exhilarating trip in search for orcas, minke and grey whales, porpoises and harbour seals and other marine life. The afternoon is free to explore Victoria.

Day 7

Leaving Victoria today via a scenic route to Burtchart Gardens, fifty-five acres of gardens and floral displays. Continue the drive to Swartz Bay and the BC ferry terminal for a 90-minute ferry ride to Taswwassn where you’ll enjoy the scenery of the Gulf Islands and the Straits of Georgia.

Dates and prices

Available dates

Pick the month you would like to arrive, then in the enquiry form tell us what your preferred arrival date would be.

Arrival date
Price
30 May to 23 June
£1300
24 June to 23 July
£1375
1 August to 24 August
£1400
25 August to 12 September
£1525
13 September to 14 October
£1400

Do you have a question about this holiday?

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Well, fear not, just fill in our super short question form and we will get back to you within 24 hours!

Team members who have been on this holiday

Paul Sugg
Liz Olkowicz

At Footprint Holidays, all of our holidays have been experienced by at least one of our team members, so any questions you have will be directly answered by our first-hand experience.

Ask us whatever you would like

We want to make sure you have the best adventure possible and will answer any of your questions for this holiday.

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Whether you have ten questions about each stop of the itinerary or want to check the dietary properties of our packed lunches, no matter the question, ask away!

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After we have received your question, our friendly team will check for answers with those of our staff who have been on this holiday and get back to you with an answer promptly.

Question form for holiday: In search of bears and whales
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Enquiry form for In search of bears and whales

Canada
(Vancouver)
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Term explanations

Activity levels

All of our holidays have an activity level rating. They are rated on a scale of 1 - 5 and give you a good idea of the level of activity and fitness which the holiday requires.

Activity level 1: Leisurely

A holiday for those that are in good health, enjoy the outdoors and want a relaxing trip with some light exercise on their adventure.

Activity level 2: Moderate

This is a holiday for the fit and healthy, who love to get up and are prepared to do a good day's worth of exercise every day of the holiday.

Activity level 3: Tough

Only for the most experienced of holiday-makers, you have to have a wild spirit of adventure and impeccable health and fitness!

Meal options

Depending on the holiday, there will be different meal options that come standard in the price. They may change from day to day, depending on the holiday's itinerary and where you end up staying. The meal plans will be clearly marked in your itinerary.

There may also be the opportunity to upgrade your meal plans when filling in our booking form.

Bed and breakfast

After a good night's rest, there will be a free breakfast available for you to indulge in.

Half-board

You will be given two free meals included with your accommodation, depending on the itinerary it could be any combination of breakfast, lunch and dinner. Which combination will be clearly marked out in your itinerary.

Full-board

You will be given three free meals included with your accommodation: breakfast, lunch and dinner.

All-inclusive

All meals, food and beverages are free and included with your accommodation.

Self-catering

No meals are included in your accommodation but there will be some sort of kitchen, cooking utensils and cooking apparatus available to use.

Room-only

No meals are included in your accommodation and there is no cooking apparatus available. You will be expected to eat out or prepare/buy meals beforehand.

Terrain types

As we provide holidays all across the world, there are many terrain types which you will encounter. As the terrain is likely to change on a day to day basis depending on your itinerary, we aim to list the most prevalent types you will find on your holiday.

Flat

Terrain with no noticable incline.

Hilly

The terrain includes multiple inclines going up and down.

Mountainous

Terrain with a steeper incline than hilly and is more likely to be combined with unsurfaced roads and off-road activities.

Tarmac

Tarmacked roads which are easy to cycle and drive down.

Unsurfaced roads

Roads which have a gravel or dirt surface.

Off-road

Commonly this will involve hiking trails and other hard-to-reach places by car.

Accommodation

Depending on your holiday, you may be staying in one type of accommodation or you may stay in many as you travel. For each holiday we list the standard accommodation included in the holiday.

There may be opportunities to upgrade or change your accommodation, please let us know of any special requests when filling out the booking form.

Private room

Usually rooms with a double bed or twin singles for just you and/or your companion.

Shared rooms

Rooms which you will be sharing with other adventurers and new-found friends. Often these rooms will have bunk beds and sleep up to six people.

Single cabin

The same as a private room but on-board one of our cruise ships or barges.

Shared cabin

The same as a shared room but on-board one of our cruise ships.

Huts / Gîtes

These are homely places, similar to staying in a holiday cottage. They have self-catering facilities and sleeping arrangements can range from private rooms with en-suite bathrooms to shared rooms with other adventurers.

Star-rated accommodation

On many of our holidays there are places you will stay which are three- and four-star rated accommodation.

Financial Protection

At Footprint Holidays we are happy to be members of the Travel Trust Association or TTA and hold a certificate of general membership, our TTA membership number is Q5057. Guests can verify our membership status by searching our company name or membership number on the TTA website which can be found by clicking here and entering our membership number: Q5057.

Your financial protection is importance to us, hence our membership in the Travel Trust Association, ensuring your payments and any travel arrangements you make with us 100% protected in the event of any supplier failure.

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