Best of The Rockies and West Coast Family Adventure
starting from US $5,090per person
Choose your own activities and experiences to enjoy.
Tailor your stay to perfectly suit your timeline and budget.
For the ‘kids’ aged 7 to 70, this is the ultimate self-drive adventure, and for Mom and Dad there is plenty of time to relax in wonderful wilderness lodges, enjoy the cosmopolitan delights of Vancouver, Calgary and the small-town resorts of Banff, Jasper, Whistler and Tofino.
Trip at a glance
3 nights Banff
3 nights Jasper
2 nights Clearwater
2 nights Whistler
3 nights Tofino
2 nights Vancouver
Day 1 – Calgary to Banff – Your Canada Adventure Begins
Arriving in Calgary, pick up your rental car and drive less than two hours though the foothills of the Canadian Rockies to the small mountain town of Banff - the perfect base for adventure vacations during the day, and good food and entertainment in the evenings. Overnight in Banff.
Day 2 – Whitewater Rafting on Kananaskis River
There is nothing quite like paddling down a wilderness river - surrounded by peaks and forests, with the chance of wildlife at every bend. And the Kananaskis River is the perfect river - stunningly beautiful, and exciting enough to make it interesting and not too scary. Overnight in Banff.
Note on activities: Unless stated, each active excursion takes roughly either a morning or an afternoon (as you choose) - and the rest of the day is free for you to explore or relax on your own. If any of the activities in this itinerary are not your cup of tea - don’t worry. Simply ask your consultant to substitute other activities when you book your vacation. Also sometimes these activities do have minimum age restrictions on them so we may suggest alternatives as well.
Day 3 – Lake Louise Horse Trail Ride
Riding a horse is a great way to experience the mountains - and also get a flavor of what it was like for the early pioneers in Canada. So today you’ll mount up and head on out into the Rockies on your trusty steed (and they are very trusty) with some of the oldest outfitters in the park. Enjoy 3 hours of stunning Lake Louise scenery. Overnight in Banff.
Day 4 – Travel the Icefields Parkway
After three nights in Banff, today you drive north along the spine of the Canadian Rockies to Jasper - on what is surely one of the most scenic roads in the world. At the highest point is the confluence of glaciers known as the Columbia Icefields, where you ride on a special vehicle onto the Athabasca Glacier. Make sure you bring your water bottles - you can fill up on this pristine glacier water. Overnight in Jasper.
Day 5 – Spirit Island Cruise on Maligne Lake
Today you will drive to one of the most spectacular areas of Jasper National Park. Stop at Maligne Canyon where 10,000 years of erosion have created a 49-meter deep gorge. Take a short walk to Maligne river and marvel at the series of waterfalls that thunder into the canyon. Then board a boat cruise for an interpretative cruise bound for Spirit Island where you can get off the boat for ample photo opportunities. Overnight in Jasper.
Day 6 – Explore Jasper and ride the Tramway
Today is a leisurely day at your own pace. Included is a ride up the Jasper Tramway, for incredible views of the endless mountain ranges. You might want to head to Mount Edith Cavell - the are excellent trails here for all ages, where you’ll be treated with wildflower meadows and calving glacier views.
Day 7 – Jasper to Clearwater
Leaving the Rockies en route for the coast, today you stop for a picnic lunch and enjoy a short hike or a swim in one of the many lakes or rivers you will pass on the way to Clearwater. The scenery is so different here, with lush cedar forest all around you. Overnight in Clearwater.
Day 8 – Explore Wells Gray Park
Close to Clearwater is Wells Gray Park, and today you’ll enjoy a full-day guided hike and canoe tour to Rainbow Falls, and have a picnic lunch surrounded by the Cariboo Mountains. This is bound to be a favorite day on your vacation in Canada.
Day 9 – Clearwater to Whistler
Another leisurely day of driving - to the resort of Whistler. On the way, stop en route to experience a wildlife tour. Experience a jet boat down the Blue River, and keep your eyes peeled for bears. While it’s not guaranteed, your chances of spotting one of these furry locals is great! Continue on, crossing some wonderful high desert - to the mountain resort of Whistler, famous for ski vacations in winter and in summer a Mecca for mountain biking and just about every other outdoor activity you can imagine. Whistler also has excellent hotels, restaurants and shopping. Overnight in Whistler.
Day 10 – Ziptrek in Whistler
Imagine flying through the tree-tops and across rushing rivers and you will have a pretty good idea of what ziplining is all about. It’s totally safe - but when you are standing on the edge of a platform 100ft high your mind doesn’t know that! Overnight in Whistler.
Day 11 – Whistler to Tofino
Continue your adventure down to the sea, then onto a ferry for a cruise across the Georgia Strait to Vancouver Island, and a drive across Vancouver Island to the village of Tofino - quite simply one of our favorite places on the planet. Overnight in Tofino.
Day 12 – Whale Watching
The west coast of Canada is a very special place - rugged, wild and breathtakingly beautiful. Pacific rollers make it a favorite with surfers (lessons available!), and salt spray hangs over pristine beaches bordered by old-growth rain forest. It is also a rich marine environment and today you go in search of Gray Whales migrating from Mexico to Alaska. Overnight in Tofino.
Day 13 – Sea Kayaking and Rainforest Hike in Clayoquot Sound
Today you learn about sea-kayaking - one of the best ways to explore the coast - with a guided adventure across a sheltered inlet to walk in awe among trees more than a 1,000 years old. You will also learn about the sophisticated culture of the First Nations peoples of the area.
Day 14 – Tofino to Vancouver
Drive back across Vancouver Island and take a ferry to the cosmopolitan city of Vancouver. Along the way, stop for a picnic in Cathedral Grove, a stand of particularly massive trees, or have lunch in the small town of Port Alberni. Overnight in Vancouver. You can drop off your car this evening, or the next morning.
Day 15 – Explore Vancouver
Vancouver is a wonderful place to end your vacation. Surrounded by mountains and ocean, it justly has a reputation as one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Included today is a hop-on hop-off bus tour which allows you the freedom to spend as little or as much as you wish at different attractions in Vancouver. Overnight in Vancouver.
Day 16 – Depart Vancouver
Much too soon you leave the beautiful colors and crisp air of Canada behind as your family vacation comes to an end.
What we love about this trip
Kananaskis River white water rafting
Lake Louise Cowboy guided trail ride
Ice Explorer glacier ride
Spirit Island Cruise on Maligne Lake
Jasper wildlife tour
Wells Grey tour with canoe paddle and hike
Ziplining in the forest canopy
Whale watching in Tofino
Rustic lodge at Long Beach with sea kayaking the coastal fringe
Hiking the West Coast rain forest
Below you'll find examples of this trip's accommodation options. Please call us for the full list or advice on how to customize your experience.
Hidden Ridge Resort
An example of our Mountain Lodge accommodations
Tucked away on Tunnel Mountain, Hidden Ridge Resort features charming chalet style condos, only a 2 minute shuttle from central Banff, offering a spectacular view of the Canadian Rockies. Each condo boasts wood burning fireplaces, full kitchens and a patio or balcony. Enjoy stunning views of the Banff town site and the most famous mountains in the Rockies.
Prices & DatesTrip Start Dates - 2017
Runs daily from May 17 to September 8
Canada vacation – price notes
• Prices are per person, and per child (based on 2 adults and 2 children ages 8 to 12 occupying one room)
• Please ask about special rates available for Children under 8 or teenagers between 13 years and 17
Family Self Drive Vacation
from US $5,090to US $5,788per person
On our Self Drive Adventures, you'll enjoy hand picked accommodations, unique Canadian experiences with our favorite guides, car rental, a custom documentation package and our ongoing customer service as you travel. These prices and itineraries are just a guide - our team of friendly Canadian experts are standing by to personalize your ideal vacation.
Not Included• Fuel and refueling fees
• Personal Accident Insurance (PAI)
• Personal Effects Coverage (PEC)
• One-way drop fee on car rental
• LDW deductible of up to $500 depending on car type
• Fee for drivers under the age of 25
• Meals and attractions unless otherwise specified
• Park entrance fees
• Trip Cancellation Insurance
• Canadian sales taxes
Important Seasonal Restrictions:
• Lake Louise trail ride is available from June 17 departure dates onwards. Bow Valley Loop trail ride from Banff will be included prior to this.
• Sprit Island cruise on Maligne Lake runs from May 31st onwards, and can be weather dependent
Fresh Tracks Canada Vs. Others
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- Choose your own activities and experiences to enjoy.
- Tailor your stay to perfectly suit your timeline and budget.
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