We began our all-inclusive itinerary in Vancouver – gateway to the Rocky Mountains and the starting point for our amazing Canadian adventure. Vancouver is a beautiful world-class city located between the sparkling blue waters of the Pacific Ocean and the snow-capped Coast Mountains which provide a majestic backdrop to the city’s glittering skyline. After coming together for a night in Vancouver we flew to Calgary before transferring by luxury coach to Banff, one of Canada’s most popular destinations. Naturally beautiful, like all visitors to Banff we were greeted by incredible mountains, forests, streams and lakes.
The constantly changing weather and light allowed endless opportunities for keen photographers to capture stunning landscape and wildlife images. We included a photography workshop by Lee Herbet of Capturing Passion during our time in Banff which allowed participants to brush up on their skills and make the most of the many postcard perfect moments that were included in our itinerary. A gondola trip up Sulphur Mountain allowed us to enjoy the panoramic views of the surrounding peaks and valleys which were covered in a fresh layer of snow from the night before. During our visit to Cave and Basin participants learned about the development of Canada’s national park network and the important role it plays in protecting and preserving the environment.
Our second stop was still within the borders of Banff National Park is beautiful Lake Louise, a turquoise-blue lake fed directly by the dramatic Victoria Glacier. The lake was still frozen from the winter cold but with the famous Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise sitting directly on the shores of the lake and was the perfect base from which to explore the region. Participants had ample time to enjoy the hotel facilities or one of the trails that surround the property. Many also took the opportunity to venture up the local ski slopes for more stunning views of the region. Out itineray also included a trip to Yoho National Park which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1981. Meaning “awesome” in the native Cree language our itinerary includes the Spiral Tunnels and Emerald Lake.
Continuing west we transfered from Lake Louise to Jasper along the Icefields Parkway – the highway that stretches through the heart of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks World Heritage Site. As part of our transfer, participants visited the Columbia Icefields. This one of the largest known accumulations of ice south of the Arctic Circle and incorporates eight glaciers including the Athabasca Glacier. Perfect weather greeted our arrival at the glacier and we enjoyed some time wandering on the glacier as well as on the nearby Sky Bridge.
Jasper was our next stops – a short distance from some of the most spectacular scenery found anywhere in the Canadian Rockies. We visited the Maligne Valley, home to a wide range of flora as well as an abundance of wildlife as well as the beautifully cascading waterfalls and the ever expanding ranges of limestone rising out of Medicine Lake. This mysterious disappearing lake changes seasonally as the flow rate of melt waters fill and empty the basin. Along the way we were also fortunate to spot a bald eagle.
Some would argue that we left the best part of our itinerary to last. Boarding the world famous Rocky Mountaineer Train in Jasper, guests were quickly be surrounded by the dramatic scenery of the Continental Divide and by the river valleys of the Monashee and Cariboo Mountains. Highlights of our two day train journey include Yellowhead Pass, the Coast and Cascade Mountains, the
lush green fields of the Fraser Valley and the rushing waters of Hell’s Gate.
Enhancing the many activities and tours included in our itinerary and adding further to the already exceptional value was the inclusion of almost all breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Participants enjoyed meals prepared by some of Canada’s best chefs as they showcased the best of Canadian produce,the freshest of ingredients and we dined in some of the most amazing locations imaginable.
Click on the links below to see some short videos highlighting each part of your destination.