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Province of British Columbia Travel Answers

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · May 22, 2016
Where to spend NYE?  (8 Answers)

Hi everyone. I'm planning our holiday trip this year and my partner and I would like to have a white holidays this year. We will be spending Christmas eve in Quebec but not yet sure where to spend NYE. We will be in Vancouver on Dec 31 until Jan5. I am thinking of spending Dec31-jan2 in Whistler for the NYE. I chose Whistler because we wanted snow/mountain view but accommodation in these dates are really expensive. Also, I'm wondering if the activities (snow tube, dog sledding, snow shoe) will be open on Jan 1? Besides Whistler, is there any other place good for NYE ? (nice scenery, fireworks, possible snow). I wouldn't consider snow peak resort and big white because it's too far from Vancouver. TIA.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · January 18, 2016
Seeking Luxurious Wintery Retreat  (3 Answers)

Hi all.

I'm new here and just came looking for a forum of fellow travelers who might have knowledge and experience of what's available in BC this time of year (early Feb 2016 trip planning).

Just wondering if anyone knows of anything roughly 5 hours drive from Vancouver resembling a private(ish) cabin on a lake with fireplace and jacuzzi, possibly with skiing/snowshoeing opportunities in the area. Also has to allow 2 night stays as many I've found ask for a 3 night minimum and that's not possible for us this time around.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · December 21, 2014
Barkersville Historic Goldrush town  (2 Answers)

Is it worth putting on a 13 hour return trip and 2 over night stops to see this town. Planning to drive up from Revelstoke and Kamloops then head back to Whistler. Yes the town looks interesting but in all practicality can we justify the mileage and cost - roughly how long will it take to see - possibly compare it to Colonial Williamsburg USA. May be there are interesting places on route to justify this journey. Also thought of visiting Sandon Ghost town - is this like Bodie in the USA

All help greatly appreciated

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · April 23, 2014
Weather in May  (15 Answers)

Hi all, travelling soon to Western Canada what's the weather like in May?
I want to be prepared what to pack

Thanks in advance

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · March 09, 2014
RV or Motels and or Tips for BC  (6 Answers)

My wife and I (early 60s, I originally from Scotland my wife from England but now living in Spain) looking to do a tour of BC and visit my namesake mountain "Jimmy Simpson" and the main attractions, or the best we can squeeze in in a 3 week window next year.
Wondering whether RV hire is economical way to do part of the trip. Only at early stages of planning so any help or pointers would be appreciated.
Looking to get the best experiences and sights both country and town.
Thanks in anticipation for any responses.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · February 14, 2014
Lake Louise area or Canmore  (4 Answers)

Planning a trip across the Rockies. Staying in Jasper for a few nights then driving the beautiful ice-fields parkway on to Lake Louise. Staying here and then making way back to Calgary to fly home. My dilemma is should we spend more time in the lake louise area and visit Banff from here then onto Canmore for an overnight before flying back from Calgary. OR spend more nights in Canmore also visiting Banff? Basically I suppose I am asking is there more to see and do (spectacular scenery) around Lake Louise area or around Canmore? Any advice greatly appreciated.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · February 13, 2014
Vancouver to Clearwater  (5 Answers)

Any advice on where to stop over when driving from Vancouver to Clearwater ? Planning a trip in late August don't want to drive more than about 3 or 4 hours at a stretch. Where would be the best place to find a b&b for an overnight stop? Also best places to see enroute? .

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 10, 2013
Family trip - Victoria-Kamloops-Jasper-Banff-Kelowna-Vancouver  (4 Answers)


My family (including 2 teens & my wife) are planning 7-days trip based this route starting this weekend (July 13-20):

- Victoria to Kamloops

- Kamloops to Jasper (check out Helmcken Falls & Mt Robson on the way) -

- Jasper to Lake Louise/Banff (stay in Lake Louise area but drive to Banff) -

- Lake Louise/Banff to Sicamous (check out Halcyon Hotspring near Revelstoke) -

- Sicamous to Kelowna (check out Salmon Arm & nearby lake area) -
Kelowna to Vancouver/Victoria

I do want to spend couple of nights in key locations like Jasper & Lake Louise or Banff.

Besides advice on cities and hotels/B&B for the overnight stay, any recommendations on "must visit" vs. "may visit" places will be helpful. Thanks a lot in advance :-)

- S

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 29, 2012
Hlaf day drives out of Princeton B.C.?  (8 Answers)

We'll be staying a couple of days with elderly relatives in Princeton during the second week in October. They are in poor health, so we want to give them time during the afternoon to have a nap and have some time to themselves.
Does anyone have any suggestions for places to do/things to see that are within a couple of hours drive - preferably places where we could get out and stretch our legs on a short hike? We're not into vineyards, but would be up for most other things.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 13, 2012
What's the drive like between Vancouver and Princeton?  (4 Answers)

Due to unexpected circumstances, it looks like we will have to drive between Vancouver and Princeton B.C. during our proposed trip in mid October.
Can anyone give us some insight into this drive? How long should we allow? Is there anything interesting to see/do en route? Would it be safe to drive sections of this road in the dark (since I imagine the days will be getting quite short by then)?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · March 19, 2012
How to travel from Jasper to Vancouver by a rented car?  (2 Answers)

I'll get off the train in Jasper and than I want to travel by Icefields pacific to Banff and than to Vancouver with few stops for camping and hiking. But renting a car in Jasper with return in Vancouver is extremely expensive.

I was thinking about solution with renting a car in Jasper, return it in Banff and than by bus to some city in BC (near boarder with AB),rent a car there again for travel to Vancouver (is cheaper inside province). But I don't know the city and don't have experience with local buses and prices.

Any better suggestions? Completely different proposals?
Thank you,

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · January 17, 2012
VIA Rail, Canada------ 'Vancouver-Toronto' route

Hello Friends!!

I would like to undertake a train journey from Edmonton,AB to Toronto,ON next week, i.e. end of January 2012.

I'm on a budget travel and would like some info on this train route.

I plan to travel ECONOMY CLASS as i cannot afford anything better

1) How comfortable are the seats and the coach facilities (toilets,etc) for this 03 nights, 02 days journey to Toronto.

2) It says, meals not included in the economy class ticket.

So, can i still buy my choice of dinners & breakfasts in the dining car? OR is the facility in the dining car exclusive for sleeper class


3) What is the quality of meals on-board; are there any good take-away food options @ VIA stations in Saskatoon, Winnipeg, etc.

4) How cold is it inside the coaches during nights? Just to let you know,its freezing out here in Edmonton now with temp. reading -32C

5) Is there any entertainment option in economy class or electric sockets for my laptop?

6) Do they offer any discounts for the "Hosteling International"(HI) members?

If you guys can clarify my doubts, that would be great.

Thank you for the help. I look forward to this winter adventure across Canada.

Cheers, ciao!!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · December 09, 2011
Wanting to find secuded lodge or resort  (3 Answers)

My husband and i are looking for a secluded area in beautiful BC nature to quit smoking. Looking for a place that doesn't sell cigarettes and is secluded from towns or stores where we could easily buy them. Any ideas would be greately appreciated!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · November 07, 2011
Viewing the Northern Lights in Feb/Mar?  (1 Answer)

I'm looking into a possible trip in February or March to view the auroras. Where in northern BC is the best chance to catch them during this time?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 27, 2011
BC Border Crossing from Washington State  (11 Answers)

Planning a trip Sept/Oct next year with an Aussie friend. Dropping him off at SEA-TAC in a rental car from Canada. Will be flying out of YVR the next day. Have family in Chilliwack and this would be on a Friday night - which is the best border crossing?- Sumas or someplace else? Any suggestions? Or should I just check online for the border crossing waittimes, and play it by ear?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 19, 2011
Medical and Travel insurance help.  (4 Answers)

My Girlfriend and I Have a one-way ticket to Western Canada in October, and had some questions regarding the health system in Canada.
Please keep in mind that we do not know how long we will be staying in Canada, the plan is for at least the winter season. This makes it very hard to plan travel insurance etc...

1. Does Canada's public health system cover Australians on a working holiday visa? Or will we be up for alot of money if we don't have travel insurance?

2. We will be doing alot of skiing over in Canada. How does the ambulance system work? Will we be up for1000's if one of us hurts ourselves in a remote location?

3. Any other considerations we may be missing?

Thanyou so much in advance for your answers.


Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · April 26, 2011
Hotel Availability en route to Vanc. Island  (6 Answers)

We are driving to Vancouver Island via Jasper, Banff, Kelowna at the end of June, taking 2 to 3 days. Is it necessary to book hotel rooms along the way ahead of time or can we just stop over where we feel like it, and be assured of getting a room? Thanks!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · April 19, 2011
Lodgings Near Skytrain  (4 Answers)

I visited my niece in Fort Langley in 2009. It was on a trip that touched many places in the Pacific Northwest, so my time in BC was very short. But I'm planning a train trip on which BC would be a stop, and remembering my experience in 2009, it seems to me that if I stay a day or two in Vancouver, the best place to stay would be outside the city close to the Skytrain. I did one roundtrip on it, and I found it a good experience. So any ideas about a place,not too expensive, with easy access to the Skytrain?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · March 09, 2011
Please advise for travel itinerary vancouver - rocky mountains and back  (2 Answers)

Hi everyone,

this July our 3-girls-combo will be travelling to BC/Alberta for 3 weeks and would like to loop from Vancouver to the Rocky Mountains and back by car. Since we will stay some days in Vancouver and 4 days on Vancouver Island, we're talking about 12/13 days to drive to/through the Rockies and back. I know this is quite tight a schedule, but we cannot afford to take more holiday.

Therefore, I would like to ask your advice whether our travel itinerary is manageable and every bit of suggestion for a nice alteration or nice places to stay over is warmly welcome! Also, we would need some help with the distances and driving time, since we lack the concept of "doable" road kilometers (depending on the quality of the roads and speed limits...)

We had planned to start our drive eastwards from horseshoe bay (coming from Vancouver Island) onto hwy 99 towards Whistler and continue to Joffre Lake Provinical Park. Is Whistler worth a stop? Any suggestions and must-sees on the way?

In Joffree Lake Park, we would like to start a 2-day hike to the upper lake (camp there the night and trek down again).
Have you any suggestions concerning campground, activities, walks, trails?
Then, we had planned to have a big-driving-day all the way to Mount Robson, where we would like to stop over for a 3-day-hike to berg lake trail. Is driving this distance in a day feasable?

Considering that we are short on time, is the Wells Gray Provincial Park worth a prolonged stop? And then we would like to do the "usual NP-Loop" - but since the NP locate in Alberta, I will consult the forum section of Province of Alberta for that matter.

Anyway, for this bit - Cheers for your help!
Julia (with Ada and Sonja)

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · February 05, 2011
British Columbia  (7 Answers)


We are a group of 10 people including 4 childrens age 12 travelling to British Columbia for 10 days in May 2011. We are planning to visit Banff, Lake Louis, Vancouvar and whistler. We are not sure how many days we should keep for each of the above places. Please advise.
Further we also plan to rent a trailer or motorhome for travelling around the BC, is it comfortable as this would be our first experience to travel in trailer or motorhome.can you also suggest some good renting companies for the same, we only want to rent the trailer or motorhome for 2 to 3 nights only.
Please also advise the places to go to in vancouvar and vancouvar island.

over all please suggest any other place to visit in BC.

Devang Kanakia

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · January 06, 2011
train travel  (9 Answers)

has anyone taken viarail from vancouver, bc to jasper, ab or banff, ab? which direction and route would give the most scenery as i can't afford the luxury of stopping overnight so the whole trip can be made in daylight. what is the best time of year for this trip? thanks for any and all help regards omax

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · December 14, 2010
2 weeks in BC  (10 Answers)

Hallo everybody.

Next July 2011 I am going to stay in Vancouver for a week because of a business trip. Of course I will spend a weekend in town, and I am sure I will enjoy it since everyone speaks kindly about Vancouver. Besides, since I come from Europe right before my summer vacation time, I am considering extending my stay for an additional couple of weeks in order to visit British Columbia.

I would rent a car and go around. My main interests as a traveler are: nature (national parks, scenery, animal watching), dining, outdoor sports (at least 1 day for kayaking is a must), culture. Moreover, as many do, I prefer off-the-beaten-track hidden spots rather than overcrowded tourist traps. Which places would you recommend not to miss?

I have thought about spending 4-5 days on Vancouver Island, including some kayaking, and 7-8 days wandering around the southeastern part of the province -Okanagan Valley, Kootenays, Rockies). I allow 2 days to drive from Vancouver to the east, and back to town. This tentative itinerary is based on information gained from guidebooks, brochures, etc.

Would you think it is balanced? Would you suggest different areas to visit instead? I would love to include some of the wild North, but I fear driving distances would come out to be a negative factor having only 15 days.

Any advice, either from locals or from people who have experience about travel in BC, will be welcome.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · December 04, 2010
Skeena train New Years

We're looking at taking a trip on the Skeena train first week in January. Is that timing advisable, or are we should we wait till we can do a trip in Spring?

Options might be fly Vancouver to Prince Rupert, then skeena train back down to Jasper. Then either train back to Vancouver or perhaps some alternative travel to across to Whistler?

Are there any transport options Jasper to Whistler?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · November 08, 2010
Weekend or Day trip  (5 Answers)

Hi all,

My husband are trying to head up to BC for a day or two while in the area visiting family during the last weekend of November. I have only been to BC as a kid and he has never been. We will be staying along I-5 in WA and most likely driving up. Any suggestions on must see's? I've read about the salmon run and a lot of activities in the Victoria area. We like small town attractions, culture events in the cities, and outdoorsy activities. We try to stay away from large group activities.

Any suggestions are appreciated, including B&B or independent lodging ideas, activites, and other. We are looking for low to mid level pricing.

Much thanks!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 10, 2010
Where to stay in BC?  (10 Answers)

I'm looking for a quick and affordable get-away in BC. I live in Vancouver and prefer to stay within about a 4-hour driving radius (ferry rides excluded). It would be great to stay in an affordable resort or cabin/cottage on the water (ocean or nice lake) with lots of greenery and fresh air, away from the city. A place with walking trails, boat/bike rentals, and a hot tub would be ideal, but I'm not overly picky.
It will just be my boyfriend and I going for about 3 nights (4 days) and we're hoping to find somewhere for no more than100/night. Nothing fancy, just clean and cozy.

Could anyone recommend anything? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! (Even better if you have personal experience with a specific accommodation.)

Thanks in advance!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 02, 2010
Seattle-Vancouver Island -Vancouver Trip-Kindly review  (5 Answers)

Would appreciate any input!
After alot of back & forth this is what we've come up with.
Arrive Seattle 9/8 (8:30pm)
9/9 Drive to Port Washington Ferry for Victoria. SOmeone on the forum suggested Bainbridge Ferry,Hood Canal Bridge, Olympic Park, Cho Ferry to Victoria. Is Port Angeles the Coho Ferry??
Stay in Victoria overnight, spend part of day (have been there before)
9/10-9/12 Tofino area
Afternoon of 9/12 head to Vancouver. Best way??
9/12-9/15 Vancouver
9/15 Head back to Seattle, spend the afternoon in Seattle (been there before)
10:30 pm flight back to Boston.
Would you please offer any suggestions, I know we are pressed for time, but would like to mostly see the views, maybe a zip line or kayak somewhere along the way??
Thank you!!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · August 02, 2010
Seattle-Vancouver-Whistler-VI-transportation??  (3 Answers)

We are planning a trip in September,8 Days. Have been reading the forum & revising as I read!
#1 Do we need a car? From what I'm reading we would only really need a car for Vancouver Island since we want to see more than Victoria.
#2 We would like to take the Sea to Sky train to Whistler, if time is short, would there be an early evening bus back to Vancouver? Scenery, a look at Whistler area is what we want. Is there a way to Vancouver Island from Whistler. Or would we just have to be back in Vancouver? Thinking that a night bus ride might be bettter than overnight & time to get back in a.m.
#3 We had planned on renting a car in Victoria.
#4 Ferry back to Seattle from Victoria.
Comments, advise most welcome.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 20, 2010
3 weeks Calgary to Vancouver  (12 Answers)

Hi all,

Here is the "The Plan" so far any comments will be appreciated

Day 0 Sat Fly in Calgary at Noon Drive to Banff (130 km 1 hour 37 mins)
Day 1 Sun Vists Lake Louise early in the morning Sleep in Banff (60.5 km – about 45 mins)
Day 2 Mon Drive to Jasper Via the Icefields Over night in Jasper (289 km – 3 hours 46 mins)
Day 3 Tues Visit Jasper Area
Day 4 Wed Drive to Kelowna or Kamloops Via Yellwstone Hwy OR back down the Ice fields Hwy and across HWY 1 ( ANY SUGGESTIONS EITHER WAY? ) (607km - 8 Hrs)
Day 5 Thur Drive to Whistler (421 km - 6 hrs)
Day 6 Fri Whistler
Day 7 Sat Sea to sky Hwy to Vancouver Island Tofino (364 km – about 6 hours 16 mins )
Day 8 Sun Tofino (maybe a Whale and Bear Zodiac tour)
Day 9 Mon Tofino or Vancouver (289 km – about 5 hours 14 mins)

Day 10 Tues Vancouver
Day 11 Wed Vancouver
DAy 12 Thur Drive to Seattle (140 mi 2 hrs 33 mins
3 hours 0 mins in traffic )
Day 13 Fri Space Needle and downtown Seattle
Day 14 Sat Possible Alaskan Crusie
Day 14-21 Cruise
Day 21 Sat Drive to Vancouver
DAy 22 Sun Fly Home

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 19, 2010
Kelowna or Kamloops  (6 Answers)

which is a better choice to stay?

Is it worth spending more than an night on the way to whistler or is this just a stop over point?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 18, 2010
Is is Jasper worth a stay  (8 Answers)

Is is Jasper worth a stay or should we drive up and back from Banff in a day?

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