a VirtualTourist member from Europe asked on Mar 14, 2006
Hi VT colleagues!
Can anybody tell me what the best way/road and faster from Regina to Vancouver is?
From Regina, take the No. 1 Highway West (Trans Canada Highway) cross Alberta and all the way to Kamloops in BC. At Kamloops, change to the No. 5 Highway South. The highway ends at Hope and you need to change to the No. 1 Highway West to Vancouver. The No. 5 Highway from Merritt to Hope is a toll highway and you need to pay CAD$10.
Thanks a lot!
You're very welcome. By the way, it takes about 21 hours to drive without stopping from Regina to Vancouver.
Note that the drive between Kamloops and Hope (on the Coquihalla toll highway) is the fastest way to get to Vancouver, but if you're looking for the "best way" in terms of scenery, it is definitely the least scenic drive that you can take.
There are several ways to drive to Vancouver once you enter British Columbia from Alberta.
One idea is to drive west once you get to Kamloops, to Lilloett, then across the Coast Mountains to Pemberton, then along Hwy 99 through Whistler, then along Howe Sound (a fjord), which goes into Vancouver. This takes you through BC's ranching country overlooking the Fraser River, and then into very remote but beautifully rugged mountain territory.
Another idea is to take Hwy 1 south from Kamloops along the Fraser Canyon.
My favourite drive, if you have an extra day, is to drive south from Sicamous BC into the Okanagan valley. This is BC's orchard fruit and wine region. This valley is semi-arid and looks a lot like the Mediterranean or South Australia... probably a region you would never recognize as Canada! The highway (Hwy 97) connects south from the Sicamous area to the city of Kelowna, and then it follows along Okanagan Lake - a very long and narrow lake that spans for over 100km.
If you're travelling in the summer months, this area is fantastic because you can tour the wineries, and all the local fresh fruit is sold by the roadside. There are a ton of different towns and beaches to stop off and explore along the way. This is much more leisurely drive.
This might add 3-5 extra hours to your drive, but if you're planning to drive between Regina and Vancouver in several days, you would definitely get a lot more out of driving the alternate routes than the Coquihalla. Coquihalla is only good for a speedy route through BC.