Canada, Wildlife Tours

Bears, Whales & Vancouver on a Budget

Tailor-Made Tour
10 Days
From 2935
Whale Watching

Tour Introduction

10 Days from  2935 per adult. All trip details below can be tailored just for you

This two-centre wildlife holiday is aimed at showcasing some of the best of British Columbia’s wildlife while keeping the costs down. This leisurely pace holiday focuses on the iconic wildlife that British Columbia is famed for, its bears and orcas. By travelling between mid-August and mid-September, there will be excellent chances to observe the spectacle of grizzly bears hunting chum salmon in the Orford River, whilst also observing the orcas in both the Salish Sea and Johnstone Strait. Black bears, humpback whales, Pacific white-sided dolphins, Dall’s porpoises, Steller’s sea lions and bald eagles are all also likely to feature. There will also be time to enjoy exploring the vibrant city of Vancouver too, all whilst keeping the internal travel to a minimum.

Full Itinerary

Price from  2935 per adult. Based on sharing double / twin rooms
Day 1
Arrive Vancouver

Arrival in Vancouver. Met on arrival at the airport with a private transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure.

Staying at Century Plaza Hotel. Includes No Meals.

Day 2
Salish Sea

Enjoy the morning at leisure to recover from your flight. Around mid-day pick up from the hotel by shuttle bus for the transfer to Steveston.

Enjoy a shared guided whale watching trip into the Salish Sea and San Juan Islands to south of Vancouver in search of orcas and humpback whales.

Both Transient ‘mammal-eating’ orcas and southern resident 'fish-eating' orcas frequent these waters. The southern resident orcas are now sadly very endangered, but the transient orcas are more abundant.

Humpback whales are also now regular in this area particularly from June to September. Other wildlife likely to be seen includes huge Steller’s sea lions, Pacific harbour seals, many seabirds and bald eagles. Return to your hotel in the evening by shuttle bus.

Staying at Century Plaza Hotel. Includes Breakfast.

Day 3

Enjoy a day at leisure in Vancouver to relax or explore independently. Optional tours are also available.

Downtown Vancouver offers many attractions such as the Vancouver Art Gallery, the Granville Island Market and the Vancouver Lookout Tower. While a little further out of town are the Capilano Suspension Bridge and Grouse Mountain Skyride for wonderful vistas. Both Capilano Suspension Bridge and Grouse Mountain offer a free shuttle service from Canada Place.

Staying at Century Plaza Hotel. Includes Breakfast.

Day 4
Campbell River

Today pick up from the hotel and transfer to Vancouver Airport’s South Terminal. Take Pacific Coastal Airlines flight to Campbell River. Take taxi or airport shuttle (**not included**) to your hotel. Spend the afternoon relaxing at the hotel or exploring the town of Campbell River with its attractions such as the Campbell River Museum.

Staying at Coast Discovery Inn. Includes Breakfast.

Day 5
Bute Inlet

Today depart the hotel for an exciting excursion by powerboat across the Discovery Channel and up the remote Bute Inlet Fjord. Disembark at the mouth of the river where a local Homalco First Nations guide will lead you to purpose built viewing stands overlooking the Orford River.

From mid-August to mid-October grizzly bears gather along this wild river to hunt returning chum salmon that spawn in the river. You may see bears walking the length of the river or actively hunting and splashing after the salmon. Bald eagles and Bonaparte’s gulls also make the most of the feast and the backdrop of autumn forest colours makes for a beautiful setting for this natural spectacle.

Large pods, sometimes 100 strong of Pacific white-sided dolphins also frequent the Bute Inlet and black bears are sometimes spotted foraging along the shorelines. Return to the hotel in the early evening.

Staying at Coast Discovery Inn. Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 6
Discovery Passage

Today enjoy a half day (7 - 8 hour) whale watching excursion into Discovery Passage and Johnstone Strait in search of its summer population of northern resident 'fish eating' orcas. The best period to see these “wolves of the sea” as they are often known is from late July until mid-September.

Besides these impressive predators you are also likely to spot majestic humpback whales that spend the summer feeding in the area. The acrobatic Dall’s porpoise are also found here and haul outs of huge Steller’s sea lions and harbour seals all add to the wildlife highlights on this trip.

Staying at Coast Discovery Inn. Includes Breakfast.

Day 7
Toba Inlet

Today take another bear watching trip, this time into the wilds of Toba Inlet for more magical sightings of magnificent grizzly bears. Your guides today are from the Klahoose First Nation. In the evening, perhaps take an optional water taxi across the channel to April Point Resort for dinner.

Staying at Coast Discovery Inn. Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 8
Campbell River

Today enjoy some time at leisure to explore Campbell River independently. Perhaps make a visit to the nearby QuinSam River Hatchery to learn more about the life cycle of the salmon that have made this region so famous. During the month of September this is a good location to spot black bears fishing for the salmon in the river. Perhaps also visit Elk Falls Provincial Park and Suspension Bridge.

Staying at Coast Discovery Inn. Includes Breakfast.

Day 9

Enjoy a final morning at leisure. Later, take the taxi or airport shuttle (**not included**) to the Campbell River airport to take a Pacific Coastal Airlines flight back to Vancouver. On arrival in Vancouver, take the hotel shuttle (runs every 20 minutes) to the Sandman Signature Vancouver Airport Hotel.

Staying at Sandman Signature Vancouver Airport Hotel. Includes Breakfast.

Day 10
Depart Vancouver

Morning at leisure. Take the hotel shuttle back to the airport for your onward flight.

Includes Breakfast.

Tour Accommodation

Canada Vancouver and the Salish Sea

Century Plaza Hotel


Century Plaza Hotel is a modern, comfortable hotel in the center of Downtown Vancouver. With suites and kitchen facilities available in rooms, it is a convenient accommodation option for guests staying in Vancouver. Due to its fantastic location near Nelson Park, the Scotiabank Theatre, and many restaurant and bars, this hotel is a perfect base from which to explore the attractions of the Downtown Vancouver area.

Rooms at the Century Plaza are spacious and large, and all options have either kitchenette or full kitchen facilities. Categories include studio suites, corporate studios, one bedroom twin or king suites, executive king suites and the penthouse suite on the 30th floor, offering fabulous panoramic views.

The hotel has a steak and wine restaurant, an all day coffee shop and cafe, and a comedy club and bar offering evening entertainment.

Swimming Pool
Air Conditioning

Italian restaurant, spa, coffee shop/cafe, comedy club, fitness center, conference rooms, ballroom, and guest amenity room with tea, coffee, computers, TV, laundry facilities, ice machine and photo booth. Rooms have free Wi-Fi, coffee and tea facilities, iron and ironing board, hairdryers and organic bathroom products. Corporate rooms also have working desks with printer/copier, and suites have either kitchenettes or full kitchens.

Optional Activities

There is a wide variety of attractions to explore in Vancouver, and staff at the hotel can assist guests in planning their time in the city.

Canada Vancouver Island

Coast Discovery Inn


If you are planning a visit to the Campbell River then the Coast Discovery Inn is a perfect welcoming and comfortable option to stay in during your visit. There are stunning views, beautiful boutiques, and great entertainment nearby and it is located right in the heart of downtown and just across the street from the ferry terminal.

The Coast Discovery Inn features modern, well-appointed rooms, some with a jacuzzi option, and a hot buffet breakfast to fuel you for a day of whale or bear watching.

All 88 rooms offer complimentary WiFi, coffee/tea makers and free newspapers. Hairdryers, phones and ironing boards are among the other amenities that guests will find.

Swimming Pool
Air Conditioning

Restaurant and lounge, free Wifi, Luggage storage, fitness facilities with a hot tub, concierge services, 24-hour front desk, business centre and laundry service.

Local Wildlife

Grizzly bears and whales are most commonly seen in the area.

Optional Activities

Whale watching, grizzly bear tours, fishing, kayaking, boat trips, camping, guided hiking, golf, the Canyon View Trail and the Pier Street Farmers Market.

Canada Vancouver and the Salish Sea

Sandman Signature Vancouver Airport Hotel and Resort


The Sandman Signature Vancouver Airport Hotel and Resort is a modern hotel conveniently located just a 10-minute drive from Vancouver International Airport. The hotel’s 256 rooms and suites are equipped with amenities such as a fridge, microwave and complimentary WiFi. Facilities include an indoor and seasonal outdoor pool, fitness centre, restaurant/bar, room service, and complimentary airport shuttle.

Swimming Pool
Air Conditioning

All rooms and suites are equipped with a fridge, microwave, electronic safe, tea/coffee making, and complimentary WiFi. Facilities include an indoor pool and whirlpool, fitness centre, seasonal outdoor pool, and restaurant/bar with room service.

Route Map

Departure Dates

This tour has no set departure date and can be tailored to suit your travel requirements. Contact us for more details.

Travel Information

Are International Flights Included?

No. Please contact us for a quote if required.

Flight Info:

Direct flight options from the UK to Vancouver include British Airways, Air Canada, WestJet and Air Transat.

Best Visited:

August to September

Are you ATOL Registered?

Yes. This means we are legally able to book your international flights in conjunction with your ground arrangements so you can book with us with complete confidence. Read more about our ATOL license here.

John Melton

Area Specialist

If you have any questions regarding this Tour, please feel free to contact me on +44 (0)1803 866965