West Coast Wilderness Adventure on Haida Gwaii

A Unique Chance To Experience Haida Culture

At one time the Haida nation dominated the west coast of North America. From the fastness of their home – an archipelago blessed by natural abundance off the coast of what is now northern British Columbia – they explored south as far as California - trading and sometimes fighting for slaves and treasure. Their wealth enable them to develop their art and culture to an unusual degree, and at the end of this journey you’ll experience their culture and hospitality. Before that you’ll explore the best of the Canadian Rockies, starting in Calgary and visiting all the highlights on your way north and then west to the sea. Space is very limited on this trip, so booking early is strongly advised. The lucky few will have a chance to learn about Haida culture and traditions from the Haida themselves – and when you understand just a little of their tragedy and their resilience you can’t help but feel inspired.

  • Starting From

    $8,195 USD

    per person
  • Trip length

    15 days

    14 nights
  • Hot Spots
    Calgary, Banff, Field, Jasper, Prince George, Prince Rupert, Masset, Vancouver
LET’S PERSONALIZE THIS TRIP

The Best of The Canadian Rockies


This is what Canada is best at – beauty and wilderness that take your breath away. We’ve selected some of the most diverse eco-systems Western Canada has to offer on this trip. You’ll see unforgettable vistas and a huge variety of wildlife to go with it. Canada unplugged.

Wilderness & Culture On Haida Gwaii


After crossing the Hecate Strait by floatplane from the Canadian you’ll get a real insight into how the Haida people lived for thousands of years.

Haida guides will take you out to ancient villages, and explain the culture and art of their people. You’ll also try their food and hear stories from elders – all amid the unspoiled wilderness of this very remote group of islands.

Plenty of Daily Experiences to Choose From


We’ve curated a wide range of options for you to choose from, ensuring it’s your trip done in your way. Possibilities include everything from a helicopter tour of remote glaciers to a quiet evening canoe on a serene mountain lake.

YOUR TRIP DAY-BY-DAY

Think of this itinerary as just a starting point. Our experienced Canadian Insiders will create a personalized experience for you that matches your schedule, travel style and budget.

View Map List days
Day 1 View Map

Arrive in Calgary, Drive to Banff

Welcome to Calgary International Airport! Pick up your rental car and drive through the Canadian Rocky Mountains to the town of Banff. The town of Banff is a unique destination as a UNESCO World Heritage Site with the charm of a small mountain community. Breathe in the fresh Canadian Rockies air – you’ve arrived!

Intermediate Sized Car Rental

(1 of 2 activities)

Enjoy the freedom of exploring by vehicle. Your rental includes a GPS, loss damage waiver, unlimited mileage, and one additional driver.

Discovery Parks Pass

(2 of 2 activities)

We've included an unlimited pass to Canada’s national parks, national marine conservation areas and national historic sites.

Overnight in Banff

Overnight at the Juniper Hotel and Bistro. This hotel is nestled at the base of Mount Norquay, with convenient access to skiing and hiking, and just a few minutes by car from the heart of Banff. Enjoy easy access to outdoor recreation and spectacular mountain views. The alpine hotel features an on-site restaurant, outdoor hot tub, and seasonal complimentary shuttle service to and from downtown Banff.

Day 2 View Map

Explore Banff National Park

Fill your lungs with cool, fresh Rocky Mountain air and head out for a day of exploration around Banff National Park.

Insider Tip

Visit the Whyte Museum, to learn about Banff’s rich artistic and pioneering heritage.

Banff in Summer

(1 of 1 activities)

Banff is like Canada’s playground. Visiting during the summer months gives you a chance to enjoy the crisp mountain air during early morning walks, hike through Banff National Park, stroll up and down Banff Avenue for a little shopping, or enjoy five-star spa treatments at your leisure. In the evening, you can enjoy the beautiful starry sky or dine at some of the best restaurants – the choice is yours. Whether you’re an adrenaline junky or prefer to experience the quieter side of Banff, there are activities for everyone.

Three Sisters Peaks Helicopter Tour from Banff

(1 of 3 options)

The most action-packed twelve minutes of your life! Get up close and personal with the world-famous Three Sisters. You will want to reach out a touch them as you whisk by them before escaping into the Spray Valley where you will explore the extraordinary hues of the Spray Lakes.

Scenic Ride to Sunshine Village & Hosted Trail Walk

(2 of 3 options)

Begin your day with a scenic ride up to a mountainside resort. Take in the spectacular views before a guided walk through Sunshine Meadows. Learn about the wildlife, vegetation and ecosystem of this fascinating world above the treeline.

Banff Sunrise Photography Tour (Extra Cost)

(3 of 3 options)

Wake up early to experience the stunning scenery of Banff National Park at sunrise. Explore with a private guide and learn how to take great photos.

Day 3 View Map

Banff to Emerald Lake

After a leisurely morning in Banff, drive through scenic Banff National Park, across the border into BC. Arriving at the exquisite Emerald Lake Lodge, located in the heart of Yoho National Park in BC. Enjoy your day and let your worries disappear in the gorgeous outdoor hot tub surrounded by towering peaks.

Overnight at Emerald Lake

Overnight at Emerald Lake Lodge. This stunning property is located in the heart of Yoho National Park, famed for its Jade-coloured waters. Built of hand-hewn timber and featuring massive stone fireplaces, the Emerald Lake Lodge includes an in-house dining room, quiet reading and sitting rooms, and a games room. Other hotel amenities include a dry sauna, stainless steel outdoor hot tub and fitness room to enjoy if you wish to do so.

Day 4 View Map

Explore Emerald Lake and Yoho National Park

Immerse yourself today in the beauty of Yoho National Park. Offering beautiful places to explore such as Field and Emerald Lake. With so many beautiful places to discover in and around Emerald Lake, you will be wondering where to start first.

Emerald Lake & Yoho National Park in Summer

(1 of 1 activities)

Emerald Lake is one of the most admired destinations in Yoho National Park, with an unmatched diversity of both activities and landscapes suited to the enthusiastic traveler. An hour-long hike around the lake is one of the least strenuous but most rewarding activities in the park. Emerald Lake is a fantastic place to see bald eagles, moose, and ospreys, as are waterfowl such as loons and mergansers. You can also rent canoes and rowboats to take in the beauty from the lake.

Day 5 View Map

Icefields Parkway - Emerald Lake to Jasper

Today is an all-day trip down the spine of the Canadian Rockies – on one of the most spectacular roads in the world, with lots to do along the way.

Insider Tip

Tell us whether you'd like a full day of sightseeing, or a more more relaxed pace.

Afternoon Athabasca Ice Walk Tour

(1 of 2 options)

Enjoy a glacier adventure on an ice walk with short stops along the trail. Learn more about active glaciation and understand the features you are seeing. There are constant views of the Canadian Rockies, along with glacially carved landscapes such as moraines, millwells, and crevasses.

Ice Explorer and Glacier Skywalk Admissions

(2 of 2 options)

Travel onto the surface of the Athabasca Glacier by Ice Explorer and then walk on an exciting cliff-edge walkway which leads to a glass floor platform.

Overnight in Jasper National Park

Overnight at the Tekarra Lodge. Set amongst the towering pines, the property sits atop a ridge overlooking the convergence of the Miette and Athabasca Rivers in Jasper National Park. The mountain lodge is located just 2km from the Jasper townsite. Enjoy the rustic charm of the Canadian wilderness with a wood burning fireplace, perfect for cozying up with a book and a glass of wine. The hotel also offers binocular rentals, bike rentals, and complimentary WiFi.

Day 6 View Map

Explore Jasper National Park

Jasper National Park, the biggest in the Canadian Rockies, is a magical place - and we have lots of ideas to help you enjoy it.

Insider Tip

Jasper's Bear's Paw Bakery offers delicious homemade stuff - one of our favorite spots!

Jasper in Summer

(1 of 1 activities)

Just 3.5 hours from Banff along the famous Icefields Parkway that straddles the continental divide, Jasper is a great base to explore Jasper National Park – the largest in the Canadian Rockies. Jasper is the gentle giant of the Rockies and this small mountain town offers visitors a more laid-back mountain experience, with equal options for adventure, discovery and relaxation. Jasper was once seen as an island of civilization in a vast wilderness, but recently has become a popular getaway from urban life, and a special place to reconnect with nature. Whether you’re rafting on the Athabasca River, overlooking the park from the top of the Tramway, hiking the trails, or soaking in rejuvenating natural hot springs, Jasper will give you that breathing room to relax and enjoy the best of this natural playground.

Pyramid Lake Guided Evening Canoe Paddle

(1 of 3 options)

An evening on a mountain lake is breathtaking – the call of a loon, a beaver gliding though the water, or perhaps a moose grazing on the shore. Paddle with a guide across the lake, in a large canoe for a peaceful way to end your day.

Maligne Valley Hiking Tour

(2 of 3 options)

Today your guide will lead you on a unique route along the Maligne Canyon Rim to bridge #5. You will feel the spray of the waterfall and hear its roar. Expect to learn about the mysterious underground drainage system as you walk the lower portion of this fascinating gorge. The water truly is this turquoise!

Jasper Evening Discovery Tour

(3 of 3 options)

Learn all about the ways that Jasper's animals contribute to the rich diversity of the National Park and how they survive the summer weather. As you travel by bus through the Athabasca Valley, a tour guide will show you some of the park’s most beautiful scenery. There is minimal walking on this tour, so sit back and enjoy the scenery from the comfort of a small tour bus.

Day 7 View Map

VIA Rail- Jasper to Prince George

Board the VIA Rail Skeena Train, and glide along the tracks through the historic Yellowhead Pass and alongside the Fraser River, British Columbia's longest river.

Skeena Train to Prince George - Touring Class

(1 of 1 activities)

Board VIA Rail's Skeena train in Jasper and travel to Prince George today. Pass by lakes, railway towns, and mountain ranges, as you journey into the wilderness of northern British Columbia. You will be seated in a spacious, reclining seat in the Panorama Dome car. Hot and cold meals will be served at your seat. Enjoy access to the Park car, offering additional space to relax and enjoy the panoramic views.

Overnight in Prince George

Overnight at the Coast Inn of the North. Located in downtown Prince George, in the heart of the gateway to the North, this is the ideal home base for exploring the area. Hotel amenities include multiple on-site dining options and a cafe for your morning coffee fix, an indoor pool, sauna, and hot tub, complimentary WiFi, complimentary self-parking, and a fitness centre.

Day 8 View Map

VIA Rail's Skeena Train - Prince George to Prince Rupert

Board the VIA Rail Skeena Train, and glide along the tracks through the historic Yellowhead Pass and alongside the Fraser River, British Columbia's longest river.

Skeena Train to Prince Rupert - Touring Class

(1 of 1 activities)

Your rail journey continues towards Prince Rupert. Great stretches of wilderness, lakes, and rivers are punctuated by small settlements, farms and sawmills. Wildlife such as bear, moose, elk, deer, wolves, coyotes, eagles, hawks and seals may be seen during the trip, depending on season and chance.

Overnight in Prince Rupert

Overnight at the Crest Hotel. Experience breathtaking views of Prince Rupert’s magnificent harbour and pristine mountains from the comfort of this hotel. You will be located just a short stroll to the Museum of Northern BC, Cow Bay shopping district, and only minutes from the ferry, VIA Rail, and airline terminals. Hotel amenities include a restaurant, pub, cafe, complimentary Wifi, fitness centre, and an outdoor hot tub.

Day 9 View Map

Explore Prince Rupert

There is plenty to discover in this Northern BC town! Prince Rupert is the land, air, and water transportation hub of British Columbia's North Coast. The sheltered harbour is the deepest ice-free natural harbour in North America, and the 3rd deepest natural harbour in the world. Prince Rupert is the starting point for many wildlife viewing trips.

○ activities

Insider Tip

From May to late July, ask your vacation specialist about adding a cruise to the untouched wilderness of Khutzeymateen Valley, home to the highest population of Grizzlies in North America. Here you can spot your first grizzly bear grazing in a meadow or tending her cubs, in a completely natural environment.

Prince Rupert in Summer

(1 of 1 activities)

Located on Kaien Island, Prince Rupert is the land, air, and water transportation hub of British Columbia's North Coast. The sheltered harbour is the deepest ice-free natural harbour in North America, and the 3rd deepest natural harbour in the world. The port is the first inbound and last outbound port of call for cargo and cruise ships travelling between eastern Asia and western North America, and is ice-free year-round, despite its northerly latitude. Prince Rupert is the starting point for many wildlife viewing trips including whales, eagles, and bears. The Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear sanctuary features one of the densest remaining populations in North America; tours can be arranged by water, air (using float planes) or land departing from Prince Rupert. The region is also home to coastal wolves, and south of Prince Rupert on Princess Royal Island you’ll find the rare white “Spirit Bear” (Kermode bear).

Day 10 View Map

Prince Rupert to Haida Gwaii

Your journey starts today with an awe inspiring flight over the Hecate Straight into the depths of Northern British Columbia, to the archipelago of Haida Gwaii. Step off the plane and begin your experience of a lifetime.

Insider Tip

Want to experience the extremely remote West Coast of Haida Gwaii? Ask your Vacation Advisor to substitute Haida House for a brand new 12 room floating Lodge accessible by helicopter!

Seaplane Flight from Prince Rupert to Masset

(1 of 2 activities)

Fly by seaplane from Prince Rupert to Masset. Soar over Haidi Gwaii and enjoy some of the most interesting and spectacular landscapes in North America.

Arrival at Haida House

(2 of 2 activities)

Upon arrival in Haida Gwaii you will be met by a representative and driven to the Haida House at Tllaal, your base for the next four days. An orientation with Cultural Services and a delicious dinner from local chefs is the perfect introduction to Haida Gwaii, also known as the ‘Islands of the People’.

Accommodation at Haida House

Day 11 View Map

Day in Skidegate and Queen Charlotte Village

Fulfill your curiosity today as you become one of the family with your Haida interpreter and journey to the villages on Haida Gwaii to meet the local people and get an introduction to indigenous culture and tradition.

Cultural Day in Haida Gwaii

(1 of 1 activities)

The archipelago of Haida Gwaii offers numerous opportunities to dive into ancient culture and traditions. Start off with an escorted drive along the scenic coast to Skidegate Village, and Queen Charlotte City. Then immerse yourself in history at the Kay Lnagaay Heritage Centre and learn about the famous Haida Totem Poles and carvings. After a picnic lunch, visit a Haida artisan’s home studio to see weaving or jewelry making in action. Top off your day with a traditional Haida Feast; including locally harvested food served tapas style by a renowned Haida Chef.

Day 12 View Map

Exploration to Moresby Island

Set out today on an zodiak adventure along the coast of Haida Gwaii to Moresby Isalnd. Visit abandon villages along the way and gaze at the amazing totem poles that remain in the temperate rainforest landscape. Enjoy the wildlife viewing opportunities today as you travel to the places less known.

Adventure Excursion to Skedans

(1 of 1 activities)

Join a marine guide on a thrilling Zodiac tour to the remote K'uuna Llnagaay, a place with 12,000 years of human history. The main stop on this tour is the Haida village site of Skedans. Enjoy a guided tour of the totem poles and house pits that remain in the village which was abandoned in the 1880s. Chances to see marine wildlife and bears makes for an exciting zodiac ride back.

Day 13 View Map

Exploring Graham Island

Today you explore the beauty and nature of Graham Island. Learn about the captivating history and culture of the Haida Nation who have occupied the land for thousands of years.

Discovering the Beauty of Haida Gwaii

(1 of 1 activities)

Enjoy a narrative drive today to the quaint villages on Graham Island. Along the way you will make stops to enjoy the temperate rainforest, beach comb on Agate Beach and end your day with a magical visit of the totem poles in Old Massett.

Day 14 View Map

Haida Gwaii to Vancouver

Enjoy the stunning scenery from the window of the plane as you fly two hours south to Vancouver. Soar over endless mountain ranges, shimmering oceans, and massive glaciers.

Depart Haida Gwaii

(1 of 2 activities)

After breakfast at Haida House, depart on the last tour of your package. Visit the local Tlell Artisans’ studios and gift shops, including Ernie’s Woodworking Shop, Sitka Studio and the Crystal Cabin. Afterwards, you depart for the airport for your flight to Vancouver.

Flight from Masset to Vancouver International Airport

(2 of 2 activities)

This quick but scenic flight is the easiest way to get to Vancouver from Haida Gwaii.

Overnight at the Vancouver Airport

Overnight at The Fairmont Vancouver Airport Hotel. This hotel is the only soundproofed, luxury hotel and spa conveniently located within Vancouver's International Airport. The hotel is situated directly above the US departures terminal - a two-minute stroll from the luggage carousels, no shuttle is required. Features include a self-service check-in kiosk in the hotel lobby, floor-to-ceiling views, diverse dining choices and an indoor pool, health club and spa.

Day 15 View Map

Depart Vancouver

Much too soon, you leave the coastal mountain air and colorful sights of Canada behind as your Canadian vacation comes to an end.

Insider Tip

Ask us about adding some time in Vancouver!

WHERE YOU’LL STAY

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.

WORKING TOGETHER
Let's personalize this trip idea with your own flair so that it's unique to you.
INSIDER EXPERTISE
We're always here to open up possibilities and clear up uncertainties.
HELP ON HAND
We're with you every step to help you plan and enjoy your trip, and get you home safely.

HERE'S WHAT YOU GET

To make sure that your holiday is full of only good surprises, here's a comprehensive list of what is (and isn't) included in your package.


Accommodation:

  • 14 nights hotel accommodation

Train Experiences:

  • 2 days on VIA Rail’s Skeena train, from Jasper to Prince Rupert

Banff Activity Options:

Choose 1 of 2:

  1. Helicopter Tour
  2. Scenic Ride to Sunshine Village + Standish Chairlift + Hosted Trail Walk
  3. Privately Guided Sunrise Photography Tour (additional cost)

Icefields Parkway Activity Options:

Choose 1 of 2:

  1. Guided Icewalk on the Athabasca Glacier
  2. Ice Explorer and Glacier Skywalk Admissions

Jasper Activity Options:

Choose 1 of 3:

  1. Evening Canoe Paddle
  2. Jasper Evening Discovery Tour
  3. Best Hike of the Day in Jasper

Haida Gwaii Activities Included:

  • Haida Cultural Day Tour
  • Visit of local Haida studios
  • Traditional Haida Dinner
  • Visits to Balance Rock, Jungle Beach, North and South End Totems on Haida Gwaii
  • Narrative tour of the village of Skidegate and Queen Charlotte
  • Marine Zodiac Excursion to K’uuna (Skedans) with Interpretation
  • Discover the North Island – Old Masset Tour
  • Tlell and Port Clements Tour

Meal Inclusions:

  • Meals on VIA Rail
  • All meals on Haida Gwaii

Transfer Inclusions:

  • All transport and water transfers to and from activities and airports on Haida Gwaii
  • Float plane transfer between Prince Rupert and Haida Gwaii
  • One-way flight between Haida Gwaii and Vancouver

Car Rental Inclusions:

  • 7-day intermediate car rental between Calgary Airport (YYC) and Jasper
  • Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) on car rental, airport surcharges, Third Party Liability Insurance Coverage (up to $1 million) and vehicle licensing fee
  • Unlimited kms & GPS
  • Fee for 1 additional driver

Other Inclusions:

  • Parks Canada Pass
  • Documentation package
  • Gratuities for private transfer and tours (unless otherwise noted)
  • Haida House Welcome Gift, orientation with Director of Cultural Services
  • Fresh Tracks Canada customer service support – from the time you book, you will be assigned your own personal Vacation Coordinator with whom you can reach out to with any questions or requests.

Important Schedule and Trip Notes:

  • Train schedules are subject to change and delays may occur
  • Some activities may not be available on all trip start dates, due to seasonal weather conditions. Your Vacation Advisor can provide further details.
  • Hike in Sunshine Meadows is available from the July 1 to September 15, 2019 departure dates.
  • Activities on Haida Gwaii are based on a minimum of 2 people.
  • All marine excursions on Haida Gwaii require the ability to climb in and out of a vessel (cruiser or zodiac) on to the shore, as many ancient villages are only accessible by ‘beaching’ the vessel (no dock).

SEASONAL RESTRICTIONS

  • Afternoon Athabasca Ice Walk Tour: Tour might be cancelled in case of thunderstorm and incremental weather conditions out of their control.
  • Meals, other than those mentioned
  • Fuel, and parking for rental car
  • Airfare, other than those mentioned (but don’t hesitate to ask for help)
  • Train station and other transfers in Prince George and Prince Rupert (quick taxi ride)
  • Gratuities for Haida Gwaii Package, VIA Rail, hotels, tours & transfer staff
  • Trip Cancellation & Travel Medical Insurance (highly recommended)
  • Canadian Sales Taxes

PRICES & DATES

This trip is available for departures between June and September.

Starting From

$8,195 USD
per person

based on double occupancy, June 2019 departure and our base class.

We offer a range of packages across all four seasons. Please speak with one of our travel advisors about personalizing your trip and getting a comprehensive quote.

Get a personalized quote

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