Welcome to Vancouver! Your Tour Director is on hand late this afternoon to answer any questions.
This morning, an included city tour highlights STANLEY PARK, Chinatown, the harbour and beaches, and more. The remainder of the day is at leisure; your Tour Director will have suggestions for your further exploration of the city. Take a water taxi to lively Granville Island with its outdoor markets, street musicians, and waterfront cafes. Or, visit historic Gastown with its steam-powered clock, antique shops, art galleries, and street vendors.
Vancouver - Kelowna
This morning, our journey begins in British Columbia's fertile valleys and continues through rich mountain forests to Lake Okanagan. Travel along the lake to the resort city of Kelowna, attractively set on the lake shore and surrounded by orchards and vineyards. Sample the local wines on the included WINERY TOUR this afternoon.
Kelowna - Glacier National Park - Yoho National Park - Banff National Park
Motor north through the Okanagan Valley, famous for its peaches and vineyards. Then, begin the climb up 1,334-metre-high (4,379-foot) Rogers Pass in GLACIER NATIONAL PARK. Take a break at the pass, a perfect spot for photos of the impressively rugged mountains, glaciers, and waterfalls. Enter YOHO NATIONAL PARK and scale Kicking Horse Pass at an altitude of 1,652 metres (5,421 feet). This evening, reach BANFF NATIONAL PARK
, gateway to the majestic Canadian Rockies.
Banff National Park
Banff is one of Canada's favourite year-round resorts, with activities ranging from skiing in winter to hiking, boating, and fishing in summer. With this free day, your Tour Director will suggest an optional helicopter ride over the Canadian Rockies.
Banff National Park - Lake Louise - Columbia Icefield - Jasper National Park
A day of scenic grandeur. First, Lake Louise, its turquoise waters a perfect natural mirror that reflects the mountains and glaciers. A highlight on today's agenda is a stop at the COLUMBIA ICEFIELD to board the Ice Explorer, an all-terrain vehicle that travels on ice that is 365-metres (1,200-feet) thick. Precipitous gorges, snowcapped summits, and lakes of exquisite blues and greens come into view as the motorcoach continues northward into JASPER NATIONAL PARK
. Late this afternoon, your Tour Director suggests an optional float trip down the Athabasca River. Enjoy an orientation tour of Jasper townsite upon arrival.
Jasper National Park
Today, join our optional excursion to Maligne Lake and Spirit Island, where you embark on a narrated cruise of the lake. The balance of the day is free to enjoy everything Jasper has to offer-from guided hikes and quaint shops to meandering wildlife.
Jasper National Park - Mount Robson - Sun Peaks
Leave Jasper and follow the Fraser River to the base of Mount Robson, the highest mountain in the Canadian Rockies, peaking at 3,953-metres (12,972-feet). Continue following the Yellowhead Highway south along the North Thompson River-a route pioneered by fur trappers a century ago. Overnight at the mountain resort of Sun Peaks.
Sun Peaks - Lillooet - Whistler
Head south, following the once-treacherous Cariboo Wagon Trail. Via Lillooet, "Mile 0 of the Gold Rush Route," your motorcoach will follow the shores of Seton and Duffey Lakes, with a late-afternoon arrival in Whistler
Spend the day in the alpine resort of Whistler, nestled at the base of breathtaking Blackcomb Mountain. Free time to explore many of the 2010 Winter Olympics' sites or join one of the many optional excursions, including flightseeing by floatplane over the lakes and glaciated peaks of Garibaldi Provincial Park.
Whistler - Ferry Crossing - Victoria
Set sail across the Strait of Georgia and through the spectacular Gulf Islands, an archipelago known for its Mediterranean-type climate. Afternoon arrival in Victoria
. Sightseeing today includes Marine Drive, Bastion Square, and Thunderbird Park with its unusual collection of totem poles. Then, visit world-famous BUTCHART GARDENS, one of Victoria's most celebrated sites and rated among the most beautiful gardens in the world. Once there, stroll through the colourful arrangements of the Sunken Garden, the Japanese and Italian Gardens, the English Rose Garden, and the magnificent Ross Fountain.
Today is at leisure to discover some of the attractions this splendid city has to offer, including the Royal British Columbia Museum, Afternoon Tea at the Fairmont Empress Hotel, an IMAX presentation at the National Geographic Theatre, whale watching on the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and fine shopping along Government Street.
Victoria - Ferry Crossing - Vancouver (Embarkation)
Early this morning, board the ferry for a scenic crossing to the mainland. Upon arrival, transfer to Canada Place to board Holland America's MS Nieuw Amsterdam or MS Volendam for an unforgettable Inside Passage
Scenic Cruising: Inside Passage.
One of the most picturesque sea lanes in the world, the natural beauty here is unbelievable, featuring thick emerald-green forests and expansive turquoise glaciers. (B/L/D)
Accessible only by air and water, history, Native culture, wildlife, and nature come to life here. Shop for gold nuggets, saunter through the swinging doors at the Red Dog Saloon, or visit mighty Mendenhall Glacier. (B/L/D)
Step back in time as you stroll along wooden boardwalks, visit the Red Onion Saloon, explore Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park, or ride the antique White Pass & Yukon Route narrow-gauge railway. (B/L/D)
Scenic Cruising: Glacier Bay.
This incredible Biosphere Reserve protects a unique ecosystem, hosting an amazing spectacle as tremendous slabs of ice break off and "calve" into the sea. (B/L/D)
Hugging the shores of the Tongass Narrows, this self-proclaimed "Salmon Capital of the World" boasts the largest totem collection on the planet and a former red-light district-turned art district on historic Creek Street. (B/L/D)
Scenic Cruising: Inside Passage.
Cruise through the awe-inspiring scenery of the Inside Passage. Keep your cameras ready for spouting whales, soaring eagles, and other wildlife. Tonight, enjoy a sumptuous dinner and onboard entertainment. (B/L/D)
Disembark the ship this morning and transfer to Vancouver International Airport for your return flight home. Please schedule homebound flights after Noon. (B)