Travel Bloggers at TBEX ‘11 & Vancouver Visitors: visit Vancouver Island, British Columbia, and experience whale watching at its finest
In This Whale Watching Article You Will Discover:
- The Best Operators in Campbell River
- Where to Watch Whales on the West Coast
- Victoria’s Wildlife Tour Operators
- And More
When a wandering grey whale swum into Vancouver’s False Creek in May of 2010, it captivated the full attention of the citizens of Canada’s third largest city. Such is the way with whales; they represent mystery, beauty, adventure, grace and the idea that we, humans, are infinitely small next to Mother Nature.
This June, as hundreds of travel bloggers from around the world descend on Vancouver for the TBEX ’11 Conference, I encourage everyone to go on a Vancouver Island whale watching adventure.
Even a born-and-raised West Coast’er like myself has never grown complacent when it comes to a whale sighting, be it in downtown Vancouver, from a BC Ferry sailing or practically within arm’s length from a sport fishing boat. They are magnificent.
So it’s no surprise that whale-watching tours are a big part of Vancouver Island’s tourist economy. And you’re in luck — watching and marine excursion hotspots are easily accessed from the Mainland via ferry or air; such locations include Campbell River, Tofino/Ucluelet and Victoria. Grey, humpback and minke whales, as well as orcas, dolphins and porpoise, are all known to pass by, and even on a whale-less day, tourists are virtually guaranteed up-close-and-personal sightings of lumbering sea lions, majestic bald eagles, curious seals, sea birds of a hundred varieties and so much more. Heck, just the scenery is worth the price of admission.
But should a whale surface nearby when you’re out on your tour, it will be an experience you won’t soon forget. My advice? Put down your camera and your camcorder and stay in the moment. When it comes to whale sightings, your memory will always be more powerful than a photo. (Some tour operators have photographers on board, so you can just enjoy the tour and pick up a couple of photos afterwards.)
So, if you’re visiting BC’s West Coast, whether for TBEX ’11 or for any reason, head to Vancouver Island and enjoy an adventure envied the world-round: wild whales, right in our back yard.
Whale Watching in Campbell River
The following tour operators can be found in and around Campbell River, British Columbia. Campbell River can be easily accessed via air (Comox Airport or Campbell River Airport) or via ferry ride from Vancouver to Nanaimo or Victoria, then drive north on Hwy 19 or 19A.
Discovery Marine Safaris
Hurricane Jack Adventures
Eagle Eye Adventures
Out For Adventure Tours & Outfitting
Island Adventure Centre
Campbell River Whale Watching & Adventure Tours
Aboriginal Journeys Wildlife & Adventure Tours
Painter’s Lodge & April Point Resort & Spa
Stubbs Island Whale Watching (Telegraph Cove)
Tide Rip Grizzly Tours (Telegraph Cove)
West Coast Whales
If you plan on spending more time on beautiful Vancouver Island, a trip to Tofino and/or Ucluelet on the West Coast is in order. Along with the gorgeous beaches of the Pacific Rim National Park, the lush coastal temperate rainforest and cute touristy townsites, whale watching excursions abound.
Archipelago Wildlife Cruises
Clayoquot Eco Tours at the Whale Centre
Jamie’s Whaling Station
Remote Passages Marine Excursions
West Coast Aquatic Safaris
To get to Tofino/Ucluelet, fly into Comox from Vancouver and hire either a tour bus or rent a car for the two-and-a-half-hour drive to Vancouver Island’s West Coast or take a BC Ferry sailing to Nanaimo or Victoria then drive northwest (Hwy 19 to Hwy 4). Heck, you may just see some whales from the ferry too!
Capital City Whales
British Columbia’s capital city, Victoria, has many whale watching opportunities. To access Victoria, either fly direct into Victoria International Airport or take a BC Ferry sailing from Tsawwassen (near Vancouver) to Swartz Bay (near Victoria).
Springtide Victoria Whale Watching Tours
Prince of Whales Whale Watching
BC Whale Tours
Eagle Wing Whale Watching Tours
Orca Spirit Adventures
Five Star Whale Watching
Ocean Exploration Whale Watching
Sea Quest Adventures
Great Pacific Adventures
For further information on whale watching throughout British Columbia, visit www.hellobc.com, and search “whale watching” in the search field of the Tourism BC (www.hellobc.com) website.
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