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Fishing with Grizzlies

Vancouver and Great Bear Rainforest

Delve deep into the heart of Canada’s Great Bear Rainforest and encounter grizzlies, black bears and eagles as they hunt for salmon on this safari-style adventure. Starting in Vancouver, take in BC’s absolute highlights with countless options to extend.

This simple two-stop itinerary offers a perfect introduction to British Columbia, stopping in vibrant Vancouver before spending days on the lookout for wildlife in the Great Bear Rainforest. August to mid-October is the best time to visit, when the salmon is spawning attracting a variety of predators to the river to hunt. Begin with a three night stay in Vancouver’s Fairmont Pacific Rim which enjoys wonderful waterfront views and is ideally located to explore the city’s main attractions. Spend some time discovering picturesque Stanley Park, best explored by bike, or visit the fine food and craft markets of Granville Island and shop ‘til you drop on Robson Street. Night time brings with it an infectious buzz which extends to the city’s fantastic restaurants and bustling harbor front making it perfect for an after dinner stroll. Hit the numerous bars or take in a show to make the most of your time here before heading off into the wilderness of the Great Bear Rainforest.

From here you will fly to Bella Coola (approx. 1 hour) where you will be welcomed by staff from Tweedsmuir Park Lodge, your home for the next four nights. After a 45-minute drive, settle into your cabin and soak in the views over the gardens or river (both regularly frequented by bears) before being introduced to the magnificent creatures that inhabit the forest here. All excursions and bear viewing activities are included in your stay at Tweedsmuir and include visits to the Wildlife Viewing Station, hikes to advantageous viewpoints, mountain biking and Drift Boat rides along the river – these engineless boats take a maximum of four passengers and allow you to silently glide to within close proximity of the bears as they feast upon salmon, truly breath-taking! For each activity you will travel in small groups for a more personal experience, always accompanied by an experienced guide ensuring an informative visit and, most importantly, a safe one.

Tweedsmuir Park Lodge is open throughout the summer and still makes for a superb wilderness experience outside of prime bear watching season, offering fishing, hiking, kayaking and biking. Longer or shorter packages are also available to suit your individual requirements but we feel that four nights gives you a perfect amount of time to experience plenty of wildlife, to enjoy the scenery and also to visit Bella Coola town and gain an insight into First Nations culture. For a longer itinerary taking in more of British Columbia, we recommend adding on several nights in Whistler or staying at Wickaninnish Inn in the Pacific Rim National Park, both of which are easily accessed from Vancouver.

At a Glance

  • Observe grizzlies, black bear and eagles as the salmon come to spawn in the river. Best viewed August - October

  • Great introduction to British Columbia's highlights, combining city life in Vancouver with wildlife viewing in the Great Bear Rainforest

  • Maximum group size of 6 for bear viewing activities ensures a more personal experience

  • Can be easily combined with Whistler or a stay at Wickaninnish Inn for further outdoor adventures

  • Tweedsmuir Park Lodge is accessible by car for those who prefer to do this itinerary as part of a longer Canada self-drive

  • Use drift boats with no engine to silently approach bears, as well as exploring on foot to reach advantageous lookout spots

Family, Fishing, Wildlife, Adventure

Insider's View

Each drift boat at Tweedsmuir only seats 4 passengers and a guide, ensuring a very personal wildlife viewing experience

Anna Bleasdale

We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely bespoke to you. Call us on (858) 523-9000 to start planning your vacation.

Description

This simple two-stop itinerary offers a perfect introduction to British Columbia, stopping in vibrant Vancouver before spending days on the lookout for wildlife in the Great Bear Rainforest. August to mid-October is the best time to visit, when the salmon is spawning attracting a variety of predators to the river to hunt. Begin with a three night stay in Vancouver’s Fairmont Pacific Rim which enjoys wonderful waterfront views and is ideally located to explore the city’s main attractions. Spend some time discovering picturesque Stanley Park, best explored by bike, or visit the fine food and craft markets of Granville Island and shop ‘til you drop on Robson Street. Night time brings with it an infectious buzz which extends to the city’s fantastic restaurants and bustling harbor front making it perfect for an after dinner stroll. Hit the numerous bars or take in a show to make the most of your time here before heading off into the wilderness of the Great Bear Rainforest.

From here you will fly to Bella Coola (approx. 1 hour) where you will be welcomed by staff from Tweedsmuir Park Lodge, your home for the next four nights. After a 45-minute drive, settle into your cabin and soak in the views over the gardens or river (both regularly frequented by bears) before being introduced to the magnificent creatures that inhabit the forest here. All excursions and bear viewing activities are included in your stay at Tweedsmuir and include visits to the Wildlife Viewing Station, hikes to advantageous viewpoints, mountain biking and Drift Boat rides along the river – these engineless boats take a maximum of four passengers and allow you to silently glide to within close proximity of the bears as they feast upon salmon, truly breath-taking! For each activity you will travel in small groups for a more personal experience, always accompanied by an experienced guide ensuring an informative visit and, most importantly, a safe one.

Tweedsmuir Park Lodge is open throughout the summer and still makes for a superb wilderness experience outside of prime bear watching season, offering fishing, hiking, kayaking and biking. Longer or shorter packages are also available to suit your individual requirements but we feel that four nights gives you a perfect amount of time to experience plenty of wildlife, to enjoy the scenery and also to visit Bella Coola town and gain an insight into First Nations culture. For a longer itinerary taking in more of British Columbia, we recommend adding on several nights in Whistler or staying at Wickaninnish Inn in the Pacific Rim National Park, both of which are easily accessed from Vancouver.

Itinerary

Stay

Location/route

Overnight

HIDE IMAGES
Fly to Vancouver
3 nights

British Columbia

Fairmont Pacific Rim
Vancouver to Bella Coola Day Flight
4 nights

British Columbia

Tweedsmuir Park Lodge
Fly home from Bella Coola (via Vancouver)

Location & Directions

Vancouver and Great Bear Rainforest

When to go

The best time for Grizzly Bear viewing is from late August to mid October. This is when the salmon swim up river to spawn and then die and this brings out the grizzly bears for a feast.

The weather in August and early September can still be warm, however, toward the end of September and into October it becomes more and more chilly and so guests should come well prepared with layers.

Rain is to be expected at any time.

Best time to Visit

Good time to visit

Average time to visit

We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely bespoke to you. Call us on (858) 523-9000 to start planning your vacation.

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