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Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

hurdle1
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Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

Travelling from the UK for 2 weeks in early to mid september?Dates still flexible to get the best combination of weather and wildlife.

Rough plan as follows:

Vancouver 3 nights

Victoria 2 nights

Tofino 4 nights

???

Vancouver 1 night before flight home.

Leaving a further 4 nights, we can't afford to fly out to the Knights Inlet lodge but really want to experience some Bears and other wildlife, any suggestion on where we should head to?

Vancouver-by-the-Sea
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1. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

Knight Inlet-singular.

Late August into September Yes.

Vancouver BC
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2. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

An alternative to driving to Tofino area is http://www.ladyrosemarine.com/ Of course that means you would have a car in Port Alberni and none in the Tofino area.

Vancouver, Canada
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3. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

Is this the same 2 weeks or another 2 weeks as your Canadian Rockies question?

Port McNeill
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4. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

For your four extra nights consider the Port McNeill / Telegraph Cove area of northern Vancouver Island. From here you can a day trip to view grizzly bears in Knight Inlet with Tide Rip Tours http://grizzlycanada.com/ (in early September the salmon should be entering the rivers providing some very good viewing opportunities). Late August to mid-September is my favourite time to be in the area due to unbelievable diversity and numbers of wildlife that is usually seen. The weather is usually good until late September - but the days do get shorter as the month progresses.

To see as much wildlife as possible consider spending a half day whale watching or joining a kayak trip for a few hours to four days long. For whale watching and kayak companies that belong to the North Island Marine Mammal Stewardship Association visit http://www.nimmsa.org/members.html .

Other things to do include taking the ferry to Alert Bay to visit the Umista Cultural Centre http://www.umista.org/ . Take the ferry to Malcolm Island and hike the Beautiful Bay Trail for a few hours. Hike the Telegraph Trail from Telegraph Cove http://www.telegraphcoveresort.com/trail.html . Visit the Whale Interpretive Centre in Telegraph Cove http://www.killerwhalecentre.org/ and the Quatse Salmon Centre in Port Hardy http://www.thesalmoncentre.org

Edited: 3:58 pm, December 31, 2013
hurdle1
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5. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

Separate from the Rockies question. We can only do one so and can't decide which. Trying to put some semi organised itineraries together then pick the one we want to do the most.

hurdle1
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6. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

Vanc 4

Vic 2

Tofino 4

Telegraph Cove 2

Campbell River 2

As a potential itinerary? Had thought dropping a day in Vancouver but would be nice to take a day trip to Whistler.

Vancouver, Canada
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7. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

Other than the amount of driving, it's a great plan. Is each '2' two days, so 3 nights at each location, with a travel day in between? Because if it's only 2 nights and you are driving every other day, then that's really too much, IMO. just pick either CR or PM, both lovely.

Vancouver, Canada
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8. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

I would favour the Island over the Rockies in this case. There are so many opportunities in late summer to see all kinds of wildlife.

The distance between Tofino and Telegraph Cove is quite large, about 6.5 hours stops extra, as is TC over to Vancouver, about 8 hours including the wait for the ferry. You really need to be in Vancouver the night before you fly. You don't want to be travelling on the day of your flight. Usually the ferry does just fine, but occasionally something mechanical happens or the ferry has to go to the aid of a boater in trouble.

Suggestion for your consideration:

4 nights Vancouver

1 night Campbell River, 5 hours including the hour's wait for the ferry, stops extra

3 nights Telegraph Cove, 3 hours

1 night Parksville, 4 hours

4 nights Tofino, 3 hours

1 night Vancouver, 6.5 hours, including the hour's wait for the ferry (4 hours driving, 2.5 hours not driving)

This itinerary would give you time to visit attractions and find activities to do along the way, as well as in and near each town.

hurdle1
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9. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

Looking at distances and driving times etc, I think we may be better just sticking with Campbell River and taking Bear watching excursions from there instead of driving to Telegraph Cove.

Vancouver 4 nights

Victoria 2 nights

Tofino 5 nights

Campbell River 3 nights

Unless we stretch our budget and use the 3 nights at Campbell River for Knights Inlet but it is very expensive. Depending on our return flight times we may have to drop a night somewhere and add one in back in Vancouver to be closer to the airport.

Vancouver, Canada
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10. Re: Help planning 2 week trip to Vancouver Island

I like your plan. I would move forward with that.