4 awesome trips into the heart of Canada’s great outdoors

You voted Canada your top-rated destination in the Wanderlust Reader Travel Awards. Celebrate with one of these mighty adventures into Canada’s epic open spaces, from the Rockies to the Arctic

1: Hike the high trails of the Canadian Rockies

Experience the stunning peaks, glaciers and high passes of the Canadian Rockies with your feet firmly planted on the ground. Make your way north through Kananaskis country to the red rock canyons and deep blue lakes of Waterton Lakes National Park and then on to the Wilcox Pass, the Columbia Icefields and Lake Louise, where the Valley of the Ten Peaks awaits.

Finally, an exhilarating heli-hike from the base of Mt Assiniboine, the ‘Matterhorn’ of the Canadian Rockies, takes you into a remote area, where you’ll camp for two nights and enjoying high alpine hikes up to 2635m. This is a thrilling, challenging adventure you will never forget.

Trip: High Trails Of The Canadian Rockies

Who: World Expeditions

When: Departures Jul-Sep

How long: 15 days

How much: From £2,590 (exc. flights)

2: Explore Haida Gwaii by boat

With over 150 islands surrounding its two main islands, Haida Gwaii, or the Queen Charlotte Islands, is best discovered onboard a 68’ ketch. Setting sail from Vancouver’s spectacular harbor, you’ll spend eight days exploring every nook and cranny of these incredible islands, observing the abundant wildlife, from the largest subspecies of black bear to the smallest stoat, in their natural setting.

The islands are home to the Haida people, who make up over 60 per cent of the population. With much of the islands designated as national park or a Haida Heritage site, you will have plenty of opportunity to explore the history, culture and beliefs of these ancient people and the relationship they have with the islands and the creatures that live there.

Trip: British Columbia: Haida Gwaii by Yacht

Who: Audley

When: Departures Jun-Sep

How long: 13 days

How much: From £5,455 (inc. flights)

3: Follow Canada’s cowboy trail

Canada’s historic Cowboy Trail, tucked between the Rockies and the Canadian prairies, is just as iconic and steeped in history as its American cousin to the south. This is Alberta ranching country, a land of rolling wheat fields, cattle pastures and frontier towns, framed by high, rocky peaks.

Standing in the midst of these vast prairies, it doesn’t take much to imagine what life was like ‘back in the day,’ especially in the majestic Waterton National Park, where the last bison reserve in the area sits on its border.

Immerse yourself in the cowboy lifestyle with horse rides along the range and copious amounts of the famous Alberta beef jerky.

Trip: Cowboy Trail

Who: Evaneos

When: Flexible dates throughout the year

How long: 12 days

How much: From £1,198 (exc. flights)

4: Tackle the ultimate Artic wildlife adventure

Situated on the northern tip of Somerset Island, the Artic Watch Wilderness Lodge is the world’s most northerly and remote lodge. It’s the perfect base to explore the wild Canadian Arctic and encounter the wildlife that roam this empty corner of the world.

This is a full Arctic safari experience, with each day offering guided activities and extraordinary wildlife sightings, including beluga whales, ringed seals, polar bears, roaming musk oxen, Arctic foxes and snowy owls.

You’ll drive all-terrain vehicles, kayak among icebergs, raft the Cunningham River and fish for Arctic char. Hiking opportunities abound too, including a trek out to the Triple Waterfalls, where water cascades down five levels.

Trip: Arctic Watch Lodge

Who: Peregrine

When: Departures in Jul

How long: 8 days

How much: From £7,585 (exc. flights)

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