Opening hours
  • Monday 9am - 5pm
  • Tuesday 9pm - 5pm
  • Wednesday 9am - 5pm
  • Thursday 9am - 5pm
  • Friday 9am - 5pm
  • Saturday Closed
  • Sunday Closed
Menu
Trip Search
Loading results
Loading your trip
Coronavirus travel update

Simply Rockies and Vancouver Island

Canada - Trip code QRK Discovery
Days 15
Deposit From NZ$472
Price from NZ$4720
Flights not included
i

Why book this trip?

Using a selection of simple wilderness hostels and some well-located campsites, this overland adventure is a low cost way to explore all the stunning national parks that Canada has to offer, combining the temperate rainforest found on Vancouver Island with the lofty peaks and glacial lakes of the Rockies.

  • Banff National Park - Canada's most beautiful national park, including the picture-postcard lakes Louise and Moraine
  • Jasper National Park - Visit the mindblowing landscapes up the Icefields Parkway, and search for wildlife including moose and elk
  • Pacific Rim National Park - Incredible rainforest, rugged beaches and a chance to go bear spotting or whale watching
  • Included meals

    Breakfast: 14

    Lunch: 12

    Dinner: 8

  • Trip staff

    Explore Tour Leader / Driver

  • Transport

    Ferry

    Maxiwagon

  • i

    Accommodation

  • i

    Trip pace:

    Moderate

  • i

    Group Size:

    8 - 12

Itinerary

Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.

Trip information

Country information

Canada

Climate

May-Sep is the best time to visit, when the weather is usually warm, dry and pleasant. Temperatures can be a little cooler on the coast and in the mountains; rain can be expected at any time. Early in the season, there can be snow in some areas which may limit walking possibilities.

Time difference to GMT

-7

Plugs

2 Pin Flat

Religion

Roman Catholic, Protestant

Language

English and French

Budgeting and packing

Optional activities

The following excursions and/or activities are usually available and may be arranged locally. Estimated costs are provided below for guidance only, are on a per person basis unless shown otherwise, and may depend on the number of participants. Prices quoted are correct as of the date these tour notes were originally issued but may change at any time due to currency fluctuations. Please note: These activities are booked and paid for direct with the supplier and do not form part of your Explore holiday contract.


There are a number of exciting optional excursions you can do on your trip. These activities are booked and paid for direct with the supplier and do not form part of your Explore holiday contract. Part of the joy of Canada is in exploring the parks on foot, for free - so you can do as many or as few of these optional excursions as you wish and have a fantastic experience either way.

Banff - Gondola CAD$ 65; Hot Springs CAD$ 7.30; Canoeing on the Bow River CAD$ 45 (1hr) CAD$ 70 (2 hrs); Three Sisters Peaks Helicopter tour CAD$ 129 (15mins); Royal Canadian Helicopter tour CAD$ 259 (25mins); Mt. Assiniboine Helicopter tour CAD$ 314 (30mins)
Lake Louise - Canoe rental CAD$115 per half hour, CAD$126 per hour
Jasper - Skytram CAN$ 69; Maligne boat tour CAD$ 72; Rafting trip CAD$ 69-102 (Athabasca River - class 2 rapids or Sunwapta River - class 3 rapids); Bike hire from CAD$55 (for 5 hrs including helmet)
Wells Gray - Canoeing CAD$ 110 (including lunch)
Whistler - Tree Trek - CAD$ 59; Rafting CAD$ 109 ($ 65 for under 16yr olds) (option of class 1 to 2; class 2&3; or class 3&4 rapids); Zip line CAD$ 129; Gondola CAD$ 69
Vancouver Island - Whale Watching (3 hours) CAD$ 109; Wildlife and hot spring (6 hours) CAD$ 139 + tax (food & drink not included); Sea Kayaking CAD$ 90 (4 hours); Bear Viewing CAD$109

All prices are per person.

Clothing

Include some long-sleeved shirts; warm clothing for chilly nights in the mountains is essential, as is a good waterproof jacket and a woolly hat. Also bring swimwear, sunglasses and a sun hat.

Footwear

Lightweight walking boots with ankle support and sandals or trainers for relaxing. Some footwear that you don't mind getting wet is essential for whitewater rafting or canoeing.

Luggage

15Kg

Luggage: On tour

Luggage is stored in the van or in a trailer attached to the back. With this in mind please keep bags as reasonably sized as possible and preferably softshell.

You will also need a day pack for walking and personal items as your main luggage cannot be accessed during the day.

Equipment

Sleeping mats are provided. Bring a sleeping bag (3 season, down to -7C), water bottle, torch (and batteries), sunblock and insect repellent.

Sleeping bags can be hired in Canada for $50CAD. Please request them when you book, or no later than 5 weeks prior to travelling. The $50CAD can be paid to your Tour Leader upon arrival.

Tipping

Explore leader
Tipping isn't compulsory, and we work hard to ensure that our leaders all receive a fair wage. However, you might want to recognise a leader that's done a great job or really added to your trip by giving them a tip. We're often asked about the recommended amount. It's a tricky one, and down to personal preference, but we'd recommend between CAD$7 to CAD$14 per person per day as a guideline.
Local crew
In North America tipping 15%-20% is a recognised part of life across the service industry, including restaurants, activity suppliers, taxis and guides. Local staff will look to you for personal recognition of particular services provided.

Unlike other Explore trips, during our trips in North America our Explore leaders will not operate a tips kitty. However, they will be more than happy to provide guidance throughout the trip on who to tip when and to suggest appropriate amounts.

Canada

Food and drink

The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.


Lunch price
£13.00
Dinner price
£20.00
Beer price
£3.00
Water price
£1.10
Foreign Exchange
Local currency
Canadian Dollars.
Recommended Currency For Exchange
Bring your money in Canadian Dollars or US Dollars cash which can be used almost everywhere, although local stores are not keen to change anything over $50.
Where To Exchange
Banks or 'Forex' offices in main towns/cities. Your tour leader will advise you on arrival.
ATM Availability
There are ATMs in the towns.
Credit Card Acceptance
Widely accepted just about everywhere.
Transport, Accommodation & Meals

Transport Information

Ferry, Maxiwagon

Accommodation notes

Accommodation throughout is in a range of town/city hostels, wilderness hostels and camping.

The hostel rooms are all multi-share, with shared bathroom facilities. Some of them are large mixed-sex dorms, and others are smaller 4-6 bed dorms, which we will endeavour to keep private where possible, although there may be other travellers outside of the Explore group. The hostels are simple, but quirky and sociable places - facilities vary but may include living room areas for socialising, kitchens (where meals will be cooked for the group), pool tables, laundry facilities, log fires etc. The wilderness hostels in Kananaskis and Mount Edith Cavell are in absolutely stunning surroundings, simply perfect for exploring the mountains. Mount Edith Cavell's accommodation does not have running water or electricity. This means that there are no showers or flush toilets.

While camping, we stay in well-located campgrounds where all equipment is provided except a sleeping bag. You will be sharing a two person tent. Basic camp responsibilities include the setting up and taking down of camp, as well as loading the trailer and helping with meal preparation, washing and clearing up. Like many adventures of this type, much of the team spirit and camaraderie is developed through mucking in and helping out around camp. One great feature of camping is that it really gives us a sense of the nature around us, as we camp under starry skies.

Camping facilities include: toilets, showers, kitchen shelters or our own canopy where we have our meals, picnic tables and fire pits. Inflatable mats are provided when we camp, as well as camping chairs. The single supplement is for tents only - no single rooms are available in the hostels.

Essential Information

Government Travel Safety Advice

We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice click here.

For more information from Explore about travel advice, click here
 

Under 18 immigration guidance

Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.

Price Guarantee

Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions

Visa and Passport Information

When travelling to Canada, you will need the following:

ETA - Citizens of the UK, New Zealand, Australia and passport holders from several EU countries can apply for an ETA here - http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/eta.asp - other nationalities should consult their local embassy or consular office.

ESTA - only if transiting via the USA
Citizens of the UK, New Zealand, Australia and passport holders from several EU countries can apply for an ESTA here - https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov - you must have an electronic passport with a digital chip containing biometric information. If you have visited Libya, Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Syria or Yemen since March 2011, or dual national of these countries, you cannot travel with an ESTA. In this case you will need to apply for a visa from the nearest US embassy or consulate.

I94 - The I94 is a history of entries and exits to the US. You can get this online here for $6
- https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/I94/#/home - as each i94 accessed is only valid for border crossings for 7 days, it is best to apply for this when in country - your Explore Leader will assist you with this.


If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may be able to apply through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
 

Booking conditions

Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.

Transfers

Find out more about Trip Transfer Terms and Conditions before you book.

Booking a land only package with Explore

Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information. 

You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.


Joining Tour Abroad

Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will now receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The complimentary transfers will be arranged from the Explore designated airport or train station to your trips joining point, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. Generally the airport or station that Explore have selected will be the one that is closest to the town or city where the trip starts, or the one nearest to the joining point. It will be either an airport or train station but not both.

The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.  

Free transfers are not available for Self-Guided, Polar, Tailormade or Tours for Churches customers.

If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.  


For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here

Insurance

It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. The cost of many of our Polar Voyages will exceed the capped amount covered by standard insurance premiums and you will be required to pay an additional premium to cover the full value of your trip. Please ensure that you are covered for the full amount of your holiday cost, as insufficient cover could invalidate a claim under the policy. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Read more information about what travel insurance is required.

Flight information

Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.


Flight Information

You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.

  

Booking a flight inclusive package with Explore

We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.

On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.

Ability to swim

An ability to swim is essential for your safe enjoyment of the water based activities on this trip. If you wish to participate in these activities then we insist that you are able to swim.

Canada

Vaccinations

Nothing compulsory, but we recommend protection against tetanus, typhoid, infectious hepatitis and polio. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.

Additional Information

Why book this trip

Canada's west coast is booming, and this trip is an opportunity to see all the sights in a low cost way. The very best way to discover Canada's iconic mountains, lakes, forests and rivers is to stay nearby, and we use wilderness hostels and campgrounds that put you into the heart of the wild outdoors. In the cities, we will be using hostels as a base from which to explore, making sure that your dollars can be better spent on activities such as whale watching, helicopter rides or canoeing.

Dates, prices and booking

All holidays are subject to availability and prices are subject to change
Sat 26 Jun 2021 - Sat 10 Jul 2021
QRK_2021 Calgary to Vancouver
NZ$4720
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
+NZ$300
QRK_2021 Calgary to Vancouver

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 
Sat 10 Jul 2021 - Sat 24 Jul 2021
QRK_2021 Vancouver to Calgary
NZ$4720
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
+NZ$300
QRK_2021 Vancouver to Calgary

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 
Sat 24 Jul 2021 - Sat 7 Aug 2021
QRK_2021 Calgary to Vancouver
NZ$4720
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
+NZ$300
QRK_2021 Calgary to Vancouver

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 
Sat 7 Aug 2021 - Sat 21 Aug 2021
QRK_2021 Vancouver to Calgary
NZ$4720
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
+NZ$300
QRK_2021 Vancouver to Calgary

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 
Sat 14 Aug 2021 - Sat 28 Aug 2021
QRK_2021 Calgary to Vancouver
NZ$4720
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
+NZ$300
QRK_2021 Calgary to Vancouver

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 
Sat 28 Aug 2021 - Sat 11 Sep 2021
QRK_2021 Vancouver to Calgary
NZ$4720
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
+NZ$300
QRK_2021 Vancouver to Calgary

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 

Reviews

Award Winning Explore Leaders
Find out more
Price Guarantee Promise
Find out more
Airport Transfers
Find out more
Back to top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more

Got it!