Canada & the Rockies plus Calgary Stampede
13 days with Contiki Rating:
Restricted to Ages 18-35
Day 1 Vancouver to Whistler
Meet up with your fellow travellers, Tour Manager and Driver in gorgeous Vancouver. With beaches, forests and mountains, this town is all about location and fusing big-city living with an outdoor lifestyle.
Today we wind our way along the spectacular cliff-top Sea to Sky highway and arrive in Whistler, one of the most popular ski resorts in North America and home to the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Day 2 Whistler
Today, you’ve got time to get into some alpine activities and experience Whistlers’ high-energy action. Choose to have a go with the paddle and get out on the water in a canoe excursion along the River of Golden Dreams.
With lots of trails to choose from, Whistler is a hiker’s heaven. For those wanting vistas of the spectacular surrounds but not wanting to work up a sweat, choose a gondola or chairlift ride to the top for amazing views. Otherwise, kick back and take in the natural surroundings back at the hotel or walk around the quaint village of Whistler.
Day 3 Whistler to Kamloops
Leaving the mountains behind, we make our way to the desert and to Canada’s impressive interior. Passing the picture-perfect Seton Lake, we’ll make a stop in Lillooet, a former gold rush town.
We travel on to our next night stop, Kamloops, sitting at the confluence of 2 rivers. Once a former meeting point for traders, it continues to serve as a stop over point for travelers and still has touches of the Wild West.
Day 4 Kamloops to Jasper
Get ready Rockies, here we come! Today we will drive into the spectacular Rocky Mountains, via the scenic Yellowhead highway. En route, we will stop to view Mt. Robson, the highest point in the Canadian Rockies, as well as drive past Moose Lake. You also have a chance to go white water rafting today! (Optional/seasonal)
Day 5 Jasper
Be sure to keep your camera ready for wildlife shots on the short drive to Maligne Lake this morning, where you will have the opportunity to enjoy the amazing scenery. We'll also visit Maligne Canyon, the deepest and longest limestone canyon in the Rockies, where you'll marvel at this impressive gorge carved by generations of raging water. The afternoon is free to hike, bike or simply enjoy the beauty of Jasper. Tonight, sample the local Rocky Mountain cuisine.
Day 6 Jasper to Banff
The Wonder Road ... It's non-stop beauty today as we travel the famous Icefields Parkway, considered one of the most scenic highways in the world. The highlight will be the ride aboard the specially designed "Ice Explorer" on the Athabasca Glacier! This afternoon we'll visit Lake Louise and make several photo stops, including the vivid blue Peyto Lake (seasonal). We arrive in Banff late this afternoon.
Day 7 Banff
We have two days free to enjoy everything that Banff National Park has to offer. You're able to sightsee, hike, shop, or just relax in the beautiful town of Banff. Why not take the optional gondola ride to Sulphur Mountain where spectacular views of Banff await? Or take a breathtaking helicopter ride over the Rocky Mountains, a once in a lifetime experience. Join us one night for an optional horseback ride and steak fry.
Day 8 Banff to Calgary
We travel to the slick city of Calgary, home to what’s known as the greatest show on earth: the Stampede. It’s all about Alberta’s pioneer past and ranching tradition at this massive cowboy carnival. This mind-blowing festival is surely going to be an unforgettable experience, get ready for a whole lot of action over the next two days. From bull-riding to calf-roping, steer-wrestling to cow-tackling, our amazing seats have you up close to these electrifying events at the Rodeo. Once we arrive in Calgary, you will have an opportunity to shop along Stephen Avenue and a premier pedestrian mall in downtown. While shopping make sure get your cowboy/cowgirl kit, you’ll find cowboy hats, shirts and boots to dress the part for the Stampede. This evening we will venture into Stampede Park to catch the Chuckwagon races and round out the evening with an epic grandstand show and prepare for the world’s most unique entertainment doubleheader.
First you get to watch the crazy GMC Rangeland Derby which has been described as NASCAR for cowboys, featuring four wagons, nine heats, and excitement that is measured on the Richter Scale. When the last wagon thunders across the finish line, prepare yourself for The Grandstand Show. You’ll witness a variety of spectacular performances that includes comedy, elaborate song and dance numbers, acrobatics and the spectacular fireworks finale, TransAlta Lights Up The Night. The stage alone is an engineering marvel. The night will be among the most memorable of your lifeâ€¦.and this is only the first night!
Day 9 Calgary for Stampede
With a day at Stampede Park, you’ll experience one of the world’s biggest rodeos and get a look into cattle country lifestyle.
Today it’s all about the rodeo but if you think that’s means men riding on bulls all day your wrong! You’ll see people hitting the dust in more ways than one. The action includes ladies barrel racing, bareback, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, saddle bronc, bull riding and the lifesaving clowns who will be out there entertaining throughout the day.
Make the most of your time here and discover Canada’s country core. With square dancing, mock gun fights, country bands, bars, restaurants and livestock, there is loads to see. Or why not head to the Teepee village, where the five nations peoples are represented and learn about indigenous peoples’ traditions.
Day 10 Calgary to Vernon
This morning we say goodbye the wild west and the Rockies before cutting across three national parks in a spectacular drive.
Things get wilder and a whole lot more rugged in Yoho National Park, where the ice blue Kicking Horse River winds through a valley of waterfalls and meadows. Be impressed by Glacier National Park, home to over 400 glaciers and stop off at Rogers Pass – a place of awesome surroundings. We’ll also see Mt Revelstoke National Park’s towering peaks and surging river.
Then it’s a complete change of scene as we travel into British Columbia’s wine country, Okanagan Valley, with its vines and terraced hills, to Vernon for our overnight stop.
Day 11 Vernon to Vancouver
Hello Big City! Today we travel via the Coquihalla and Transcanada highways enroute to the cosmopolitan city of Vancouver with time to explore the city this afternoon.
Day 12 Vancouver
Feel the young vibe of this city while exploring its hip shops & cafes. Later, enjoy a dinner cruise around the harbor & head out for a night on the town!
Day 13 Depart Vancouver
Today its time to say a final farewell as your tour ends this morning.
All This Included
Experience the Canadian Rockies, have some fun, chill out & challenge yourself in Canada's dynamic duo of provinces: Alberta & British Columbia. Their diverse physical beauty - from Whistler to Banff to Vancouver & everywhere between - feature the greatest of the great outdoors. Take a hike or ride a bike along the many scenic, wildlife-laced trails. Better yet, we'll put you on a gondola, horseback or helicopter for the endless to-die-for photo opportunities. You'll also get a taste of the world famous rodeo, the Calgary Stampede.
Rocky Mountain chalet (2 nights)
Hotel (8 nights)
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* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.