Being the world's second largest country with a population little over half that of the UK, it should come as no surprise that Canada does Wilderness better than most, and some of our favourite wilderness hideaways lie within an hour or two's travel of Vancouver city, along the coast of British Columbia.

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Our guide to holidays in British Columbia Coast

British Columbia is home to the largest intact temperate rainforest in the world - the Great Bear Rainforest - which stretches over 250 miles along the state's central and northern coast. The rainforest takes its name from its famous inhabitants, including the Spirit Bear (Kermode Bear), a sub species of the black bear who reside only in this very rainforest tract. The Great Bear Rainforest is also prime grizzly spotting territory, making this region a must on the bucket list of any wildlife enthusiast.

Did you know

  • The Kermode Bear, also know as the Spirit Bear, can only be found in the Great Bear Rainforest in British Columbia
  • One in four North American grizzly bears are found in British Columbia
  • British Columbia has over 16,000 miles of coastline

Off shore, the waters teem with life from whales and dolphins to sea otters and sea lions and so water based exploration features highly on the activity list of many wilderness lodges. Paddle boarding with dolphins, anyone?

The more remote lodges can only be accessed by a light aircraft or float plane journey, so while it requires a little more travel effort, guests are rewarded with accommodation in the heart of pristine wilderness, incredible wildlife encounters and the most amazing senses of stillness - no chance of noise or light pollution here.

For those that prefer to stick a little closer to civilization, lodges along the Sunshine Coast can be accessed by road and ferry but still focus very much on the great outdoors, with fishing, hiking, biking and kayaking all on offer.

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