Get a taste of British Colombia during this week-long road trip chock full of summits and lakes. Start in Vancouver, where you'll explore Granville Island and cross the Capilano Suspension Bridge. Visit the chalet village of Whistler and see its towering twin peaks by gondola. Discover Okanagan Valley's sumptuous views as you visit nearby markets and go wine tasting. Finish your trip exploring the shores of Shuswap Lake and the pristine wilderness of Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park,


  • Cross the forest canopy near Vancouver via the Capilano Suspension Bridge
  • Drive along the iconic Sea-to-Sky Highway for stunning mountain views
  • Take the Peak 2 Peak Gondola to view the Whistler and Blackcomb Summits
  • Discover Okanagan Valley and go wine tasting at some of their vineyard estates

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Vancouver, Visit Granville Island Vancouver
Day 2 Grouse Mountain, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park Vancouver
Day 3 Day Trip to Whistler Vancouver
Day 4 Drive to Kelowna via Wine Tasting in Okanagan Valley Kelowna
Day 5 Drive Around Okanagan Lake, Visit Myra Canyon Trestles Kelowna
Day 6 Day Trip to Vernon & Salmon Arm, Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park Kelowna
Day 7 Drive to Vancouver & Depart  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Vancouver, Visit Granville Island

Vancouver's spectacular waterfront setting
Downtown Vancouver

Welcome to Vancouver, Western Canada's coastal metropolis, where the sea and mountains meet. Upon arrival at the airport, pick up your rental car for the easy 20-minute drive downtown to your hotel. The influence of First Nations, Asian, and Anglo cultures enriches this cosmopolitan and modern city. Its compact center is easy to explore on foot, with highlights like Stanley Park, Chinatown, and historic Gastown all within easy reach. If you're hungry, head to Granville Island's vibrant waterfront market, where you can sample local specialties in a buzzing, open-air atmosphere.

In the 1970s, Granville Island began its successful transformation from an industrial wasteland to one of Vancouver's favorite public spaces. As Vancouver's premier artistic and cultural hub, located in an urban waterfront location and steeped in a rich industrial and maritime heritage, the island's charm lies in its unexpected mix of uses. The famous Public Market is home to over 50 independent food purveyors and contributes to the island's appeal as a renowned culinary destination. In the Net Loft Shops and Railspur District, you'll find many of Canada's best artists and designers. 

Day 2: Grouse Mountain, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park

Climb into the treetops at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park

Grouse Mountain offers something for all travelers, whether the snow is coming down or the weather is warm. Just a 15-minute drive from downtown, spend the morning exploring. Ride the Skyride Gondola to the Peak of Vancouver for breathtaking views or enjoy distinctly British Columbian cuisine while overlooking the grandeur of the Lower Mainland, some 3,700 feet (1,128 m) below.

In the afternoon, take a 15-minute shuttle leaving downtown to head for Capilano Suspension Bridge Park. Cross the iconic suspension bridge spanning the raging Capilano River. Climb to Treetop Adventure and walk through the forest canopy on a series of suspended footbridges set 110 feet (30 m) high. Continue to the nearby Cliffwalk to traverse a granite precipice along the river, navigating a labyrinth-like series of narrow cantilevered bridges, stairs, and platforms. When you return to the city, unwind at one of Vancouver's many bars and restaurants.

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Day 3: Day Trip to Whistler

Hop on the Peak-to-Peak Gondola for views of Whistler

Hit the road and head north to Whistler along the Sea-to-Sky Highway, one of the country's most iconic drives. This scenic route from the sea to the mountains offers several beautiful spots worth stopping for during the drive. Stop in Squamish, a popular access point for outdoor activities and adventure, and see the area's most famous peak from the highway: a sheer granite rockface popular with skilled climbers known as "The Chief." You can either hike to the summit or take the Sea-to-Sky Gondola up the mountain for excellent views of Howe Sound from Summit Lodge, where you can also grab lunch.

In the afternoon, you'll reach Whistler, an upscale, chalet-style pedestrian village built around the twin peaks of Whistler-Blackcomb. Stroll around the village, pamper yourself in one of the town's many spas, or ride to the top of the ski area via the Peak-to-Peak Gondola. The world's longest unsupported cable car runs between the summits of Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains and provides easy access to alpine hiking and biking trails. At the end of the day, you'll return to Vancouver along the same route you took, so don't miss the extraordinary views the setting sun will provide.

Day 4: Drive to Kelowna via Wine Tasting in Okanagan Valley

Vineyards overlooking Kelowna and Okanagan Lake

Make the four-hour drive east to the Okanagan Valley. The history and culture of the Thompson-Okanagan region are strongly linked to the land. The First Nations semi-nomadic tribes were divided between hunting and fishing grounds in summer and semi-subterranean house camps in winter. Europeans came first to trade in furs and later established cattle, agriculture, and mining. The region contains museums and heritage sites of its rich and eventful past, as well as renowned golf courses, orchards, ski resorts, vineyards, and diverse landscapes.

The highest point in the Canadian Rockies is in this region, with a waterfall twice the height of Niagara Falls. Spend the day visiting the wineries of the Okanagan Valley and enjoy the stunning views of the mountains, lakes, and vineyards. If you don't wish to drive, you can organize a wine-tasting tour that includes transport. At the end of the day, you'll arrive in Kelowna, where you'll stay for the night. 

Day 5: Drive Around Okanagan Lake, Visit Myra Canyon Trestles

Drive around Okanagan Lake
Relax by Okanagan Lake

Today, drive around Okanagan Lake, stopping at the different markets in Peachland, Summerland, and Penticton. Or go on a fishing tour at Skaha Lake. Later, take a short trip to Myra Canyon. This highly-scenic portion of the Kettle Valley Railway (KVR) runs along a steep-walled canyon. Initially built by hand at the turn of the last century, this impressive landmark is highlighted by two tunnels and 18 trestle bridges that are too spectacular for words. You can hike or rent a bike. Just 13 miles (24 km) from downtown Kelowna, the scenic drive takes you past farms, orchards, and vineyards.

Day 6: Day Trip to Vernon & Salmon Arm, Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park

Excursion to Vernon and Salmon Arm
Salmon Arm's Shuswap Lake

Head 40 minutes north to Vernon today, a town that mixes exceptional recreational outdoor opportunities with urban amenities. Soak up the sun on the beach, relax at a spa, or paddle on a lake. Continue north to Salmon Arm, a small village sitting on Shuswap Lake, which is one of the most popular recreational destinations in British Columbia. The over 248 miles (400 km) of shoreline contain more than 20 provincial parks and offer unlimited water-related recreational opportunities. The surrounding mountains provide beautiful hiking trails.

Return to Vernon to see Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park. Nestled along the Coldstream Valley, this fine example of northern Okanagan grassland is dotted with ponderosa pines and groves of douglas fir. While the spring wildflower show is spectacular, this largely undeveloped park has an all-season appeal. Various animals, birdlife, reptiles, and plant life reside in a mosaic of grassland communities. To date, 432 varieties of vascular plants have been identified in the park, rare for such a small area. Spend some time discovering the park's nature and history before heading back to Kelowna for the evening. 

Day 7: Drive to Vancouver, Depart 

Bid farewell to the Rockies!

Your great Canadian adventure draws to a close today as you make the scenic four-hour drive back to the airport in Vancouver, return your rental car, and catch your departing flight. Safe travels!

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Map of British Columbia Road Trip: From Vancouver to Kelowna - 7 Days
Map of British Columbia Road Trip: From Vancouver to Kelowna - 7 Days