| by KATE POCOCK|
Family Travel Ink
Canada: British Columbia's Top Ten Family Vacation Experiences
Summer Ski Resort holidays: resorts such as Sun Peaks, Kicking Horse Ranch and of course, Whistler and Blackcomb, now attract more families for summertime fun than for snow season. Hiking, mountain biking down the trails, concerts at the tops of mountains and at Whistler/Blackcomb, boatind and summer snowboarding camps for teens.
Canadian River Expeditions summer family float experiences: since 1972, Canada’s first river rafting outfitter has been offering family weeks as part of their expeditions down the Tatshenshini-Alsek, Fraser and Firth rivers. Truly great trips for kids eight to 12
Houseboating on Lake Shuswap or in the Okanagan near Kelowna, home of the Ogopogo Sea Serpent
Gold Panning: hunt for gold at the Gold Panning Recreational Reserve near Lytton, Lillooet, at Emory Creek Provincial Park near Yale or in northern BC. At Barkerville Historic Town, the restored gold-rush town from the 1860s that’s also one of the premiere attractions in the province, families can also pan for gold and attend theatrical performances depicting the area.
Wildlife Viewing at King Pacific Lodge, Princess Royal Island: an exclusive floating lodge located in its own bay on the Inside passage of the BC coast. Whale watching, kayaking and hiking for families. New family fun package for three- to four-night stays. Great for an inter-generational holiday.
BC Ranch Vacation: More than a dozen guest ranches in BC welcome families. The Double M Ranch on the Cariboo Chilcoltin Coast is a working horse and cow ranch whose specialty is teaching children to ride either Western or English style and look after horses.
Cowichan Native Village, Duncan, Vancouver Island: about one hour from Victoria is this native village where families watch totem carvers at work, and even try their own carving or decorating “spirit rocks” with paint.
Strathcona Park Lodge, Upper Campbell Lake, Vancouver Island: this experienced outdoor education centre offers outdoor thrills to young and old. Family Adventure weeks has kids swinging on zip lines, kayaking the coast and rock climbing. From age six is best. Good intergenerational holiday.
Victoria City Fling: bugs at the Victoria Bug Zoo, butterflies at Crystal Garden, boats at the Maritime Museum of British Columbia, ocean creatures and an authentic longhouse at Royal British Columbia Museum and Pacific Undersea Gardens make this a city filled with family attractions.
Eco-adventures with Island Escapades: customized family wilderness excursions, tours and lessons in kayaking, sailing, hiking and climbing in the fascinating Gulf Islands and coastal B.C. Overnight accommodation.