From the glacial grandeur of the Canadian Rockies to the spume-wreathed coastline of the Pacific rim, from the ghostly expanses of the tundra to the solitary enclaves of its lush rainforests, Canada offers some great wildlife experiences
Sequestered in the protected environs of its 38 National Parks and 8 National Park Reserves are a host of stunning habitats, where visitors can sample the awesome delights of Canada’s wild heritage. You can go snorkelling among migrating salmon in Vancouver Island’s Campbell River or head out to the massive puffin colony at Witless Bay Ecological Reserve. One can even sign up for a visit to the tundra wastes of Labrador to witness the migration, from the south, of the of the barren ground caribou, with the black bears, wolves and elusive Arctic fox right behind them. What an awesome experience it is to see the gathering of over 3,000 beluga whales that arrive each year at the Churchill River estuary in Manitoba, to feed and give birth to their babies.
Banff National Park
Summer visitors go hiking, whitewater rafting, paddling, mountain biking, cycling, birding and mountaineering. In winter snow-lovers hit its ski slopes (Nov-May) around Lake Louise Ski Area, Sunshine Village, and Mount Norquay – and there’s also the allure of ice walks, snowshoeing, and dogsled rides. In summer and winter, wildlife tours open up sightings of moose, grizzly bears, caribou and wolves. In autumn, fall colours are a magnet for photographers…
Millions of wildlife and nature lovers, have, down the decades, been exploring the wild expanses of Alberta at the 1,641,027 acre Banff National Park, Canada’s first national park, designated in 1885. The beginnings of its potential as a secure habitat for its fabulous array of flora, fauna, avifauna and snow-capped mountains and gorgeous vistas, was kicked off by the unexpected discovery of a natural hot spring in the folds of the Canadian Rockies – and the creation of the 26 sq km Banff Hot Springs Reserve. The rest, as they say, is history. The rapid development of the town of Banff (Canada’s highest town at 4,540 feet) is largely attributed to the growing footfalls of visitors to the pristine environs of the National Park who arrive here, not only to enjoy its fabulous setting and wildlife, but also for its alluring range of adventure activities. An intrinsic part of the Unesco-acclaimed Canadian Rocky Mountain World Heritage Site, Banff’s highest elevation is the 11,850 ft Mount Forbes. Its glacial lakes – Louise, Moraine, Bow, and Peyto – have become hubs of intense visitor attention. Visitors also throng the 16-mile long Banff Legacy Trail which showcases some of the most beautiful aspects of the park.