Travel: Attractions of Western Canada

In British Columbia, nature itself is the main attraction – from the awe inspiring Rocky and Coastal mountain ranges to the beautiful gulf islands, from the pounding surf to the towering trees in the old growth forests. BC is known around the world for its “super” natural scenery. But if hiking through rugged wilderness isn’t your cup of tea, there are still many great attractions throughout the province, including:

The Butchart Gardens – a 50-acre floral show-place on Vancouver Island. In Victoria, you can go back through the history of British Columbia in the realistic Ice Age and Coastal Forest dioramas of the Royal BC Museum.

On the mainland, you can cross the world's greatest suspension footbridge - 450 feet across and 230 feet above Capilano River. Don’t miss their rainforest trails, Living Forest and Story Centre exhibits, Totem Park and Big House native carving center.

Sights in Vancouver’s Gastown include the world's first steam-powered clock and a statue of "Gassy" Jack Deighton - who convinced local loggers and trappers to build him a saloon they all could share.

Further inland, take the "Hell's Gate" airtram over wild white water of the Fraser river and view the massive International Fishways which help over 2 million salmon a year make it to their spawning grounds.

In the mountains between BC and Alberta, the scenery in Banff, Jasper and Lake Louise will take your breath away.

In the badlands of Drumheller, Alberta, discover the Royal Tyrrell Museum where you can see more than 35 skeletons of real dinosaurs like Albertosaurus, T. rex and Triceratops.

Sleep in a tipi near Elk Island National Park.

Explore an exotic jungle inside a towering glass pyramid at Edmonton’s Muttart Gardens.

See top professional cowboys ride bucking broncos at the world’s greatest rodeo during the Calgary Stampede which runs from July 7th through 16th.

The world class Calgary Zoo features a unique Prehistoric Park with life-sized dinosaurs in their re-created environment.

In Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, take the Tunnels of Moose Jaw tour where gangsters including Al ‘Scarface’ Capone ran their distilling, bootlegging and rum running operations.

In the Saskatchewan capital of Regina, (once called “Pile of Bones”) – you can visit the RCMP Centennial Museum and find out all you ever wanted to know about the Mounties.

In Winnipeg, Manitoba, take a paddle-steamer through the heart of the city which is known as “The Gateway to the North”. In the suburbs, you’ll find the high-tech Royal Canadian Mint and Lower Fort Garry, an old fur-trading post.

You can even book a safari to the eerie and remote tundra of Northern Manitoba, to view polar bears in the wild.

CNM