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Great Bear Lodge Adventure

8

days

starting fromUS $3,440per person

Star Rating 5

5 of 5 stars (3 reviews)

  • Get this trip plan customized to cover everything you want to see.
  • Learn which places to go and which areas are best during certain times of the year.

Discover the magnificent Canadian grizzly bear at Great Bear Lodge, a secluded floating lodge in the heart of the Great Bear Rainforest, located 80 kilometers from Port Hardy on the northern tip of Vancouver Island, only accessible by a floatplane or boat. Enjoy daily guided activities, such as boat cruises and interpretive rainforest walks. There are many native species to admire, including grizzly and black bears, wolves, otters, bald eagles and many others. This unique wilderness lodge offers impeccable service, gourmet food and stunning views.

Trip at a glance

8 Days / 7 Nights

Arrive Vancouver 2 nights Vancouver 1 night Port Hardy 3 nights Lodge 1 night Port Hardy Depart Vancouver

  • View Details Of Each Day

    Sample Itinerary

    Think of this itinerary as just a starting point. Our experienced Canadian Insiders will create a personalized experience for you that matches your schedule, travel style and budget.

    Day 1 – Arrive in Vancouver
    Today you arrive in the beautiful coastal city of Vancouver. Surrounded by mountains, ocean and forest, Vancouver is one of a kind. Tonight you settle into a welcoming Vancouver hotel – the comfortable atmosphere, welcoming staff and beautiful views make for a great first night.

    Overnight in Vancouver.


    Day 2 – Vancouver
    You have a full day to explore Vancouver. Included is a small group tour, to explore Vancouver’s beautiful North Shore, where you’ll see stunning ocean vistas and old growth rainforest.

    Overnight in Vancouver.

    Day 3 – Vancouver to Port Hardy
    This morning you will be taken by private transfer to Vancouver Airport’s South Terminal for your flight to Port Hardy. Enjoy the bird’s eye view of British Columbia’s rugged coast line on your journey to the northern tip of Vancouver Island.

    Upon arrival make your way to your Port Hardy hotel. Be sure to get lots of rest, tomorrow your Great Bear Lodge experience begins.

    Overnight in Port Hardy.


    Day 4 – Port Hardy to Great Bear Lodge
    Leave the noise and distractions of modern life behind, today you welcome the relaxation and silence of the remote wilderness. Your friendly guide meets you to assist with your transfer to the Great Bear Lodge. Board your seaplane for your first adventure the views of Queen Charlotte Strait and the central coast are breathtaking.

    Your friendly hosts are waiting to welcome you to the lodge and show you to your private room. In the late afternoon your first wildlife viewing session begins. It’s nearly impossible to describe seeing your first grizzly bear
    breathtaking, thrilling and humbling all in one moment.

    This evening you’re served a fresh gourmet meal prepared with the best local produce and seafood available
    enjoy complimentary wine or beer with your meal. Learn where the grizzly bear fits into the local ecosystem before relaxing by the fire and enjoying the sounds of the forest.

    Overnight at the Great Bear Lodge.

    Days 5 to 6 – Great Bear Lodge
    The Great Bear Lodge promotes low-impact eco-tourism by using wind and solar power, taking special care not to disturb the bears or their environment.

    Scheduled morning and afternoon bear viewing sessions coincide with times when the bears are the most active. Accompanied by an experienced wildlife biologist, observe bears roaming freely in their natural habitat as you cruise by boat through nearby estuaries or watch from specially designed viewing areas.

    Keep a close eye for other wildlife such as wolves, otters, bald eagles, black bears, pine martins and mink. Daily guided activities, such as boat cruises and a popular interpretative rainforest walk, are offered between morning and afternoon viewing excursions
    and a delicious brunch awaits you back at the lodge.

    If you travel in late summer and fall you’ll witness the incredible sight of thousands of migrating salmon from a series of enclosed viewing stands along the river. Watch as the grizzlies hunt for fish in preparation for their coming hibernation.

    Overnight at the Great Bear Lodge.

    Day 7 – Great Bear Lodge to Port Hardy
    This morning you go out on your final bear watching session. Be sure to bring your camera along for those last great photos! Return to the lodge for a farewell brunch before boarding your seaplane for your journey back to Port Hardy. Enjoy another evening in this fishing community.

    Overnight in Port Hardy.

    Day 8 – Port Hardy to Vancouver – Depart with Fond Memories
    This morning, return south to Vancouver to connect with your flight home. Much too soon, you leave the clean air and colorful sights of Canada behind as your vacation comes to an end.
Great Bear Lodge Adventure – Map

Availability

MayJunJulAugSepOct

Places Visited

VancouverPort Hardy

Accommodation Style

HotelLodge

Activity Level

Easy

What you'll love about this trip

  • Pristine rain forest experience in one of British Columbia's truly magical places

  • Grizzly bear viewing

  • Soaring old-growth forest with nature hikes and bear watching program

  • Boat trips to see the bears

Common Questions

  • Where am I staying on this trip?

    You'll be staying at various local three to five start hotels or lodges along your route, some of which are very iconic properties with great locations, views and history. All our accommodations are carefully selected by our Canadian Insiders. We'll make sure that wherever you stay, you get the best value and comfort based on the seasonal availability.

  • What is included in the price?

    Typically we include and pre-book all your main trip components so you don't have to worry about your connections, places to stay, or activities on your trip. You'll receive a complete travel package with detailed documentation and our Canadian Insiders remain at your disposal before and during your trip to answer your questions.

  • Can I customize this trip?

    Your trip can be as rich as you'd like, and completely arranged around your interests and needs. The greatest benefit of working with us is our local knowledge. You can request your free trip plan to decide what you'd like to see and do.

    If your trip is a special occasion, we'll make sure it is unforgettable. Or if you're traveling with a group, we'll take care of the logistics so you can share time together stress-free.

  • What are the best ways to travel around Canada?

    Canada has a network of spectacular roadways, train routes, ferry crossings, and float planes. We can arrange for you to travel by car or to sit back and relax.

  • When is the best time to see wildlife?

    That depends on the destination and type. As a rule, the main feeding and migration seasons are best for wildlife experiences. Tell us which animals interest you and we'll make your trip coincide with the best viewing season.

  • Is this an escorted tour?

    With the exception of our guided wildlife trips, our vacations are not typically 'escorted.' We combine the best of both worlds – the reassurance of seamless connections, customer service support, and scheduled activities, plus the freedom of 'independent' travel. You are not tied into a specific group, or a rigid daily itinerary. This allows us to personalize your trip to suit your occasion, interests, and timeframe.

  • Will it be cold when I visit Canada in summer?

    The temperature varies from mild to hot, depending on location. Northern Canada will range between 50°F to 64°F (10°C – 18°C) in summer. The interior of BC, prairies, Ontario and Quebec can reach temperatures around 95°F (35°C). Canada's west coast, mountain regions, and Maritimes enjoy milder summer temperatures. They range on average from 59°F to 77°F (15°C – 25°C).

  • How much does my trip cost?

    All our trips can be customized to fit your schedule and budget. The price depends on travel season, train service, hotel level, and the sightseeing tours you choose. Request your free trip plan which will provide you with a detailed cost estimate.

  • What's Included

    What's Included in the Price

    These are the places and experiences to look forward to on this trip.

    Accommodations:
    • 2 nights hotel accommodation in Vancouver at a 4 star hotel
    • 2 nights hotel accommodation in Port Hardy at a 3 star hotel
    • 3 nights accommodation at Great Bear Lodge with private bathroom and shared shower facilities

    Vancouver Experiences:
    • Vancouver North Shore Tour

    Bear Lodge Experiences:
    • Welcome orientation briefing at lodge
    • Wildlife biologist guide
    • Evening interpretative program
    • Bear viewing trips, and additional guided activities such as rainforest walks or boat tours

    Meal Inclusions:
    • Full board meals while at the Great Bear Lodge, including wine and beer

    Transfer Inclusions:
    • Private airport transfer from Vancouver Airport to Vancouver hotel
    • Private airport transfer from Vancouver hotel to South Terminal for flight to Port Hardy
    • Roundtrip air between Vancouver and Port Hardy
    • Return transfers between Port Hardy and the Great Bear Lodge (by float plane)
    • All transportation to bear watching sites at the Great Bear Lodge

    Other Inclusions:
    • Great Bear Lodge provides rain ponchos and rubber boots, if necessary
    • First Nation fee
    • BC Provincial Bear Viewing License Fee
    • Brown Bear Research Network contribution
    • Documentation package
    • Gratuities for private transfer and tours (unless otherwise noted)
    • Gratuities for staff at Great Bear Lodge
    • Fresh Tracks Canada customer service – from the time you book, you are assigned your own personal Vacation Coordinator whom you can reach out to with any questions or requests.

    Important Schedule and Trip Notes:
    • Vancouver North Shore tour is not available on the October 10 and 13 departure dates.
    Not Included
    • Canadian sales taxes
    • Trip Cancellation & Medical Insurance (highly recommended)
    • Airfare from your home to Vancouver
    • Meals, except at the Great Bear Lodge

    Ideas to customize this trip

    Think of this trip as just a starting point. These are some of the experiences you can add-on to personalize your trip.

    • Additional activity packages include extra bear viewing trips, and one of the following daily activities: guided hiking or boat cruise
    • Ask us to arrange a car rental, and drive Vancouver Island with stops in Victoria, Parksville or Campbell River, up to Port Hardy for your bear viewing adventure
    • Add on a trip to the Sunshine Coast and spend a few days exploring the beaches, kayaking or taking in the spectacular ocean views from your private tent-house suite
  • Prices & Dates

    Trip Start Dates

    2019 Vancouver Trip Start Dates
    May 4, 7, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 25, 28, 31
    June 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30
    July 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30
    August 2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 26, 29
    September 1, 4, 7, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 25, 28
    October 1, 4, 7, 10*, 13*

    * Vancouver North Shore tour is not operating on these dates.

    Pricing For This Trip

    Prices listed may vary by departure date, hotel class and degree of personalization. Please speak with one of our travel advisors to get a personalized quote.

    Canadian Bear Viewing Adventure
    from US $3,440to US $5,389per person

    On our Wilderness Adventures, you'll enjoy days with experienced naturalist guides, some meals, seamless connections, and accommodations suited to the unique Canadian surroundings.

  • Accommodations

    Accommodation Options

    These are examples of this trip's accommodation choices. Please call us for the full list or advice on how to customize your experience.

    Great Bear Lodge - The Great Bear Lodge is a unique floating wilderness lodge

    Great Bear Lodge

    An example of our Floating Lodge accommodations

    Great Bear Lodge is located 50 air miles from Port Hardy, British Columbia, at an outstanding wildlife viewing location. This is a place of spectacular beauty where one can still find the silence and solitude of true wilderness. The charming, wind and solar powered floating lodge has eight bedrooms. The common area is a comfortable place for relaxing and listening to natural history presentations from our wildlife biologists.Natural wood decks surround the lodge, a perfect place to enjoy a glass of wine while enjoying the beauty of the scenery. Gourmet meals in the dining room are made from fresh, often organic, local ingredients.

    Sutton Place Hotel - Sutton Place Exterior

    Sutton Place Hotel

    An example of our Superior accommodations

    This elegant hotel is located in a prime location in downtown Vancouver, offering easy access to restaurants and shopping. You can soak up the chic atmosphere and enjoy the spa, sauna, fitness center and pool.

  • Customer Reviews  (3)

    We saw spirit bears

    Star Rating 5
    October 2, 2014

    Read full review...

    Look what we saw today - spirit bears!

    I always recommend Fresh Tracks to others as you give a fantastic, reliable, exceptional service.

    Star Rating 5
    October 2, 2014

    Read full review...

    In a 'nut shell' we had another wonderful ,exciting time in Canada and yes we are planning another trip, probably 2016, for the east coast. Looking for another active and eye popping holiday. So glad we did this active tour and we added extra days, it would have been rushed if we had not. We felt we had enough days to fully experience all that was on offer. The itinerary and instructions  were very exact. So helpful as we referred to it every day. We appreciate the effort that was taken to make our holiday happen. Loved all the activities, the best would be the heli-hike, what an experience! Really enjoyed every one. As the rafting was cancelled, we did the horse trek with the 'cowboy and cook out', it was great fun and we would recommend it. We would recommend the Spirit Bear Lodge. Just what we expected and obviously sighting the bears was the icing on the cake. Experiencing the culture of the Kitasoo was a real bonus. Listening to the Elders, who were also guides and skippers, singing in the main dining room on a stormy day was ever so special. We had a few 'hick ups' and thanks to Sarah they were fixed quickly. Our lake view room at Lake Louise was just breath taking and thanks to all for fixing out that problem with the accommodation. We have so many precious memories of our holiday, too many to mention, and I would like to say a special thank you to you and  Sarah for making it all happen. When I have the opportunity  to do so, I always recommend Fresh Tracks to others as you give a fantastic, reliable, exceptional service.

    Out of this world

    Star Rating 5
    February 27, 2012

    Read full review...

    We have returned from our vacation having had a most fantastic time. Everything worked well and the hotels got better and better as the trip went on. Knight Landing was literally out of this world. Thanks to you for advising us and arranging the trip so effectively.

  • Ways to Save on Your Trip

This Trip in Pictures

Visitors experience walking over the Capilano Suspension bridge in Vancouver
Visitors experience walking over the Capilano Suspension bridge in Vancouver
Starting in Vancouver you are so close to the wilderness on a tour of the Capilano Suspension Bridge.
Passengers ride the Grouse Mountain gondola with views of Vancouver far below
Passengers ride the Grouse Mountain gondola with views of Vancouver far below
Take the Skyride to the top of Grouse Mountain, the peak of Vancouver.
A float plane lands in a lake at the Great Bear Lodge
A float plane lands in a lake at the Great Bear Lodge
Fly to Port Hardy and take a float plane to the Great Bear Lodge.
A whale can be seen in front of the floating Great Bear Lodge in Port Hardy
A whale can be seen in front of the floating Great Bear Lodge in Port Hardy
Relax at your secluded floating lodge in the middle of the wilderness.
Two young grizzly bears play in a river
Two young grizzly bears play in a river
Admire grizzly bears while at the Great Bear Lodge.
Passengers on a boat watch an adult grizzly bear on the riverbank
Passengers on a boat watch an adult grizzly bear on the riverbank
Embark on excursions to see wildlife including bald eagles, deer, porpoises and many other animals.
Rustic bedroom inside the Great Bear Lodge
Rustic bedroom inside the Great Bear Lodge
Relax in your comfortable accommodation in the floating lodge.

Get your FREE trip plan organized and arranged for you

Train and hotel availability is limited – we're now booking into 2019.

Get your personalized itinerary
  • Get a trip that covers everything you want to see.
  • Know which places to go and which areas are best during certain times of the year.
  • Have someone local who knows the area to suggest trains, hotels, dining, sightseeing, etc.
or call us directly toll-free
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