North Vancouver Island
While whale-watching may seem like a cyclical game of Hit and Miss, Vancouver Island has always been the spot with the best odds. Campbell River, Port Hardy and, in particular, Telegraph Cove are the focal points for marine adventure in these parts. You can spot resident orca whales year-round and humpback whales May to September. Large groups of white-sided dolphins, porpoises, sea lions and harbour seals are also on the marquee.
Must-do: Enjoy bear-watching, kayaking, birding and surfing. Plus, the sunsets here are beyond words.
Best route: Fly into Campbell River from Vancouver Airport, or take the ferry from Horseshoe Bay north of Vancouver to Nanaimo and make the pleasant drive north.