Friday, August 17, 2012

Stories about summer travel in British Columbia

  Story Ideas from Tourism British Columbia
Here is a captivating collection of Fresh Story Ideas from Tourism British Columbia.

Vancouver Island: Dive Into Deep Bay Marine Field Station: If the mussels, clams, oysters and crabs of Baynes Sound could talk, they would tell a story that spans 400 million years. They would spin a yarn about Vancouver Island's original human population — the innovative First Nations people who relied on them for food. They would tell tales about what it takes to keep the ecosystem clean — a key task for shellfish, which are essentially the self-powered filters of sea.

And they would undoubtedly discuss the precarious future of the environment, and shellfish's relationship to it. But since these miraculous marine creatures cannot speak, Vancouver Island University's new, multi-million dollar Deep Bay Marine Field Station is encouraging others to speak for them. The Station, near Qualicum Beach, is a stunning clamshell-shaped structure that gazes over the waters of Baynes Sound; it is an architectural triumph, honoured with a 2011 National Green Buildings Award. At this facility, aquaculture research is treated the same way land-based agricultural field research has been done for years. The building also functions as a marine science museum with huge aquariums up to nine-metres (30-feet) long, jellyfish tank, touch-tanks and skeleton of a ten-metre (32 foot) grey whale. Here, children and adults can plunge — educationally speaking — into the world beneath the ocean and explore the marine life the planet depends on.

To read more story ideas from the Vancouver Island region, visit

Cariboo Chilcotin Coast: No Worries at Nimpo Lake Resort: A tiny community in BC's wild West Chilcotin boasts a beautiful lake ripe with big opportunity for outdoor adventure. Perched on the doorstep of Tweedsmuir Provincial Park, Nimpo Lake Resort is the ideal jumping off point for wilderness experiences and exploration. Five cosy cabins set on or near Nimpo Lake are the perfect place to retreat from the chaos of the "real world" and relax. The linens, bedding, towels, firewood and the unspoilt beauty around you are all part of the package. So remote is Nimpo Lake that this area is often called The Floatplane Capital of BC, as much of the region beyond the resort is inaccessible by road. A flight-seeing trip high above Hunlen Falls (Canada's third-longest freefalling waterfall) and the pristine icefields of the Rainbow and Monarch Mountains is an experience that won't soon be forgotten. But there is as much to explore on foot, mountain bikes, ATVs and all manner of boats, and since the area is home to an abundance of wildlife including bears, caribou, mountain goats, eagles and moose, it's wise never to go out without a camera and binoculars. Solitude, jaw-dropping vistas and pristine wilderness are reason enough to explore this unsung corner of BC, but the trout and fly-fishing are definitely another, with Nimpo Lake offering up natural rainbow trout up to five pounds (2.3 kilograms). With no cell phone service and limited wireless Internet access, there's no better place to pull up a chair on the dock, sit back and say goodbye to any worries.

To read more story ideas from the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast region, visit

Thompson Okanagan: The Big Buzz About Arlo's Honey Farm: There's been a lot of buzz in culinary circles about bees lately, and with a membership of over 30 beekeepers in the BC Honey Producers Association, Kelowna is no stranger to apiaries. Take Helen Kennedy from Arlo's Honey Farm, for example. Lovely, energetic and passionate about beekeeping, Kennedy treats her bees like members of the family — and perhaps the bees acknowledge that love by producing a honey that has been recognized as the "Best Honey In BC." Kennedy doesn't just raise bees, she also celebrates them through National Day of the Honey Bee. An event that Kennedy conceived a year ago at her 46-hectare (114-acre) farm in southeast Kelowna, the day sees neighbouring farms and beekeepers come together to display their products, offer honey tasting and treats, and bee farm tours, which truly makes the area a hive of activity for one day every year.

To read more story ideas from the Thompson Okanagan region, visit

Kootenay Rockies: Finding Fun This Summer is as Easy as Riding a Bike: The Kootenay Rockies region is known for its steep-and-deep skiing, and rightly so. But the mountains that offer such adventure each winter become an entirely different playground in the summer, and discovering summer fun can be as easy as riding a bike — literally.

People head to Kicking Horse Resort Bike Park for something new, and they get it. The highest of all Canadian bike parks, it boasts vistas of three mountain ranges and the wetlands of the Columbia Valley from the top, and from there it's all downhill — in the best way. You might even peek a Boo: Boo is the resident grizzly bear at Kicking Horse's protected grizzly bear habitat, the world's largest.

The bike park at Panorama Mountain Village is accessed by a high-speed chair lift from Thursday to Sunday all summer long, with downhill trails for every level of rider. With mountain bike lessons, rentals and cross-country trails, the mountain is perfect for family fun. Great golfing, rappelling and a Kids Adventure Camp also on offer, Panorama clearly understands that a memorable family holiday doesn't necessitate spending every waking minute together.

Another incredible mountain, Fernie Alpine Resort, boasts the largest mountain bike park in the Rocky Mountains. But the resort's new Aerial Playground & Rippin' Zipline is also taking visitors by storm. An exhilarating leap of faith is all it takes as you zip through a rope course 18 metres (60 feet) above the ground — then there's the suspended, gravity-defying climbing walls, walk-the-plank and high-wire acts, which also get the heart rate up.

Need a day off the adrenaline high? All three resorts also offer scenic hiking trails and great food, good for all ages.;;

To read more story ideas from the Kootenay Rockies region, visit

Northern BC: Get a Big Nature Experience at Haida House: Magical and mysterious, Northern BC's Haida Gwaii is a place of pristine natural beauty known for its wildlife, hiking, art, surfing and historic and contemporary First Nations culture — plus the Haida House at Tllaal. Perched on the edge of Graham Island between the community of Masset in the north and Queen Charlotte in the south, the Haida House gazes upon both the Tlell River and the rugged shores of the Hecate Strait. A 2,400 square-metre (8,000 square-foot) post-and-beam cedar lodge on a 2.8-hectare (seven-acre) wooded property, the House is the perfect place for visitors to tuck comfortably into the grandeur of the landscape and unwind. Take an excursion led by a Haida cultural ambassador — who will impart the stories of the Haida people in the way of ancient oral tradition. Explore the ever-changing dining menu at the on-site gourmet restaurant, which specializes in fresh seafood from the region and local seasonal vegetables, and be sure to ask about trying traditional Haida foods. Most people come for a few days; many wish they could stay forever.

To read more story ideas from the Northern British Columbia region, visit

Vancouver, Coast & Mountains: Thrill-seekers Take to the Whitewater at Sunwolf: Near Squamish, Sunwolf resort is the perfect place to discover why the area deserves its moniker the outdoor recreation capital of Canada — and you won't have to do much digging to get to the bottom of it once you're there. While Sunwolf offers kayaking, fishing and flight-seeing tours, whitewater rafting is arguably where it really makes its mark, as thrill-seekers from young kids to retirees discover between May and September each year. Looking to get your heart rate up? Power your way through spectacular scenery in nearly continuous whitewater on a rafting tour down the Elaho River, which includes a gourmet salmon barbecue on a private beach. Want a slower pace? The Cheakamus River Family Float is more scenic than scary as you float along crystal clear water through Paradise Valley, watching for black bear, cougar, deer and coyote. Just 70 minutes from Vancouver, the tidy, riverside cabins with hardwood floors, vaulted ceilings and gas fireplaces make for the perfect overnight stop. Just be sure not to miss Sunwolf's Fergie's Café, where Chef Pixie's homemade sausage and BBQ packs are fast becoming the stuff of legend.

To read more story ideas from the Vancouver, Coast & Mountains region, visit

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