Watch CBS News

Outdoorsman's Guide To British Columbia

british columbia
(credit: Shutterstock)

Those looking for an outdoor adventure should consider escaping to British Columbia. This area offers everything from large recreational areas to quiet waterways, all perfect for exploring, relaxing and getting an up-close look at remote natural areas that appear untouched by man. You will definitely have an adventure of a lifetime and come back home feeling refreshed from your outdoor getaway.

Photo Credit: Thinkstock
Photo Credit: Thinkstock

How To Get There

Those looking to have an outdoor adventure in British Columbia will have a variety of different methods of transportation to get to the area. Everything from air to land travel helps make the wilderness in this region of Canada accessible to every outdoorsman. When flying into the area, travelers can choose to fly into international airports, regional airports, seaplane airports and smaller municipal airports. Airports in the area include:

A variety of bus and shuttle services are available throughout British Columbia, giving travelers easy access to nearly every city and town in the region. Several sightseeing tours are also available for those wanting to experience the great outdoors without the struggle of exploring it solo. British Columbia has a series of well-maintained highways and roads. Many of these routes offer breathtaking scenic views and everything is well-marked, making it possible to safely get to a destination without getting lost along the ways. Travelers can either rent a car upon their arrival at one of the area’s major airports or drive their own car from home. Different scenic driving routes throughout British Columbia include the Hot Springs Circle Route, Discovery Coast Circle Route, Ranchlands and Rivers Circle Route and Great Northern Circle Route. When driving, check up-to-date road conditions by visiting the website for the Traveller Information System.

British Columbia is easily accessible by train, with many of the cities having train stations, putting travelers close to where they want to be for camping, outdoor recreation and nature tours. Traveling by train is offered by VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer.

Related: The Outdoorsman’s Travel Guide Of Montana

RV Park
(credit: Shutterstock)

Where To Stay

Throughout British Columbia you will find hotels, motels, resorts, bed and breakfasts and plenty of places to camp. If you're wanting a true outdoor experience, make plans to pitch a tent at one of the many parks or campgrounds found throughout the area. There are more than 1,200 recreational sites that are perfect for camping using a tent or RV. Camper vans and RVs are also available locally for those wanting to camp at local campgrounds and RV parks.

Provincial park and national park camping is available in British Columbia, with prices ranging from $10 per party per night up to $40 per party per night. Provincial parks offering camping services include Summit Lake, Juniper Beach, Whiskers Point, Kootenay Lake, Robson River in Mount Robson Park and Kentucky Alleyne provincial parks.

Private campgrounds are also available, offering a variety of amenities and services for campers. Popular private campgrounds and RV parks in British Columbia include:

outdoor gear
(credit: Shutterstock)

What To Bring

Preparing to spend time in the great outdoors takes a bit more planning and preparing than a vacation to a five-star tropical getaway. Out of everything you pack for your outdoor adventure in British Columbia, the most important thing you need to have with you are things to help keep you dry and warm. Dressing in layers is key to staying warm -just make sure the removable layers are easily folded and can fit in a backpack or other carrying sack. Clothing to consider packing include: jeans, a water/wind-proof jacket, T-shirts, long-sleeved shirts, hiking shoes/boots, scarves, gloves, hats and plenty of socks
Pack plenty of water and food items that are easily carried to campsites and while hiking. Most who like outdoor adventures bring along a reusable drinking container to carry with them while hiking and exploring. First aid essentials include bug spray, anti-itch cream, Band-Aids and Neosporin. Keeping a bright bandana in your backpack is also a good idea, as it can be used to signal for help, as a headband or to gather berries. Do not forget to bring pillows, blankets and a tent, or other sleeping comforts if traveling in an RV. Books and small games are good to have to keep everyone entertained at night. Recreational items to bring with include bikes, skis, helmets and any other item that is needed for the recreational activities you plan to enjoy while in British Columbia.

Related: How to Pack Lightly for Your Camping Trip

Photo Credit: Thinkstock
Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Things To Do

With so many provincial and national parks scattered throughout British Columbia, there are a variety of outdoor activities available for those wanting to get closer to Mother Nature. One of the most popular activities for those camping in British Columbia is hiking in the different parks, including at Tweedsmuir, Babine Mountains and Mokman provincial parks. Other activities available throughout the many parks in British Columbia include boating, wildlife viewing, horseback riding, sightseeing, canoeing, kayaking, fishing and picnicking. Winter sports in the area include snowshoeing, backcountry skiing, skiing, winter camping and ice fishing. Planning a trip to British Columbia will put you close to nature, giving you access to do all of the outdoor activities you have dreamed of enjoying. While away, you will be able to kick back and relax, while exploring the many different forests and national parks.

Heather Landon (Heather Leigh Carroll) is a freelance writer with more than 20 years of experience. She has combined two of her passions - writing and travel - to share her experiences with others. You can read more of her articles at
View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.