Bald Eagles in a tree
The Vancouver Island region’s diverse ecosystems make for some of the best wildlife viewing in British Columbia.
Popular wildlife activities on Vancouver Island include guided whale-watching and bear-watching tours, but there are many self-guided wildlife viewing opportunities as well.
Watch grizzly bears in Knight Inlet, view Roosevelt elk (found only on Vancouver Island), check out one of many bird watching areas or look for the Vancouver Island marmot, an incredibly rare mammal.
Enjoy seeing prolific marine life in Barkley Sound and Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, snorkel with salmon and seals, watch sea otters play in kelp beds or spot wildlife from the deck of a working coastal freighter as it plies the waters of remote West Coast inlets.
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83 Wildlife Tours in Vancouver Island
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51 Wharf St
Tofino, British Columbia
We are committed to preserving the ecological value & timeless wonder of Clayoquot Sound. We strive to help visitors appreciate the coastal environment through fun, educational outings. Our programs emphasize the many connections between forest & ocean ecosystems.
Whether whale watching, bear watching, dipping into Hot Springs Cove or sea kayaking to a rainforest trail, people of all ages have enjoyed our excursions since 1986.
We launch out of Tofino, on the west coast of Vancouver Island, just minutes from Long Beach & Pacific Rim National Park. Tofino is part of Clayoquot Sound, a temperate rainforest area of beaches & fjord inlets.
An eco-tour with the viewing of orcas, humpback & minke whales, numerous other marine mammals & seabirds while touring through the protected waters of Johnstone Strait & the Broughton Archipelago.
Departures are from: Alert Bay on Cormorant Island & the Alder Bay Resort on Vancouver Island. Our 4-5 hr "Sail with the Whales" tour offers exceptional service & value to individuals, families & small groups & includes fresh baked muffins & Devonshire Tea.
If you are looking for a unique & eco-friendly experience, join us, our carbon footprint is very small. There is no other whale-watching tour like it on the BC coast!
Klemtu, British Columbia
Spirit Bear Lodge is located in the Kitasoo First Nation village of Klemtu, BC. With the lodge as our base, we travel in small groups by boat, exploring the temperate rainforest and ecological wonders of Princess Royal Island, home to the world's only Kitasoo Spirit Bear Conservancy. See the rare Spirit bear and majestic Grizzly bear, who inhabit the traditional territory of the Kitasoo/Xai'xais First Nation. Fabulous opportunities exist to watch and photograph these amazing creatures in their natural habitat.
1119 Wharf St
Victoria, British Columbia
SpringTide's 61' Marauder IV provides the perfect platform for whale viewing & photography with 360° viewing decks and a terrific sound system to capture underwater vocalizations. Expert Biologists provide informative lectures, while you enjoy free hot beverages, comfortable indoor/outdoor seating and spacious washroom facilities. Charter Marauder for your private events.
Just for the thrill of it, suit-up for a Zodiac tour! Naturalist interpretations throughout your excursion covering biology & behaviour of whales, marine mammals & birds.
3 hour tours are also from April through October. Day trips, including transportation and/or hotels are available from Vancouver & Seattle.
Sportfishing charters available on a 42' sportfish yacht.
Telegraph Cove, British Columbia
Committed to ethical & educational wildlife viewing, we are the first whale watching company established in BC, now in our 36th season. Based in Telegraph Cove, the Whale Watching Capital of BC, we offer tours through Johnstone Strait, Blackfish Sound & Broughton Archipelago Area.
You'll love our island, the magnificent mammals & bird species you'll see, and the friendly people you'll meet. Depending on the season, you may see Orca (Killer Whales), Humpback Whales, Pacific White-sided Dolphins, Harbour Porpoises, Dall's Porpoise, Minke Whales, Bears, Steller Sea Lions & various birds.
Cruise in comfort in our 60 foot (17 metre) vessel MV Lukwa or the 40 foot (12 metre) MV Kuluta which have heated cabins & toilets, hydrophone (underwater microphone) so that you can hear the Orca vocalizations throughout the vessel.
1950 Peninsula Road
Ucluelet, British Columbia
March and April "Gray Whale Adventure" during the northern migration. May through October "Islands Whales and Bears" in this amazing see-it-all tour in Barkley Sound. A photographer's dream. "Bears and Birds" all the activity in Ucluelet harbour at low tide (best for bears). November to February "Broken Group Islands Sunset Cruise" or "Sunset Harbour Tour" featuring low angle light, sea lions, eagles, and no crowds. Choose the boat that suits your style, a fast and fun adventurous zodiac or a cosy enclosed cruiser. Our Guarantee - We can guarantee that if you do not go on a whale or bear watching tour, you will definitely not see a whale or a bear. Unfortunately, you will miss all the other amazing things our tours have to offer.
Telegraph Cove, British Columbia
See grizzly bears in the wilds of Knight Inlet. Tours depart daily from Telegraph Cove, the whale watching centre on northern Vancouver Island, by covered boat. Watch grizzly bears eat salmon, eagles pick the scraps. Sea birds, dolphins, seals, black bears, grizzlies. We depart early at 7:00 am to assure grizzly bear sightings; we had 99% sightings on 2014 trips. June is our best month. We run in a covered boat with on-board washroom, then at the grizzly bear hot spot we switch to big open skiffs to get in close to the action. Lunch & light breakfast is included amidst the splendour of Knight Inlet. In the fall, bears eat salmon. Departure times may vary in the fall.
7001 Corbould Rd
Bella Coola, British Columbia
Our Grizzly Bear Tours have been included in the Canadian Tourism Commission's "Signature Experiences Collection"! Tours run August to October when the rivers are teeming with salmon, drawing Grizzlies hoping to fatten up for the winter. At this time Grizzlies are intent on fishing and are more tolerant of other bears and people, therefore much easier to observe.
Accompanied by an experienced guide, our non-motorized drift trips are the perfect way to see the bears and wildlife of Bella Coola.
- Small groups!
- Leave Vancouver in the morning and be bear viewing in the afternoon!
- Superior accommodation
- Founding member of The Magnificent 7 Luxury Wilderness Lodges of Canada
- TripAdvisor's Certificate of Excellence & Traveller's Choice Award: "Top Small Hotels of Canada"!
101 Fourth St
Tofino, British Columbia
First Class Family Adventure, Excellent Value.
Tour Tofino's wild side with West Coast Aquatic Safaris! Enjoy the West Coast of Vancouver Island's premiere wildlife and sightseeing aboard our all weather family tour boats, Wasco and Nanuq, both of which are Transport Canada safety certified. Our professional and knowledgeable staff will make your Tofino experience one to remember.
Get off the beaten path and experience eco-tourism that is environmentally responsible, safe, and fun for the whole family! See why whale watching in Tofino truly is special, take a bear watching trip from the safety of our boat, visit local Tofino hot springs, and don't forget our seasonal safaris!
West Coast Aquatic Safaris is accessible for all. We look forward to welcoming you aboard!
2261 Haddington Crescent
Port McNeill, British Columbia
Join us for the trip of a lifetime! Guided Orca Sea Kayaking. Explore the pristine wilderness from our comfortable basecamp located within the world-famous Orca and Humpback whale watching waters of Johnstone Strait.
Experience whale and other wildlife watching at its finest - right in their habitat as you become one with nature and connect with your surroundings on an intimate, personal level that you will never forget.
Previous kayaking experience not necessary. Expert guides ensure a safe paddling experience for the whole family.
Our island basecamp is well established with a well-groomed trail network, private tent platforms with tarp roof and cozy tents, camp kitchen and hearty meals, zero-impact outhouses and camp shower facilities with heated water. Breakfast on the beach as Orcas pass closeby.