Hi, I have found all of the postings from the local experts on this forum incredibly helpful in planning my trip to Vancouver Island in mid-late July. My fiance and I are taking our moms on a trip, and we are all excited about seeing wildlife (grizzlies, orcas, etc).
Here is the draft itinerary I've put together:
Day 1: Fly into Vancouver
Day 2: Take Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay Ferry, drive to Victoria (mom really wants to see Butchart Gardens)
Day 3: Drive toward Campbell River, stopping at sites along the way, stay overnight at Campbell River
Day 4, 5, 6: Drive to Port McNeill, Grizzly bear tours, whale watching tour, 1/2 day kayak
Day 7: Drive to Nanaimo, take ferry back to Vancouver
Day 8: Fly out
The main question I had was whether we should consider just staying in Campbell River for Days 3-6 (lodging may be cheaper for us) and to take wildlife/kayak tours from there or if it it worth driving further north to stay near Telegraph Cove/Port McNeill.
Thanks for any thoughts or advice you could offer!