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British Columbia Travel Guide
British Columbia Travel Guide
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British Columbia Travel Guide

British Columbia Travel: General Information

You might have heard people singing praises of British Columbia’s breathtaking natural beauty. If you have a chance of visiting this westerly Canadian province, the land will actually provide an out of the world experience with its lofty snow-capped mountains, shimmering sandy beaches, gleaming snow-fed lakes, boisterous milk-white waterfalls, majestic stand-alone islands, lush valleys and wildlife-filled forests or just any other aspect. Of course, it is not just the panoramic beauty of British Columbia that lures tourists; Nature-lovers flock to the province as much for its physical diversity as for its biological diversity. Likewise, history buffs are lured by the province’s aboriginal and colonial heritage and outdoor enthusiasts have numerous activities to engage in. In addition, if you are looking for cosmopolitan verve, there are BC’s urban centers for you.

British Columbia Travel: Key Facts

Capital City: Victoria

Area: 944,735 sq km

Population: 4,419,974

Monetary Unit: CAD

Official Language: English

International Dialing Code: 001

British Columbia Travel: Popular Tourist Destinations

  • Victoria: Victoria, the historic capital city of BC, is thronged by tourist-crowds every year attracted by its sunny weather and its multiple sites. Rendered unique by its Totem poles, the city has quite a few architectural marvels like the British Columbia Parliament Buildings, The Christchurch Cathedral and The Empress Hotel that also have immense historic importance. The city has a number of museums headed by the Royal British Columbia Museum; some private dwellings like the Craigdarroch Castle and the Emily Carr house have been converted to museums. Victoria, characterized by its art-galleries, music-bands, operas and theaters has a very tempting cultural ambience. The city’s many recreational parks, theme-based gardens and the zoo attract children. Victoria varied cuisine is worth giving a try.
  • Vancouver: Vancouver, touted as one of the greatest venues for global meetings and events, has done brisk business as a commercial tourism center for quite some time. This, however, has never undermined its real tourism-value as a natural paradise, a sporting heaven and a truly cosmopolitan city. If Vancouver’s surrounding waters, beaches and mountains promise a bevy of activities for adventure freaks, the city’s many galleries and museums attract the ones with refined tastes; again, if the city’s high-rises, hip bars and cafes present the glitzy, glamorous side of Vancouver, the area attractions like the Capilano Suspension Bridge, Gastown, Science World and Stanley Park anchor its significance as a tourist destination. Sky train rides and trips to Vancouver’s shopping districts are ‘musts’. Moreover, with 2010 Winter Olympics just round the corner, the city is likely to spring up more surprises.
  • Other Popular Destinations: BC is full of travel destinations across its length and breadth – each of these having its own specialty, besides being scenic and promising scores of adventure sports/activities. Bella Coola Valley is a historic region and gives you glimpses into the BC’s past. The lakeside Nelson Heritage Town can mean a great feel with its hippie community, jazzy nightlife, its cultural/creative ambience and its rich history. Whistler, the snow-decked alpine village of the past is on the verge of becoming a modern town that will be co-hosting the 2010 Winter Olympics. Other destinations include the National Parks and provincial parks as well as regions like Okanagan Valley, Queen Charlotte Islands, The Gulf Islands, etc.

British Columbia Travel: Economy and Infrastructure

The Land of the Rocky Mountains and The Glacier National Park, of bears and rattlesnakes, of world-famous ski-resorts, beaches, etc., British Columbia receives its highest earnings from tourism as the province is visited by millions of tourists from the world-over every year. Forestry, which till the 1990s was the number one industry with its conifer-population producing multiple products like lumber, paper, pulp, etc., has declined due to opposition to tree-felling. The other important industries are fishing, food-processing, manufacturing, mining and ranching.

British Columbia transportation infrastructure was initially spear-headed by the Transcontinental Railways, but now the province has extensive networks of roads highways and railways. Air- and water-transports for passenger-services and commercial-services are more than adequate.

British Columbia Travel: Culture

British Columbia is a land of diversity – both physically and culturally. Initially home to aboriginals, the province gradually turned into a multi-ethnic region through continuous settlements by various immigrant groups. Today, British Columbia has a mixed population and though the majority of the populace has European roots, BC has the largest Asian population in Canada. A visit to BC will give you the flavor and feel of this mélange of cultures.


Things about British Columbia you may be interested in

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