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Haida Gwaii - Queen Charlotte Island Tours, B.C.

Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site
RATED #1 PARK DESTINATION IN NORTH AMERICA by the 2005 National Geographic Review.

Join our Haida Gwaii adventure tour aboard our 54-foot motor yacht Great Bear II to enjoy the Haida culture and the biodiversity of Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site. Come experience the amazing beauty of these islands.

 

All our cruises and boat tours to Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site begin and end in Sandspit/Queen Charlotte City.

Your home for this Haida Gwaii adventure tour of discovery is our 54-foot ship, the Great Bear II. We equip this yacht with the latest safety and navigation equipment. We even have an 18-foot zodiac dinghy that is perfect for excursions along the shore. Additionally, we have kayaks that are great for experiencing the inter-tidal life and the serenity of our coastal anchorages.

FOCUS OF OUR TRIPS

Our Queen Charlotte Island Tours take us one hundred kilometers west of B.C.'s north coast, on the edge of the Pacific Continental Shelf, and to the archipelago of Haida Gwaii. Its shores bathed in warm, nutrient-rich waters, Haida Gwaii is often referred to as the Canadian Galapagos.

Because the Haida First Nations People had such an abundance of food, they had time to develop one of the world's most powerful and creative cultures. The Haida culture, art, and the unique flora and fauna of B.C.'s Haida Gwaii are the main focus of our tours in Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site.

VISIT THE NEW HAIDA HERITAGE CENTRE

Our Haida Gwaii adventure tour may begin or end with a visit to the Haida Heritage Centre in Skidegate where in 2001, the Haida raised six new totem poles in a memorable ceremony at the site of Kaay llnagaay, (Sea Lions Town). (Price of admission to the Museum is included in the price of our trips). In the summer of 2008 the new Kaay Ilnagaay Heritage Centre officially opened.

This important heritage centre celebrates the living culture of the Haida people, and includes an interpretive centre, carving sheds, theatre, and art school.

SEE OLD HAIDA VILLAGE SITES AND SPEAK WITH HAIDA WATCHMEN

When we begin to travel south, the Gwaii Haanas boat tour brings us to the old village sites of Skedans, Tahnoo, Sgang Gwaay, (a World Heritage Site), and also Gandll K'in, (Hot Springs Island). In each of these sites, Haida Watchmen will greet and share with us the life and culture of each of these awe inspiring and very spiritual places.

You will be able to walk alone on trails through these old villages, and have the time to see, hear, and smell, all that makes these sacred places so special! Bring plenty of film for your camera!!

UNIQUE FLORA & FAUNA, A BIRD WATCHER'S "EDEN"

Because Haida Gwaii has been separated from the British Columbia mainland for so long and much of the land escaped the last ice age, there exist many unique and genetically different species that cannot be found anywhere else in Canada. (Even the larger Black Bears found here are genetically different from their relatives on the mainland.) Haida Gwaii are a bird watchers 'eden': you may see Tufted Puffins, Peregrine Falcons, Bald Eagles, Trumpeter Swans, Sandhill Cranes, Murrelets, Shearwaters, Cormorants, Oyster Catchers, some of which only come on land to nest in the summer and spend the rest of their lives at sea.

WHALE WATCHING

Whaling was once an important industry in the islands. Those days are thankfully long gone and the whales have returned, and the whale watching is great!

On our Gwaii Haanas boat tour, off the coast of the southern islands, we have often found ourselves surrounded by large groups of Humpbacks-as many as 50 whales! Minke and Fin whales are often seen, as well as Dahl's porpoises and Pacific White-Sided Dolphins who love to join our cruise for a ride on our bow wave.

 

A CLOSE UP OF THE PROLIFIC MARINE LIFE

A "float" through in Burnaby Narrows in the zodiac or in the kayaks with our onboard Naturalist at low tide is one of the highlights of our trips in Haida Gwaii. Below you, in the tidal channel stretches an endless carpet of sea life: tiny Bat Stars, small to huge sun stars, anemones, sea cucumbers, clams of every description, mussels, some tiny, and some the size of your hand, clinging to the seaweed drenched rocks, colourful red turban snails and huge moon snails. Hermit and rock crabs scurry along the colourful bottom looking for their next meal.

RELAXATION AT IT'S FINEST

In late October 2012 after the 7.7 earthquake rattled Haida Gwaii, the hot pools at Gandll K'in dried up and the earth became cold. However, warm water has begun to return and has filled several of the pools which we are all very excited about!

If you are traveling with us in 2019, don't forget your bathing suits so you can revel and relax in the warm water on Gandll K'in, (Hotsprings Island).

SMALLER TOUR GROUPS ALLOW FOR A MORE INTIMATE EXPERIENCE

You gain a more intimate experience with the local flora and fauna when in a smaller group (two to five individuals).

On our Queen Charlotte islands tour, you are sure to find wonder:

  • In front of the mortuary poles in Sgang Gwaay
  • Discovering the colourful carpets of sea life in Burnaby Narrows
  • Standing in front of the ancient remains of the longhouses in the old village of Tahnoo
  • Witnessing a towering potlatch pole at Skedans
  • Soaking in the pools and enjoy the sweeping ocean vistas at Gandll K'in

Experience the Wild in Wilderness!

Testimonials

"...all shown to us with such modest competence--makes me proud to be part of Canada." ~ Phyllis, Toronto, Ontario

"As wonderful as the trips have been, the friendships with you are the most memorable and special aspects of these coastal adventures." ~ Al and Marilyn, Calgary, Alberta

"Your love and respect for these islands and these people are palpable and moving." ~ Margo, Vancouver, Canada

  
First class BC wilderness cruises, coastal tours and charters on the West Coast of British Columbia aboard the 54 ft. Great Bear II, out of Vancouver, BC.
· Haida Gwaii · Queen Charlotte Islands · Great Bear Rainforest · Gulf Islands · Princess Louisa Inlet ·
· Desolation Sound · Howe Sound · Indian Arm · Whale Watching · Bear Viewing · Wilderness Adventures ·

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