As you plan your visit, I recommend spending a few additional days in Vancouver itself and allocating a few extra days to visit at least one additional destination in British Columbia.
- Whistler is a perfect destination to get out into the B.C. mountains. It is two hours’ drive North of Vancouver, with regular, comfortable bus services available. In winter Whistler is a ski resort, and in summer it is a world-renowned center for outdoors activities including hiking, mountain biking, zip-lining, and some water sports. Even for the less physically-active, the gondola at Whistler-Blackcomb mountain resort can provide you with phenomenal views from the peak of the mountain.
- Vancouver Island has several excellent destinations. The city of Victoria, on the south side of the island, can be accessed easily from Vancouver via the BC Ferries Connector service, which combines a bus from downtown Vancouver and a ferry across the Salish sea. Victoria has several notable attractions, the foremost of which is the Buchart Gardens, one of the finest manicured landscapes in the world.
- The Okanagan is a region in the East of British Columbia known for its many wineries. The main city in the Okanagan is Kelowna, which you can access from Vancouver by bus (c.6hours) or a short flight. If you are driving, I recommend the area around Penticton as the most picturesque to stay at. The Okanagan is an excellent place for relaxation, especially if you like touring wineries (accompanied with tastings, of course!). Even if you do not visit the Okanagan, I recommend trying out the wine from the region while you are in Vancouver!