Trip length: 10 days / 9 nights
Start/End: Williams Lake, B.C.
Group size: 2-6
Price: from $3,345 per person
From Williams Lake to Bella Coola, this trip is an adventure that spans the heart of British Columbia.
On this West Chilcotin self-guided tour, you will venture through ranch country and the scenic Chilcotin Plateau to Tweedsmuir Provincial Park and the Great Bear Rainforest.
If you would like more information about this awe-inspiring journey to the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
West Chilcotin Self-Guided Tour
Embrace the rural ranching culture of the Chilcotin Plateau with a stay at a Guest Ranch and horseback riding.
Hike to the top of the sand dunes overlooking Farwell Canyon, and be on the lookout for bighorn sheep.
Embark on a float plane tour over the expansive ice fields, glaciers and alpine lakes of the Coast Mountain Range.
Learn about the Indigenous culture of the region, from the desert-like landscapes of Xat'sull Heritage Village to the coastal rainforest of Bella Coola.
Visit the iconic Hunlen Falls, dropping 260m from the Turner Lakes chain above, where you'll spend the afternoon hiking to various scenic viewpoints.
Enjoy a walking tour with a guide from the Nuxalk First Nation into a sacred forest to learn about Bella Coola history and marvel at the impressive petroglyphs.
Immerse in grizzly bear country with an afternoon gently rafting down the Atnarko River.
Journey into the Great Bear Rainforest on a marine tour of the glacial fjords west of Bella Coola, including a stop at the serene natural hot springs.
Experience homestyle cooking and hospitality at locally-owned lodges and B&Bs.
Activities On This Trip
B&B, Guest Ranch + Lodge
This is a sample itinerary that can be customized to your group.
DAY 1: Arrive to Williams Lake | Optional sightseeing and activities | Dinner at leisure | Overnight in Williams Lake. Accommodation: Hotel | Meals included: n/a.
DAY 2: Visit Xat'sull Indigenous Heritage Village for tour and lunch | Drive up the Chilcotin Plateau | Dinner and free time to relax at historic B&B | Overnight in Riske Creek. Accommodation: B&B | Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
DAY 3: Visit the scenic Farwell Canyon, a taste of the desert | Hike along the sand dunes | Lunch by the river | Free afternoon in Riske Creek, hiking and relaxing | Overnight in Riske Creek. Accommodation: Bed & Breakfast | Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
DAY 4: Travel day along HWY 20 | Stop in Redstone for lunch on a farm | Hike along the Chilcotin river at Bull Canyon Provincial Park | Arrive at your guest ranch for a classic Canadian ranch experience | Overnight near Kleena Kleene. Accommodation: Guest Ranch | Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner.
DAY 5: Settle into ranching culture and the relaxed pace of life on the Plateau | Morning horseback ride | Optional side-by-side through the forest to a scenic lookout | Free afternoon to canoe on the lake, go for a hike, or relax on the grounds | Overnight near Kleena Kleene. Accommodation: Guest Ranch | Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
DAY 6: Board a float plane from Nimpo Lake for a scenic tour over the Coast Mountains and Monarch Icefields | Disembark on Turner Lake to visit the iconic Hunlen Falls | Spend the afternoon hiking around the remote park | Floatplane return to Nimpo Lake | Overnight near Kleena Kleene. Accommodation: Guest Ranch | Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
DAY 7: Continue along HWY 20 down 'the hill' into the lush Bella Coola valley | Lunch by the ocean and estuary | Walking tour with local Indigenous guide to view sacred petroglyphs | Overnight in Bella Coola. Accommodation: Lodge | Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
DAY 8: Grizzly bear viewing tour on the Atnarko River in Tweedsmuir Provincial Park | Free afternoon to enjoy Bella Coola and hike in the local parks | Overnight in Bella Coola. Accommodation: Lodge | Meals included: n/a.
DAY 9: Full day boat tour cruising the glacial fjords from Bella Coola | Take a dip in the natural hot springs | Catch a glimpse of grizzlies, black bears, whales and dolphins | Overnight in Bella Coola. Meals included: Lunch.
DAY 10: Return to Williams Lake | Optional add-on packages available in Bella Coola or via ferry to Vancouver Island | Tour ends. Meals included: n/a.
This trip is designed for...
Adults and youth age 12+ with interests in outdoor adventure, wildlife, and Indigenous culture and history. Basic mobility and moderate fitness level is recommended. Must be comfortable walking/hiking on light trails for 1-2 hours and riding a horse for 1-2 hours. Some excursions require sitting for extended periods while driving on uneven roads, and on potentially wavy ocean. Guests must be comfortable spending full days outdoors in potentially inclement weather - we promise it'll be worth it! Activities can be customized to fit your interests and fitness level.
Discover More About our West Chilcotin Self-Drive Tours
Read our Travel Journal about the adventures of the West Chilcotin.
DATES + PRICES
Self-Guided Tours are available from July to September for groups of two or more people, based on availability.
Itineraries can be customized based on the interests, budget, and size of the group.
See "How it Works" for more details.
2024 starting rates:
Groups of 2-4: $3,595 /person
Groups of 6: $3,345 /person
All prices are in CAD and subject to GST tax (5%)
Looking for a guided trip?
Check out our Journey to West Chilcotin Guided Tour.
10 days / 9 nights
All accommodation for 9 nights, including 1 night in Williams Lake, 2 nights at a Bed & Breakfast in Riske Creek, 3 nights at a Guest Ranch near Kleena Kleene, and 3 nights at a lodge in Bella Coola.
6 Breakfasts, 6 lunches, and 5 dinners.
All activities listed in the itinerary, including hiking, horseback riding, floatplane tour to Hunlen Falls, grizzly bear viewing, Indigenous cultural tours, and fjords boat tour.
Custom prepared itinerary, local recommendations, and remote support during your trip.
Additional meals not listed
Flights to/from B.C. and Williams Lake
Vehicle rental/usage and fuel
Optional activities in each town
Gratuities for third-party tour providers and housekeeping services (to be given at your discretion)
Personal expenses such as alcoholic beverages, medications, snacks, and souvenirs
Self-Guided West Chilcotin Tour
This is a self-guided trip that requires use of your own vehicle. If travelling via air into BC, we recommend booking a connecting flight from Vancouver International Airport to Williams Lake via Pacific Coastal Airlines and renting a car from here for the duration of your trip. Alternatively you may wish to drive from Vancouver or another destination.
The trip ends on Day 10 with the return drive from Bella Coola to Williams Lake (6 hours). The timing is up to you — there are no scheduled activities on this day. If you wish to stay longer in Bella Coola or travel to Vancouver Island (via scenic ferry from Bella Coola), our team can provide some recommendations based on your preferences.