Tucked between the mainland of southwestern British Columbia and Vancouver Island is an archipelago of islands known as the Canadian Gulf Islands. Each has its own charm, with natural history and coastal scenery unique in North America.

Starting from Victoria on Vancouver Island, we visit the smaller islands of Salt Spring, Galiano and Mayne as we explore the pastoral island life. Whether by bike, on foot, or by kayak, you will be seduced by this unique island charm. We’ll stay in inns and hotels that are welcoming and dine on inspired Pacific Northwest cuisine.

Only Great Explorations:

  • Small groups, extraordinary guides, and authentic experiences.
  • Dinner at Pilgrimme, ranked one of the best restaurants in Canada.
  • A picnic at Lighthouse Park on Mayne Island, where whales may be spotted offshore.
  • Order off the menu at restaurants you won’t find in guidebooks.
  • Distinctive, charming hotels too small for larger groups.
  • We design and operate our own trips so there are only good surprises.



662 Pandora Ave, Victoria, BC V8W 1R7, Canada

Starting Location

Salt Spring Island

Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada

Day 3 - 4

Galiano Island

Galiano Island, Southern Gulf Islands, BC, Canada

Day 5 - 6

What’s Included in the Cost of Your Trip?


Services of one or more experienced Great Explorations guides and support vehicle.
6 nights lodging.
All breakfasts, 2 lunches, and all dinners but 1.
Entrance fees for selected historical sites and museums.
Detailed map and route instructions.
All baggage transportation.
All transportation from initial meeting point to final drop-off (see arrive/depart cities).




Jun 7-13
Jun 14-20
Jul 2-8
Jul 9-15
Jul 16-22
Jul 23-29
Aug 6-12
Aug 13-19
Aug 20-26
Sep 3-9
Sep 22-28
Sep 30-Oct 5


Jun 6-12
Jun 13-19
Jul 1-7
Jul 8-14
Jul 15-21
Jul 22-28
Aug 5-11
Aug 12-18
Aug 19-25
Sep 2-8
Sep 21-27
Sep 29-Oct 4

Trip can start at any date. Self-guided and custom trips also available. Call or email for details.


8-16 participants


7 days / 6 nights




30-50+ km

(20-30+ miles) daily
Van supported


Gently rolling with some short steep hills.


Land Cost (current year):
CAD $2950
Includes 6B/2L/5D

Single Supplement:
CAD $740

Bike Rental:
CAD $220

Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 5% must be charged on trips in Canada.

Please note: Final itinerary is subject to revision; any changes made are done so in an attempt to provide the best possible trip given route conditions and available services. Due to the nature of our business and exchange rates, prices are subject to change. Due to cancellations and waiting lists, trip availability fluctuates daily. If you have any questions or would like to confirm space on this trip before making your reservation, please contact us at info@great-explorations.com or by telephone at 604.730.1247

Victoria, the beautiful capital city of British Columbia, is easily accessible by ferry from Vancouver, BC and Seattle, Washington or by international flight.


Day 1+2


Your hotel is included on arrival day and we will meet at 2:00 pm for bike fit and a short warm-up ride. Victoria and Vancouver Island are a cyclist’s paradise with lots of options for moderate and more challenging rides. The second day we’ll ride loop out to Ten Mile Point, visiting historical sites along the way. We will dine in one of Victoria’s best restaurants, a short walk from the harbour.
Distance: 22 up to 43 km, elevation gain up to 134 m.*


Day 3+4

Salt Spring Island

Today we cycle north along a cycle path to Swartz Bay before crossing by ferry to Salt Spring Island. There is lots to see and do in Ganges, full of artisan shops and galleries. The second day we’ll ride a route that gives us outstanding views of Trincomali Channel with the snow-capped Coast Range mountains as a back-drop. There may be an option to cross to Mayne Island to explore it’s treasures. Ganges is filled with excellent restaurants including several with live folk singers. It’s that kind of island!
Distance D3: 49 km, elevation gain 314 m.*
Distance D4: 42 km, elevation gain 420 m or 54 km, gain 314 m.*


Day 5+6

Galiano Island

We begin the day with a water taxi to Galiano Island, and a visit to Montague Park. For hikers, we’ll lead a walk up to the top of Mt. Galiano, where views are outstanding (see photo in slideshow above). On the second day, start your day with a yoga session or swim followed by a ride out to the west end of the island where a pristine beach awaits. Finish the day with spa and massage. Dinners at the Galiano Inn will be memorable and we’ll finish the trip as we always do, with a celebratory dinner with festivities.
Distance D5: 40 km, elevation gain 133 m.*
Distance D6: 43 km, elevation gain 322 m.*


Day 7

Depart for Victoria or Vancouver by ferry or by sea-plane flight (additional cost).

Note: Kayaking enthusiasts will have the opportunity to kayak on each of the islands (1/2 day each). Kayak rentals are additional cost.

*Distance and elevation gains may vary depending on hotels chosen for specific departure.

Inn at Laurel Point Hotel, Victoria

The Inn at Laurel Point is a waterfront hotel located in downtown Victoria. There's a heated indoor pool, an exercise room and a Japanese garden, plus a restaurant with a patio and harbor views.

Hastings House Hotel, Salt Spring Island

A boutique luxury waterfront lodge, spa and restaurant on 22 acres close to the village of Ganges. It is a magnificent 11th century Sussex-style Manor House overlooking peaceful Ganges harbour. 18 unique guest rooms and suites, each with its own décor and history are situated in seven lovingly maintained buildings around the estate. Member of Small Luxury Hotels; Relais & Chateaux.

Galiano Inn & Spa, Galiano Island

This luxurious oceanfront resort and spa features large guest rooms, each with a breath-taking view, wood burning fireplaces, and a casually elegant décor. The restaurant has been receiving rave reviews for its inspired West Coast cuisine.


Trip Reviews

September 17, 2015

“The geography was amazing and the guiding was superb.”

June 30, 2015

“Not only were the accommodations and food outstanding, but the guide’s local knowledge and joy in sharing it with us was wonderful.”

August 14, 2014

“We really enjoyed the trip. Lots of fun-met my needs-close by, same time zone, not too hot, not too crowded, peaceful. Accommodations were all magnificent, Hastings House was stunning! We enjoyed good food all around. The Sat Market in Salt Spring was fun. Ferries were fun.”

July 17, 2012

“Perfect way to visit these lovely islands (Gulf) in a very friendly and beautiful scenery setting. We enjoyed very much the places where we stayed.”

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