Columbia Quick Facts
British Columbia is the third largest and most westerly province
in Canada, it's larger than any of the U.S. states, except Alaska, and
is four times larger than Great Britain. The Yukon and Northwest Territories
form B.C.'s northern border that stretches for 1062 km (669 mi.) along
the 60th parallel, and to the east B.C. and the province of Alberta share
a common boundary that runs in a northerly and southerly direction, as
it follows the Rocky Mountains for 1545 km (973 mi.). To the south, British
Columbia's neighbours are the states of Washington, Idaho and Montana,
this border on the 49th parallel is 650 km (409 mi.) long. Forming the
west boundary of B.C. is the Pacific Ocean. The distance of this coastline
that includes the mainland and all islands is more than 27,000 km (16,900
Area - 952,263 square km (367,699 square mi.)
Population - 4,400,057 (2011)
accommodations within B.C. range from a $6. a-night
campsite to luxurious hotels that can be over
$1000. a day. For a complete and comprehensive
on-line guide, visit our accommodations
section of the BC Travel Planner.
copies of the B.C. Accommodation guide can be
requested from Tourism B.C. by calling their toll-free
tourism, mining and fishing are four main industries
of British Columbia.
terrain of B.C. is varied, to the east
are the Rocky Mountains and to the west are the
Outer and Coastal Mountains, in between are numerous
other mountains ranges, deep fertile valleys,
plateaus, rivers, as well as hundreds of lakes
climate varies from region to region, as does
the topography. Along the coast, summers are warm,
winters mild and wet. The southern interior has
hotter summers and cooler winter, while the central
interior has warm summer and cold winters.
sure to visit the Wilderness
section of the BC Adventure Network for more information.
is a haven for bird watchers. It's estimated that
over one million birds use the Pacific Flyway,
two of the many species that use this corridor
are the rufous hummingbirds and the Snow geese.
include moose, Rocky Mountain elk, deer, woodland
caribou, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, black
bears, grizzly bears, cougars, and the hoary marmots.
Subspecies of the black bear include the Kermode
white bear that lives in the Terrace-Kitimat region
and the glacier bear that's found in the northwest
area of the province.
life is abundant in B.C. coastal waters. Pacific
gray whales migrate along the west coast of Vancouver
Island, orcas (killer whales) live in the east
coast water of Vancouver Island. Occasionally
minke whales are seen, and recently humpback whales
have been spotted. Harbour seals are common. There
are Stellar and California sea lion colonies.
different species of salmon live in Pacific waters.
Lingcod and halibut are also found in waters along
the coast. B.C. inland streams and lakes offer
cutthroat, rainbow and Dolly Varden trout and
Parks & Conservation Areas
the borders of B.C. are three UNESCO World Heritage
Sites: Anthony Island (Ninstints), part of Gwaii
Haanas/South Moresby National Park; the Burgess
Shale, that lies within Yoho National Park and
the Tatshenshini-Alsek watershed, located in the
north western corner of British Columbia.
are six National
Parks: Glacier, Gwaii Haanas/ South Moresby,
Kootenay, Mount Revelstoke, Pacific Rim and Yoho,
these are managed by the Federal government under
Parks Canada. Camping is available in all nationals
park in BC, except Mt. Revelstoke. There is a
fee charged for camping.
are more than 400 provincial parks, recreation
and conservation areas in B.C. These parks are
under provincial jurisdiction and managed by the
Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks. The
camping fees give a good indication of service
levels and facility. Check the Parks
section of the Travel Planner for more
are 131 ecological reserves in the province. They
cover an area that totals more than 158,700 ha
(392,200 a.) with approximately one-third of the
area in marine waters. There is limited use in
most of these reserves, but the more delicate
areas are closed to the public.
mountains, lakes, rivers, plateaus, valleys, forests,
islands and coastline that make up B.C. offer adventures
to suit every visitor. The activities are as diverse
as the terrain and the climate. For details,
visit the BC Adventure Network's Recreation
water fishing and salt water fishing
kakaying and white water rafting
back-pacing and horse-packing
mountain climbing and rock climbing
including mountain biking
and Nordic skiing, snow boarding, as well as snowmobiling
gliding and paragliding
combing and sight seeing.
matter when you visit British Columbia, be it spring,
summer, fall or winter, you'll find there is always
something to do and definitely somewhere to go.
Whether you prefer the lights and sounds of city
life, or enjoy a quiet outdoor adventure away from
it all. British Columbia is calling to you.
a Postcard to a Friend
you enjoy your journey through the BC Adventure
a virtual postcard to a friend!