I’m always impressed with a good black-and-white photo, but this one by the ubiquitous fiznatty positively took my breath away. What you’re looking at here is the exhalation of a humpback whale, photographed in the Great Bear Rainforest in British Columbia, Canada. Beautiful, isn’t she?
For more than twenty years Maple Leaf Adventures has been providing unique and affordable opportunities for travelers to visit the stunning coastlines of British Columbia and southern Alaska, with a host of tours designed to offer amazing wildlife experiences while immersing travelers in the native cultures that are still prevalent in the region today.
A quick glance at Maple Leaf’s list of tours and you’ll begin to understand why they were named one of National Geographic Adventure‘s best adventure travel companies. Their trips range in length from five to eleven nights, with small groups of travelers boarding the Maple Leaf, a 92-foot long, 104 year old, wooden schooner that has been refurbished with modern amenities and outfitted to make these expedition cruises as comfortable as possible for passengers. The entire experience is enhanced further by the presence of top naturalists and historians who specialize in the B.C. and Alaskan coasts and serve as guides for the these adventures.
Eco-tourism may have become a hot topic in the travel industry over the past few years, but for Maple Leaf Adventures, it has been part of the companies philosophy since it was founded back in 1986. All of the tours have been meticulously planned to have as small of an impact on the environment as possible, and the company has championed conservation efforts along the B.C. coastline for years. In addition, Maple Leaf was instrumental in opening travel options to the Great Bear Rainforest and parts of Vancouver Island.
Personally, the thought of taking an adventure cruise along the Alaskan or B.C. coasts sounds like an amazing experience. The fact that the cruise takes place on a wooden longship that provides a sense of history, only enhances the appeal. With so many interesting options to choose from, it is difficult to recommend just one, but it’s also hard to top their voyage to the Gulf Islands, in Autumn no less. Those lucky enough to make that journey are treated to spectacular scenery, the great migration of birds heading south for winter, spawning salmon, and giant orcas, with the stunning backdrop of all the fall colors. Sounds perfect to me!