Explore the Great Bear Rainforest

The Great Bear Rainforest The Great Bear Rainforest

Cruise the Great Bear Rainforest in search of the Kermode Bear. A coastal British Columbia nature cruise that will take you to remote areas of the Inside Passage. Search for Grizzly and Black bears... Excellent chances to see the Spirit bear! Departs: Bella Bella, BC

Adventure into this remote wilderness, seeking wildlife and meeting native guides. Learn why the Great Bear Rainforest is one of the last gems on the Pacific Coast.

Islands and intricate waterways beneath towering mountains... lush, coastal temperate forests... wilderness alive with eagles, ravens, salmon, bears and wolves... ten thousand year old native cultures...

The central coast region of British Columbia’s scenic and intricate shoreline has a long history. Stretching from Vancouver Island, north along the mainland coast, it forms a significant section of the famous “Inside Passage” route to Alaska - a name that started with the gold rush of the 1800’s. Many of the gold seekers stayed on the coast, attracted to the plentiful resources of fishing and the lush forests. Native peoples have lived along this coast for at least 10,000 years, and built a renowned culture based upon these same fish and trees. Unfortunately, diseases spread from the first European settlers, decimated the old villages, and now the native peoples are centred in a few, small coastal villages - Bella Bella, Klemtu, and Hartley Bay. It was only in the last few years with the introduction of the name “Great Bear Rainforest”, that this magnificent wilderness has deservedly found itself in the spotlight of international attention.

Trip Highlights

We visit and explore this incredible area with permission from the local Gitga’at, Kitasoo/Xai’Xais, and Haisla First Nations. In the concept of eco-tourism visitors respect local cultures and share a portion of revenues with local communities.

Bluewater Adventures fully supports this concept and has committed to Protocol Agreements with all these First Nations. We plan to spend a day with local Gitga’at guides who will share their culture and history as they guide us to their favourite bear viewing sites. We also make efforts to visit the newly built Big Houses in Klemtu or Hartley Bay.
These primeval forests are the only habitat of the Kermode or “spirit bear”. An elusive and rarely seen wonder, the Spirit Bear is a genetic throwback - a black bear with  a “recessive” gene for snow-white fur. Princess Royal Island is one of the few areas on the coast where one can find the Kermode. Only 10% of black bears in the area are white, so though we expect to see black bears, it will require good luck and perseverance to spot a Spirit Bear.
During our voyage there are excellent chances of seeing various species of marine mammals. Campania Sound and Whale Channel are good areas for viewing humpback whales.

We often see spectacular humpback behaviours such as breaching and a cooperative feeding technique called ‘bubble-net feeding’. As well, we sometimes encounter the infamous orca (killer whale).
This area is home to the magnificent grizzly bear, a species that requires large areas of habitat undisturbed by human activity. These great bears, once roamed across North America but due to the advance of civilization, diminished food supply and continued hunting, they are now threatened in their remaining range.

Weighing in at more than a quarter of a ton, grizzly bears sit at the top of the food chain and are a critical part of this coastal ecosystem. These bears are drawn to the estuaries of large coastal rivers to feast on the salmon moving upriver to spawn. They depend on these salmon to survive. The Great Bear Rainforest supports one of the last sustainable populations. We plan on exploring up remote coastal fiords and expect to see these majestic creatures.

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The Great Bear Rainforest
Trip Brochure

See our 4-page brochure on The Great Bear Rainforest
This brochure highlights the history, ecology, wild life and native culture.



Great Bear Trailer   Great Bear Rainforest - waterfall   Great Bear Rainforest - Klemtu Drumming
The Spirit Bear in The Great Bear Rainforest   Great Bear Rainforest - Salmon   Great Bear Rainforest

Map & Location

Trip ItineraryGreat Bear Rainforest

Our daily plans are flexible to accommodate the surprises that we encounter each trip, the requirements of tide and weather, and the interests of the group. With so many opportunities to be “wowed”, it’s hard to predict what unique moment will be your favourite memory.

Day 1 - We meet at the top of the Municipal Dock on the Bella Bella waterfront and leave mid-day to begin our adventure. Note: some departures begin/end in Prince Rupert.

Days 2-7 - Over the next 6 days, we will travel to a number of areas around the Central Coast such as Campania Sound and Whale Channel - excellent areas for spotting humpback whales and Steller sea lions. We may go ashore in the Gitga’at (Princess Royal Island) Conservancy. We will cruise over to Bishop Bay to enjoy a relaxing dip in the hot springs and spend a day with a Gitga’at native guide, taking us to his favourite bear viewing area. With patience and some luck we will see black bears and the elusive, white Spirit Bear! We may visit the First Nations village of Klemtu or Hartley Bay to see their ceremonial Big Houses. We will voyage deep into the coastal mountains to explore the Fiordland Conservancy where, beneath towering rock bluffs and waterfalls, we will search remote estuaries to see grizzly bears feeding on spawning salmon.

Day 8 - We arrive in Bella Bella late morning. Participants can catch the Pacific Coastal Airlines late afternoon flight back to Vancouver.


The Great Bear Rainforest
Sample Trip Itinerary

Download your 3-page Trip Itinerary on The Great Bear Rainforest
Includes: daily activities, travel details & accommodations details.

View Itinerary

2017 Schedule, Prices & Trip Availability

Aboard SV Island Roamer

Dates Duration CAD Price Embark / Disembark Availability
July 26 - Aug 2**
"The Great Bear Sea"
8 days CAD $4850 Prince Rupert / Bella Bella Booked
August 28 - Sept 4 8 days CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Terrace Booked
September 5 - 12 8 days CAD $5400 Terrace / Bella Bella Booked
September 13 - 20 8 days CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Terrace Booked
September 21 - 28 8 days CAD $5400 Terrace / Bella Bella Booked
Sept 29 - Oct 6 8 days CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Bella Bella 1 Space Available
October 7 - 14 8 days CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Bella Bella Booked
** The Great Bear Sea - Conservation Trip with Dr Paul Paquet with partial proceeds going to Raincoast Conservaiton Foundation

Aboard SV Island Odyssey

Dates Duration CAD Price Embark / Disembark Availability
August 29 - Sept 6
"Northern Great Bear Explorer
9 days CAD $5650 Prince Rupert/ Terrace Booked
September 7 - 14** 8 days CAD $5600 Terrace / Terrace Booked
September 15 - 22 8 days CAD $5400 Terrace / Terrace Booked
** 2 days at the bear stands

Aboard SV Island Odyssey

Dates Duration CAD Price Embark / Disembark Availability
 August 27 - Sept 3  8 days  CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Terrace Booked
 Sept 4 - 11  8 days  CAD $5400 Terrace / Bella Bella Booked
 Sept 12 - 19  8 days  CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Terrace Booked
Sept 20 - 27 8 days  CAD $5400 Terrace / Bella Bella Booked
Sept 28 - Oct 5 8 days CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Bella Bella 1 Space Available
October 6 - 13 8 days CAD $5400 Bella Bella / Bella Bella Booked


Sustainability Fee

To support conservation efforts on the west coast, a $100 Sustainability Fee will be applied to rates at time of booking. Dates and prices are subject to change. Some departures may be reserved for groups. If you are interested in chartering a date for your group, special pricing is available.

Please contact us