Ski slopes carved in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, ranches as far as the eye can see, rain forests of gigantic trees; all this is waiting for you in the British Columbia. Many consider the BC panoramas the most impressive in the entire country.

Among principal cities, Vancouver is the largest in the province, and Victoria is the capital. Ideally poised on the edge of a continent, Pacific Ocean at its shore, and snow- capped Rockies as a backdrop, Vancouver is a city that will surprise visitors. Victoria, a charming city of 300 000, takes its pride in its British roots; it was first established as a British fort, and grew to be a primary port of the British Navy.

Vancouver Island is settled largely in its southern region, in and around Victoria. The rest of this large island is largely unspoiled, and still ruled by nature. Small communities nestle between areas of dense rainforest, home to thousand-year-old trees, and abundant wildlife. The shores are rich with sea life, and just off shore you might catch a glimpse of Orca, the magnificent Killer Whale, long celebrated in native legends, the fish that breathes like a man.

Winter sports are a passion in this province, home of Whistler, Canada’s largest ski resort, and host, along with nearby Vancouver, of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.

Moving eastward from the coast, British Columbia transforms from lush forest to an almost desert-like terrain – this is the land of ranchers, along the Gold Rush Trail. British Columbia owes its sudden development in the mid 1850’s to the passion that drove men to seek their fortune in gold.

A picture is worth a thousand words