Let’s call it like it is: British Columbia is a crowd-pleaser. The Canadian province draws travelers to its ten mountain ranges, temperate rain forest, thousands of lakes, and the unspoiled islands dotting its rugged Pacific coast. Throw in a vibrant First Nations culture, a booming wine region, and the multicultural metropolis of Vancouver – ranked by global human-resources consulting firm Mercer as the city with the third-highest quality of living in 2019 – and it’s hard not to see the appeal.
Vancouverites such as Virtuoso travel advisor Ginger Blum are fiercely loyal to their urban gem, whose natural beauty is complemented by thriving art, music, and culinary scenes. “I’ve met people all over the world who tell me this is their favorite city,” Blum says. But for travelers who prefer fly-fishing and campfires over rooftop cocktail bars, a 50-minute helicopter or seaplane transfer takes them to Sonora Island, which, for all its peace and quiet, hums with wildlife. “The overpowering scenery there really makes you realize how grand nature is,” she says.