by Marci Nielsen
A trend has been going on in the past few years regarding visits to certain areas in British Columbia. In particular many people are increasing their visits to the Haida Gwaii archipelago and thus there are increases in searches for Haida Gwaii accommodations. Before you do choose a hotel and make a visit, this article hopes to give you more information about what the place has to offer.
Being a group of islands, Haida Gwaii will thus be expected to offer activities on or around the water. Gaining much popularity over the years are the whale watching tours, which are actually held almost the whole year around.
Quite a few will say that this area is the best area in the world to go on a whale watching tour. It is a good place to be able to catch a glimpse or even an extended view of killer whales, gray whales and humpbacks. The frequency by which you see these of course will be higher on certain days and months than others. As with any other ecological observation, it will definitely depend on month and season the chances you get of seeing more than one species. Doing your research beforehand and even talking to locals about best times will increase your chances of having more views per hour.
Plenty of land activities exist as well on these islands. There are quite a few hiking and camping spots dotted around the islands for those that enjoy these kinds of activities. Hand in hand with this one can enjoy kayaking and fishing as well. Most popular activities are biking in the morning followed by just lounging and lazing around the beaches in the afternoons until evening.
The Haida are a friendly people and are the local inhabitants of the islands. If learning about local history and culture is your cup of tea, they would be more than happy to indulge you. It is, however recommended that you read up on some aspects of their culture beforehand to avoid embarrassing situations and questions.
Many totem poles in the Alaskan tradition are strewn about, and also erected on the islands. These are basically records of the families in the area and act as some sort of mnemonic device, much like a family heirloom or even photo album. These totems are very much similar to Alaskan ones since the Haida also inhabit large portions of that state and surrounding areas.
It will take you the better part of four days, more or less, to be fully immersed in local culture and learn all about the local history. During this four day jaunt you can visit a lot of communities which have their own museums and displays of arts and crafts. Here you will learn about the bent wood techniques that are used by almost all North American Indian tribes to make their furniture and implements.
To get to this group of islands, the most accessible route is by plane via Toronto, which only takes two hours. Or you can opt to take a boat or ferry which will take longer at around eight hours. Either way, both methods of transport will take you to a place worth remembering and never forget.
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