a major part of the provincial economy. In 2009, British Columbia accounted for
over 26 per cent of Canada’s International overnight customs entries (including
Columbia's scenic attractions, combined with its clean, safe image, serve to make
it an attractive destination for Canadian as well as international tourists.
In addition, there are a wide variety of urban and cultural attractions, ranging
from the performing and visual arts, to professional sports, amusement parks and
Columbia's national, provincial, regional and local parks provide a spectrum of
natural beauty, breathtaking scenery and opportunities for outdoor enjoyment and
Overnight Customs Entries* - 2009|
do not account for all visitors to BC since domestic visitors are excluded as
well as international visitors who cross Canada Customs outside B.C.|
972 parks and protected areas (provincial parks, ecological reserves, recreation
areas and other protected areas), covering over 13.5 million hectares, are diverse
in their features and facilities. There are more than 340 campgrounds, 11,000
campsites, 263 day-use areas and 6,000 km of hiking trails within the provincial
one-tenth of the province's parks are wilderness, largely untouched and frequented
mostly by back-packers and mountaineers. Inland and coastal waters are dotted
with marine parks intended primarily for water-borne users.
The abundance and variety of wildlife in British Columbia reflect the great diversity
of the province's environment. There are more species in total, and more unique
species of birds and mammals, than in any other Canadian province.
In British Columbia, the salt and fresh water resources of the province provide
both recreational and tourism opportunities for such activities as sport fishing,
boating, sailing and wildlife viewing.