10 Best Places for Landscape Photography in British Columbia, Canada

mount Assiniboine British Columbia photography

British Columbia landscape photography offers budding photographers an unending world of opportunities.

This province is hands down one of the most diverse and beautiful in Canada. It is the westernmost province and the most mountainous one, with many of its mountains capped with stunning glaciers.

British Columbia landscape photography

The Pacific Ocean runs along its western edge, and the Rocky Mountains and Alberta border its eastern edge, making the diversity found across this dazzling province outrageous.

Vistas range from sweeping mountainscapes to moody rainforest scenes to dramatic beaches, with much more in between.

In this article, I will be sharing my favorite places for landscape photography in British Columbia. This is just scratching the surface, however, as this place has endless locations for landscape photography.

But I aim to give a personal touch here with some of my favorite spots and to showcase locations where you can unleash your creativity. I’ve chosen these places because I feel they offer a variety of opportunities for all types of landscape photographers.

Read more: 10 Top Tips to Improve Your Landscape Photos

1. Glacier National Park

This place is often overlooked as it shares a name with a more well-known national park in the USA. However, the Canadian Glacier National Park has so much to offer.

I wanted to list this place as a whole instead of choosing a specific location within the park, as there are so many options.

Many trails in this park are steep but stunning, offering amazing views and photography options from the subtle to the dramatically elevated imagery from the tops of a trail.

glacier national park British Columbia

This park also has shorter and easier access points that are roadside. One of my favorites quickly became Bear Creek Falls, which is pictured above.

The closer access to the falls was closed when I visited because of floor damage, but I do believe it is all fixed now. Even from a distance, you will be able to fill the frame with what I love about British Columbia: color.

Read more: An Introduction to the Power of Colour Photography

2. Kootenay National Park

This is another national park that is not very well known. It is right across the border from Banff National Park and is the main road to access places like Radium Hot Springs and Invermere.

I feel a lot of people just drive through this park and not enough stop to check it out. I am again listing this park as a whole because, well, it’s all beautiful and provides so many opportunities.

Some of my favorite spots within the park include: Marble Canyon, Stanley Glacier (hike), Paint Pots, Floe Lake (hike), and Numa Falls.

British Columbia landscape photography

Along with actual destinations in the park, there are several roadside spots worth stopping at if you drive through the park.

One special thing about Kootenay National Park is that it’s kind of a lightning hotspot. On most drives through the park, you can see trees at different stages of regrowth after forest fires.

Because of this, you will see so much wildlife, and in the mid-late summer, there are entire mountainsides pink with fireweed, which can make for fantastic color in your landscape images.

Read more: How to Use Focus Stacking for Landscape Photography

3. Niagara Falls, Goldstream Provincial Park

As someone who is originally from southern Ontario and specifically the Niagara Region, it absolutely blew my mind when I discovered there was a waterfall named Niagara Falls in BC.

This waterfall is located in Goldstream Provincial Park just outside Langford, BC, which is just outside Victoria, BC on Vancouver Island.

British Columbia landscape photography

This entire area offers a beautiful BC forest experience, and this beautiful waterfall with mossy rocks will keep you shooting for hours!

The hike is short to get here, and it was a cool experience to walk through a big tunnel to get to this waterfall. At this location, waterfall flow levels change throughout the year, so the falls may not always look the same.

Read more: Long Exposure Photography – Creative Landscapes with a Slow Shutter

4. Kicking Horse Mountain Resort

This location is not season-specific, but I can recommend visiting the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort in Golden, B.C. during the winter as a “foot passenger” among the crowds of skiers and snowboarders.

The alpine views are something you don’t get to see often when you have your camera in your hand on a ski hill. I really appreciated having the opportunity to access this area and see these amazing sights as someone who doesn’t do winter sports but loves winter!

British Columbia photography

It’s a great place to have lunch up top, and the views for photography are stunning, especially if you get a warm day (the last time I was there, it was -30 degrees and the air was frozen).

There can be lots of floating crystals in the air when photographing toward the sun, which can add a bit of dynamism to your landscape images.

There are also lots of things to do at the ski hill during the summer that open a world of image opportunities for those who maybe can’t hike too far but still want to get elevated images.

Check out the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort website for more information on what’s available during each season so that you can plan your visit in advance.

Read more: How to Photograph Winter Landscapes

5. Yoho National Park

This is probably my favorite national park in BC. It’s another place that many people just drive through, but there is so much to see here.

The main attraction is Emerald Lake. This stunning location is accessible year-round and always has something amazing to offer. A portion of the lake stays open year-round, so it is a great place to get some rare reflections in the winter in your landscape photography.

emerald lace British Columbia photography

The Natural Bridge is along the same road as Emerald Lake. I have always found the Natural Bridge to be a hard location to shoot, as I never wanted to photograph the actual “natural bridge.”

My biggest tip for this location is to go to the bridge and then look at what else is around. The water is colorful most of the summer, and the rocks that surround it can be stunning additions to your images.

Another great location within Yoho National Park is Takakkaw Falls. This is another location that I struggled to get great images of when I first visited it.

It is a very tall, skinny waterfall that for most of the year blows off a lot of mist, making it difficult to get a photo of it up close. Since it is so tall, getting close to it means you are basically shooting straight up. My tip for this waterfall is to shoot it with your long lens.

There are many sections of the long plunge that have great character, and I really love zooming into that. Another tip is to stop along the road on the way in if you want to get a “full” shot of the falls.

For those who love to hike, Yoho has it all. The Iceline trail offers non-stop opportunities for a very diverse landscape.

Yoho is also home to Lake O’Hara, but this location is very hard to access for very good reason. The area is in the high alpine, and overuse damages the delicate flora (because of this, I cannot expand on this location).

Read more: How to Improve Your Lake Photography

6. Bella Coola

The Bella Coola Valley really took me by surprise. It’s a place I have only visited once, but ever since that visit, I have been trying to find a way to visit again!

There were jokes that my vehicle wouldn’t make it down the big giant hill that brings you into this stunning area, so be prepared for difficult driving. Although it was long and steep, my brakes didn’t blow up because I used engine braking.

British Columbia landscape photography

I highly recommend exploring this area with a vehicle with clearance and investing in a sightseeing plane or helicopter tour while here. I know I only scratched the surface with my first visit!

This area has layers of contoured mountains, glacier-fed streams, mossy forests, ocean inlet waterways, hot springs, wildlife, sea life, and character! Make sure you are open to using lots of different lenses in this location. The shot possibilities are endless.

Read more: 8 Best Lenses for Landscape Photography

7. Fernie, BC

Fernie is one of those locations that is a hidden gem and goes unnoticed and unexplored by many photographers. The town is beautiful, and there are loads of trails and forestry roads to explore, which lead to endless photography options.

British Columbia landscape photography

I have visited several times now in the fall season and am impressed by how much color there is to capture. The mountainsides are filled with larch trees long after the Alberta larch trees have lost their needles in Banff (another popular fall-color destination).

The offerings here for photography are reminiscent of Banff, but the access to places is actually easier because there are fewer people. Banff can get very crowded across most seasons, as it is such a popular location. The waterfall hikes in this area are stunning.

Read more: 3 Autumn Highlights for Landscape Photography

8. Tofino/Ucluelet on Vancouver Island

Tofino on Vancouver Island is a place that many people know about, but I feel can be underestimated for how much potential it has as a landscape photography location. I certainly did not expect the plethora of opportunities on my first visit!

British Columbia photography Vancouver Island

This diverse and different landscape is unlike most other places in BC. It is like a fairy tale. The forest photography here is endless, and if there is one type of photography that can create original images, it is forest photography.

This area isn’t just forests either; there are plenty of beaches and rock stacks along the coast. This area has so much to offer, including Pacific Rim National Park, which is well worth a visit.

Read more: How to Photograph Trees and Forests

9. Mt. Robson Provincial Park

Mt. Robson Provincial Park includes many stunning places like Berg Lake, Kinney Lake, and Emperor Falls. It also includes the meadows beside the visitor centre, which are beautiful in the summer. In short, this place has something for everyone.

The trail to Berg Lake has been closed the last few years because of flooding that took out portions of the trail, but the trail to Kinney Lake is open in the summer and is a great hike for photography-based activities!

British Columbia photography

Once the trail reopens after the repairs are done, make sure you get your permits to hike and camp here so you can experience this amazing location.

I personally love all the wildflowers along the roadside when driving through this park. The colors are stunning and great for creative foregrounds for landscape photography.

Read more: Flower Photography Tips – Taking Beautiful Flower Photos

10. Mt. Assiniboine Provincial Park

This final location in my list of favorite locations in BC is one location that I have been lucky enough to visit over a dozen times. There is something special about this place that just keeps me coming back. I visit during different months of the year to keep the variety of the location fresh.

mount Assiniboine British Columbia photography

The access to Mt. Assiniboine Provincial Park is difficult when it comes to accommodation. Camping is an option, and there are a few huts and a lodge available to rent. If you can find a way to go and stay, the landscape here feels like it was created by photographers for photographers.

Mt. Assiniboine has it all for any type of photographer and whatever shooting style you have. From grand, sweeping landscapes to more intimate scenes, there is something for everyone here.

Read more: How to Develop a Photographic Style

In conclusion

The province of British Columbia is an amazing place for landscape photography.

I found it difficult to narrow down a list of places I really enjoyed shooting in BC for many reasons, and I’m sure you will too.

There is so much on offer in this varied and diverse location!

Visit Dani's website

Dani is a Landscape Photographer and photo guide based in the beautiful Canadian Rockies. Dani has been pursuing her passion of photography for 22 years and has been enjoying passing her knowledge through teaching for the last 11 years. Her biggest inspiration is the Canadian landscape and all the unique beauty we have around us every day.

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