ALOHA! Meet your new Ohana for 10 incredible days of adventure and scenic wonders on 3 Hawaiian Islands. Then jet to Vancouver, known as Hollywood North for 6 amazing days in Western Canada featuring an action packed resort stay in Whistler. Get ready for the Via Ferrata mountain challenge! Cross the border to Seattle for 3 days in the Pacific Northwest before boarding Carnival Cruise Line’s Legend for 7 days of awe inspiring Alaskan scenery. Cruise Tracy Arm Fjord, and visit the picturesque Alaskan towns of Skagway, Juneau and Ketchikan, as well as disembark to explore Victoria in British Columbia. Go ashore to pan for gold in Skagway, take a whale watching boat to see the Orcas and Humpbacks in Juneau and kayak in Ketchikan.
This trip begins with your flight to Hawaii. We help you coordinate your flight to arrive within designated times so that we may greet you upon arrival. For participants from the New York area, we offer a chaperoned group flight that leaves from the New York area. One of your summer leaders and staff from our office will be at the airline counter to greet you, introduce you to fellow travelers, help you to check-in and the leader will be with you from check-in onward.
For your return home from Seattle, we head to the airport for morning flights. Our leaders help you to check-in and remain in the airport until flights in designated times have departed. For those from the New York area we offer a chaperoned flight.
Welcome to the Island Life! Learn to surf with a professional instructor on the pristine ocean waters of Maui. Interact with the locals in Lahaina on Front Street. Hold on tight during one wet and wild banana boat ride in turquoise waters. Take a double deck catamaran to snorkel amongst more than 250 species of fish off the coast at Coral Gardens, one of Maui’s premier snorkeling destinations. Be amazed by an authentic luau on the resort’s Sunset Terrace.
Fly to Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii. Travel by boat to your rooms and throughout the resort on this incredible property located on the Southern Kohala coast. Snorkel or swim with tropical fish and rare green sea turtles in a salt-water lagoon. Go paddle boarding, boogie board or try out a water trike. Swim or lounge by one of three fresh-water pools. Explore the Kings’ Shops and Queen’s Marketplace for dinner. Visit Volcanoes National Park to see one of the world’s most active volcano, Kīlauea, and the world’s largest volcano Mauna Loa. There, check out Thurston Lava Tube and marvel at the Kīlauea Iki Crater. Enjoy your last evening on this island exploring Old Kailua town.
Jet to Oahu and check into our resort situated on Duke Kahanamoku Beach, the widest stretch of Waikiki that is one of the best beaches in America. Sunbathe or swim in one the hotel’s five pools including the Paradise Pool featuring an aquatic playground with four slides including a 77-foot lava tube slide (the longest in Waikiki), three waterfalls and two heated spas. Reflect at Pearl Harbor and visit the USS Arizona Memorial. Take a ride on the original Hawaiian rollercoaster ride with outrigger canoe surfing. Visit the Dole Plantation and sample some fresh pineapple. Hike Diamond Head, a crater formed from the eruptions of the Ko’olau Volcano many years ago.
Explore the Granville Island Public Market with over 100 vendors and artists, and a farmers’ market offering local delicacies. Check into UBC and pick up a hoodie at the bookstore. Go tandem biking through Stanley Park, an urban area in downtown Vancouver that is 10% larger than NYC’s Central Park. The ride along the seawall with mountains and ocean as a backdrop is stunning! Check out the funky shops on Robson Street. Experience the cool vibe of Kitsilano!
Travel 2.7 miles reaching a maximum height of 1,427’ over Fitzsimmons Creek from Whistler to Blackcomb and back again on the PEAK 2 PEAK gondola. Clip into Via Ferrata, a network of steel cables that run the length of a mountain face and cross built-in steps, handles, beams and bridges while you are struck by spectacular views of nature all around. Bike around the Lost Lake or, if you’re looking for even more thrill, brave the Tin Pants Trail. Browse the shops in the pedestrian friendly village. Relax in your condos and hangout in the outdoor hot tub.
View downtown Seattle and on clear days to Mt. Rainier from the top of the Space Needle, a landmark you may recognize from Grey’s Anatomy. Watch out for the fishmongers throwing fish at Pike Place Market. Although scraped clean in 2016, you can participate in the rebirth of the infamous tradition and stick your gum on the Market Theater Gum wall. Imagine playing in a rock band in a packed stadium at MoPOP (Museum of Popular Culture). Prepare your Whirlybug for intense competition at Whirlyball, it’s like basketball, lacrosse and bumper cars combined. Ride the Seattle Great Wheel on Pier 57 and see the city of Seattle like never before.
Sail away with ocean view cabins! Enjoy 7 days on board the Carnival Legend to take in all of Alaska’s natural beauty by cruising Alaska’s Inside Passage. Venture ashore to pan for gold at Skagway, go whale watching for orca and humpback whales near Juneau, sea-kayak in Ketchikan, and visit the town of Victoria, British Columbia. Onboard dining offers delicious meals from sushi to steak and don’t forget the midnight buffet. Work it off using amenities including jogging track, pools, complete fitness center and basketball court. We will laugh together at the nightly shows and dance ‘til the wee hours of the morning in the teen Club 02!
Once your action packed day is over, you’re going to need a place to crash. You will enjoy a combination of the finest centrally located hotels and resorts, a fantastic college dorm to get a taste of college life and a Carnival Cruise.
You will stay in the finest hotels and resorts. All of our properties are chosen based on safety and security, amenities, comfort and location to our activities. Rooms vary from doubles to triples. Triples may contain two beds and a rollaway or be a suite style with a sofa bed. Each trip member has his or her own bed.
Surrounded by 40 lush acres, on a white sand beachfront, enjoy the ultimate Kaanapali beach hotel. The hotel has two free-form pools divided by waterfalls, lava tube slide, a rope bridge and outdoor whirlpool. All guest rooms have plasma screen TVs and a private lanai.Visit Website
Discover a Big Island hotel like no other at the Hilton Waikoloa Village. A destination in itself, this impressive property is nestled within 62 oceanfront acres, offering breathtaking tropical gardens and abundant wildlife. Enjoy three unique swimming pools – including waterfalls and slides and salt-water lagoon with a white-sand beach.Visit Website
As Waikiki’s only true resort, and located on Waikiki’s widest stretch of beach, this Beach Resort is nestled on 22 oceanfront acres. This hotel offers the perfect mix of exceptional hotel accommodations and classic Hawaiian hospitality.Visit Website
The SpringHill Suites offers spacious suites with separate living areas, an indoor heated pool, and fitness center. Get set to discover popular landmarks including The Space Needle and Pike Place Market and to experience Whirlyball and rock out the Museum of Popular Culture (MoPOP).Visit Website
The Coast Blackcomb Suites Whistler is an all-suite, condo-style hotel at the foot of Blackcomb Mountain. Suites include full kitchens, complimentary Wi-Fi and spacious rooms. Enjoy an outdoor pool and hot tub as well.Visit Website
Get a taste of the college lifestyle on world class campuses and as time permits, take advantage of incredible facilities.
Enjoy a taste of university life as you stay at UBC’s oceanside campus and enjoy their amazing athletic facilities. The Vancouver campus educates more than 47,000 annually!Visit Website
Enjoy your ocean-view cabin as we cruise up Alaska’s Inside Passage to the Land of the Midnight Sun. With the many dining options and classic midnight buffet you can burn it off on the water slide, playing hoops, or at the fitness center.
At Westcoast Connection nothing else comes first. From our extensive trip planning department through our management team and our leaders, it is our single biggest priority! Safety procedures, equipment – we’ve got it covered. All Trip Leaders and Directors are certified in First Aid and CPR. We are extremely proud of our safety record and welcome all questions you may have in this area. Please see more under Safety First.
Once you are on your trip, you will have sensitive leaders that are caring, approachable and always there for you. Your Trip Director and Trip Leaders are people with incredible backgrounds including teachers, guitar players, IRONMAN triathletes, SCUBA divers, volunteers, and so much more.
Every staff member takes part in and must complete our extensive training weekends that review our philosophy and procedures to provide a well-supervised and fun-filled program.
Our Trip Directors, the individuals responsible for overseeing each itinerary, take on the roles of teachers, coaches, camp counselors, mentors, concierges and hosts. They’ve been trained to provide individual attention and create an all-inclusive family atmosphere (our EACH & EVERY philosophy). There’s a definite art to building dynamic groups, and we’ve worked hard to master it! We want you smiling on day one right through to a teary goodbye at your farewell banquet.
Our leaders are non-smokers. To learn more about our staff, please visit our Summer Leaders section.
We can’t say it too many times, this is a really incredible group experience. A great dynamic starts with our secrets for group bonding. Our bag of tricks goes way beyond traditional ice breakers. Imagine people hunts, Rock, Paper, Scissors championships, Ninja tournaments, flash mobs and so much more. We work hard to get everyone moving beyond first impressions and creating an atmosphere of total acceptance. Our staff hiring and training emphasizes social safety and establishing an inclusive culture. Many of our travelers come as individuals and we have a geographically diverse enrollment with students joining us from across the USA, Canada and internationally. This mix helps eliminate cliques at the outset and establish an open environment that benefits you. We take great care in assembling groups to create an unforgettable social experience.
Your summer of a lifetime starts with us carefully crafting the perfect program. Our team is dedicated year round to creating exciting, meaningful experiences! You have a detailed itinerary, but not one that is so rigid that you lose chances for spontaneity! Our Trip Planning Department pays painstaking attention to detail, sweating the small stuff so that your summer experience is stress free. Our trips are designed with a very logical flow: action, adventure and excitement balanced with structured downtime and relaxation. There is a reason our itineraries are known to be “Perfectly Planned. Perfectly Paced.” Our year-round team has over 420 summers combined working with teenagers and we understand what you’re looking for. We describe our trips in as much detail as these web pages allow, but to truly appreciate the flow of a particular program, please speak with us to review the trip of your choice.
Get ready because your summer is not going to be spent staring out of a window! For starters, our Active Teen Tours are very different from tours your parents may have gone on. We are always on the lookout for the newest and coolest activities from playing whirlyball in Seattle to climbing the Via Ferrata at Whistler-Blackcomb. It’s much more exciting than summer camp. Depending on the specific itinerary, add in nights out at comedy clubs, baseball games, and you know you’re in for a treat.
But “active” also means you get to play a big part in how the summer turns out. We want you engaged and are interested in what you have to say. You have a role in this trip and how it gets molded.
There is so much more to a teen travel experience than just traveling. Summer after summer we love nothing more than the many calls and notes from parents sharing with us how they can’t believe how much their son or daughter has matured, helps out more at home, is more outgoing and confident, is more poised, more responsible and more worldly having had not just the summer of a lifetime, but a life changing experience as well. It’s amazing how much growth can occur when you are having fun, feeling socially safe, branching out into new friendships, and being yourself.
Our experience lends itself to trying new things and stepping just outside of one’s comfort zone. With a taste of age-appropriate independence and a well-deserved break from overly scheduled lives during the school year, teens can enjoy a very healthy reprieve from the usual pressures associated with home and school. We want you to be empowered and will provide opportunity to grow as a leader and further develop your self-confidence!
Living, experiencing, working and learning together, our trip members are afforded the chance to interact with other teens who share both similar and different backgrounds and interests. Everybody grows in their social acceptance of others.
By the end of the program we hope to have lit a spark – to travel, to learn, to meet new people, to try new things and to explore. With new friendships, new memories and new life skills on which to build, our teen travel experiences are truly unforgettable.
There really is a difference in how different summer programs operate! Motivated teens going away with qualified leaders is a given. But what sets us apart is the depth of our qualified personnel that allow us to perform with the greatest consistency at the highest level.
Your Trip Director and Trips Leaders are with you throughout your program. They have daily contact with one of our two 24-hour Communication Centers and are in regular contact with our Company Directors. Our Company Directors are the most seasoned veterans who each oversee specific programs providing support to trip staff and to assist with any situations that may arise. Our Company Directors alternate between traveling to visit programs and being reached in the office.
Program visits enable us to provide ongoing support and development to our Trip Directors, allows trip staff to have a sounding board for their own progress in reaching trip goals, helps us to identify any challenging areas for improvement while it still has relevance to your summer rather than as a mention on your end-of-summer survey, and helps us to identify the future Directors from the current crop of all-star summer staff. These visits are by Company Directors along with our Regional Supervisors, who are former Trip Directors with further experience out in the field. Collectively our planning, supervisory and management team is an incredible resource with over 420 summers of combined teen travel experience. This way, we can lend a hand wherever and whenever a little extra effort is called for. Last year, we had 205 scheduled supervisory trip visits to make sure all was running well, provide ongoing support to our staff in the field and have fun! This investment in depth of personnel is unrivaled in teen travel and is a critical element to achieving consistent, excellent program quality and surpassing client expectations!
Included in the trip tuition are all activities and entertainment described, breakfast and dinner daily, lunches as indicated on your specific program, gratuities, taxes, land transportation, accommodations, and fanatical customer service from our full-time team and summer Communication Centers. This can add up to tremendous value!
A big part of a summer’s success depends on how well you eat. We are proud of the fact that year after year we are complimented for our quality, quantity and choice of food. Our North American Active Teen Tour programs visit great restaurants. Depending on the specific itinerary, you may order off the menu at the Cheesecake Factory, Romano’s Macaroni Grill or Hard Rock Cafe. Still hungry? Here are more of the places you may enjoy… Jack Astor’s, Boudin Bakery and some really great local favorites like a Boulder institution featured on “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.”
We have satisfied the choosiest of eaters and gladly accommodate most special dietary requests including vegetarian, anaphylactic food allergies, lactose intolerance, celiac disease and kosher style. We welcome discussing your individual requirements with you and have extensive personal experience in this area. Please speak with us to review your needs.
On our Hawaii & Alaska teen tour, we travel in various ways. On each of the Hawaiian Islands and in Seattle, Vancouver and Whistler you’ll ride in a chartered deluxe, air conditioned motor coach with a professional driver. For inter-Island trips and between the Islands and Vancouver, we fly on regularly scheduled commercial flights. From Seattle to Alaska we sail on Carnival Cruise’s Legend.
You will only need to bring one week’s worth of clothing as outlined in our packing list as we visit local laundromats weekly. We will supply the detergent and dryer sheets. Don’t worry if you’ve never done laundry before, most of our travelers have not either! We’ll walk you through the Westcoast Connection laundry lesson, and in no time at all you’ll have the hang of it. Parents, we know the thought of your children doing laundry is making you smile!
While you’re out having the summer of your life, your parents should feel like they are in on the action as well. We post updates to our blog and Facebook page and e-mail photos approximately once a week so those at home can be in on the fun. Parents also have access to our dedicated office Trip Monitors 24/7 for any questions and/or concerns. We’re as in touch as any trip operator could possibly be via smartphones with e-mail and text. The goal is uncompromising safety and peace of mind, day after day, hour by hour, minute by minute. Participants may bring their personal cell phones.
In last summer’s surveys, 98% of responding teens and parents said they would recommend us to others. We must be doing something right!