Category Archives: SPECIAL PLACES

There are so many special places, both civilized and wild, on the Island that many visitors miss altogether. They are maybe just a little bit out of the way, off the main roads, or totally unknown by the producers of the multitudinous visitor guides that flood the Island each year. This section will introduce you to some of the interesting, quaint and/or quiet places on the Island. We will cover some of the iconic spots, too, simply because they are so worth seeing and spending some time at, and because we can offer you first-hand experiences rather than just a few words that may or may not pique your interest. Some of these special places are commercial enterprises, some are not. There are isolated villages, parks and peaceful walks that may take you out of your way, but will be worth every bit of the time and trouble you expend. So, if you’re interested in places that are a little out-of-the-ordinary, this section is for you.

Hiking Nanoose’s Enos Lake

I came away from a recent hike at Nanoose’s Enos Lake with mixed feelings. We struck out on a beautiful autumn day – our second attempt to hike the area after being turned back because of dangerously dry conditions in … Continue reading

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Nanaimo’s Buttertubs Marsh

With the feasting, partying and indoor activities of the looming Yuletide season (not to mention this month’s Thanksgiving celebrations) often comes the desire to just get outdoors for a bit of fresh air and exercise. There is a perfect spot … Continue reading

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Campbell River’s Elk Falls suspension bridge

With the rainy winter season looming here on the west coast we take every opportunity to get outdoors while the weather is still fine, so on a recent weekend we headed up to Campbell River to experience the hiking trails … Continue reading

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Hiking Nanoose’s Notch Hill

With winter coming on and the rainy season threatening here on the Island we grab every opportunity we can to get outdoors and enjoy whatever good weather the Gods bestow on us.  So it was with happy anticipation that we … Continue reading

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Ucluelet’s Wild Pacific Trail

One man’s dream. One magical internationally-renowned legacy. That best sums up Ucluelet’s Wild Pacific Trail – a spectacular network of easily accessible walking trails  that stretches for a total of 10 kilometres (6.25 miles)  along the awe-inspiring headlands of Vancouver … Continue reading

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Salt Spring Island’s Ruckle Provincial Park

There is a little bit of everything to be found at Ruckle Provincial Park, located on the southern tip of Salt Spring Island – history, waterfront, wildlife, woodland trails.  When we visited back in early autumn we figured on spending … Continue reading

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Port Alberni’s Stamp River Provincial Park

It had been more than 40 years since I last visited Stamp River Provincial Park in the beautiful Alberni Valley, and I have to admit that I headed over there recently with some trepidation.  Back in the 1970s the place was wild and … Continue reading

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Fanny Bay Conservation Area

  It’s not very obvious and you have to go in search of it, but the Fanny Bay Conservation Area is worth the trouble. Located 23 km (14 miles) south of the city of Courtenay on the Island’s east coast, … Continue reading

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Sointula – still a place of harmony – offers a warm welcome

How can anyone fail to love a place where little girls can set up a lemonade stand in the middle of ‘town’, unaccompanied by adult supervision, whiling away their summer days and maybe making a little bit of pocket money?  … Continue reading

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Big Qualicum Regional Trail

There isn’t anything much better on a warm Summer afternoon than exploring new-to-us territory, so we recently set out to the Big Qualicum Fish Hatchery and the many miles of trails that snake along both sides of this lovely spot. … Continue reading

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