Experience Transat

2 Perfect Seaside Day Trips from Vancouver

Share the article

Table of Contents

Slow down and inhale the ocean breeze with two perfect day excursions from Vancouver. An island day trip is essential for any Vancouver itinerary—how could you resist? The west coast is speckled with rugged islands, each with its own unique charm. Whether you opt for a ferry ride to Bowen Island or a quaint seaplane journey to Victoria on Vancouver Island, these top island destinations offer unforgettable adventures from Vancouver, allowing you to immerse yourself in the stunning beauty of British Columbia’s West Coast.

These day trips from Vancouver offer a blend of adventure, relaxation, and cultural immersion, showcasing the diverse beauty of British Columbia’s coast.

Day Trip to Bowen Island

Bowen Island offers a quick yet enchanting escape from Vancouver. It’s the ultimate retreat for relaxation and physical activity. Here, you can kayak, hike, and even climb a mountain—all in a single day.

Getting to Bowen Island from Vancouver

It’s a breeze! Rent a car and drive to Horseshoe Bay to catch a scenic twenty-minute ferry ride from the western end of Vancouver’s North Shore.

Things to Do on Bowen Island

Whether you prefer driving, cycling, or walking, exploring Bowen Island is always a joy. We suggest biking for an active and enjoyable day. The ferry docks at Snug Cove, and in no time, you can be kayaking in the ocean, thanks to Bowen Island Sea Kayaking, which offers hourly rentals and tours.

Our favorite trek is a leisurely 15-minute walk to Artisan Square, just a kilometer west of Snug Cove. The square boasts numerous art galleries and shops, as the island is renowned for its vibrant artist community. Don’t miss the Artigiana Milanesi Cashmere Tailor for exquisite handcrafted cashmere from Milan. The Arts Pacific Gallery, an artist cooperative, is another must-see, showcasing works from some of the island’s most talented artists.

For those seeking a challenge, Mount Gardner offers breathtaking views and a rewarding hike. The journey to the summit takes about four to five hours round trip. The Skid Trail Handloggers route to the North Summit, followed by the North Summit Trail to the peak, is highly recommended. Once there, the helicopter pad serves as an ideal rest or picnic spot. For more hiking adventures, check out Bowen Island’s website.

Conclude your Bowen Island adventure with a slice of pie from the Lime and Moon Pie Company in Snug Cove. The Apple Raspberry Pie with Chocolate Crust is a personal favorite, blending tart apples, sweet raspberries, and chocolate into a delicious dessert.

Day Trip to Victoria on Vancouver Island

The journey to Victoria on Vancouver Island is as thrilling as the destination itself, with potential whale sightings en route!

Getting to Victoria from Vancouver

The quickest and most thrilling route to Victoria is by one of Vancouver’s seaplanes, departing daily from downtown. Within about thirty minutes, you’ll be exploring the streets of Victoria. For a more traditional approach, the BC Ferries Connector offers a bus and ferry service between the cities, including an option for those traveling with a car.

Things to Do in Victoria

Victoria’s Inner Harbour is the lively heart of the city, bustling with artists, buskers, and aquatic traffic. On weekends during summer, don’t miss the water taxi ballet at the Steamship Terminal—a delightful display of coordination.

Butchart Gardens, a national historic site recognized by the National Geographic Society as one of the Top Ten Magnificent Gardens, attracts nearly a million visitors annually. Owned and maintained by the Butchart family for over a century, these gardens are a testament to the enduring beauty of nature.

Lastly, a visit to Fisherman’s Wharf, just a twenty-minute walk from the Inner Harbour, offers a glimpse into the unique Floating Home Village and the chance to enjoy local cuisine, including Barb’s legendary fish and chips.

The comments and contributions expressed are assumed only by the author. The recommendations, intentions or opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Transat AT Inc. or its affiliates. See terms of use of the Air Transat website.

You may also like

12 dream locations for wildlife observation in Québec: moose, beavers, caribous, birds and whales, from the Outaouais to the Gaspé Peninsula.
Eat and drink your way around Île d’Orléans, a most wonderful fertile island just outside Québec City where agriculture flourishes.
To breathe in the fresh air and wander off the beaten path, explore Quebec’s outdoors. Go beyond Montreal for a true, natural adventure!
Poutine may be ubiquitous in Montreal but only a handful of restaurants make it right.

Travel with Air Transat