The coastline of British Columbia is spectacularly beautiful -
indented with small coves and long, deep fjords to form a rugged
and beckoning landscape. Although the coast faces the stormy Pacific
Ocean, the massive bulk of Vancouver Island and a chain of smaller
islands stretching north to Alaska shelter it.
For more than 40 years, BC Ferries has provided vital year-round
transportation between Canada's many west coast communities, including
the 1-1/2 hour ferry ride between Vancouver on the mainland,
and the Provincial capital of Victoria on the southern tip of Vancouver
Island. With 40 vehicle and passenger vessels,
Schedules available at www.bcferries.com.
Here are some suggested routes to take:
Vancouver to Victoria or Nanaimo
In summer, Victoria, at the southern end of Vancouver Island, is linked with Vancouver by hourly ferries (every two hours in the fall and winter
They sail between Tsawwassen, 37 kilometres south of Vancouver, and Swartz Bay, 32 kilometres north of Victoria. Ferries on this route start their 1-1/2 hour crossings at 7am and run until 9pm.
Victoria is a delightful blend of the past and present. It was a former colonial outpost of the Old British Empire and this heritage is evident in the Legislative buildings and the Empress Hotel where afternoon
tea is still served as a ritual, with scones, cakes and fresh preserves. The picturesque streets of the old town are a shopper's delight, and hanging flower baskets remind you that Victoria is known as the Garden
Other routes between Vancouver and Vancouver Island include the Horseshoe Bay-Nanaimo crossing, and BC Ferries' MID-ISLAND EXPRESS between Tsawwassen and Duke Point, just south of Nanaimo.
The Gulf Islands is a group of Canadian islands between Vancouver and Victoria. From both Vancouver (Tsawwassen) and Victoria (Swartz Bay), vehicle ferries
regularly sail to these charming destinations, each of which features a unique combination of attractions and personality.
The Sunshine Coast & Powell River
North of Vancouver is the fjord area of the Sunshine Coast. From Horseshoe Bay, 21 kilometres north of downtown Vancouver, a 40-minute ferry ride takes
you and your vehicle to Langdale terminal. The roads wind gently through Gibsons and Sechelt, 87 kilometres to Earls Cove. From here another ferry crosses in 50 minutes to Saltery Bay and the clear, perfect diving
waters of the upper Sunshine Coast and Powell River. Lund, 32 kilometres farther, is the end of highway, so from Powell River take the 75-minute ferry crossing to Little River (Comox) on Vancouver Island.
The Discovery Coast Passage
The Discovery Coast Passage is our summer-only service between Port Hardy and Mid Coast ports
Bella Bella, Shearwater, Klemtu, Ocean Falls and Bella Coola.
The Inside Passage
Port Hardy, at the northern end of Vancouver Island, a 500 kilometre (8-hour) drive from Victoria, is the southern terminus for BC Ferries year-round Inside
Inside Passage Day Cruise includes an extra stop at Bella Bella. Arrival time at Bella Bella is 5:30 pm, departure time is 6:00 pm. Arrival time at Port Hardy is 11:30 pm.
Alaska's Best Tours
Discover the best activities and things to do in Alaska and the Yukon. View the cities below for "Must Do" activities.
Reservations and Information
Reservations are strongly advised for BC Ferries' Inside Passage route between Port Hardy and Prince Rupert. (If you're planning to head further north, please note that reservations on the Alaska Marine Highway must be
made separately with that ferry system.) On the Vancouver-Gulf Islands service,
reservations are strongly recommended.
On the major routes between Vancouver and Vancouver Island, reservations are a convenient option.
To book passage, or for schedules, fares and additional
information on any routes in the BC Ferries system go to: www.bcferries.com.
You can also contact BC Ferries by phone. It's
a local call in Victoria, 386-3431. Anywhere else in BC t 1-888-BC FERRY (223-3779).