The Parksville Downtown Business Association’s “Free Bus” connects Resort Drive and Parksville beach to the shops, galleries, restaurants, and other services of Parksville’s downtown during July and August. Download the Parksville Free Bus schedule and check out their website for more details.
Parksville BC has a bustling downtown that is the business hub of Vancouver Island’s Oceanside region as well as a favourite destination for romantic weekends and extended family vacations. A full range of shops and services can be found here, including a few that can’t be found anywhere else!
Parksville’s community spirit, combined with the climate that is so garden-friendly, earned the city “Five Blooms,” or first place for cities its size, at the 2006 Communities in Bloom National Award Ceremonies. This award adds to the accolades that Parksville and Qualicum Beach shared when they won the national Communities in Bloom “Canadian Classic” competition in 2004.
While definitely a four-season town, Parksville British Columbia has long been renowned as one of Canada’s top summer vacation spots. Its fabled beachfront, located directly across the street from downtown, is now the site of the three week long Parksville Beach Festival each August. The event’s highlight is the Canadian Open Sand Sculpting Competition, which draws tens of thousands annually to see a jaw-dropping array of alternately whimsical, complicated and flat-out stunning creations.
Widely known as Vancouver Island’s “Garden Village,” Qualicum Beach is probably the oldest holiday destination on the BC coast. Early explorers spoke of its beauty, warm summers and amazing vistas as early as 1864. With the arrival of the railway a century ago, the town rapidly developed into a vacation retreat. And thanks to visionary thinking by town planners and a set of strict building codes, Qualicum (a Salish Indian word for “where the dog salmon runs”) Beach remains a singularly unique and special destination to this day.
The town’s founders practically enshrined the words “quaint” and “charming” into Qualicum Beach’s identity. Downtown is filled with boutique shops, galleries, cafes and large, pedestrian-friendly sidewalks. The splendid library is worth a visit in itself. When the tide drops, beachcombing is a treat on the broad, sandy expanse. Pockets filled with salt-stained treasure, you can then head uphill to wander among the regal holiday homes with million-dollar views.
Golfers choose Qualicum Beach as their Vancouver Island golf getaway to play the Qualicum Beach Memorial and Pheasant Glen golf courses. Qualicum Beach Memorial is one of oldest BC golf courses with spectacular views of Georgia Strait and Pheasant Glen has some of the best views of Mount Arrowsmith to be found in the region.
Take a walk in the Heritage Forest of Qualicum Beach, 50 acres of rare remnant old growth forest – a mixture of Coastal Douglas Fir, Western Red Cedar, Hemlock, Grand Fir, and Sitka Spruce. It includes a beautiful ravine with a salmon bearing stream, rare and endangered plants, deer and many species of birds. Only five minutes from downtown, the Forest with its bark mulch trails is protected by a Covenant to ensure that it remains as an ecological reserve, available to all for the purpose of observing and appreciating nature. Stop in at the Qualicum Beach Visitor Centre to get directions.
Content for Parksville & Qualicum provided by http://www.visitparksvillequalicumbeach.com
Getting to Parksville
If you are traveling with your vehicle BC Ferries is the only way to travel to Vancouver Island from the Canadian mainland. A leisurely ferry ride between the BC Lower Mainland and the Island allow visitors to experience the unique geography and wildlife of this coast.
Sailing time:- From Vancouver (Tsawwassen) to Nanaimo (Duke Point): 2 hours
Sailing time:- From West Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay) to Nanaimo (Departure Bay): 1 hour 35 minutes
For schedule information please visit www.bcferries.com or call 1-888-BCFERRY. Reservations may be made in advance for a nominal fee. We recommend reservations for peak summer periods as well as weekend or holiday travel year round to avoid waiting.
The drive to Tigh-Na-Mara from Departure Bay is approximately 20 minutes and from Duke Point approximately 40 minutes.
Black Ball Ferry Line
Black Ball Ferry Line provides a classic ship experience via the MV Coho, which links Victoria, British Columbia and Port Angeles, Washington. Our vehicle and passenger ferry has been providing reliable daily service for the past 50 years. Come and enjoy this scenic passage as part of your next trip and explore the many wonders of the Olympic Peninsula. Our captain and crew look forward to welcoming you on board the ship! From Victoria, the drive to Tigh-Na-Mara is approximately 2 hours.
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
430 Belleville Street
Victoria, BC V8V 1W9
Tel: (250) 386-2202
Port Angeles, Washington, USA
101 E. Railroad Avenue
Port Angeles, WA, 98362
Tel: (360) 457-4491
Travel between Seattle and Victoria is fast and easy! Hop aboard the Victoria Clipper, a high-speed passenger-only ferry, and enjoy the 2.5-hour cruise through the Puget Sound and into the Strait of Juan de Fuca on your way to Victoria’s Inner Harbour. Find a comfortable seat, enjoy a light meal or a refreshing beverage, shop the onboard gift shop and duty free shop or step out on deck and observe the beauty of the passing scenery. From Victoria, the drive to Tigh-Na-Mara is approximately 2 hours.
Clipper Vacations and the Victoria Clipper
2701 Alaskan Way, Pier 69
Seattle, WA 98121
Hours: 6:30am-9pm, daily
One of the most scenic ways to travel to Vancouver Island is via Seaplane. These small twin prop beaver or otter aircraft transfer guests to Vancouver Island in minutes! If you are traveling light, in 20 minutes you can travel from downtown Vancouver to downtown Nanaimo. Shuttle service from the seaplane terminal to Tigh-Na-Mara may be arranged in advance.
Celebrating over 25 years and with more than 30 aircraft, Harbour Air is the largest all-seaplane company in the world.