Life on the road less traveled...
It’s a short sail to Gabriola Island, about 20 minutes by car ferry from Nanaimo on Vancouver Island. This signature trip is a breathtaking reminder of what makes southwestern British Columbia one of the most spectacular destinations in the world. Your journey to Gabriola is all part of this island’s magic.
As you sail your internal clock slowly drifts to “island time”.
Surrounded by the dramatic views and images of boats slipping between the cluster of islands beneath a deep blue sky and white-capped peaks of the coastal mountains in the distance will likely form in one’s mind. Sailing to Gabriola Island punctuates the pairing of island refuge and city lifestyle within short reach.
On Gabriola Island the daily grind is defined as a few errands followed by a great cup of coffee with friends in the village.
Gabriola Island is a short 45 minute drive around, with no stop lights to interfere, and where you’ll hear the phrase “go slow… you’re on an island… you’re only going in circles."
City temptation moors at the Descanso Bay dock every day, with 16 return sailings every day. Approximately five km east of Nanaimo, British Columbia, and the rest of the world. Not ready to set sail? Then why not just stay right at home.
Everything you need is right here...
Gabriola enjoys the lifestyle amenities of a small rural community. The local bakery, cafes and restaurants serve a culinary variety of comfort foods for visitors and islanders all year round. Seasonal Saturday farmers markets feature a bounty of locally grown produce, specialty items, locally grown flowers, art and home baked goods.
The village is home to the islands shops featuring clusters of curiosity shops scattered between island necessities like the island's apothecary, doctors, video stores and banking.
The history of the island is unveiled by a trip to the museum just a short walk away from the village, or by viewing the islands ancient petroglyphs; these ancient carvings are intriguing, and their origins remain a mystery.
Creative people are always attracted to exceptional places...
Art is such an essential part of the character of Gabriola Island life that no visit would be complete with at least some exploration of the creative wonderings. Many artists live, work and sell their works on the island; functional and decorative pottery, wearable art, glass sculpting and mosaics, silver jewelry, acrylics, watercolours, wood carvings and metal work – it's all available on Gabriola.
Gabriola Island offers some of the most beautiful West Coast temperate rainforest and ocean scenery to be found anywhere in British Columbia.
Forests coupled with sheltered ocean coves and beaches provide endless possibilities for recreation and relaxation year-round. Trail systems crisscross the central region of the island, practically linking from one end of the island to the other, through parkland and road systems guiding cyclists, walkers, joggers and nature lovers through the island's newest 707 acre park.
Gabriola Island spoils everyone with its heart’s desire.
Set sail under the full moon on indigo waters...
Surrounded by sparkling blue waters and sheltered by the neighboring islands, Gabriola is a heavenly place for kayakers, sailors and fishing enthusiasts. With approximately 45 km of rocky and sandy shoreline it offers a great place to explore coves, beach comb or simply relax with a gourmet beach picnic and ocean dip at Olebar Point, this island caters to everyone’s whim.
But at the end of the day, Gabriola is really about one thing. People. The residents are as diverse as the land they call home; from all over the world they’ve come together, creating a strong sense of community and to share in life’s pleasures and treasures.
Capture your heart's desire. Anything is possible when you choose life on the road less traveled.
Come discover... Come play... Come live...
However the true bliss of living on an island is not having to leave! Island living is a very special experience for vacationing, retirement, or as a location for your business. On Gabriola Island, you will find a slow-paced approach to living the good life in an uncommonly beautiful area. Would you like to join us?