Nelson is located; 41 km (25.5 miles) north-east from Castlegar
on Hwy 3A/6, 122 km (76 miles) from Creston
on Hwy 6/3, or 114 km (71 miles) from Creston on Hwy 3A via the
Kootenay Ferry crossing at Balfour - Kootenay Bay.
Known for its long association with the silver mining industry and
provincial parks, Nelson is also the main centre for most artisans
and craftsmen in the Kootenay Region.
This is the centre of it - Baker Street. You will be impressed with
the colourful and unique Baker Street, restaurants, coffee shops,
old heritage buildings, art stores, plus lots of curios and collectibles
throughout the whole length. A real treat is when a large number
of outdoor cafes are set up and you get to have a breakfast or a
coffee on all of the patios.
Throughout Nelson you will notice a large number of old-stone heritage
buildings some dating from the elate 1800's. Nelson was a very prosperous
town and, in a proud display, the lumber and mining barons built
their homes and businesses using large slabs of granite rock throughout.
The City of Nelson has made a walking tour you can take throughout
the city and view this proud past. You can pick up this free map
at the Visitor Info Centre located at 225 Hall Street.
When you're walking around Nelson make sure you go to the Lakeside
Park located just by the Orange Bridge on Hwy 3A. Visiting the park
has been a Nelson tradition for many a family throughout the years.
You can take a very nice walkway from downtown along the West Arm
of Kootenay Lake.
Located adjacent to Lakeside Park along Kootenay Lake is Chahko
Mika Mall. The mall can be easily accessed using Nelson's colourful
tramway or by walking along the waterfront. Chahko Mika Mall is
very handy if you need supplies with Wal-Mart and Save-on-Foods
being the main tenants in the mall.
of Nelson Parks
The city parks around Nelson are excellent with various recreational
pursuits offered throughout the year.
For swimmers, besides Kootenay Lake there is also Cottonwood Falls
Park and the Cottonwood Creek area. This is located where Cottonwood
Creek crosses under Hwy 3A and Hwy 6. Then, across the Orange Bridge
on Johnstone Road, just over the North Shore is James Johnstone
Regional Park for relaxing on Kootenay Lake.
Also in town, kids will enjoy Gyro Park for swimming in the pool
area and the adults will also enjoy the colourful garden display.
Gyro Park is located at the end of Vernon Sreet heading north-east
from the city.
The Nelson Artwalk is an annul event where the whole of Nelson has
artistry showcased over the months of July, August and September.
During the opening day of each month, Baker Street and downtown
Nelson are set up with displays and objects of art to look at plus
samples of various wines.
Various venues, exhibits and events are also scheduled during the
days and most evenings. With lots of colourful events and people
coming together all summer long, it will be entertainment for you
every day at Nelson Artwalk.
- Nelson and District Arts Council
For recreation the things and options to do are endless. From skiing
at Whitewater, boating and fishing on Kootenay Lake, playing 18
holes at Granite Pointe to exploring along the Columbia River towards
Crescent Valley and the Silvery
For mountain bikers and cyclists, there are some great rides especially
the logging roads and abandoned Nelson & Fort Sheppard Railway
Nelson is home to some very nice provincial parks around Kootenay
Lake. Towards Balfour on Hwy 3A only 19 km (12 miles) there is Kokanee
Creek Provincial Park featuring a white sandy beach around 1,000
m (3,281 ft) long. North from here at Ainsworth is the Cody Caves
Provincial Park presenting a guided tour into one of BC's caving
experiences. For hikers try Kokanee Glacier Park just 16 km (10
miles) past Kokanee Creek. There is also along the west arm of Kootenay
Lake, the incredible West Arm Provincial Park.
One unique thing about Nelson is that it is not part of BC Hydro's
or FortisBC's electrical distribution customers. The City of Nelson
owns its own fully vertically integrated electrical utility called
Nelson Hydro with generation of power coming from the Bonnington
Generating Plant. The power plant was built at Bonnington Falls
located south of Nelson on the Kootenay River.
the "Silvery Slocan"
One area that makes for good exploring around Nelson is the Silvery
Slocan Driving tour. The route takes in Ainsworth Hot Springs, Kaslo,
Sandon, New Denver,
City, Crescent Valley and Bonnington Falls. Make sure you allow
yourself a good day for the tour as there is a lot to discover.