Campbell River is located 46 km (29 miles) north of Courtenay
and 198 km (123 miles) south of Port
McNeill on Hwy 19, just about the halfway point on Vancouver
Island. Known for its fantastic salmon fishing, Campbell River is
a boater's paradise with islands, passages and inlets found near
its coastline in Discovery Channel.
Access to Discovery Channel and the many islands and inlets that
are in the Campbell River are right at the waters' edge at a number
of locations featuring eco-tourism and guiding opportunities. You'll
be able to view such places as Cortes
Island, Quadra Island
and Sonora Island and your mind will be filled with your imagination
of the past Spanish explorers who charted these waters.
Campbell River has various marinas, supply facilities and refueling
areas to make your trip hassle-free. A very convenient marina has
to be the Discovery Harbour Marina. Everything is within a short
walk from the marina and your boat moorage. The Discovery Mall is
right next door.
The Discovery Mall has a Canadian Tire (hardware), a liquor store,
Ocean Pacific Marine Supply Ltd., Starbucks, a Real Canadian Super
Store for groceries and clothing, plus an endless list of other
vendors. There are also lots of First Nations' artwork displayed
both outside and in the Wei Wai Kum House of Treasures.
If you feel like a cold beverage or meal, the Ripetide Marine Pub
is located along the picturesque boardwalk next to the marina. From
the pub there are beautiful views of Discovery Passage and Quadra
Once you're in downtown Campbell River there is another boardwalk,
marina services, restaurants and the government docks. If you want
to go to Quadra Island or Cortes Island this is where you'll find
the ferry over by the Discovery Inn. When you arrive at the government
docks look for the Pier Street shopping district for some local
Street Shopping District
There are some excellent fresh fish restaurants along the Pier Street
District boardwalk. The halibut fish and chips served at the Lookout
Seafood Bar & Grill is of very nice quality and favourite and
for a real experience go to Dick's Fish and Chips. For another outdoor
dock experience, try Patti Finn's that is located right across from
the to the entrance of the marina area near the fish boats.
If you get a chance, look around the dock area for the fresh fishmongers
selling their catch. Fresh prawns, halibut, crab and salmon, are
all top-quality with some bargain prices to be found along Fisherman's
Recreational activities around Campbell River include boating, hiking,
mountain biking, sport fishing and sailing. You can also find skiing
at either Mt. Cain going north near Woss
or south at Mt. Washington located just north of Courtenay. For
golfers you can play at either Sequoia Springs Golf Club or Storey
Storey Creek has to be the untold jewel of British Columbia golf
courses. You will fully enjoy this course, which is rated as the
best layout on Vancouver Island. If you are a high handicapper you
might want to try the forward tees, including the reds. This is
just a great way to play this course.
Falls Provincial Park
If you enjoy the outdoors one place that you might want to visit
is Elk Falls Provincial Park. This is located on Hwy 28 west of
Campbell River towards Gold River.
Elk Falls Provincial Park is set in a grove of old-growth forest
with trails meandering throughout. The highlight of the park is
the 25 metre (83 feet) high Elk Falls which plummets into a spectacular
If you don't have a boat or don't like an organized trip, a good
day or overnight trip from Campbell River is across Discovery Channel
aboard BC Ferries. The trip takes you over to Quadra Island, about
a 10-minute trip, where you can do some exploring on one of the
largest gulf islands.
From Quadra Island at Heriot Bay you can take another BC Ferry route
over to Cortes Island at Whaletown, about a 40-minute ride. Cortes
Island is perhaps the most beautiful gulf island along the British
Columbia coast and is well worth the visit.
Leaving Campbell River going north on Hwy 19 you'll come to a small
community of Campbell River called Campbellton.
Heading north out of Campbellton on Hwy 19 make sure you visit the
lookout of the old Catalyst pulp mill site. The viewpoint is really
interesting and very panoramic with Quadra Island in the background.
For perhaps the best fishing on Vancouver Island go to Gold River.
Only 89 km (56 miles) away from Campbell River, Gold River has excellent
salmon fishing. Take Hwy 28 west through Strathcona Provincial Park
past Upper Campbell Lake to get to Gold River. If you are a caver
the Upana Caves are located only 17 km (10.6 miles) northwest of
Nicknamed the 'Gold River Run,' Hwy 28 is pure heaven with Vancouver
Island's best section of curves, straight sections and beautiful
mountain scenery making an excellent trip, especially if you love
riding on a motorcycle.
There is also Strathcona
Provincial Park and Strathcona-Westmin Provincial Park located
just west of Campbell River on Hwy 28. Strathcona contains Buttle
Lake a major recreational lake on Vancouver Island. Buttle Lake
contains Rainbow, Cutthroat, and Dolly Varden trout for fishers.
Throughout Strathcona there are some hiking trails that go right
up into some of Vancouver Island's highest peaks.
If you are going to or coming from Courtenay the most scenic drive
has to be Hwy 19A rather than Hwy 19. It is not as fast as Hwy 19
but if you talk to the locals it is a lot faster than those 'good
old days' before the new highway was built. The beach scene along
Hwy 19A seems endless and the beauty of Discovery Passage incredible.
Brown's Bay Marina is located only 20 km (12 miles) north of Campbell
River. This is a very nice place to park your RV and, if you love
cruise ships, you can watch the Alaska cruise ships go by during
the season. The fishing is great and your boat will be well protected
by a really cool breakwater. Made out of railway tanks, the breakwater
spans the bay.
Heading north from the turnoff to Brown's Marina on Hwy 19 you'll
come to Sayward and Kelsey
Bay. Just north of here and just south of Woss is where you
can find access to Mt. Cain. Mt. Cain is one of Vancouver Island's
highest peaks at 1,612 metres (5,920 feet) elevation and receives
some of British Columbia's highest snow packs.
At Mt. Cain you can find the ultimate winter getaway for excellent
skiing and snowboarding. Then, in the summer, there is great hiking
and some mountain biking along some backcountry scenery. Just a
note - the forestry road up Mt. Cain during the week is restricted
so please check operating hours.
If you have an RV or are pulling a boat, the Discovery Mall makes
a good choice for parking your vehicle if you want to access town.
Transit and taxi services are located quite close for a quick ride
into downtown Campbell River.
on Campbell River