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 Home > Travel BC > BC Cities and Towns > The Islands  > Parksville

Parksville
Parksville is located 35 km (22 miles) north of Nanaimo and 11 km (7 miles) south of Qualicum Beach on Hwy 19A. Parksville, along with Qualicum Beach and the smaller community in-between called French Creek, form the region on the east side of Vancouver Island called Oceanside.

Parksville Bay
Parksville is an ideal ocean waterfront community located along a large beach parallel with Hwy 19A called Parksville Bay. Situated in town are grocery stores, hotels, motels, resorts and tourist services. Most of the residences live off Hwy 19A towards the west with an exception of a small section situated on the east side towards French Creek.

Hwy 19A
As you travel through Parksville on Hwy 19A, there are number of fast food restaurants, motels, resorts and general items. The main intersection is at Hwy 19A and McMillan which takes you towards the Alberni Hwy to Port Alberni, and across Hwy 19A is the Parksville Community Park.

Parksville Bay Community Park
This beautiful park is located along Parksville Bay with a view east towards Sechelt. The park features the arena, a sandy beach, Lions waterpark-play arena, concession kiosk and a grassy field and plays host to a number of events throughout the year. The entrance to Parksville Community Park is located at the traffic lights along Hwy 19A at Corfield Street.

Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park
One of British Columbia's premier parks, Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park, is located approximately 3 km (2 miles) south from downtown Parksville. Here you can find a fairly large campground featuring very private campsites situated next to a large sandy beach along Craig Bay and Ballenas Channel.

Craig Bay
The beach and day-use area for Rathtrevor Provincial Park is absolutely beautiful. The interesting thing here is when the tide goes out, the beach becomes an incredibly large playground for everyone to beachcomb and play in the sand. Towards the south end of Craig Bay outside of the park, the beach carries along the shoreline towards luxury resorts, spas and condominiums.

Craig Heritage Park
Situated on Hwy 19A at the south end of Parksville near the Info Centre by Northwest Bay Road is the entrance to Craig Heritage Park Museum and Archives. Here you can find valuable archives, photographs and artifacts dealing with the settlement of the surrounding area including Parksville, Nanoose Bay, Coombs, Errington, Hilliers and French Creek.

Parksville Beach Festival
All throughout the summer months you can find events taking place in Parksville. If you happen to come in late August, the Parksville Beach Festival is on for a few weeks featuring lots of fun and enjoyment. During this time, a main event dating back to 1982, is the Parkville's Sandcastle Competition.

Top Bridge Community Park
This park is the hidden jewel in Parksville. Beautiful trails along a river gorge, nice forests, petroglyphs, a mountain-bike circuit and excellent swimming holes. Top Bridge Community Park was once the site of a vehicle bridge over the Englishman River and the original transportation route to Port Alberni.

Getting Here
There are two ways to drive into Top Bridge Park. The preferred way is to drive south of Rathtrevor Provincial Park on Hwy 19A, go past the exits for Nanaimo and Qualicum Beach and turn right onto Kaye Road, then quickly onto Chattell Road, then 1.5 km (1 mile) to the parking lot.

Little Mountain
The other route is to take Hwy 4A, turn onto Bellevue Road, then travel on Allsbrook Road for 10 km (6 miles) to a parking lot. If you go this way, take the time to go up Little Mountain. Rather than turn at Allsbrook Road, take the next road called Little Mountain Road for the best views of Errington, Coombs and Parksville.

Top Bridge Trail
There is also a great trail called Top Bridge Trail that takes you from Rathtrevor Park for approximately 5 km (3 miles) to Top Bridge Park. The trail follows Northwest Bay Road, crosses the Hwy 19A at Tuan Road, then takes you through almost Okanagan-like conditions then follows the Englishman River under the E&N trestle into the park. From here, the trail continues across Englishman River on a pedestrian bridge situated at a popular swimming hole at Top Bridge known locally as the 'The Nose.'

Horne Lake Caves
If you enjoy going into some caves, try the ones at Horne Lake. Located just north of Qualicum Beach, Horne Lake Provincial Park features the Horne Lake Cave experience. This is a guided tour of various lengths where you get to learn and see some unique formations under the ground.

Regional District of Nanaimo
Other communities around Parksville belonging to the Regional District of Nanaimo for you to explore are: Nanoose Bay, Lantzville, Coombs, Errington and French Creek. The RDN also operates and maintains various parks, trails and recreational facilities in the area including Ravensong Aquatic Centre in Qualicum Beach.

Lasqueti Island
If you have time, take the passenger-only ferry from French Creek over to Lasqueti Island and hike around this beautiful place. Lasqueti Island is very unique in that there are few cars and the island is off the BC Hydro electrical grid and power has to be partly generated by wind and solar means.

Private Resorts
Besides Rathtrevor Provincial Park, there are a number of private resorts that are close to the beaches along Craig Bay. For motels and RV camping, there are a number that are close to town, Rathtrevor Provincial Park and Englishman River.

Information on Parksville

Tourism

 

 

Map of Parksville
click map for larger image

 

Parksville Bay
Parksville Bay

 

Parksville Bay Community Park
Parksville Bay Community Park

 

Craig Bay
Craig Bay

 

Craig Heritage Park
Craig Heritage Park

 

Parksville Beach
Parksville Beach

 

Top Bridge Community Park
Top Bridge Community Park

 

View from Little Mountain Road
View from Little Mountain Road

 

'The Nose'
'The Nose'

 

Parksville 'Show n Shine'
Parksville 'Show n Shine'

 

Englishman River Estuary
Englishman River Estuary

 

Parksville Bay Beach
Parksville Bay Beach

 
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