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 Home > Travel BC > BC Cities and Towns > Vancouver, Coast & Mountains > Bowen Island

Bowen Island
Bowen Island is located off the coast of West Vancouver near Horseshoe Bay at the entrance to Howe Sound. Bowen Island has a long history going back over 100 years as a weekend destination point for people who live in Vancouver.

BC Ferries
To get to Bowen Island you either have to take a boat or use the regular scheduled BC Ferries sailing from Horseshoe Bay to Snug Cove which takes around 20 minutes. If you're parking a car at Horseshoe Bay, allow yourself lots of time to find a parking spot as sometimes it can prove quite difficult.

Cycle to Bowen Island
The best way for you to see Bowen Island is by bicycle. This is a way to get on BC Ferries with no problem - first on, first off. Not only is there no line up, it costs less money and, during the summer, parking is at a real premium. Once on Bowen, the roads are easy to cycle with traffic being less hectic once the ferry traffic clears.

Public Transportation from Vancouver
If you happen to be visiting in Vancouver and don't have a car, there is convenient public transportation from downtown. You take the West Vancouver Blue Bus numbers 250 or 257 that leave from Georgia Street to the Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal

Walk On
Getting around Bowen Island is real easy if you walk on. There is the Bowen Island TransLink Community Shuttle with a couple of routes throughout the island. If you don't happen to make the last BC Ferries at night, there is also a scheduled water taxi service called Cormorant Marine Water Taxi which has operated since 1978.

Snug Cove
Snug Cove is located on the east side of Bowen Island and provides the main centre and meeting place for the locals. Most of the conveniences, entertainment and services are located here. Snug Cove is also where you can find the Bowen Island Summer Market which makes for great browsing among all the fresh products.

Restaurants and Cafés
Services in Snug Cove include the Village Square, Bowen General Store, The Ruddy Potato for organic food, Bowen Island Pub, a sports bar featuring a full pub-style menu. There is also The Snug Coffee House plus a few restaurants and cafés if you're hungry. A real favourite is the Tuscany Wood Oven Pizza.

Union Steamship Company Marina
If you're boating there are sheltered bays and safe anchorage as well as two marinas situated at Snug Cove. The Union Steamship Company Marina has moorage available, fuel and a great historic store plus Doc Morgan's Inn. If the weather starts to blow in Howe Sound, Bowen Island makes a good destination for waiting it out.

Dorman Point Walking Trail
The best thing about Bowen Island is if you do walk, most of the trails start right out of Snug Cove. A favourite walk is the Lady Alexandra Promenade along the waterfront and marinas eventually to Dorman Point Trail. At Dorman Point there is a spectacular viewpoint east towards Horseshoe Bay.

Crippen Regional Park
For longer walks try going up the Killarney Creek Trail into the 600-acre Crippen Regional Park. This trail eventually connects with Killarney Lake Loop Trail on Magee Road near the site of the control dam and picnic area. Once at Killarney Lake, you can find good lookout points with lots of exploring and observing the various wildlife, especially birds in the forest and along the lakeshore.

Killarney Creek Trail
To get to Killarney Creek Trail, take Maple Trail starting near the RCMP building in Snug Cove. The trail eventually goes by the Lagoon, Fish Ladders and Bridal Falls. If you want you can take the Hatchery Trail to Terminal Creek Salmon Hatchery or access Killarney Creek trailhead just up Millers Landing Road.

Mount Gardner
If you have the time take a walk up to the top of Mount Gardner. At 719 metres (2,359 feet) Mount Gardner is the highest point on Bowen Island. From the top there are excellent views of Gambier Island, Howe Sound and the surrounding landscape of Squamish.

Trailhead
The trail starts either in Crippen Regional Park, Mt. Gardner Road or off Bowen Bay Road in the Bluewater area. Check with the Bowen Island guide for exact trail locations.

Sandy Beaches
If you do go to Bowen Island remember to bring some walking shoes for the beautiful sandy beaches and rocky points. The island boasts eight public beaches with the main ones being Bowen Bay, Sandy and Tunstall Bay Beach, all with toilet facilities.

Tunstall Bay Beach
Tunstall Bay Beach makes a great destination point if you happen to cycle over. The beach faces out towards the west enjoying some great sunshine during the summer months. There is lots to do with great panoramic views and excellent sunsets towards Nanaimo.

Sea Kayaking
Located just off the west of Tunstall Bay Beach is Pasley and Worlcombe Islands, the site of some excellent sea kayaking. Pasley Island involves around eight small islands all closely grouped together with Worlcombe close by. You can leave by Tunstall Bay and do a loop through the islands with a chance to see some wildlife including bald eagles and seals. If you prefer Bowen Island, Sea Kayaking is available for guided tours around the island.

Keats and Gambier Island
There are two other islands off the coast of Bowen to explore: Keats Island and Gambier Island. Keats Island is a small island near Pasley Island with a small community with ferry service to Gibsons. Plumper Cove Marone Provincial Park is within walking distance. Gambier Island is much bigger with four big bays within close range of the north side of Bowen Island. Halkett Bay Marine Park is situated on Gambier's west side across from Lions Bay.

Bowen Island Golf Club
Bowen Island also has a nice 9-hole public golf course called the Bowen Island Golf Club.

Bowfest
There is an annual celebration on Bowen Island called Bowfest happening on the fourth Saturday in August at Bowfest Field in Snug Cove. Bowfest Bowen's End of Summer Community Festival features an opening day parade, music and culture awareness. Bowfest also raises money for charities on the Island with the 'Run For The Ferry' event.

Information on Bowen Island

 

 

Map of Bowen Island
click map for larger image

 

BC Ferries to Bowen Island
BC Ferries to Bowen Island

 

Bowen Island
Bowen Island

 

Snug Cove
Snug Cove

 

The Ruddy Potato Café and Garden
The Ruddy Potato Café and Garden

 

Union Steamship Company Marina
Union Steamship Company Marina

 

Oceanfront Walkway
Oceanfront Walkway

 

Bowen Bay Park
Bowen Bay Park

 

Bowen Island
Bowen Island

 

Tunstall Bay Beach
Tunstall Bay Beach

 

Snug Cove
Snug Cove

 

Bowen Island Pub
Bowen Island Pub

 

Bowen Island Golf Club
Bowen Island Golf Club

 

Bowen Island Public Library
Bowen Island Public Library

 
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