Premier Listings for Island Highway 19

The Island Highway (Highway 19) runs beside the open water of the Strait of Georgia, from Nanaimo in the south through the Comox Valley, north to Campbell River and terminates in the town of Port Hardy in North Vancouver Island.

As you drive the Island Highway, it’s always a treat to look across the Strait of Georgia at landmarks on the mainland as the spires of the Coast Mountains rise on the eastern horizon.

One such scenic view is the profile of the Howe Sound Crest as revealed when you look back towards the city of Vancouver from Parksville. The farther north you head towards Courtenay and Campbell River, however, the more the peaks and glaciers of Vancouver Island’s ranges, principally the imposing Comox Glacier, Forbidden Plateau, and Mount Washington, rise in the west and vie for equal attention.

As the highway winds past well-kept farms, this is a serenely rural part of the journey. Flowers abound in the gardens that front many of the homes along the way. Small rivers such as the Little Qualicum and the Englishman, as well as mightier ones such as the Puntledge and the Campbell, empty into the strait. From the highway you catch glimpses of quiet green forest settings on the banks that line each river’s course. Come late summer, these streams teem with spawning salmon.

From Nanaimo north to Parksville, the eastern coastline of Vancouver Island softens considerably. There are no islands along this stretch to interrupt the views across the Strait of Georgia to the snow-covered peaks of the Coast Mountains as they rise above the Sunshine Coast.

Qualicum Beach, about 7.5 miles (12 km) north of Parksville beside Hwy 19A, gently spreads in front of one of the most pleasant small towns on east side of Vancouver Island. Pause here at any of the numerous beachside pullouts and smell the salt air intermingled with the perfume from the many private and public floral displays. From this point on, the pace of Vancouver Island slackens noticeably. Not that the southern portion is any more hurried, it’s just that there are more people and more congestion. From here north, there is less traffic, and what habitation there is clings to a narrow coastal plain beside the ocean.

Offshore to the east of Parksville lies Lasqueti Island, the first of several northern Gulf Islands that you catch glimpses of as the Island Highway heads north towards Courtenay and Campbell River. Farther off in the distance is the dark profile of Texada Island. Other islands closer at hand are Denman Island and Hornby Island south of Courtenay, and Quadra Island across Discovery Passage from Campbell River.

For much of the way between Courtenay and Campbell River the Island Highway runs beside Qualicum Bay, an area rich in seafood. Pullouts beside the road give easy access to the bay’s sand and pebble beaches. At several places you can buy fresh seafood, brought to the docks daily from local waters.Take your time as you meander through this laid-back region. Its rhythms are subtle, but with gentle probing they reveal themselves, showing greater complexity than first meets the eye.

The northern portion of Highway 19 runs from Campbell River to Port Hardy and Cape Scott, including access to Alert Bay, Telegraph Cove, Brooks Peninsula / Muquin Provincial Park, and Cape Scott Provincial Park. As 97 percent of the population lives on the southern half of Vancouver Island, outdoor recreationists in search of solitude come north.

Much of Vancouver Island once looked as the north still does today. Thanks to recent government protection, some of the remaining wilderness, such as Brooks Peninsula, a stubby, 8.5-mile-long (14-km) projection on the northwest coast of the island, has been preserved. Other places, such as the most northerly tip of the island, are sheltered by the elements from the preying eye of industry. Cape Scott Provincial Park is one of the wildest, windiest, most woebegone locales in the province for human habitation. Journeying to either Brooks Peninsula or Cape Scott is only for those whose mettle has been tested by repeated exposure to the bellows and blast-furnace of nature in the raw.

Gentler conditions prevail in the sheltered waters of Johnstone Strait, where the Kwakwaka’wakw First Nations are the traditional gatekeepers. To experience a tranquillity that passes all description, paddle these waters where whales rub and salmon run in summer months.

Circle Tours: See the best of BC when you embark upon one of the many circle tours that take in Vancouver Island, the Discovery Coast, and the Sunshine Coast. The coastal tours involve exciting road and ferry trips on BC Ferries, and scenic highways flank the coast, taking you through charming beachside communities, rolling farmlands and majestic mountain ranges. Check out the Sunshine Coast and Vancouver Island Circle Tour, and other Circle Tours in British Columbia.

Location: The new Island Highway (Highway 19) has superseded the old Island highway (Highway 19A) as the way to move quickly between Nanaimo and Campbell River. Parksville, 23 miles (37 km) north of Nanaimo’s Departure Bay ferry, lies just east of the new Island Highway. For those wishing to make time, the new four-lane route will be a blessing.

For those wishing to take their time, this will mean fewer cars tailgating along the scenic ocean drive. Highways 19 and 19A link Parksville with southern Vancouver Island. Highway 4 links Parksville with Port Alberni, and with Tofino and Ucluelet on the west side of Vancouver Island. Campbell River may also be reached by BC Ferries from Quathiaski Cove on Quadra Island, a 10-minute ride.

Approaching from the north, Highway 19 links Campbell River with the northern half of Vancouver Island. The top half of 280-mile-long (450-km) Vancouver Island is served by a maze of logging roads and Highway 19 (North Island Highway), which links Campbell River with Port Hardy, the southern terminus of BC Ferries’ Inside Passage and Discovery Coast routes. BC Ferries links the north and central coasts (Prince Rupert and Bella Coola, respectively) with Vancouver Island at Port Hardy.

The following towns are located on or near the Island Highway:
Nanaimo, Lantzville, Parksville, Qualicum Beach, Qualicum Bay, Bowser, Deep Bay, Fanny Bay, Buckley Bay, Union Bay, Royston, Courtenay, Comox, Comox Valley, Merville, Black Creek, Campbell River, Woss, Telegraph Cove, Port McNeill, and Port Hardy.

Premier Listings

Photo of Discovery Marine Safaris
Discovery Marine Safaris
Booking Office – June to October Coast Marina, Next to the BC Ferries Terminal 760 Island Highway Campbell River BC V9W 2C3 Home Phone: 250-287-7008Home Fax: 250-287-7005Work Phone: 1-866-501-6722 (ORCA)Visit Website

Biographical Info

Travel along stunning shorelines and inlets in search of killer whales, black bears, pacific white-sided dolphins, Dall’s porpoises, seals, and magnificent bald eagles. Our tour boats feature an enclosed and heated cabin, two outdoor viewing decks, and an onboard washroom. Enjoy a Romantic Sun Set Cruise, or embark on our Grizzly Bear Viewing Excursion and observe these incredible creatures in their natural habitat far away from human civilization.

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Beach Acres Resort
#25 – 1051 Resort Drive Parksville BC V9P 2E4 Home Phone: 250-248-3424Work Fax: 250-248-6145Work Phone: 1-800-663-7309Visit Website

Biographical Info

It’s all in the name, Beach Acres Resort … miles of warm sandy beach, ocean and mountain views, acres of lush forest, and a range of resort accommodations to delight your family and friends. Our family-friendly, beachfront accommodations offer private self-contained cottages, spacious townhouses – all with two bedrooms, fully equipped kitchens and fireplaces – and majestic ocean views from every window.

Situated on 23 acres of forested property bordered by Rathtrevor Beach’s sandy seashore, we offer the perfect mix of relaxation, adventure, waterfront, forest, and private accommodation … the perfect place for a relaxing vacation retreat or romantic Vancouver Island getaway. The perfect “kid-free” getaway awaits in a cozy little cottage … right on the beach.

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Hidden Cove Lodge
Lewis Point P.O. Box 258 Port McNeill BC V0N 2R0 Home Phone: 250-956-3916Home Fax: 250-956-3916Visit Website

Biographical Info

A west coast cedar lodge on northern Vancouver Island, 20 minutes from the boardwalk Village of Telegraph Cove, with 8 fully accommodated rooms, a licensed dining room, and 2 self-contained ocean view cottages for those seeking complete privacy. Kayak to Robson Bight to view killer whales, or watch black bear, deer and river otter from our patio.

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Photo of Campbell River Whale Watching
Campbell River Whale Watching
Moorage & Office: Discovery Harbour Marina #1 – Dock E Campbell River BC Home Phone: 250-287-2667Work Phone: 1-877-909-2667Visit WebsiteVisit Blog

Biographical Info

Mailing address:
558 Thulin Street
Campbell River, BC V9W 2L1

Campbell River Whale Watching invites you to experience some of the most spectacular Orca Killer whale watching and wildlife viewing in the world. You can take a Grizzly Tour, go Orca Whale Watching, see Bald Eagles, and experience the life of seals and sea lions on an adventure tour of a lifetime.

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Pearl Point Beach House
6448 South Island Highway Courtenay BC Mailing Address: Box 129 Union Bay BC V0R 3B0 Home Phone: 250-335-9048Home Fax: 250-335-9068Work Phone: 1-866-335-9048Visit Website

Biographical Info

Pearl Point Beach House is situated on 5.5 acres of the most beautiful property in the Comox Valley. With 1,600 feet of walk-on waterfront and a stunning 180-degree view of Baynes Sound, Pearl Point Beach House offers spectacular views from every room. Sleeps 4 to 6 people. Walking trails, beachcombing, clam digging, and famous Fanny Bay oysters.

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Photo of Haida Way Hotel
Haida Way Hotel
P.O. Box 399 1817 Campbell Way Port McNeill BC V0N 2R0 Home Phone: 250-956-3373Work Fax: 250-956-4710Work Phone: 1-800-956-3373Visit Website

Biographical Info

Haida Way Hotel is Port McNeill’s largest and most popular accommodation and hospitality complex. Located near Port McNeill downtown, the Haida Way is within walking distance of shopping, the harbour and the ferry terminal. We have 70 cozy guestrooms and suites, free wireless internet, banquet and meeting room, and our own full-service Northern Lights Restaurant, lively pub, and liquor store. Featuring killer whale and grizzly bear watching tours, salmon and halibut fishing, and kayaking expeditions.

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Photo of Long Lake Waterfront B&B
Long Lake Waterfront B&B
240 Ferntree Place Nanaimo BC V9T 5M1 Home Phone: 250-758-5010Home Fax: 250-758-2115Work Phone: 1-877-758-5010Visit Website

Biographical Info

Long Lake Waterfront B&B offers self-contained, luxurious bed and breakfast suites on beautiful Long Lake in Nanaimo, a destination spot at which to relax and have waterfront fun, or use as a base for day trips and and activities on Vancouver Island. Enjoy the experience of staying at a B&B that creates wonderful memories and offers exemplary customer service. Each suite has a view of Long Lake, with air conditioning, fridge and ensuite with shower and/or Jacuzzi.

Vancouver Island’s harbour city of Nanaimo is a bustling active place with over 200 parks, a 5-km Harbourside Walkway, world-class diving and kayaking, and bird watching with over 250 local species.

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Photo of Cape Lazo RV & Campground
Cape Lazo RV & Campground
685 Lazo Road Comox BC V9M 3X2 Home Phone: 250-339-3946Work Phone: 1-888-558-3946Visit Website

Biographical Info

The Cape Lazo RV & Campground is a 6.5 acre beachside property with 64 beautifully landscaped campsites, just metres from the beach and minutes from downtown Comox. We offer a family friendly campground facility with kayak and paddleboard rentals, accessible boat launch, playground, on site store, and pavilion for group picnics. The Comox Peninsula on the east coast of Vancouver Island is spectacular at any time of year with miles of shoreline to explore and great recreation opportunities for all ages. Cape Lazo is perfect for a weekend, a week or even months of camping in the Comox Valley.

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Photo of Black Bear Resort & Spa
Black Bear Resort & Spa
PO Box 285 1812 Campbell Way Port McNeill BC V0N 2R0 Home Phone: 250-956-4900Work Fax: 250-956-4909Work Phone: 1-866-956-4900Visit Website

Biographical Info

Black Bear Resort in the beautiful coastal community of Port McNeill is the newest property on Northern Vancouver Island, offering elegant accommodation on the fringe of a natural forest with beautiful ocean views. The stylish cedar resort boasts 40 tastefully decorated guestrooms each with stunning views of the protected harbour, Malcolm Island, and the coastal mountains of the BC mainland.

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Photo of Black Creek Bed and Breakfast
Black Creek Bed and Breakfast
2474 Oakes Road Black Creek BC V9J 1J1 Home Phone: 250-337-8082Visit Website

Biographical Info

Nestled between the Ocean and the Mountains in the scenic Comox Valley, halfway between Courtenay and Campbell River, the rural setting of Black Creek B&B offers privacy to unwind just 2km from beautiful sandy Saratoga Beach, just over a minute from Saratoga Golf Course, and close to world-class skiing at Mount Washington – the closest off-mountain lodging at just a 20-minute drive away.

We offer luxury accommodation at affordable prices in two separate suites, catering to couples, family or groups. The Luxury Suite sleeps up to two people, and our Deluxe Suite sleeps up to four people. The suites are in separate parts of the house, which makes for a comfortable and peaceful stay in this beautifully quiet and serene setting.

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Photo of Sunrise Ridge Waterfront Resort
Sunrise Ridge Waterfront Resort
1175 Resort Drive Parksville BC V9P 2E3 Home Phone: 250-248-4674Work Phone: 1-877-977-8669Visit Website

Biographical Info

Sunrise Ridge Waterfront Resort is a year round destination in Parksville offering gorgeous west coast inspired vacation rentals and beachfront resort accommodation. The resort offers 65 fully furnished, fully equipped 1, 2 and 3 bedroom vacation homes boasting magnificent mountain and ocean views. Pamper yourself in our newly constructed seasonal outdoor heated pool, hot tub, and fitness facility. Our guest services and friendly approach will ensure that this resort experience is one you will want to repeat again and again. Reserve your Parksville vacation rental home today and discover why you may never want to leave Vancouver Island.

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Photo of Best Western Northgate Inn Nanaimo Hotel
Best Western Northgate Inn Nanaimo Hotel
6450 Metral Drive Nanaimo BC V9T 2L8 Home Phone: 250-390-2222Work Fax: 250-390-2412Work Phone: 1-800-661-0061Visit Website

Biographical Info

Let Best Western Northgate Inn be your home away from home. Located in the north end of Nanaimo, just steps away from Woodgrove Shopping Centre, Vancouver Island’s largest shopping mall. All Rooms have air conditioning, microwaves, fridges, balconies and complimentary wireless internet. Parking is included with your stay and the facilities include: restaurant and pub, hot tub, exercise room, coin operated laundry, and meeting room facilities.

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Photo of Salmon Point Resort RV Park & Marina
Salmon Point Resort RV Park & Marina
2176 Salmon Point Road Campbell River BC V9H 1E5 Home Phone: 250-923-6605Work Fax: 250-923-7572Work Phone: 1-866-246-6605Visit Website

Biographical Info

The Salmon Point Resort in Campbell River offers oceanfront cabins, serviced RV sites, a marina with boat launch and boat moorage, a pub and restaurant, camping, fishing, fishing charters, and whale watching. Salmon Point Resort is located between Campbell River and Courtenay, with spectacular views of Georgia Strait and the BC Coast Mountains.

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Photo of Pacific Playgrounds International
Pacific Playgrounds International
9082 Clarkson Avenue Black Creek BC V9J 1B3 Home Phone: 250-337-5600Home Fax: 250-337-5979Work Phone: 1-877-239-5600Visit Website

Biographical Info

The Pacific Playgrounds Resort, RV Park, Campground and Marina is located at Saratoga Beach, midway between Campbell River and the Comox Valley, nestled in the trees along the bank of the peaceful Oyster River just as it flows into the Georgia Strait. This truly beautiful setting offers fresh air, clear water and acres of park for your enjoyment. Year-round RV Park, Cabin and Marina facilities second to none at your gateway to Vancouver Island recreation. Enjoy golf, world-class skiing, hiking, biking, camping, and fishing.

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Photo of Practicar Nanaimo
Practicar Nanaimo
227 South Terminal Avenue Nanaimo BC V9R 5C7 Home Phone: 250-753-6461Home Fax: 250-753-4355Work Phone: 1-888-296-8888Visit Website

Biographical Info

Practicar Nanaimo offers low rates on daily, weekly and monthly rentals for cars, passenger vans, and trucks; ferry and airport pick-up and delivery, cars also available in Parksville/Qualicum and Gabriola Island; no charge for additional drivers; minimum driver’s age 21; special packages, including self-drive vineyard tours, Tofino/Pacific Rim, Gulf Islands available.

Nanaimo is the Gateway to Vancouver Island, with convenient and frequent ferries from Vancouver as well as float plane service from both Vancouver airport and downtown Vancouver. Walk on – walk off – drive away – with Practicar rentals – free pickup at Departure Bay ferry terminal, and downtown Nanaimo float plane docks.

Practicar provides discount car rental prices with top of the line auto rental customer service. At Practicar we believe that cheap car rental can be accompanied with excellent service. With airport locations and convenient neighborhood locations Practicar strives to meet all of your car and truck rental needs; whether you are looking for airport car rental, an insurance replacement vehicle or a van or minivan to take on vacation. Drive a Good Bargain…Practicar!

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