Campbell River

Located on the east coast of North/Central Vancouver Island, 3.5-hour drive from Victoria and less than 2 hours north of Nanaimo. Population: 36,096.

Visitor Information: Campbell River Visitor Centre is located in the same building as the Art Gallery, at 1235 Shoppers Row; phone 1-877-286-5705. Free parking is available at the visitor centre with EV plug-ins next to the Tyee Place Shopping Centre.

Full visitor services are available, including accommodations (from budget hotels to B&B’s and vacation rentals to the world-famous Painter’s Lodge), fine dining, family-friendly eateries; major chain stores as well as local boutiques. Oceanside camping at Thunderbird RV Park, phone 250-286-3344.

Campbell River is located at the entrance to Discovery Passage, the primary route for marine traffic between the Pacific Ocean to the north and the Strait of Georgia to the south. Cruise ships, deep sea freighters and barges in transit to Alaska, along with sailboats, yachts and other pleasure boats, pass through Discovery Passage. Not surprisingly, the city has a busy waterfront scene, with marinas, the landmark Discovery Pier, multi-use trails and parking.

Attractions:

  • The waterfront Robert V. Ostler Park is several blocks from the Visitor Centre, on the other side of the strip mall with beautiful gardens, totems and walkways.
  • Discovery Fishing Pier, Discovery Passages Aquarium and Maritime Heritage Centre.
  • Pier Street Farmers Market is here Sundays 10 A.M. to 2:30 P.M. May–September.
  • Ferry service to Quadra Island and Cortes Island; whale watching and sea-kayak tours.