Each island is a jewel, with its own culture and community, with each offering many opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and sample locally grown and prepared cuisine, all in some of the best scenery around.
The most heavily populated island is Saltspring Island, home to a farmers’ and artisans’ market like no other. Saltspring has it all; award-winning hand-made cheese, distilleries, wineries, pubs, spas, golf, whale watching, book shops, bakeries, and loads of outdoor activities, all at your fingertips in a relaxed, gently-paced environment.
Mayne Island, also quite well populated, offers beautiful resorts and B &Bs. This island’s many quiet roads are a delight for cyclists. Here you will find warm bays for swimming, picturesque hikes, farmers’ markets, art galleries, restaurants and cafés, kayaking, and fishing charters.
Galiano Island is the closest Gulf Island to Vancouver. This island has ancient rain forests, hiking, fishing, and whale watching for the nature lovers in your party. Here you can dine at award winning restaurants, buy produce from organic farms, attend art shows, or play a round of golf.
Gabriola Island is known as the “Isle of Arts.” With easy access from either Vancouver or Nanaimo via B.C. Ferries, or via float plane, this island sports local galleries, a network of hiking and biking trails, farms, nurseries, restaurants and pubs, and all manner of outdoor water activities such as diving, fishing charters, and kayaking.
Pender Island is made up of North and South Pender Islands, and is part of the Gulf Islands National Park. These islands have golf, cycling, hiking, and kayaking. From here you can charter a boat to fish, or to explore some of the smaller surrounding islands.
Modestly sized Saturna Island (31 sq. km), located in the Gulf Islands National Park, boasts the highest peak in the park, Mt. Warburton Pike, a hike that will provide breath-taking views. This island, halfway between the lower mainland (Vancouver), and Vancouver Island has land-based whale watching, back-country hiking, an active arts and crafts community. The Marine Research and Education Society, which is open to the public, offers guided tours.