Gulf Islands National Park Reserve of Canada

Explorer Quotient

Authentic Explorer | Cultural Explorer | Cultural History Buff | Free Spirit | Gentle Explorer | No-hassle Traveller | Personal History Explorer | Rejuvenator | Virtual Traveller

Gentle Explorer

A couple strolling on the beach Out for a stroll at Sidney Spit
© Parks Canada / Chris Cheadle

You like returning to past destinations and enjoy the security of familiar surroundings. You seek the most comfortable places when you get away and avoid the unknown. Well-organized travel packages and guided tours that take care of all the details appeal to you - travel should be fun, not extra work! And if it’s fun, chances are you’ll be back.

Enjoy a place where serenity and idyllic scenery are a step away from the finest amenities!

Spoil yourself with a weekend of extravagance at a local gulf island resort or Bed and Breakfast. Stay in a cozy oceanfront cottage, pamper yourself at a local spa, indulge in local fare at a west coast restaurant and enjoy the peace and quiet of the surrounding park reserve.

Look no further than Sidney Spit for a relaxing get away that is close to home. Lie back and unwind on your beach blanket and be transported to the tropics by the warm sandy beaches and inviting blue waters. From building sandcastles to bird watching, there is a pleasant diversion for everyone in your clan. So pack a picnic and your favourite book and idle away an afternoon.

What better way to enjoy your Gulf Islands retreat than to sit back and relax on a boat captained by a knowledgeable expert? Treat yourself and your nearest and dearest to a guided excursion and visit some of the park’s tried and true top destinations.

For the Gentle Explorer, we suggest…

Soothing Strolls – Stroll along the warm sandy beaches of Sidney Spit, admire the picturesque view of the lagoon and dip your toes in the Pacific Ocean. Or, slip away from the afternoon sun on Saturna Island to ramble along the shoreline of Winter Cove to a breathtaking view of Boat Pass and the Strait of Georgia. Sit back, relax and be mesmerized by the tides.

Sniff, sip and savour – Cap off an afternoon stroll through the park with a leisurely lunch, followed by a wine tour and tasting at a local winery.

Scenic road trip – Drive to the top of Mt. Warburton Pike on Saturna Island and enjoy the breathtaking bird’s eye view. Or, cruise along the stunning ocean-side road to East Point on Saturna Island where you will find an unparalleled view of the Strait of Georgia (and your best chance to spot a whale from land).

Under the sea – The Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre is a Parks Canada partner that offers you the opportunity to touch local marine creatures and see the ocean environment normally hidden under the waves in the park reserve.

Sidney stroll with a view – Admire stunning views of the park while strolling the waterfront boardwalk in Sidney. Stop in at the nearby shops for coffee or ice-cream, or take some time to browse the second hand bookshops. On Thursday evenings in the summer, drop by the famous outdoor market.