Nanaimo, BC, Canada

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Nanaimo, BC, Canada

Nanaimo vacation rentals

Nanaimo’s the gateway to Vancouver Island

Nanaimo sits quietly gazing across the deep-blue straits to its big brother, Vancouver. Ferries continually drift across the Salish Sea to moor up with the other bobbing skiffs and whale-watching trawlers in its salt-washed harbor. Travelers who opt to linger a while before breaking out into the wild reaches deeper in the heart of Vancouver Island will discover a charming place of wooded shores, seaside promenades, local museums, and cannon-topped landmarks, not to mention some excellent Nanaimo vacation rentals that ooze hearty, cozy charm.

Nanaimo offers walking tours and nature

Virtually all travelers who land on the shores of Vancouver Island via the harbors of Nanaimo will start by casing out the historic relics of the town's downtown area on self-guided or private walking tours, which should help reveal something of the intriguing coal mining and trading past of the place. Camping excursions to nearby reserves and inland peaks are also really popular, while those with Nanaimo vacation rentals close to Long Lake can look forward to lazy days of fishing, swimming, and boating.

Pacific history and the great outdoors in Nanaimo

One attraction stands tall and proud above the bobbing boats of Nanaimo harbor is the Bastion. This timber-clad tower still rocks each noon with the firing of the cannons ceremony, and now conceals a museum all about the long-gone trading days of the Hudson’s Bay Company in these parts. After that fix of local heritage, be sure to explore the salt-washed Nanaimo seawall, or hit the wetland fishing hotspots of the Swy-a-lana Lagoon Park on the water's edge. Greater wildernesses await to the west too, where Vancouver Island turns into the rugged Pacific Rim.

Nanaimo is best done in the summer

Heavy snow and bitterly cold temperatures all along this section of the Pacific coast can turn a trip to Nanaimo during the winter into a tricky affair. So, unless you're heading for the ski resorts of Mount Washington to the north, it's probably better you book those Nanaimo vacation rentals for the milder months of the year. Consider hopping across the straits between May and October to be in with the best weather, when the conditions should be perfect for camping in the sites of Newcastle Island or touring the old trading posts of the town center.

Nanaimo and the Salish Sea

Nanaimo sits in a wide cleft between the Vancouver Island Ranges and the Pacific Ranges of mainland Canada. Rising foothills encompass the town, while wetlands and marshes, lagoons, and babbling creeks mark the moment where it drops down into the Salish Sea. There are nature reserves aplenty here, whether that means the pretty bays and coves of Newcastle Island, or the driftwood-scattered sands of Rathtrevor Beach. Nanaimo is also the gateway to other wildernesses, like the Mount Arrowsmith Massif Regional Park; a land of spear-like pine trees and salmon-infested rivers.