Archive for the ‘Nanaimo’ Category

Innkeeper Recommendations: Nanaimo, the Harbour City

Saturday, August 8th, 2015

Nanaimo, “the Harbour City”,is the second largest community on Vancouver Island. It’s the second major ferry terminal on the Island and receives traffic for all points north and west, so it’s a busy place that people often pass through on their way to somewhere else.  Yet there are many reasons to stay a few days in Nanaimo and explore all the city has to offer.  We asked our Nanaimo innkeepers for a few reasons why you need to visit the Harbour City.

Gordie & Janice at Long Lake Waterfront B&B love the Harbourfront Walkway, a stretch of 4.5 km running along the waterfront from the downtown harbour to Departure Bay. Along the way you can shop, grab a coffee or an ice cream, have a picnic, or dip your toes in the saltwater Swy-A-Lana lagoon.

Also from the Harbourfront Walkway you can take a 10-minute ferry ride to Newcastle Island, a provincial marine park, which dominates the view from downtown. Hike or bike the forested trails or explore the beaches.  A second island in the Nanaimo harbour is Protection Island, and it is home to Canada’s only registered floating pub, the Dingy Dock.

Stroll the Harbourfront Walkway in Nanaimo

Stroll the Harbourfront Walkway in Nanaimo

Karen at Hammond Bay Oceanside B&B loves the walking trails and the more than 200 green spaces in the city.  Hammond Bay is located between Pipers Lagoon Park and Neck Point Park, two very different parks.  There is drive up diving from Neck Point Park, and great diving in the Nanaimo area in general with three wrecks that have been sunk in the area.

Of course two of Nanaimo’s major claims to fame are the Nanaimo Bar and the International Bathtub Race.  Pick up a self-guided tour brochure for the “Nanaimo Bar Trail” at the Visitor Centre and don’t forget to taste this sweet chocolaty treat! The Great International World Championship Bathtub Race is held in July from Maffeo Sutton Park, and has been a famous local event for 48 years. so you’ve got to see it at least once!

Of course, all of our Nanaimo Bed & Breakfast innkeepers have insider knowledge of their city, so a stay with them will not only give your great accommodations, delicious breakfasts, and outstanding hospitality, but all the best information for an enjoyable stay in Nanaimo!

It’s Time For the Nanaimo Dragonboat Festival!

Saturday, June 14th, 2014

2014 Nanaimo Dragonboat FestivalThe 12th annual Nanaimo Dragonboat Festival is scheduled for Friday, July 4th through Sunday, July 6th, 2014 – will you be here to witness all the fun?

The tradition of dragonboat racing originated in southern China over 2,000 years ago. According to legend, a poet and statesman named Qu Yuan made himself a target of his rivals through unswerving honor and integrity. When said enemies were able to trick the king into banishing Qu Yuan from the province, he loaded his pockets with stones and threw himself into the Mi Lo River. Local fishermen raced in vain to rescue him, their drums pounding and paddles splashing to scare the fish and water dragons away. To honor the lost and beloved Qu Yuan, the dragonboat race was made an annual event.


Row, Row, Row your boat….To Nanaimo!

Saturday, June 8th, 2013


Paddle up and saddle up to experience everything the beautiful City of Nanaimo has to offer. With one of the longest shorelines in Canada on one side and an amazing forested mountain backdrop on the other, the city of Nanaimo is a classic West Coast community, offering natural beauty at every turn. Go from a fun, recreational wilderness to a unique urban experience in just minutes.

Nanaimo is a very age-friendly town, offering activities for families, adults and seniors! Take your family down to the beach, or have a picnic at one of the over 50 amazing parks Nanaimo has to offer. Have a date night at the City Centre and try one of the many culinary adventurous and delicious restaurants. And don’t forget about Dad on Father’s Day! Woodgrove Mall is your official stop for some amazing presents to tell dad how much you love him – and while you are there, make sure you pick up something for yourself!

Tourists and City-Folk alike flock to many of Nanaimo’s great festivals including the Great International World Championship Bathtub Race (July 26-28), the Maple Sugar Festival and  The Nanaimo Dragon Boat Festival! Teams from all over BC and the US come to Nanaimo for a weekend of competitive races and celebrations on Nanaimo’s waterfront,  July 5th -7th. Did we forget to say, Admission is FREE!

Plan a couple of weekends to experience what Nanaimo has to offer, and that includes some amazing Bed and Breakfasts.  Amazing hosts, great hospitality and beautiful places will continue when you stay at a Nanaimo Bed &Breakfast. Make your weekend even better by booking a package special at a couple of local B&Bs.

Kennedy House

Flying Cloud

MGM Seashore B&B

The Whitehouse on Long Lake

Hammond Bayside Executive Suite Inn

Long Lake Waterfront Bed & Breakfast

Pine and Picket

Hammond Bay Oceanside

We look forward to seeing you in Nanaimo and an early “Happy Father’s Day” to all those Dads out there!

Vancouver Island Short Film Festival— look quick

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

The Vancouver Island Short Film Festival (VISFF) looks back on five years of local film excellence with a retrospective screening on February 11th and 12th, 2011. This year’s festival will include a screening of award winning films that have been featured at the festival over the last 5 years and a live Pitch Contest where local filmmakers can pitch their short film ideas to the Festival audience with the winner receiving $500 towards the making of their next short film. Tickets for the VISFF cost $15.00 and are available at the Nanaimo Arts Council gallery in Nanaimo North Town Centre, and at House of Indigo and the Nanaimo Art Gallery on the campus of Vancouver Island University.  The festival will take place in Vancouver Island University’s Malaspina Theatre with a repeat showing Saturday, February 12 at the same time and location.  

Short films are limited to a running time of just 10 minutes.  There are presently 13 films scheduled, all award winners and people’s choice picks from the past 5 years.  This festival promises to be a lot of fun.

And for a super fun place to stay be sure to book your Nanaimo Bed & Breakfast accommodation at a member of the BC Bed & Breakfast Innkeepers Guild where, rest assured, you’ll sleep better than  your blogger did while sitting through “Out of Africa” which was definitely NOT a short film!

Got the Winter Blues? Visit the “Old Wine in New Bottles” Festival

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011

Nanaimo, the harbour city, hosts the Vancouver Island Symphony Orchestra’s very special “Old Wine in New Bottles” festival January 19 to 22.  The festival is certain to be a delightful romp through a myriad of tastes, sights and sounds.  Events include wine competitions, the Wine Makers’ Gala Dinner, concerts and wine tastings.  More than ten BC wineries, including Vancouver Island wineries, are participating so expect something to delight even the fussiest palate. In addition to the variety of events being held, invited artists are creating original art bottles to be auctioned. The bottles will be on display and available for bidding at Gallery 223 from Jan 2 – 19.

Says an excited Pierre Simard, artistic director, “The original thought was of wine as a metaphor for old music made new; the idea has now become a huge happening!”

That happening includes two luscious concerts featuring guest conductor Ivars Taurins of Toronto (Festival Concert I on Friday January 21) and Vancouver Island Symphony conductor and director Pierre Simard (Festival Concert II on Satureday January 22) and opportunities to have questions answered at pre- and post concert talks.  Hurry and visit the Vancouver Island Symphony Orchestra website for details on the concerts and events.

If you want delicious accommodation in Nanaimo to compliment the fine wine and music, be sure to book at one of the excellent Nanaimo Bed & Breakfasts featured on the BC Bed & Breakfast Innkeepers Guild website

Wildly Awash In Nanaimo

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

The Loyal Nanaimo Bathtub Society kicks off the 44th annual Nanaimo Marine Festival July 22, beginning four fun days and nights of great food,  fireworks, a kid’s carnival with harborside playdock and finally the main event: the “great” International World Championship Bathtub Race.  The Bathtub Race is a grueling 1 1/2 hour voyage circling Entrance Island then up and around Winchelsea Island and finishing at Departure Bay.  In past years it was a challenge just to get out of the choppy waters caused by hundreds of extra escort and observation boats.  Nowadays there are some pretty spiffy motorized tubs out there giving a new meaning to the word “whirlpool.” 

This year’s Nanaimo Marine Festival is a salute to the “Canadian Naval Centennial 1910 to 2010”.  The salute is also the theme of the festival’s “Sail Past on Wheels Fun Parade”.  (more…)