Best Secluded Coastal Getaways in British Columbia

Whether you’re looking for a quiet, romantic trip or you just want to get away from it all, British Columbia has some of the most secluded and picturesque getaways along the coast that you could wish for.

From the quiet Southern Gulf Islands to the whale watching along Long Beach, you’re sure to enjoy an unforgettable experience in B.C. The weather tends to be mild year-long, although you may want to skip the busy season from June through September if you want some real peace and quiet.

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by Kris Krug on Flickr

British Columbia Gulf Islands

The Southern Gulf Islands of British Columbia are small, secluded islands located between the mainland and Vancouver Island. This community is very slow-paced and idea for the nature lover with quiet beaches, coves to discover, small shops and little villages, all waiting for you to enjoy the perfect weekend retreat.

Galiano Island is the easiest to reach from the mainland with everything from upscale resorts to art galleries, hiking trails and plenty of water activities to take in. It’s also the most unspoiled of the islands, in part because most of it was used as a tree farm until recently.

Sunshine Coast

The Sunshine Coast is truly one of the best kept secrets in the area and goes from Gibsons to Lund with a number of coastal towns along the way. The Sunshine Coast has a very laidback, easy-going atmosphere with fun waterfront shops to visit and kilometers of shore to explore at your leisure.

Sechelt is the largest community along the coast and it’s a great gateway to everything you could imagine, while Secret Cove is a popular summer getaway. One of the best ways to relax and enjoy the coast here is kayaking through the protected waterways bordered by beautiful mountains.

Qualicum Beach

This small town of less than 9,000 people sits along the Strait of Georgia on the northeast coast of Vancouver Island. It’s close to Vancouver and Victoria, so it does get very busy during the tourist season, although most of the time you’ll still enjoy relative seclusion on the beaches.

There are plenty of small beachside pullouts and the area was originally known as the place where the dog salmon run. Enjoy picking berries, fishing or digging for clams, or take in the local arts of Qualicum Beach, the museum or the famous Fire & Ice Street Festival every May.

Long Beach

Often considered the best beach in all of Canada, Long Beach is the place to go to explore Canada’s wild west coast. It’s the longest beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and one of the most scenic beaches in the country. One of the coolest things to explore here is the rocky “islands” that are formed in the mid-tidal zone. They can only be accessed during low tide; otherwise, they’re surrounded by swells.

Many of the largest islands here are surrounded by dangerous rip currents so it’s not a good idea to swim, although you can take in some great whale watching in the region. This form of eco-tourism is available from the middle of March through April when the coastline is home to thousands of Gray whales. Humpback whales can often be seen within miles of the shore and killer whales sometimes pass through in huge pods. You can also spot everything from bald eagles to sea lions.

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