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Northwest TripFinder Vancouver Island

With over 2,000 miles of tranquil coastline, Vancouver Island is North America’s largest island.

The island’s rugged west coast is fringed with fjord-like inlets and coves. Avid hikers from around the world make the summertime trip here for the scenic and challenging West Coast Trail, a 74 km-long backpacking trek along beaches, under waterfalls and around tidal inlets.

The beautiful city of Victoria sits on the island’s southern tip and hosts over 3.5 million visitors each year.

North of Victoria sits the Cowichan Valley, home to farms, orchards, wineries and a tranquil lake fringed with Madrona trees. On the island’s east coast are several small seaside cities like Nanaimo, Courtenay, and Campbell River–great family vacation destinations themselves, and all along this coast are ferry terminals where you can access the Gulf or Discovery Islands scattered in between Vancouver Island and the lower mainland.

Much of Vancouver Island is protected parkland, from lush temperate forests to craggy peaks to mountain meadows. The island’s largest is Strathcona Provincial Park, a remote, beautiful, wild swath of mountain wilderness full of hiking trails, rocks to climb and lakes to swim in.

>>Read our Nanaimo Trip Guide

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