We encourage everyone planning a trip to the Sunshine Coast to explore safely, responsibly, and respectfully. We’re all visitors on the traditional territories of the Tla’amin, Klahoose, shíshálh, and Skwxwú7mesh nations.
Gambier Island (Chá7elkwnech) is the largest island in Howe Sound and truly exudes relaxed island vibes. It’s located offshore from the community of Gibsons, within the traditional territory of the Skwxwú7mesh Nation.
The island is home to approximately 100 permanent residents, primarily in New Brighton, Gambier Harbour, and West Bay. Gravel roads connect the three communities, and BC Ferries offers convenient foot passenger service between Langdale and New Brighton.
Visitors to the island should be self-sufficient. The Gambier Community Centre is the only public facility, and since there are no stores or restaurants, you’ll need to bring adequate supplies (including enough drinking water). Respectful visitors are welcome—be Wildsafe and practice the principles of Leave No Trace.
Things to Do
Day trippers can take a ferry or water taxi to Gambier Island’s New Brighton on the western side of the island to visit the seasonal Gambier Island Farmers Market, Anavets Park, or a pop-up art event from one of the talented Artists of Gambier Island. Experienced paddlers can kayak to the island from Gibsons Landing Harbour—depending on your destination, a return trip can take between 4 – 9 hours.
On the eastern side of Gambier Island, Halkett Bay Marine Provincial Park is a prime spot for boaters. Here, you can spend the day picnicking, hiking, and swimming. Fishing opportunities are limited because the park is home to a glass sponge reef conservation initiative. Scuba divers can explore the nearby HMCS Annapolis, a former helicopter-carrying destroyer that’s now an artificial reef.
Also in Halkett Bay, visitors can follow a hiking trail from the shoreline up through coastal forests to the peak of Mt. Artaban. A moderate to high difficulty trail that takes about 2 hours to summit, spectacular views of Howe Sound reward hikers who are up for the challenge.
Where to Stay
Gambier Island is home to a handful of small accommodations, including vacation rentals, cabins, and several summer camps that offer seasonal options for children and families.
There are also three boat access-only campsites in Halkett Bay Marine Provincial Park. Facilities include a pit toilet, along with a buoy and dinghy dock. Note that campfires are prohibited in the park, and there are no garbage services, so you’ll be responsible for packing out your garbage. The BC Marine Trail network has identified other backcountry marine picnic and campsites around the island.
Food & Drink
There are no restaurants or grocery stores on the island. There may be occasional roadside vendors in the summer months, but visitors need to plan ahead to ensure they have adequate supplies—including a supply of drinking water.
Getting to Gambier Island
Visitors to Gambier Island will need to take a ferry from the Langdale Ferry Terminal or charter a water taxi from the Gibsons Landing Harbour.
BC Ferries operates a foot passenger ferry from Langdale (Gibsons) to Gambier Island (New Brighton). The sailing duration varies depending on the number of stops but typically takes approximately 10 minutes.
Keats Island (Lheḵ’tínes) is a small, scenic island in British Columbia’s Howe Sound. It’s located just offshore from the community of Gibsons, within the traditional territory of the Skwxwú7mesh Nation.
The densely forested island is mainly a recreational getaway for those with summer cabins, and only about 50 full-time residents between the two primary communities of Keats Landing on the west coast, and Eastbourne on the eastern shore. Locals and visitors can access Keats Island with BC Ferries’ foot passenger service from Langdale, private water taxi from Gibsons, or private boat.
Facilities on the island are limited. Make sure you bring adequate supplies with you (including a supply of drinking water) before embarking on a trip to Keats. Respectful visitors are welcome—be Wildsafe and practice the principles of Leave No Trace.
Things to Do
Keats Island is a popular spot for day trips. You can take a ferry or water taxi, or if you’re an experienced paddler, you can kayak to the island from Gibsons. Some paddlers opt to circumnavigate the island—it takes about 3 hours from Gibsons Landing Harbour, though you may want to stop and enjoy some time on the island.
Plumper Cove Marine Provincial Park is the main attraction on the island. Here, you can spend a relaxing day disconnecting from daily life. The pebble beach is excellent for exploring and picnicking, and those with a fishing license can cast a line. Stretch your legs on one of Keats Island’s few short hiking trails.
Where to Stay
There are 20 packed dirt and gravel campsites in Plumper Cove Marine Provincial Park. Facilities include pit toilets and a drinking water handpump (but note that the water handpump is only available from mid-May to mid-September and is under a boil water advisory). There are no garbage facilities in the park, so remember to pack out what you pack in.
Barnabas Family Ministries operates a variety of retreats for families and adults at their Barnabas Landing facilities, which include meeting and lounge spaces, a dining room, and a commercial kitchen.
Food & Drink
Food and drink options on Keats Island are minimal at best, so you’ll want to come prepared—including bringing enough drinking water for your trip.
In July and August, the Barnabas Landing General Store opens to the public and is located on a sprawling farm and family retreat centre at the north end of Keats Island. This community gathering place serves up refreshing drinks, farm-fresh produce, and more, but in keeping with the relaxed pace of “island time,” the store’s limited hours and selection of goods may vary.
Getting to Keats Island
Visitors to Keats Island will need to take a ferry from the Langdale Ferry Terminal or a water taxi from the Gibsons Landing Harbour.
BC Ferries operates a foot passenger ferry from Langdale (Gibsons) to Keats Island (Keats Landing or Eastbourne). The sailing duration varies depending on the number of stops but typically takes approximately 15 – 30 minutes.