Gabriola Island is home to both fulltime and summer residents. It offers all of the benefits of island life with the bonus that it is just a short ferry ride to downtown Nanaimo BC.
Visitors and islanders alike are enchanted by the beaches, bays and coves, the forests, gardens and orchards.
Gabriola Island has year round cultural events and for the outdoor enthusiast there are all the water sports: swimming, diving, water skiing, kayaking and boating - just to name a few.
There is also a beautiful nine hole golf course in a lakeside setting complete with a driving range and a log home club house.
This island community has so much to offer that you’ll come for a visit and want to stay for a lifetime.
With easy access to Nanaimo and Vancouver Island, Gabriola Island lies about 5 kilometers east of Nanaimo and about 30 nautical miles west of Vancouver BC and the Lower Mainland. It has a land area of about 57 square kilometres (4 kilometers wide by 15 kilometers long) and a resident population of around 4,500.
There are many great sites that will give the history of Gabriola Island and the surrounding area.
Check out these links:
A 5km, 20-minute ferry ride from downtown Nanaimo to the BC Ferries' Descanso Bay terminal on the northwest side of Gabriola Island. The ferry makes 16 trips daily between 5:25 am and 11:30 pm.
Gabriola Island Ferry schedule
Ferry Schedules for routes between Nanaimo, Tsawwassen and Horseshoe Bay
Vancouver - Nanaimo (Tsawwassen-Duke Point)
West Van - Nanaimo (Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay)
Gabriola's North Road and South Roads are the Island's main roads. There are approximately 90 kilometers of roads on Garbriola Island with many of them hugging the shoreline.
Tofino Air offers scheduled flights by float plane, a 20-minute flight from Vancouver Airport's South terminal to Silva Bay on the south east side of Gabriola Island. Air Canada offers connector flights from Vancouver International Airport to Nanaimo's Cassidy Airport, about 15km south of Nanaimo. It is also possible to travel by float plane between the Nanaimo harbour, downtown Vancouver and the Vancouver Airport's south terminal.
The Gabriola Island Taxi service is the public transportation on Gabriola. 250-247-0049.
Maps and Information
Maps, brochures and information about island artists and festivals are available at the Gabriola Visitor Centre at #5-377 Berry Point Road, opposite the Twin Beaches Gabriola Sands Provincial Park.
Gabriola enjoys a temperate climate with just a few days of snow (if any) in the winter and beautiful sun filled days in the summer. For a more detailed look at island weather, check out the weather network. Gabriola Island was quoted by Reader’s Digest to have the best climate in North America! Gabriola Weather
Additional learning opportunities on Gabriola Island
Places to learn more about Gabriola Island and our Island lifestyle
Other useful links