Nanaimo, known as Vancouver Island’s Hub City, the Bathtub Racing Capital of the World and the Harbour City is one of the fastest growing communities in British Columbia. Nanaimo boasts a mild Pacific North West climate, a central location on Vancouver Island that is within easy travelling distance across the Straits of Georgia to Vancouver and the Lower Mainland.
Located on the eastern shore of Vancouver Island, Nanaimo BC is about 110 kilometres north of Victoria BC and 55 kilometres across the Strait of Georgia from Vancouver BC.
There are many great sites that will give the history of Nanaimo, it people and the surrounding area. Check out these links:
Nanaimo serves as the major ferry terminal linking Vancouver Island with the BC mainland and Gabriola Island. There are two BC Ferries terminals: one at Duke Point with service to Tsawwassen and the other at Departure Bay with Service to Horseshoe Bay. The Gabriola Island terminal is centrally located in downtown Nanaimo. Foot passenger ferry service is available to Protection Island and Newcastle Island.
There are regular flights into the International Airport to Nanaimo Airport which is about 15km south of Nanaimo, near Cassidy. Taxi service and the Nanaimo Air Porter helps travellers to downtown Nanaimo.
Nanaimo harbour also has seaplane service to the lower Mainland and Victoria plus other island destinations.
From Vancouver, you can travel by car to Nanaimo via a BC Ferry Terminal at Horseshoe Bay (West Vancouver) or at Tsawwassen (south of Vancouver). From Victoria, drive north on the Trans Canada highway (#1) for about 90 minutes to downtown Nanaimo.
The Nanaimo Regional Transit bus system provides both regular transit and HandyDART custom transit service. They serve the area from Cedar to Qualicum Beach.
The BC Transit bus system services Vancouver Island from Victoria to Port Hardy.
Maps and Information
Maps, brochures and information about Nanaimo and its attractions are available at the Nanaimo Visitor Centre in a beautifully restored log heritage home on the grounds of Beban Park at 2290 Bowen Road or at the Tourism Nanaimo kiosk in the front lobby of the Vancouver Island Conference Centre at 101 Gordon Street, Nanaimo.
Nanaimo has over 30 elementary and secondary schools run by School District 68 Nanaimo-Ladysmith and private education groups. The main campus of Vancouver Island University(VIU), which offers a wide variety of certificate, diploma and degree programs attracts students from around the world, is located in Nanaimo.
Places to learn more about Nanaimo and our Island lifestyle