The waterfront fishing village of Cowichan Bay sits at the head of a beautiful and natural harbour, which is the main focal point of the town, where shops, cafés, galleries and homes float on the water. Dine out on some of the best seafood in the area, relax in waterfront cafés, or take part in a variety of water activities.
Top things to do
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Hike local trails
Hike or bike up Mount Tzouhalem or along the Cowichan Valley Rail Trail—complete with trestle bridges (including the famous Kinsol Trestle), scenic views and great opportunities for birdwatching.
Chemainus has won international acclaim for its successful revitalization project, which began in 1982 with the unveiling of five large murals, all professionally painted onto existing downtown buildings. It is also home to great theatre, restaurants and natural beauty.
Visit the rapidly growing village of Brentwood Bay on the Saanich Inlet, a 30-minute drive north of Victoria, to enjoy waterfront restaurants, relaxing strolls along the bay and a warm, welcoming community.
Visit the seaside town of Sidney, just a few minutes down the road from Swartz Bay terminal, providing the ideal stop-off before or after you take the ferry. Go on an adventure to see local wildlife, or take a stroll in the town to check out the shops, marina and restaurants.
Visit the lush and beautiful oceanfront city of Victoria. The city is rich in British heritage, has the oldest Chinatown in Canada, and is home to the historic BC Parliament Buildings. You can enjoy lots of water and land activities, and taste a variety of craft beers and fresh seafood.
Known as the Garden City, Victoria is always in bloom and has one of the mildest climates in Canada—perfect for a trip any time of the year.