We arrived in Haida Gwaii three days ago, on May 1, after a very long journey. The journey up here included a lot of driving and three ferries, but also included a couple of visits with friends! The driving did take longer than normal as we are driving a HUGE yellow van filled with outdoor adventure toys (2 surfboards, 2 bikes, and 1 surf-kayak).
Our first day of travel we left the mainland to take the ferry to Nanaimo, and had plans to be in Campbell River for the night. Once we got back onto the island we drove to Coombs Country Market where we picked up a Kubb game set and a few snacks (candied salmon, and sausage rolls) before continuing our drive. After about 4-5 hours of driving we made it to Vanessa’s house in Campbell River!! As we had been sitting a lot that day we went for a nice walk at an estuary close to Vanessa’s house. We also got a driving tour of the town, which had a lovely waterfront and sea-walk path. We had a nice evening of dinner and some television.
The next day we woke up early to eat some breakfast and then go to Elk Falls Suspension Bridge – which was super cool! There were some fantastic walking trails around that had nice views of the waterfall. I would recommend making this a stop on your drive if you’re driving through Vancouver Island North. After breakfast we did a couple of errands in Campbell River – which included getting a donut from Perk’s and a hot beverage from Fogg Dukkers Cafe. Fogg Dukkers was a really cute cafe in a weathered building on the ocean – I would recommend getting one of their London Foggs. That afternoon after getting our beverages we drove to Telegraph Cove. Unfortunately EVERYTHING in the village was closed and wouldn’t be reopened until May 1 (for the season) – however, there was a really cute dog there! We did end up camping at Alder Bay Resort, which was lovely because we were parked along the grass with an amazing ocean view.
The next day we had to finish our Vancouver Island portion of our journey to Haida Gwaii. We drove first to Port McNeill were we got to see the “World’s Biggest Burl” – it is truly really big! On our way to Port Hardy we made a quick detour in Woss…it ended up being a really small town with not much going on. We made it to Port Hardy where we got some breakfast and lattes from Cafe Guido. They have a super cool bookstore beneath with some great Port Hardy stickers! Because we didn’t have to be at the ferry terminal until 4:00pm, we spent the day wandering around Port Hardy, playing Kubb at the beach, picking up some last minute groceries, and walking
We got to the ferry terminal in Port Hardy around 4:00pm, and got onto the ferry shortly after. To fit everyone on, you have to back your vehicle into the ferry which was stressful (and I wasn’t even driving). This was the long ferry we had to go on – it was 22 hours long which felt like FOREVER. We didn’t book a cabin when we scheduled our ferry so we slept on the outside deck on our sleeping mats and in our sleeping bags. It was really nice until it started to rain – so we moved into the ferry at that point to continue sleeping. We had a lot of snacks and a lot of time to read on the ferry which was nice, but was definitely boring towards the end. Around 4:00pm (the next day) we docked in Prince Rupert for a few hours before our next ferry.
In Prince Rupert we met up with some friends to get sushi from Opa Sushi which we ate in a park in Cow Bay. Cow Bay is a super cute part of the Prince Rupert waterfront. We did a bit of a walking tour of the downtown in Prince Rupert before grabbing some beer from their local brewery, Wheelhouse Brewing Company. Around 8:00pm we got back onto the ferry for our 8 hour sailing to Haida Gwaii! We spent this entire ferry asleep as it went from 10:00pm to 6:00am.
We arrived in Skidegate at 6:00am and we had a nap to start the day before starting our next big adventure in Haida Gwaii!! I’m going to post a condensed list of things to do between Nanaimo and Haida Gwaii later, but for now I’m going to try and post often about our adventures here in Haida Gwaii.