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Cortes Island is part of the Discovery Islands off the coast of British Columbia.

Understand[edit]

Get in[edit]

Map of Cortes Island

BC Ferries runs a ferry from Heriot Bay on Quadra Island to 1 Whaletown on Cortes Island. Ferries leave roughly every two hours with six sailings daily, except Tue, which has five. The ride usually takes 45 minutes and costs $12.45 per passenger (age 12 and up), plus $24 for a car or $12 for a motorcycle (return).

If you need to get on or off the island outside of the ferry times, a water taxi from Campbell River or Lund can be arranged.

Get around[edit]

See[edit]

  • 1 Cortes Museum & Archives, 957 Beasley Rd, Mansons Landing, +1 250-935-6340. mid-June to mid-Sept: Tu-Su 10AM-4PM; mid-Sept to mid-June: F-Sa noon-4PM. Small museum with a mix of rotating exhibits and permanent exhibits focusing on local history, First Nations artifacts, a pioneer kitchen and a reading corner with local stories and photos. Outside there is a heritage garden and logging shed.

Do[edit]

The Gorge of Cortes Island
  • Kw'as Park. Park set amidst old-growth and second-growth forest between two lakes. There are many hiking trails, some with moderate climbs and a number of viewpoints. Access is from one of the following two points: 1 Seaford Rd access – at the sharp bend in the road near the Cortes Motel, look for the wooden mapboard ; 2 Kw'as Bay Rd access – look for the "park trail" sign near Lowe Rd
  • 3 Manson's Landing Provincial Park, Seaford Rd & Sutil Point Rd. Park spanning the ground between Hague Lake and Manson's Lagoon, with a day use area on each. The beaches are popular for swimming, particularly Hague Lake which is warm in summer. Canoeing and other water activities are also popular. There are some short hiking trails and beach walks. Mansons Landing Provincial Park (Q6751808) on Wikidata Mansons Landing Provincial Park on Wikipedia
  • Misty Isles Adventures, +1 250-935-6756. Sailing cruises, kayak tours and kayak rentals from May through September. Depending on the season, sailing trips go to Mittlenatch Island (May/June), Desolation Sound (July-Sept) or other parts of the Discovery Islands. Kayak tours are guided from one of the docks on Cortes Island or "mothership tours" where point-to-point travel is done by the Misty Isles ship and then you kayak at the destination. Sailing cruises $95-130, kayak mothership tours $680 (two days, one night), kayak rentals $50-60 for a day.
  • 4 Smelt Bay Provincial Park, Sutil Point Rd (15 km south of Whaletown). 7AM-10PM. Park with a pebble beach, canoeing/kayaking, fishing, a small number of picnic tables in the day-use area and camping. At low tide, you can walk along the beach from the park south to Sutil Point. The park's name comes from the capelin fish that spawn in the area in the fall, which attracts other marine life and birds. Day use is free. Smelt Bay Provincial Park on Wikipedia

Buy[edit]

  • 1 Cortes Craft Shop Co-op, Forrest Rd, Squirrel Bay (next to the Squirrel Cove General Store), +1 250-935-6635. Sa-Su noon-4PM mid-May to June, daily 10AM-5PM July-Aug, daily noon-4PM first half of Sept. Small shop featuring crafts and textiles from local artisans.

Eat[edit]

  • 1 Cortes Market Coffee & Deli, 809 Sutil Point Rd, Mansons Landing, +1 250-935-6626. M-Sa 8:30AM-7PM, Su 10AM-6PM. Grocery store with cafe serving coffee and deli sandwiches.
  • 2 Cortes Natural Food Co-op, Cafe & Bakery, 800 Sutil Point Rd, Mansons Landing, +1 250-935-8577 (store), +1 250-935-6505 (cafe). Store: M-F 9AM-7PM, Sa-Su 10AM-6PM, Cafe: M W F 9AM-3PM. Grocery store, cafe and bakery. The cafe and bakery serves breakfast sandwiches, wraps, pizza, sandwiches and a variety of freshly-made breads and baked goods. Breakfast/lunch $4-11, baked goods $2-5.
  • 3 The Floathouse, 1374 Hunt Rd, Whaletown, +1 250-935-6433. June-mid Sept: 8AM-4:30PM and 5:30PM-9PM; off-season: F-Sa 5PM-8PM, Su 10AM-2PM, also open Tu-Th for dinner in May. Restaurant that serves fresh seafood, burgers, fajitas and breakfast. Overlooking the harbour, it has some nice views with indoor and outdoor seating.

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

  • 1 Cortes Island Motel, 1078 Seaford Rd, Manson's Landing, +1 250-935-6363. Ten room motel in a forest setting. Rooms options range from one double or queen bed to rooms with two beds and a pull-out sofa, and eight of the rooms have a full kitchen. Amenities include free Wifi, satellite TV, and use of communal outdoor spaces including BBQs, picnic tables, a swing and green space. $100-120.
  • 2 Gorge Harbour Marina Resort, 1374 Hunt Rd, Whaletown, +1 250-935-6433. Marina with a number of accommodation options. The lodge has four rooms (2 with one queen bed, and 2 with two double beds), a two bedroom cottage, two trailers with one bedroom and tenting and RV campsites (some RV sites are full serviced). The lodge has a common room downstairs with cooking facilities, a deck and shared BBQ. The grounds include an outdoor pool, hut tub and playground. Motorboats, kayaks and stand-up paddleboards are available for rent. Lodge $180, cottage $350, trailers $175, RV sites $45-49, tentsites $30-35 (rates for June-mid Sept, cheaper rates in off-season).
  • 3 Smelt Bay Campground, Sutil Point Rd (campground is inside the park), toll-free: 1 800 689-9025. Check-in: 1PM, check-out: 11AM. Seasonal campground with 22 vehicle accessible camping spots. The sites are generally spacious and in a forest. There are pit toilets and cold water but no electrical hookup. The pebble beach and day-use area are a short walk away. The gates are open 7AM-10PM and the campground operates from early May to the end of Sept. $20.

Connect[edit]

Go next[edit]

This city travel guide to Cortes Island is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.