Hornby Island from Vancouver: How to get to BC’s remote “Little Hawaii”

Penni Schewe


From the golden cliffs of Helliwell to the turquoise waters of Tribune Bay, it is effortless to drop under Hornby’s spell. But receiving to Hornby Island from Vancouver is an journey in and of by itself.

Hornby Island is section of the Northern Gulf Islands. To get there from Vancouver, you’ll have to either generate and just take the ferries (of course, that is ferries – plural) or fly.

A trip to see “Little Hawaii,” as it is sometimes termed due to the fact of its white sand beach locations with tropical-hued waters, needs more journey time than a weekend getaway can provide.

I recently went from Vancouver to Hornby Island, leaving my property at 5 am to arrive at Hornby Island at 1 pm. Having there and back pretty much eats up a total day, but for those fully commited to making the journey, here’s what you need to know about likely from Vancouver to Hornby Island.

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Flying to Hornby Island

To keep away from the ferries, opting for a quick flight to Hornby Island in its place is a good possibility if you have close friends or household on the Island with a auto.

Indigenous-owned Gulf Island Seaplanes offers one particular-way fares from $250.

Though it is possible to get by Hornby without having a car, you’re far more than most likely to want your personal set of wheels to take a look at. Really do not be expecting to obtain an Avis or Price range motor vehicle rental on Hornby Island, both. While a Hornby Island bus services the area and it’s also possible to cycle your way close to Hornby, the broad the greater part of travellers opt to acquire the ferries with a automobile.

Having the ferry to Hornby Island

Likely from Vancouver to Hornby Island? It is just 5 very simple measures:

  1. Take the ferry from Horseshoe Bay in West Vancouver to Departure Bay in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.
  2. Drive around an hour north on Vancouver Island.
  3. Get a further ferry from Buckley Bay to Denman Island West.
  4. Push 10 minutes throughout Denman Island.
  5. Get a single a lot more ferry from Denman East (Gravelly Bay) to Hornby Island (Shingle Spit).

But pack your endurance since though it’s feasible to do the full voyage in five hrs, that’s not the actuality on the floor.

This is because the lesser ferries that link Vancouver Island to Denman Island are notoriously packed – specially in the summertime when there can be several sailing waits at peak instances.

BC ferries told Every day Hive that these routes are “traditionally hectic in the summertime” and in 2022, visitors on minor routes is reliable with pre-pandemic yrs. They have no immediate designs to alter support on these two routes.

“Overloads do manifest on all of our routes. These routes are no unique,” BC Ferries explained.

“Wait instances fluctuate depending on time of day and day of the 7 days. Fridays and Sundays, for example, are chaotic with weekenders travelling to and from the islands.”

hornby island

Google Maps

These lesser ferries choose only about 10 minutes and run on a timetable you are going to want to continue to keep useful as you voyage.

The ferries will enter shuttling method at peak times – forgoing the routine and going as rapid as they can amongst the islands. But the ferry comes only about each 40 minutes, even at prime speed. So if there’s a two-sailing wait, that will insert at least an hour and a half to your itinerary.

These scaled-down ferry routes are not bookable on the net, possibly. You shell out the moment you arrive – your ticket you buy at Buckley Bay features return fare – and it’s first arrive, very first served.

That is why an early start out is critical – especially leaving Hornby Island mainly because if you really do not make the closing sailing of the day, then you are paying out yet another night time there!

hornby island

Waiting around for the ferry and onboard the ferry

A trip to Hornby Island isn’t inexpensive, possibly. I compensated about $375 roundtrip in ferry fares on my latest trip. Fares change relying on your selection of travellers and automobile style. But for $375, I could have gotten a flight to Los Angeles and possibly arrived faster, too.

Nonetheless, as soon as you are there and perhaps after you have experienced a nap to recover from your early get started, there is absolutely nothing else like it in BC!

Is Hornby Island on your BC summertime will have to-see list?



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