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Bikes n’ Bites Local Tour of downtown Campbell River

Destination Campbell River has partnered up with one of our favourite locals, Michael Hack (@michaelrhack) to showcase how you can put together a roving appy tour all on your own right here in Campbell River. Whether you’re a local or you have visiting friends and family, this should jump-start the beginning of any trip or re-introduction to downtown. Safe biking and bon appétit!

Travelling to Campbell River during COVID-19

This summer has been a bit different, as we choose summer staycations instead of traveling as we have in the past. We are often looking for new ways to enjoy our city! Downtown Campbell River offers a diverse selection of locally-owned restaurants that are all close in proximity, making it easy to create your own food and bike tour.  The idea of staying close to home and creating new ways to explore the community seemed like a win/win. We met up with our friends and set off for downtown on our bikes to grab some guilt-free appies at Beach Fire Brewery and Nosh House to kick off our very own Bikes n’ Bites tour.

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Did Someone say Beach Fire?

Beach Fire Brewing and Nosh House have ample bike parking to lock your bikes up while you try their tasty food or locally brewed beer. They also offer a newly minted patio behind the building for additional outdoor seating to their existing patio, both of which provide ample space to enjoy a socially distanced, comfortable atmosphere for your group. With a large variety of options we settled on some queso, chips, and tostadas,  washing it down with a glass of their locally famous beer, (for hydration purposes of course), paying our tab, we grabbed our helmets and took off to our second stop.

Local Tip: The menu at Beach Fire changes daily and can be checked out on their live feed. They have a lunch menu that starts at 11:30 and goes until 2:30 pm. From 2:30-5:00 pm, they offer a limited menu of soup, charcuterie boards, bar snacks, and dessert. Dinner goes up at 5:00 pm is always worth the wait!

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Spin Party anyone?

Keeping with our biking and nosh theme, we set off to Session Taproom Kitchen and Spin, not just an eatery, this location also doubles as a Spin Studio. Since we did our spin on the way there, we opted to enjoy their food and drinks instead! There is a bike rack outside to lock your bikes up. Session recently built a patio to make outdoor seating available for patrons to safely dine, adapting to our new normal. The patio boasts pocket views of Discovery Passage and partitions that allow for safe distancing for each party. We grabbed one of the patio spots and ordered a  wheel-shaped meal, a pepperoni pizza along with a few more appies, and more liquids for hydration.  Everything was exceptional! We quickly devoured the pizza (carb loading for pumping those pedals) and hopped back on the bikes for a scenic detour. 

Local Tip: These guys have some amazing seasonally fresh desserts that never miss the mark! Don’t want to indulge? Sign up for one of their spin classes and then enjoy dessert, you won’t regret it.

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waterfront cycling views and paths

Our next stop is one of Campbell River’s most iconic locations, the Tyee Spit. Departing from downtown you can ride along the seawall for most of this trek, before transitioning onto Spit Road. With the summer in full swing, and the Tyee boats back on the water every evening, this was the perfect spot for a waterfront cruise c to watch the boats row back and forth, full of hopeful anglers looking for the elusive prize Chinook Salmon. Fading light on the rowboats maneuvering their way around the Tyee pool is nothing short of magical and is a true Campbell River sight to witness. 

With sunset not far off, we hopped back on the bikes and headed for our last stop, Quay West, which offers some of the best views of the Campbell River waterfront and Discovery Passage.  These views are even better with the new outdoor seating they offer in the foreshore park. Somehow even though our entire ride had been completely flat, we required additional hydration and happily watched the hustle and bustle of boat traffic in the passage before last light while enjoying our much-earned refreshments. 

Local Tip: If you’re a fan of nachos, then you have to try Quay West Tuna Poke Nachos. Soooo good! 

Having fun while supporting local

It is amazing to see how each of these local businesses has adapted to the challenges of COVID-19 and how they have all gone the extra mile to provide customers options for safe outdoor seating while continuing to offer friendly service and amazing food and drinks. 

Exploring our own backyard while supporting local businesses was a great way to spend a beautiful summer evening with friends. Exploring downtown in this way, made us think we will have to create another Bikes n’ Bites tour in the south end of town, to hit up local spots and locations to keep this workout and reward train going!
Even with fall right around the corner, we are confident that we will continue to find ways to support local businesses that have adapted to the current times we are all experiencing. Supporting local is what will get us through these tough times together, as a community. 

Local Tip: Trying to piece together new ideas of how to explore our backyard, download The Campbell River Collection app for discovery and local rewards.

List of local restaurants

You can keep following along with Michael by checking out his channel on IG @michaelrhack as he continues to capture the world around him.