Top Ten Things to Do in Campbell River

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ELK FALLS PROVINCIAL PARK

Location: 2 km out of Campbell River along Hwy 28, turn right at Brewster Lake Road for the Elk Falls parking lot.

Lose yourself in nature and the overwhelming power of the Elk Falls from the swinging suspension bridge above. After the waterfall, wander through the six kilometres of serene old growth forest trails and feel dwarfed by the sky high trees. Nestled in nature, Elk Falls will leave you in awe of west coast woodlands. While visiting, be sure to check out the John Hart Dam Interpretive Centre.

QUINSAM RIVER SALMON HATCHERY

Location: 4217 Argonaut Road

As one of Canada’s largest salmon rearing facilities, the Quinsam Hatchery has been in operation since 1974 playing a vital role in restoring natural spawning runs to the Campbell and Quinsam Rivers during the fall months. The highlight for visitors is the fish floor inside the hatchery’s interpretive centre: it is a glass floor covering a re-creation of the nearby rivers with salmon, trout and other native aquatic species. Providing visitors with information about the salmon life cycle and conservation, the hatchery is open 8:00 am to 4:00 pm daily.

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HAIG-BROWN HERITAGE HOUSE

Location: 2250 Campbell River Road

Roderick Haig-Brown was a notable conservationist and his riverside property captures his appreciation for the natural world. Meander through the scenic gardens along the banks of the Campbell River, and keep an eye out for flyfishers wading into the river in search of salmon and trout. During summer months, the house is rented out as a Bed & Breakfast, and from July 5 to August 23, the Museum hosts a Tea and Croquet afternoon on the grounds every Wednesday from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm.

 

DISCOVERY FISHING PIER

Location: 655 Island Highway

Take a walk along the beautiful Discovery Pier, a popular spot for anglers of all ages. The Pier provides great views of Quadra Island and the Discovery Passage, and is one of Campbell River’s most unique attractions. Open 24 hours a day, the Pier is wheelchair accessible and fully lit. It has built-in rod holders, bait stands, fish cleaning tables, covered areas, picnic tables and benches. The concession stand provides rod and tackle rentals, licenses, and is famous for their delicious ice cream cones and wraps. The concession is open 7:00 am to dusk, May to October.

 

MARITIME HERITAGE CENTRE

Location: 621 Island Highway

Discover the area’s rich fishing history at the Maritime Heritage Centre. Behold the fully restored motor vessel BCP 45, a table seiner made famous on the Canadian five dollar bill in the 1970s. Now a national historic site, guests are allowed to hop aboard the restored table seiner and explore the cabins below deck. In addition to the BCP 45, the Centre also has an eclectic collection of maritime artifacts that range from model ships to Navy paraphernalia.

BEAVER LODGE FOREST LANDS

Location: Parking and easy access to Rail Trail at Hilchey Road and South Dogwood Street intersection

The Beaver Lodge Lands have a wide variety of trails that are loved by locals and visitors alike. To get started, we suggest the Rail Trail, which is roughly 3 kilometres long and takes approximately 40 minutes to walk one way. This trail was developed on an old logging road, which created a path that is fairly wide and level. All the trails in the Beaver Lodge Lands are multi-use and suitable for all ages and skill levels: bikers, walkers and horseback riders are all welcome.

CAMPBELL RIVER ART GALLERY

Location: 1235 Shoppers Row

The Campbell River Art Gallery is located in the Centennial Building downtown, right beside the Visitor Centre in Tyee Plaza. Exhibiting contemporary art of professional artists from across Canada, the Gallery offers workshops for adults and youth, gallery tours, Super Saturday free art-making sessions, films and other special events.

RIPPLE ROCK HIKE

Location: Off Hwy 19, about 16 km North of Campbell River

This popular hiking trail overlooks the site of the famous 1958 Ripple Rock blast, which was the largest non-nuclear explosion in the world at the time. While the detonation was dangerous, the trail is the opposite. At 4 kms long in each direction, this moderate trail provides scenic viewpoints overlooking Menzies Bay and the Seymour Narrows.

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MUSEUM AT CAMPBELL RIVER

Location: 470 Island Highway, at 5th Avenue

Explore vibrant and contemporary exhibits of First Nations cultures, sit behind the wheel of an early logging truck, and learn about early days of recreational and commercial fishing at the award-winning Campbell River Museum. While visiting, be sure to take in the short film on the Ripple Rock explosion, in the Van Isle Theatre.

ROTARY SEA WALK

Location: Island Highway, spanning from Waterfront Hill to Willow Point Hill

This paved 10 kilometre lane running alongside the shoreline offers flat and convenient access to spectacular views of the Discovery Passage and Quadra Island. Walkers, bikers and strollers are common on the pathway that runs along the beachfront and winds to iconic local hubs like the fiftieth Parallel marker, Rotary Beach Park, and cafes. A highlight for photographers is Big Rock, a massive, painted rock with many legends to its origin, sitting in the chilly waters reaching towards the path.

Other Ideas Seasonal Experiences

WHALE WATCHING (April – OCTOBER)

Campbell River is a hub of opportunities for whale watching enthusiasts. Experience everything from whales, dolphins and sea lions, to bears and eagles through the safe guidance of an experienced and knowledgeable tour operator. If you would like more information about booking an excursion, our team at the Visitor Information Centre would be happy to assist you.

SNORKELLING WITH THE SALMON (July to September)

Each year thousands of salmon return to the river from which they began. The crystal clear water allows for easy viewing of the salmon in the river environment from the raft – or you can don a wetsuit and participate in one of the most unique experiences by snorkelling in the river pools teeming with thousands of salmon. The prime season for snorkelling with the salmon runs from late July into September. If you would like more information about booking this unique experience, our team at the Visitor Information Centre would be happy to assist you.

DISCOVERY PASSAGE AQUARIUM (May to September)

The Discovery Passage Aquarium features local marine species and habitats from the Discovery Passage. They offer education and fun hands on experiences that are suitable for all ages. With a focus on conservation and education, the Aquarium runs from spring to fall with the species being collected in the spring and released in the fall.