Just a short journey from Vancouver is BC's Sunshine Coast, a strip of earthly paradise. Located on the north side of Howe Sound, the southernmost fjord in North America, the Sunshine Coast comprises several small towns and villages including Gibsons, Roberts Creek, Sechelt, Halfmoon Bay and Pender Harbour, each with its own characteristics.
Getting There - Take the ferry from Horseshoe Bay to Langdale. The area is most easily explored by car, but there is a bus from the Langdale ferry terminal which stops in each settlement; Gibsons Landing is compact enough to be explored on foot.
Attractions - Enjoy the natural beauty! There are many fine beaches, particularly the long sandbar at Roberts Creek Beach. There is an abundance of hiking trails. Gibsons served as the set for the long-running CBC TV series the Beachcombers, and people still come to see the area featured in the series.
Hotels - There are a number of small hotels but especially recommended are B&Bs, of which there are many.
Food & Restaurants - Seafood is a natural choice here beside the sea. Molly's Reach is a longstanding favourite for having featured in the Beachcombers series and since then served as a real restaurant. It offers a fine view of Gibsons Harbour. In recent years several craft breweries have opened, starting with Persephone Brewing, now a local favourite. Sit in their garden, have some freshly baked pizza and listen to live local bands whilst sipping their excellent brews.
Shopping - There are many local shops offering handicrafts, art and souvenirs, particularly in Gibsons Landing and Sechelt. Don't miss Reasons to Live Books, an excellent little new and used bookstore.
When to go: Despite the name, this area is in a temperate rainforest and subject to rain at any time of year. The most reliable times for good weather are in May and July-September. If you are caught in a shower, visit a local gallery or one of many cafés and wait a while
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