Maffeo Sutton Park View - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Maffeo Sutton Park View - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Westwood Lake View - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Westwood Lake View - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Pipers Lagoon Sunset View - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Pipers Lagoon Sunset View - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A Woman kayaking through the rocks in the lake - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Wide view of the ocean from Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
View of the rocks & ocean from Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A woman enjoying the ocean view from Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A Woman kayaking through the rocks in the lake - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A Woman kayaking through the rocks in the lake - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Jack Point and Biggs Park view from Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A sea lion resting on the rocks near the water,  Vancouver Island
View of a bridge for bungee jumping in Wild play - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Jack Point and Biggs Park view from Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Jack Point and Biggs Park view from Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Starfishes resting on the rock around the lake in Nanaimo
Jack Point and Biggs Park view from Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A Man kayaking through the rocks in the lake - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Guest services & shop in WildPlay - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
WildPlay Board by the road in Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A sea lion resting on the rocks near the water,  Vancouver Island
View of a bridge for bungee jumping in Wild play - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A sea lion resting on the rocks near the water,  Vancouver Island
Starfishes on the rock around the lake in Nanaimo
A sea lion resting on the rocks near the water,  Vancouver Island
WildPlay entrance board in Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
A Woman kayaking through the rocks in the lake - Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Starfishes on the rock around the lake in Nanaimo
A Starfish resting on the rock around the lake in Nanaimo
A Starfish resting on the rock around the lake in Nanaimo
Starfishes on the rock around the lake in Nanaimo
Wild play element parks in Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Wild play element parks entrance in Nanaimo,  Vancouver Island
Starfishes on the rock around the lake in Nanaimo

Nanaimo; The Second-largest City on Vancouver Island

Nanaimo is the second-largest city on Vancouver Island, located on the east coast, and it has everything a tourist's heart can desire. This historic port city is known as The Harbour City among the islanders. But it used to be the Hub City; the reason for that was the special design of the streets that radiated like the spokes of a wheel. Nanaimo is also one of the best cold-water diving destinations on Vancouver Island.
The indigenous people of the city are the Snuneymuxw, which is Nanaimo in anglicized pronunciation.
About art in Nanaimo, it's enough to know that The Nanaimo Concert Band is 138 years old, and it's the oldest continuous community band in Canada. The Nanaimo Conservatory of Music is still offering music lessons and producing concerts since 1977.


Average Weather in Nanaimo

During winter in Nanaimo, the temperatures rarely go below 0°C (32°F). In summer, the average temperature is 24°C (75°F). Nanaimo is known as one of the comfiest climates in all of Canada.

The Best Time to Visit Nanaimo

The best time to visit Nanaimo is from June to August. It is the period when the city is full of tourists.

How to Get to Nanaimo?

Nanaimo Airport Transfers

Nanaimo Airport is 18.8 km (11.7 miles) south of downtown Nanaimo. Nanaimo is one of the main gateways to Vancouver Island, specifically for passengers who come from Vancouver and Calgary.


Seaplane to Nanaimo

You can get on board from Vancouver Harbour to Nanaimo Harbour.


Ferry to Nanaimo

1. If you plan to visit Nanaimo from north and west of Vancouver Island or Horseshoe Bay, the access is via Deep Bay.
2. Access to Nanaimo is possible from Tsawwassen to Duke Point Ferry Terminal.

Top 10 Attractions in Nanaimo

  • Ferry to Newcastle Island
  • Snorkelling with seals
  • Whale watching tours
  • Tasting the Nanaimo bars, the city's signature sweet, there are a map and a trail, which shows 39 of the best spots in the city.
  • Strolling along the beautiful Harbourfront Walkway
  • Visiting the WildPlay Element Parks, Nanaimo, south of the city, where you can climb on the obstacle course, swing on a zipline, bungee jump.
  • Biking at Westwood Lake Park on a 5.5 km (3.4 miles) trail around the Westwood Lake
  • Harbour Air Seaplane tours, on the Strait of Georgia.
  • Neck Point Roaming Game, where you play the game of finding clues, solving puzzles north of the city

Discovering Natural Beauty and Entertainment in Nanaimo

There are many parks and gardens in Nanaimo, each one with its unique beauty. Here are some of the most favourite landmarks. The water sports in Nanaimo are various and exciting and certainly won't fit inside a paragraph. The activities involve sailing, diving, fishing, kayaking and canoeing. Spend the day paddling around, or get out on a charter and start angling. Nanaimo's museums are the museum of natural history, and there are some of the best Vancouver Island art galleries in the city. South of the city is where the most nightlife happens.
Lots of festivals and events take place in Nanaimo; among them is Marine Festival & World Championship Bathtub Race. It has been welcoming visitors for more than 40-years to participate in this famous festival and race. Maffeo Sutton Park & Sway-a-Lana Lagoon will play host to vendors, arts & crafts, and a Kiddies Carnival at the core of the bathtub festivities.


Nanaimo gardens

Gardens, Parks, and Natural Green Attractions in Nanaimo


Beaches, Lakes, Rivers, and Water-based Activities in Nanaimo

Museums and Art Galleries in Nanaimo


Entertainment in Nanaimo

Festivals and Events in Nanaimo



Nightlife and Entertainment in Nanaimo

  • LevelTwo Nightclub
  • The Queen's live music bar
  • Koncept Nightclub
  • NightLife Entertainment LTD
  • Nanaimo Entertainment Centre
  • Port Theatre
  • Galaxy Cinemas Nanaimo

Free Attractions in Nanaimo

  • Swimming and sunbathing at Westwood Lake, Nanaimo River, or the beaches
  • Hiking all around the Morrell Nature Sanctuary and watching birds
  • Witnessing the Nanaimo Bastion Cannon Firing
  • Hiking Mount Benson
  • Finding prehistoric fossils at Ammonite Falls
  • Visit Bowen Park with its wonderful services
  • Bowen Park Curling club, Disc golf, Tennis courts, and sand volleyball courts

Services in Nanaimo

Public Transportation in Nanaimo

Nanaimo Public transportation is mostly buses and ferries. Using buses is for destinations inside of the island and ferry for the ones outside. You also can use the taxi services and The Hangar air taxi for transportation.



Where to Stay in Nanaimo

As a tourist, downtown is the best place to stay, close to the Harbourfront. Downtown is close to everything from whale-watching boats and seaplane tours to the museums, restaurants, and shops.
If you want to take a ferry to Vancouver, it is recommended to find somewhere near the ferry terminal instead.

In case you are looking for luxury accommodation, try the Coast Bastion Hotel downtown and enjoy a fantastic view.
If you're on a budget, though, HI Nanaimo - Painted Turtle Guesthouse is right next to Coast Bastion Hotel at a more reasonable price. Here are some suggestions for staying in the city:

Hotels
:
Coast Bastion Hotel, The Grand Hotel Nanaimo

Self-Catered Accommodation
Buccaneer Inn, Nanaimo Gibralter Rock Ocean View Bed&Breakfast,  Surf Lodge and Pub, Best Western Northgate Inn

Hostels
Departure Bay Motel, Value Lodge Motel

Guesthouses:
Beachwalk Guesthouse, Nanaimo Ocean View Guesthouse


Shopping in Nanaimo

Nanaimo has a few significant shopping malls. Woodgrove Centre is the largest on Vancouver Island, northwest of the city, Nanaimo North Town Centre, University Village Mall.
For Boutique Shopping, visit Old City Quarter and Waterfront.
Farmers Markets are active from late spring to Thanksgiving. You can find the products in Lantzville Farmers Market, Cedar Farmers Market, Bowen Road Farmers Market, Nanaimo Downtown Farmers Market.

Food and Beverage Services in Nanaimo

Restaurant and Café in Nanaimo

The Bee's Knees Café and The Vault Café are two of the best cafes in downtown Nanaimo.
Asteras Greek food and La Stella Trattoria downtown and Nori Japanese Restaurant uptown are excellent restaurant choices.

Nanaimo Restaurants and Cafes

Wineries, Breweries, Distilleries, Pubs, and Bars in Nanaimo

The Nanaimo Bar and Milton Street Public House downtown and Arbutus Distillery & Cocktail Lounge on the west are a few of the best bars and pubs you can find in the city.
Misguided Spirits Craft Distillery is northwest, and Stillhead Distillery is south of the city. Qualicum Village Winery in the northwest, Emandare Vineyard, and Averill Creek Vineyard in the south are a few of the best Wineries and vineyards in Nanaimo. Wolf Brewing Compan, Longwood Brewery, and Cliffside Brewing Company are Nanaimo's only Breweries.

Health and Wellness in Nanaimo

Sport and Wellness Centers, Spas, and Recreational Therapy in Nanaimo

  • Nanaimo Elements Holistic Centre & Spa
  • Simply Beautiful Spa
  • Pure Spa
  • McGirr Sports Fields
  • Air house Nanaimo
  • Beban Soccer Fields
  • Serauxmen Stadium
  • Nanaimo Golf Club
  • The Whispering Earth
  • Laser Centers For Health Nanaimo
  • Innerglow Wellness Center
  • Sound Therapy Nanaimo
  • Rocky Point Massage Therapy
  • Lynn's Holistic Massage and Craniosacral Therapy

What you Can Expect to Do Near Nanaimo

Hiking on Bowen Park Loop

Hiking on Bowen Park Loop

Hiking on Westwood Lake Trail

Hiking on Westwood Lake Trail

Hiking on Cable Bay Nature Trail

Hiking on Cable Bay Nature Trail

Hiking on the Mount Benson Loop

Hiking on the Mount Benson Loop

Hiking on the Nanaimo River Trail

Hiking on the Nanaimo River Trail

Nanaimo Diving

Nanaimo Diving

Nanaimo Yacht Club Whale Watching

Nanaimo Yacht Club Whale Watching

Protection Island Ferry Whale Watching

Protection Island Ferry Whale Watching

Nanaimo Whale Watching

Nanaimo Whale Watching

Nanaimo Kayaking and Canoeing

Nanaimo Kayaking and Canoeing

Ladysmith Kayaking

Ladysmith Kayaking

The wreck of the Robert Kerr Diving

The wreck of the Robert Kerr Diving

Elliot's Beach Park Diving

Elliot's Beach Park Diving

Boeing 737 Jet Plane Diving

Boeing 737 Jet Plane Diving

Alcala Point in Porlier Pass Diving

Alcala Point in Porlier Pass Diving

What you Can Expect to See Near Nanaimo

Parksville

Parksville

Nanaimo Lakes

Nanaimo Lakes

Colliery Dam Park

Colliery Dam Park

Maffeo Sutton Park

Maffeo Sutton Park

Nanaimo River

Nanaimo River

Beaufort Park

Beaufort Park

Pipers Lagoon Park

Pipers Lagoon Park

Bowen Park

Bowen Park

Nanoose Bay

Nanoose Bay

Chinese Memorial Gardens Park

Chinese Memorial Gardens Park

Neck Point Park

Neck Point Park

Qualicum Beach

Qualicum Beach

Beach Estates Park

Beach Estates Park

Westwood Lake Park

Westwood Lake Park

Kanaka Bay

Kanaka Bay

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