After more than a year of lockdowns and restrictions, we are all anxious to get away! With the vaccine rollout picking up steam, we are all hopeful that by summer the worst of the pandemic will be behind us. That said, most of us will still prefer to stay closer to home for our summer vacation. Why not let Expedia Cruises help you to plan a road trip through our beautiful province. We can help you with accommodations, activities, car rentals, and places to eat – thus taking the stress out of planning your getaway. All you have to, do is sit back and relax. Call us today! We can’t wait to assist you.
This itinerary is designed to keep you moving each day so that you can experience all of the highlights of both the Upper and Lower Sunshine Coast. You'll have short drives and ferry transfers each day, passing through Gibsons, Sechelt, all the way up to Powell River and Lund. En route, stop at historic seaside villages, local breweries, driftwood-strewn beaches and sheltered coves for easy kayaking.
- Escape to an idyllic stretch of coastline less than two hours from Vancouver
- Explore over 100 miles of protected coves, inlets, and driftwood-strewn beaches
- Hike, kayak, and paddle-board at some of the best spots in British Columbia
- End your days at great local breweries and local sea-to-table restaurants
|Day 1||Vancouver to Gibsons (2 hours)
|Day 2||Gibsons to Powell River (2 h 45 min)||Powell River|
|Day 3||Powell River to Egmont (1 h 30 min)||Egmont|
|Day 4||Egmont to Vancouver (3 hours)||Vancouver|
Day 1: Vancouver to Gibsons (2 hours)
The typically sunny town of Gibsons
Head north toward Horseshoe Bay and catch the ferry to the Sunshine Coast. This 112-mile (180 km) stretch of coastline—from Howe Sound in the south to Desolation Sound in the north—holds countless bays and inlets, driftwood beaches, lush fir forests, and rugged headlands backed by the snowcapped mountains.
Gibsons, a small town in the Lower Sunshine Coast, offers a good base for exploring. The town has two sections: the original 100-year-old fishing village around the harbor and a commercial corridor along the highway. Around the harbor, Gower Point Road is a charming strip of seafaring businesses, antique dealers, arty shops, and cafés. Down on the harbor itself is a marina and the pleasant Gibsons Seawalk, a 10-minute scenic meander that’s lit up at night.
Driving time (Vancouver to Horseshoe Bay): 30 minutes (12 miles / 12 km)
Ferry time (Horseshoe Bay to Langdale): 40 minutes
Driving time (Langdale to Gibsons): 15 minutes (4 miles / 6 km)
Day 2: Gibsons to Powell River (2 h 45 min)
Pacific coast near Powell River
Follow the coast north to Powell River, which involves a ferry crossing from Earls Cove to Saltery Bay (check departure and wait times in advance). En route, both Sechelt and Egmont are great places to stop and explore or grab a meal. It's a pretty drive, with the highway winding its way along coves and inlets past the beautiful coastline. Remember to drive slowly and stop often to enjoy the views!
At Egmont, Skookumchuck Narrows is a popular stop to witness a whitewater wonder of the world. It's an easy 5-mile (8 km) return hike that leads to a section of the river where, twice a day, the saltwater flow changes directions and creates large waves and whirlpools. Check that your timing is right to catch the waves.
If there's time left in the day, follow Highway 101 north to the historic fishing village of Lund on the shores of Desolation Sound where you can head out on a sea kayaking tour or short hike. Don’t miss a stop at Nancy's Bakery for their celebrated blackberry cinnamon buns. Head back to Powell River for a pint of Pow Town Porter at Townsite Brewing before heading out for dinner.
Driving time (Gibsons to Earls Cove): 1 hour, 15 minutes (50 miles / 80 km)
Ferry time (Earls Cove to Saltery Bay): 50 minutes
Driving time (Saltery Bay to Powell River): 30 minutes (20 miles / 30 km)
Day 3: Powell River to Egmont (1 h 30 min)
Coastal inlets along the Sunshine Coast
Head to Saltery Bay for the 50-minute ferry crossing to Earls Cove. From there, it's a short drive to Egmont. Skookumchuck Narrows is a popular stop to witness a whitewater wonder of the world. It's an easy 5-mile (8 km) return hike that leads to a section of the river where, twice a day, the saltwater flow changes directions and creates large waves and whirlpools. Be sure that your timing is right to catch the waves!
Driving time (Powell River to Saltery Bay): 30 minutes (20 miles / 30 km)
Ferry time (Saltery Bay to Earls Cove): 50 minutes
Driving time (Earls Cove to Egmont): 10 minutes (4 miles / 6 km)
Day 4: Egmont to Vancouver (3 hours)
Downtown Vancouver from Stanley Park
It's a 40-minute drive to Langdale where you'll catch the ferry to Horseshoe Bay on the mainland. Take your time to enjoy the stops along the way. From Horseshoe Bay, it's only a 30-minute drive to Vancouver.
Before catching the ferry, consider grabbing lunch in nearby Gibsons, a small town in southern Sunshine Coast. The town has two sections: the original 100-year-old fishing village around the harbor, and a commercial corridor along the highway. Around the harbor, Gower Point Road is a charming strip of seafaring businesses, antique dealers, arty shops, and cafés. Down on the harbor itself is a marina and the pleasant Gibsons Seawalk, a 10-minute scenic meander that’s lighted at night.
Driving time (Egmont to Langdale): 1 hour, 30 minutes (53 miles / 85 km)
Ferry time (Langdale to Horseshoe Bay): 40 minutes
Driving time (Horseshoe Bay to Vancouver): 30 minutes (12 miles / 20 km)