Taking A Ferry From Vancouver To Vancouver Island: Your Options

If you plan to sail from Vancouver to Vancouver Island, take a local ferry. However, before you make the decision to do so, do consider your options. To reach the island from Vancouver, you have several possibilities. Which ferry from Vancouver to Vancouver Island you choose, depends upon your intended destination on the Island.


A trip to the Island is a worthwhile journey. However, while you may be staying in Vancouver, to catch a ferry, you actually have to leave the city behind. The Tsawwassen terminal is the main terminal. The other option is Horseshoe Bay.

Tsawwassen Terminal

If you intend to go from Vancouver to Victoria, this is the point of departure – some 32 km (20 miles) south of downtown Vancouver. Any ferry leaving this terminal is bound for the Schwartz Bay terminal on the island and, therefore, close to Victoria. The trip will take about 45 minutes with ferries leaving the terminal every two hours during the off-season and hourly during the peak season.

These ferries carry both walk-on passengers and vehicles. Be sure to plan ahead to make sure you can get on. Since weather and holidays play a factor, always check ahead as to whether the ferry from Vancouver to Vancouver Island is on schedule. This will help you avoid the risk of missing a ferry resulting from a last-minute schedule change.

Horseshoe Bay Terminal

If you plan to visit Nanaimo, this is the ferry to take. It also provides easy access to the entire northern section of the island as well as the beaches on its west coast.

Taking the Ferry from Vancouver to Vancouver Island

Taking the ferry from Vancouver to Vancouver Island is a pleasurable way to travel. However, before you book, make sure you have a clear destination in mind. This will narrow your ferry options, making sure you pick the right BC ferry for your trip.

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