Lighthouse Country

Just north of Qualicum Beach, along the Oceanside Route (Hwy 19A), is charming and friendly communities of Qualicum Bay, Deep Bay, and Bowser. This area provides access to many activities, where you'll find plenty of opportunities to boat, fish, hike, trail ride, beachcomb, golf, and cave. Explore the caves at Horne Lake Caves Provincial Park; an Amphitheatre is located at the lake. The two lighthouses after which the region is named are the Chrome Island Lighthouse off the southern tip of Denman Island, and Sisters Lighthouse off the northern tip of Lasqueti Island in the Strait of Georgia. Nearby Spider Lake is known for its warm water, kayaking, and canoeing. With over 60 miles of coastline and sandy beaches. You are always close to the ocean, overlooking Georgia Strait where Clam and shellfish digging are popular activities in this area. The marina in protected at the Deep Bay Harbour which offers boat charters and rentals. At Qualicum Bay, beachcomb, fly a kite, or stroll the beach at sunset. Motels, cottages, bed and breakfasts, campgrounds, restaurants, shops, services, boat charters, and more are available in the friendly communities of Lighthouse Country.

Qualicum Bay
lighthouse countryQualicum Bay has a nice clean and endless beach protected from traffic noise by a barrier of private land. During lower tides you'll find lovely sandy areas, relatively warm water for swimming, and good beachcombing for little treasures. You are always close to the ocean, overlooking Georgia Strait, with all the clams and oysters you can eat.

The small waterfront community of Bowser is the main community centre of Lighthouse Country. The Bowser Hotel made history in the 1930's (and Ripley's Believe It Or Not) by having a bartender dog that served beer to patrons, collected their money and returned with their change!

Deep Bay
The small oceanside community of Deep Bay is a town seemingly devoted to angling. Mapleguard Point is the elbow of an arm and spit that protect Deep Bay's natural harbour beside much larger Qualicum Bay. A peaceful BC resort community, Deep Bay is a fisherman’s delight, where chinook salmon in the 20-pound range top the scales each year.

lighthouse country
Government Wharf at Deep Bay, BC

The Oceanside Route follows the coastline from the Nanoose Bay area all the way to Campbell River. Enjoy the sights of Parksville and Qualicum Beach and the Lighthouse Country communities of Qualicum Bay, Bowser and Deep Bay. Follow the Oceanside Route through the charming communities of Fanny Bay, Buckley Bay, and Union Bay and continue north through Merville, Black Creek, and Oyster River to Campbell River. Parks, beaches, golf courses, and dozens of attractions are located along the Oceanside Route, making it one of the Island's most popular driving tours.

Lighthouse Country boasts world-class artists and artisans.
Just off McColl Road, Wildwood Park beckons travellers to stop and rest. An existing 1-km trail will ultimately become the northern trailhead of a proposed Lighthouse Country Hiking Trail, stretching south to Qualicum Bay.
Visit the docks at the excellent natural harbour at Deep Bay to watch the commercial fishing boats return with their catches. Deep Bay's prolific herring spawn and shrimp hatches attract the larger Chinook salmon, some up to thirty pounds.
Nicely sheltered by Mapleguard Point, Deep Bay launches sport fishing boats for the rich coho and chinook salmon grounds along the coastline and offshore islands and rocks. Anglers' dreams are fulfilled for both fresh and salt water catches.
Baynes Sound offers excellent and easily accessible birdwatching, and is also a popular viewing area for Bald Eagles. Baynes Sound is used extensively by Western Grebe, Common Loon, Trumpeter Swan, Brant, Mallards, American Wigeon, Green-winged Teal, Bufflehead, and mergansers are common. Bald Eagles congregate in large numbers at the mouth of salmon streams during winter. A colony of Brewer’s Blackbird has been known to nest on a gravel bar in Rosewall Creek.
Take a break from the beach and drive north to Buckley Bay for a visit to Hornby Island and Denman Island, located just offshore from Lighthouse Country. These tranquil and enchanting southern Gulf Islands are accessed by a 15-minute ferry ride from Buckley Bay to Denman Island, and a second ferry trip to Hornby Island.