Broken Group Islands
In our hearts, we all live on the land. That is the real world. We take away the obstacles to experience what is real, to experience your bliss. We show you the way. That's Coastal Bliss Adventures.Look For Your Bliss Now
We Take Care Of You
We do the planning, logistics, and support. You do the experience and the fun.
From pickup to return, we cover everything you need, except your personal items. We take you to and from the trip start, and feed you well along the way. We can't guarantee weight loss on our tours.
Our guides get out into our areas. They know the ins and outs of the trip and provide exceptional interpretation of flora, fauna and history. You'll know more after you leave.
We give you an entire packet of information on how to prepare, what to bring, how to pack, and a plan for training so you can fully enjoy the trip. Our care for you starts before you even arrive.
Broken Group Islands
4, 5 & 6-day Kayaking Tour
The Broken Group Islands , a unit of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, are a cluster of about 100 islands in Barkley Sound on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The natural beauty, cultural and environmental significance of this location led to Parks Canada declaring The Broken Group Islands a protected area in early 1970’s.
With many lagoons and small, intimate harbors, touring around the group can be magical. The inner islands are home to a rich and vibrant selection of marine life, not seen in other areas along the coast.
The exosed, outer Islands are abundant with caves, blow holes, colonies of California and Stellar sea lions, roaring aloud over the distance.
Midden beaches and archaeological remnants hint at the 4,000 year First Nations history. There is a reason why these islands are talked about the world over as a sea kayaking and sailing destination.
- KAYAKING DAYS: 3-5
- TRAVEL DAYS: 2 HALF DAYS
- RATING: BEGINNER TO INTERMEDIATE KAYAKER
Book Your Tour Now
This is our typical itinerary for the Broken Group Islands kayaking tour. Because we are travelling in wilderness, itineraries can change. This is especially true for coastal kayaking. There are many factors that can affect how a tour actually runs. We confirm pickup times by phone, email or SMS at least 12 hours before.
This trip begins in Nanaimo, where we will arrange your pickup to drive to the launch location for the Broken Group Islands where we begin the activity.
If you are staying in Nanaimo the night before pick up be sure to give us accommodation details. We will call to let you know exact pick up time. Between 0930 and 1030 am.
Arriving by ferry from Mainland in morning: From Nanaimo Ferry Terminal Between 9:45 - 10:15 am (Ferry Route dependant)
Take 8:30am ferry from Horseshoe Bay (West Vancouver to Departure Bay, Nanaimo) Or 07:45 Ferry from Tsawwassen to Duke Point / Departure Bay (arrives 9:45pm) Note: Be sure to arrive at ferry terminal 20 minutes before sailing, as ticket sales stop 15 minutes before sailing.
Check Ferry Schedules Here
We will drive to Secret Beach Campsite in Toquaht Bay, were we will unload and set up camp for the night. On route we will stop in Port Alberni for lunch. There will be an opportunity to purchase a few last minute items if necessary. We will plan to include a few cultural stops on route, the first being a visit to the Tseshaht First Nations Cultural Centre, where we will have the opportunity to learn about the Tseshaht people, who once inhabited the islands of the Broken Group and Barkley Sound. On arrival at Secret Beach we will first stop to pay for launch fees, camping permits, and parking. Once we have set up camp the remainder of the afternoon will cover topics such as fitting you to your kayak, camping etiquette, safety during tour, camp set up, packing for kayaking (transfer personal items to dry bags) and group/individual expectations. Depending upon conditions and time, we may go for a short harbour paddle to familiarize you with kayaks and paddle strokes.
Pack kayaks, review kayak safety, paddle strokes and launch. Our route will be from Secret Beach, Toquart Bay first to Hand Island, a possible lunch stop, then on to one of the other inner islands, where we will set up camp, then spend more time exploring, either in kayaks or tide pools, or simply relaxing after the mornings paddle. Discuss options for the next day.
Days Three and Four
There are many options for kayaking once within the Broken Group. These usually combine camping in one location for a few nights and exploring surrounding islands and waterways, and moving camp to explore mid or outer islands. The itinerary on these days is dependent on sea conditions, group goals and considerations. Most days begin with a cooked breakfast, then paddle and explore the eslands. LUNCH will be Relaxed, on the beach somewhere, and Paddle some more. The afternoons can bring stiff winds in the Broken Group meaning that it is likely we will not be kayaking during this time, unless in protected waters. This makes this time more appropriate for: Time to relax /explore tide pools/ beach. DINNER then discuss the Plan for next day.
It is possible that we will have the opportunity on one of the days to visit Nettle Is. ,one of the First Nations Islands, where a traditionally cooked Salmon meal is available for $35 per plate (2017)(not included in price of tour). Naturally for those who do not wish for this experience, or do not eat fish there will be an alternative meal provided by Coastal Bliss Adventures.
It is possible that we will have the opportunity on one of the days to visit Nettle Is., one of the First Nations Islands, where a traditionally cooked Salmon meal is available for $35 per plate (2017)(not included in price of tour). Naturally for those who do not wish for this experience, or do not eat fish there will be an alternative meal provided by Coastal Bliss Adventures.
Our route will take us back to Secret Beach, Toquart Bay, by mid-day. We will unload and load kayaks and gear, then enjoy a picnic lunch before traveling back to our various drop off locations. We will make one or two comfort stops on route to Nanaimo, and if there is interest and time permits we will stop at a local Tsesharht carver and artists studio.
Note: Our paddling itinerary is subject to wind and weather and other conditions, and while a tentative plan can be made, final plans and routes may change at any given time. Guides will discuss objectives with guests, however, the final route and daily plans will be made by the lead guide. Their final decision will be based on group safety and the best interests of Coastal Bliss Adventures Ltd.
Travel Note: Usually we would be back in Nanaimo between 5 – 7pm, however, as there are many factors that can affect the timing of our last day we request that if you are flying out of Nanaimo or Vancouver, that you book your flight for the day following our return, late enough that it would be possible to take a ferry from Nanaimo in the morning and still catch your flight.
Included Not Included Transportation from and to the departure location (pick up and drop off) Your transportation to the departure location (from your home) All kayaking gear Water Boots or shoes Dry bags to keep your things dry Sleeping bags or mats (available for rent) All backcountry park fees and camping fees National Park entry fees (may change as Parks alters their policies) All meals (except on any travel days) Some food (on travel days) Professional guides Gratuities are not included. Recognizing your guide for their hard work and care is always appreciated; $10-20/day per guide is recommended. Tent (shared) A substantial preparation guide Gear rental optionsGetting There And
Where To Stay
If you are travelling into the Vancouver, Victoria, or Nanaimo area from afar, you should arrive at the departure location (in Nanaimo) for your trip the day/evening prior to the trip start date and plan to leave the day following trip return.
You can fly to Vancouver (airport code YVR) or Seattle (airport code SEA) then connect to Vancouver Island using ferry, bus, or air, or arrange flights directly to Vancouver Island.
Flying to Victoria (Airport code YYJ)
Flying to Nanaimo (Airport code YCD)
Nanaimo Airporter shuttle service.
Servicing all of Vancouver Island from airports to ferrys to cruise ship terminals. Tel: 1 250 758-2133
BC Ferries 1-888-BC FERRY (1-888-223-3779)
We will let you know the ferry to take for travelling to Vancouver Island, but if you want to check out times, you can go the the BC Ferries website at:
Where to Stay
Naniamo Pick up & Hotels
Pick up: Departure Bay, Duke Point Ferry Terminal, or the following Accommodations:
Days Inn Harbour View Nanaimo
Address: 809 Island Hwy South, Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada, V9R 5K1
Phone (250) 754-8171
Best Western Dorchester Hotel
Address: 70 Church, Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada, V9R 5H4
Phone: (250) 754-6835
Painted Turtle Guesthouse
Address: 121 Bastion Street, Nanaimo, British Columbia CANADA, V9R 3A2
Toll Free: 1-866-309-4432
Phone: (250) 753-4432Preparing
Preparing For Your Trip
How you prepare for your adventure is important. Being well prepared will enhance the quality of your experience. Because we are travelling in wilderness, it is very important for you and for the rest of your adventure group that you are fit enough to handle the level of difficulty and demand with no problems. Our guides know how to minimize the impact of these demands as much as possible, but they cannot remove them. The depth of your experience can only increase if you have made sure that you have prepared well.
Your preparation will be different for different activities. Preparing for a kayak trip is different from preparing for a hiking trip. We have provided some basic information that can be downloaded through the following links to pdf documents. If you do not have the Adobe Reader, you can download it from the Adobe site by clicking here.
Use the links below to download some of the preparation files for this hiking or kayaking tour. When you book your tour, we will send you a complete preparation packet to help you get ready.Please take this seriously. Most people are unaware of the demands of a coastal environment, particularly with keeping dry and warm. Your preparation will really help make your coastal hiking or kayaking tour a great experience.
Important Details-Preparing Yourself For Kayaking or Canoeing
Hints and Tips-Mostly for Backpacking, but lots of good overlapGear Rental
We have gear available to rent if you don't want to buy a particular piece of equipment, or need to travel without it.
Look over the following list to help you decide whether you want to rent. If you decide to rent gear, you can tell us on the phone or book it online with your tour.
Item Price Sleeping Bag Rental $35.00 Thermarest Rental $15.00 Water Booties Rental $15.00 Wetsuit Rental $20.00 Helmet Rental $10.00 Rental Bundle 4-sleeping bag+sleeping pad+water booties $60.00