Coast extends from Port Hardy to Bella Coola on the Central Coast,
and includes the communities of McLoughlin Bay, Bella Bella, Denny Island (Shearwater),
Klemtu, Ocean Falls, and the Hakai Pass area.
Time: June to September
on Port Hardy
of Port Hardy
on Namu, Bella
Bella, Denny Island (Shearwater),
Falls, and Hakai Pass
of the route
on the map to view a large scale map of Vancouver Island and
Coastal British Columbia Ferry Routes.
current schedules, fares, vehicle reservations and additional
information directly with BC
Ferries. Reservations are required for passenger and vehicle
travel along our Discovery Coast Passage between Port Hardy
and Bella Coola.
Until BC Ferries
launched its Discovery Coast
Passage run in the summer of 1996, the Central Coast was also
largely inaccessible by water. Now, to the delight of adventurers
and locals alike, from June to September the Queen of Chilliwack
connects the community of Port Hardy, at the northeastern end of
Vancouver Island, with Bella Coola. Sail direct, or enjoy optional
stops at McLoughlin Bay, Denny Island (Shearwater), Klemtu, Ocean Falls and Bella
The Queen of Chilliwack
The Queen of Chilliwack is a working freight boat, serving
the needs of the local communities. It's just as well that luxuries
aboard this refurbished Norwegian vessel don't distract from the
scenery, which is spectacular, with long fjords and narrow channels
forming the backdrop to the Inside Passage. The roughest portion
of the trip is just out of Port Hardy, as the ferry navigates the
unprotected waters of Queen Charlotte Sound. This is a good time
for a nap. The most stunning scenery is between Bella Bella and
With the setting
sun behind you, the monolithic rock formations looming over the
narrow Burke Channel give the cruise a European flavour. You'll
get an even better look at the scenic Dean Channel during daylight
hours if you board the ferry in Bella Coola for the southbound sailing.
Weather permitting, the ship's two upper decks are an excellent
vantage point from which to watch for the logging camps, barge houses,
and abandoned settlements that indicate a human presence on this
rugged coastline. Although Natives have inhabited the area for thousands
of years, the inhospitable terrain has limited development and exploration
by European settlers until comparatively recently. Wildlife viewing
- the ferry slows for orcas - is another bonus of this trip. Don't
forget your binoculars.
aboard the Queen of Chilliwack include reclining sleeper seats,
a cafeteria, and small licenced lounge, a gift shop and - a boon
for kayakers - pay showers. Service is friendly, the food is better-than-average
for BC Ferries, and there is a staff member dedicated to customer
service who can assist you with your onboard needs or travel plans.
If you are
travelling with a vehicle, reservations are a must. For more details
and reservations, contact BC Ferries in Canada at (888) 223-3779
or (250) 386-3431.