Things To Do In Nanaimo

Select Local Merchants

The triumphant crash of bowling balls against pins has been echoing throughout Brechin Lanes since 1956. The newly renovated five-pin-bowling alley maintains its family-friendly atmosphere by only selling soft drinks and prohibiting smoking within their walls. League banners hang over the 16-lane spread, and between turns, players cheer each other on from plastic benches or cushy seats throughout the centre. Atop whimsical bowling-pin-shaped coffee tables, players refuel their rolling arms and bragging muscles with hot dogs, poutine, and pizza made fresh to order. During weekend glow bowling, blacklights switch on, a crisp sound system booms the hits, and vampire bowlers suddenly become the brightest people in the room.

1870 E. Wellington Rd
Nanaimo,
BC
CA

Eaglequest Nanaimo's par 3 golf course encompasses nine lush, challenging holes accented by towering evergreens and water hazards. Golfers tee up on real grass and then launch golf balls and papier mache zeppelins down tree-lined fairways. Shots soar over hilly terrain and water before trundling toward undulating greens. Clubbers can traverse the pastoral playground and complete a round in 60–90 minutes, giving them the ability to fit a game into a busy schedule. Before hitting the course, golfers can make like a pendulum at the 22-stall driving range, which features opportunities for straightening troublesome slices, improving golf games, and alleviating plumber's elbow. The range also hosts lessons and clinics conducted by CPGA pros for golfers of all abilities.

1601 Thatcher Rd
Nanaimo,
BC
CA

A careworn blue tractor rests near the tree line, its rusted exhaust puffing out from under the hood. The faint imprint of tire marks leads off into the lone opening in an otherwise solid wall of corn. At approximately 7 acres, McNab's Corn Maze covers a swathe of land where families wend through twists and turns, or shout helpful tips from the two-storey watchtower overlooking the labyrinth. Elsewhere, hayrides transport groups around the farm, where they can glimpse crops such as squash, gourds, and pumpkins, as well as genuine farming equipment such as plows, tractors, and the robotic horse that drives tractors. At the petting zoo, kids can caper about with adorable farmyard friends such as goats, piglets, and an emu.

4659 Yellow Point Road
Ladysmith,
BC
CA

Harbour Air boosts wingless beings with first-class flights on carbon-neutral aircrafts, boutique stratosphere accessories, and picturesque seaplane tours. Eco-friendly seaplanes furnished with first-class amenities such as leather interiors and hands-free cloud parallel parking launch daily and link Lower Mainland and the Islands through panoramic flights that last 20 to 50 minutes ($156.53–$563.38 round trip). The airline's auspicious boutique furnishes cloud gazers with flight-centric merchandise for gifts and seagull bribes. A small Beaver model plane ($41.99) carves its niche among collectibles with locally handcrafted western maple wood, and a Dax Wilkinson T-shirt ($34.99) celebrates Canadian aviation.

5764 Wharf Rd
Sechelt,
BC
CA

Tracks Outdoor Adventures' certified and trained guides escort 6–12 trekkers and their taste buds on a six-hour excursion expedition through three Cowichan Valley vineyards. Journeys commence with hour-long scenic drives from Nanaimo to the Cowichan Valley, which surrounds passengers with breathtaking Vancouver Island landscapes including rolling hills, sprawling farm land, and wine-bottle bushes. Upon arriving at one of the day's vineyards, pairs taste wines such as award-winning pinot gris, gewürztraminer, and blackberry port or soak in the atmosphere of an Italian-influenced 1903 farmhouse, which doubles as a tasting room, wine store, and restaurant dispensing delectable pinot grigio, pinot nero, and Glenora Fantasia Brut. Each tour's itinerary is unique, as vineyards are chosen based on availability or by deferring to a grape-stained Ouija board.

2130 Akenhead Road
Nanaimo,
BC
CA

Located where the Caren and Richardson mountain ranges slip into the Pacific Ocean, Pedals and Paddles sits on spectacular trailheads for hiking, camping, and kayaking. When paddling through the crystal-clear inlet waters on kayaks or standup paddleboards in guided or self-guided tours, clients can gaze at the ocean floor to commune with seafaring creatures such as starfish, sea cucumbers, and—if they're lucky—dolphins and orcas. Explorers can also camp on the beaches at Piper Point, Tuwanek Beach, or Oyster Beach, where they can sleep in between swimmable waters and the towering pines of the mountains.

7425 Sechelt Inlet Road
Sechelt,
BC
CA