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.
Salt Spring Adventure Co. strives to curate the coolest and most rewarding outdoor experiences possible, whether explorers are on Salt Spring Island itself or in the surrounding area. Along with her staff, owner Yvonne Poirier, a dedicated guide with multiple certifications, oversees exciting expeditions on land and sea. Guided kayak tours invite paddlers to explore the surrounding Gulf Islands in small vessels, while multiday kayak expeditions help explorers sight native birds and animals and sample the area's culinary wonders.
The company also offers standup-paddleboard and bicycle rentals for self-guided exploration. Sailing charters, meanwhile, send visitors on a leisurely cruise through the Gulf Islands. More extensive adventures include outdoor education for schools and youth groups—activities can include kayaking, surfing, and studying marine ecology. And guides even lead groups on eco-tourism trips to Ecuador, where tour-goers can explore the jungle in search of chocolate.
Cutting across the glassy waters surrounding the Gulf Islands, Salt Spring Tours' skiff navigates along the picturesque coast of Salt Spring beneath the steady hand of Captain Tom Burnett. Aboard the 43-passenger vessel nicknamed The Salty Cat, riders enjoy uninterrupted 360-degree views from multiple desks, with the occasional Orca sighting. In addition to cruises and private charters, Salt Spring Tours curates kayak trips, dinner cruises, and new take-away lunches served at the dockside to business people taking an underwater lunch.
Operated by the Canadian International Dragon Boat Festival Society, a registered non-profit society, Dragon Zone Paddling Club makes it easy for people to experience the ancient art of dragon boating, as well as many other types of paddle sports. In addition to 10- and 20-person dragon boats, the club equips guests with canoes, six-person outriggers, one-person outriggers, and kayaks.
For those who are new to dragon boating, Dragon Zone Paddling Club offers four-week classes that introduce basic techniques and get participants used to working as a team. More specialized workshops supplement foundational skills with more advanced instruction, which is especially useful for anyone who decides to join a racing team.
The waters of False Creek reach into the city of Vancouver like an arm. For years, the passage of water was used for industrial purposes, but all that changed in 1980 when the city of Vancouver decided to develop Granville Island. One of those developments was False Creek Community Centre.
Today, the centre fills False Creek with an array of recreational boaters, including kayakers, canoeists, dragon boaters, and whale surfers. Back on land, the facility boasts a pottery studio, a fitness centre, tennis courts, a water park with a large kid's area, and a talented staff of instructors who teach programs and classes for kids and adults alike.
False Creek runs through the heart of Vancouver, creeping around skyscrapers and city parks and spilling into the English Bay. The best way to traverse this urban waterway is by kayak, rented from nearby Creekside Kayaks. Its single and tandem kayaks and paddleboards give city dwellers a chance to see the skyline from a new angle as they paddle their way through the gentle waters. As the buildings light up at night, the surface reflects glowing pinpricks, creating a romantic atmosphere for evening boating. For first-time boaters, lessons impart basic skills, rescue techniques, and water safety to small groups.