5 romantic things to do in Vancouver island, Canada
Vancouver Island is a fabulous place for a romantic weekend getaway in British Colombia – Canada's westernmost province.
Despite the name, it's actually far from Vancouver downtown and involves either a short plane ride, or car/ferry ride to reach it.
We came here for a weekend retreat during our trip in Vancouver and completely fell in love. There are many highly rated restaurants, beautiful sceneries to explore, and even a few wineries to check out. Yup – Canadian wine is a thing!
Following our trip, we've put together our 5 favourite romantic things to do in Vancouver Island, which we hope will inspire your trip. Please note the island is huge, and we only saw a glimpse of it, so there are of course many many more things one can embellish this list with!
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The Hydropath at the Pacific Mist Spa
One of the most relaxing things we did as a couple on Vancouver Island is the Hydropath circuit at the Kingfisher hotel. We chose it because every local we asked for tips on what to do in Vancouver Island, suggested this.
This is a guided circuit in what feels like an underwater sea cave. The circuit took us around various wellness pools including a mineral massage pool, waterfall massage, steam cave, tidal bath and more. Our favourite was the final bath, which included a sand and seaweed body scrub, presented on a large scallop shell.
It's rejuvenating, refreshing and extremely romantic. Then, after you've finished, you can relax in the heated outdoor hot tub.
Visit the Elk Falls Provincial Park
The Park is a popular place to come for a hike together. It's located at the east end of the John Hart Lake on the northwest side of the Campbell River city.
There are many trails here, along with an impressive stairway that leads you to the real highlight: the dramatic Elk Falls. The might of all that water falling is spellbinding. It reminded us of a smaller version of the Iguazu Falls in Argentina/Brazil.
The Park was established in 1940 to protect the waterfall and nearby canyon. A suspension bridge over the canyon was completed in 2015, which provides a good view of Elk Falls.
Wine tasting at a winery
Canadian wine is completely underrated. It's not as popular as it should be, which we think is largely due to the high taxes. This is why you don't see much of it in supermarkets outside the country. Nonetheless, we were really impressed with it and highly recommend it to fellow wine lovers.
There are several wineries on Vancouver Island you can visit for a wine tasting session. We visited the family owned 40 Knots Vineyard & Estate Winery in Comox. We loved the owner Brenda. She is full of charisma and passion for the wine and she taught us a great deal about the grapes they harvest. The wine tasting was a lot of fun and worth factoring into your Vancouver Island itinerary.
The other thing we loved the most about this winery was their celebration of gay love. They produce a specific branded wine with a “love is love” rainbow label, which really touched us.
Shopping and trying artisan chocolate treats in Courteney
We spent one day exploring Courteney city, where there are plenty of things to check out.
We started at the Atlas Cafe for a delicious brunch. Then we walked around the boutique-lined 5th Street for window shopping. There's a range of gift shops, books stores and outfitters. Some of our favourites include Uranus, Hip Gifts Cool Cards and Whale's Tale Toys.
No visit to Courteney is complete without visiting the famous Hot Chocolates. This is chocolate heaven. If you love your truffles and Belgian chocolates, you need to check it out. You can purchase chocolate prizes to take back as gifts or to compliment a cup of coffee freshly brewed by them.
Courteney also has a daily famous Farmer's Market where you can try many different artisan goodies. The area is an agricultural hotspot, home to no fewer than 445 farms, so this is the place they all come together to sell their produce.
Splurge and stay at a luxurious resort
We stayed at the highly rated Kingfisher Oceanside Resort and Spa in Courtenay, which is definitely worth the splurge. It's stunning here and made for the perfect base for our romantic weekend. It's located right on the ocean, with direct beach access. The complex has its own swimming pool, two highly rated restaurants and the Pacific Spa. You can also book yoga sessions, or just take advantage of the calm beach atmosphere for meditation.
The Ocean7 is the resort's fine dining restaurant, with local specialties including salmon, scallops, oysters and shellfish. We had a romantic meal here, washed down with excellent locally produced Canadian wine. We also love their in house bar who do some really innovative cocktails.
This is definitely a place you want to check out if you're planning a romantic splurge on Vancouver Island. For more inspiration read about these other Vancouver island resorts you need to check out.