Things to do in Campbell River
Our downtown Campbell River hotel is your perfect base for fishing, whale watching, grizzly bear tours and all the wilderness, culture and West Coast hospitality of the Campbell River area.
Here’s just a small sample of what’s awaiting your discovery in Campbell River:
Campbell River has long been revered as the “Salmon Capital of the World.” Whether out at sea, knee-deep in the Campbell or Quinsam River or trolling a glassy freshwater lake, sport fishers are in paradise here.
Fishing is a year-round passion in Campbell River, with anglers hooking Chinook salmon 12 months of the year and four other varieties – coho, pink, chum and sockeye – from May to November. During the winter, the focus turns inland to pristine lakes pumping with steelhead and cutthroat trout. Saltwater fly-fishing is becoming increasingly popular around Campbell River, and prawns, rockfish and mussels are also plentiful in local waters.
Whale-watching & wildlife tours
Located near the entrance of Desolation Sound and nestled within the world’s largest temperate rainforest, Campbell River is an eco-tourism hotspot. Many tour operators offer marine sightseeing tours, during which you’ll likely see an abundance of marine life, including orcas (killer whales), seals, sea lions, porpoises, bald eagles, bears and many, many seabirds.
Other adventure sports
Campbell River is a world-class destination for a range of all-Canadian outdoor activities such as sea & freshwater kayaking, rafting, hiking, mountain biking, diving and climbing. The area is also home to several wilderness parks, including Elk Falls, Miracle Beach and Strathcona Provincial Park, home to Buttle Lake and Della Falls – the highest waterfall in Canada.
Our Guest Services team will be happy to provide you with maps and other information about where to enjoy your favourite outdoor pursuit.
First Nations Culture
First Nations peoples have lived in the Campbell River area for at least 8,000 years, and their proud culture can be experienced throughout the region. The Museum at Campbell River – named one of Canada’s top 10 museums by TripAdvisor – houses an impressive collection of Northwest Coast Native masks, ceremonial items and other fine art.
On nearby Quadra Island, the Nuyumbalees Cultural Centre is the perfect place to learn about the Kwak'wala, Laich-Kwil-Tach & K'omoks Peoples – as well as see fascinating ancient petroglyphs dating back more than 2,500 years.
Another great stop is the Wei Wai Kum House of Treasures which is housed in an impressive contemporary building based on the architectural look of a traditional Big House. It features original native art from local first nations on Vancouver Island. Inside you will find a magnificent selection of masks, jewellery, clothing, dolls, home accessories, clothing, prints, paddles and souvenirs.
Discover our rich history
There’s so much more to discover about our heritage at the Museum at Campbell River, and you can learn even more from a fascinating visit to Haig-Brown Heritage House. If you like history, this historical riverside home of conservationists Roderick and Ann Haig-Brown, set amidst beautiful gardens and lush forest, is not to be missed.
Wineries & distilleries
Okanagan, eat your heart out! Vancouver Island is fast becoming known for its award-winning wines. Beaufort, Coastal Black and 40 Knots are just three estate wineries located within easy reach of Campbell River – as is Quadra Island’s SouthEnd Winery.
If single malt whisky is more your style, you’ll want to tour Shelter Point Distillery, currently producing Vancouver Island’s first batch of field-to-flask whisky. Shelter Point also produces a wide range of flavoured vodkas that are available for sampling and purchase.
True to its heritage, Campbell River is home to a vibrant arts and cultural scene, including the restored art-deco Tidemark Theatre, a pioneering showcase for award-winning drama, dance and visual arts performances.
Skiing & snowboarding
Campbell River is a comfortable distance for day trips to epic skiing & snowboarding at Mount Washington Alpine Resort. We’re also a great staging ground for trips up-Island to Mount Cain, a local favourite for its deep powder and uncrowded slopes.