A white ferry at the port in Bowen Island. A white ferry at the port in Bowen Island.

4 Best Things to Explore on Bowen Island Ferry, BC

Bowen Island is a peaceful getaway situated right in the Howe Sound of British Columbia, Canada. The island is a picturesque destination that offers an array of activities for anyone and everyone who are looking for fun and adventure, and allows visitors to escape the hustle and bustle of a busy life in indulge themselves in an island that embraces nature. 

We bring to you some of the best things to explore life and everything bright on Bowen Island Ferry, BC.

1. 4 Fun Things about Bowen Island Ferry

1.1. Wildlife Spotting

The Howe Sound is home to a broad horizon of wildlife. Visitors are provided with the exciting opportunity to spot different species of animals in their natural habitat.

Eagles can be seen soaring overhead, and seals can be seen leaping along the shoreline. If the passengers are lucky enough, they can even spot whales or dolphins farther in the distance. So, Keep your camera ready!

1.2. Scenic Views

An aerial view of Bowen Island Ferry port, British Columbia, Canada.
Image by EB Adventure Photography from Shutterstock

When you travel to and through Bowen Island be it by ferry line, vehicle, or walking, there are stunning views to notice along the way. It is hard to miss it.

The mind-blowing scenery of the Bowen Island, the mountains, and the dense forests that engulf the island are all worth capturing on your camera. It is breathtaking.

1.3. Tranquility

The tranquillity there is something to behold. Possibly, it is the best thing in this place.

Visitors can schedule the day to take a tour of the beaches, galleries, and the island’s trails. Or, if you want to escape the hustle and bustle of your busy life, simply relax and breathe in the tranquil beauty of Bowen Island.

1.4. Beaches

How good are the beaches? The island consists of a variety of serene beaches where foot passengers can sit back and sink in the sun’s warmth.

Let it be a Saturday, Sunday, Monday, or any day of the week, Tunstall Bay is the best spot for sunbathing and swimming, whereas Bowen Bay is more latent coupled with the breathtaking scenery of the mountains.

If family time is what you are looking for, Sandy Beach is a famous spot. It includes picnic tables, playgrounds, and everything needed for a family outing.

2. Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay) to Bowen Island (Snug Cove)

A view of Vancouver Horseshoe Bay from above and people standing on a storey.
Image by StandbildCA from Shutterstock

It is recommended to catch a ferry from Horseshoe Bay to Snug Cove. This ride consists of only 20 minutes but offers a stunning scenic view of Howe Sound. In addition, it is engulfed by mountains.

Since it is a natural location, the fresh air and the wildlife, like seals, dolphins, and eagles are something to look out for. According to the ferry schedule, the ferry operates from 5:50 am to 10:30 pm, and reservations are not a necessity.

What can you do when you enter the village of Snug Cove? Snug Cove is a village that consists of restaurants, cafes, and other attractions. You can explore delicious food and beverages, understand the island’s history and have a relaxing hour at the waterfront.

3. Cormorant Marine – Water Taxi

The Cormorant Marine – a passenger-only water taxi – offers a late-night, year-round service between Bowen Island and the Government Wharf at Horseshoe Bay. The schedule for the same is as follows:

Snug Cove departure – 11:15 pm (Sunday-Thursday), 12:15 am (Friday and Saturday)

Horseshoe Bay departure – 11:30 pm (Sunday-Thursday), 12:30 am (Friday and Saturday)

To know more about the water taxi, Cormorant Marine, visit their website. Additionally, they provide year-round charter service.

4. Missing the Ferry (Overload)

Usually, ferry workers halt you at the black gate if they have completed loading. If, in case, you cannot make it when they close the gate, it is better you leave labour. You should leave or reroute to the ferry line.

5. Bowen Island Vanpool

The ride-share van has a trip to and from UBC (University of British Columbia) via downtown Vancouver. The van rides five days a week. It leaves Bowen at the 6:20 am ferry sailing, which will arrive at UBC at around 7:30 am.

The van has a departure from UBC at 4:25 pm and will arrive at downtown Vancouver at approximately 4:55 pm for pickups. Then, they will reach Horseshoe Bay for guaranteed loading on the ferry to Bowen Island at 5:45 pm. To know more, visit their website here.

6. Ferry Line DOs and DON’Ts

A blue Bowen Island ferry at the port, resting beside a platform.
Image by Dgu from Shutterstock

Islanders could be particular concerning the rules of the ferry, so you can note both the official and unwritten rules.

6.1. Vehicles:

6.1.1. Dos

  • Line up or park behind vehicles that are last in line, or you could park in the first open space nearest to the ferry. In other words, it is best to park and wait wherever you see gaps.
  • Park in the shorter lane in the two-lane portion of the ferry line.
  • Get cozy! Park in an area of two feet against the vehicle in front of you.
  • Be there on time in your vehicle! Your arrival should be a minimum of 8-10 minutes before the ferry’s departure.
  • Bike owners will be up and loading before the cars so you can take your bike right to the front.
  • Cyclists will be loaded and unloaded with the foot passengers. Therefore, you can walk your cycle across the ramp.

6.1.2. DON’Ts

  • Do not park on the ferry line unless and until you are waiting to get on the next sailing.
  • Do not speed to reach the ferry. Note that the speed limits are strictly followed by the RCMP.
  • Do not search for a toll booth. If you purchased a fare in Horseshoe Bay, it includes the trip back.
  • Do not take a U-turn on the hill to reach the ferry line.

6.2. Foot Passengers:

6.2.1. DOs

  • Arrive at the waiting area before the scheduled departure.
  • Advisably, wait for the ferry to load and unload.

6.2.2. DON’Ts

  • Do not walk on the road once you cross the ramp. Step aside to the sidewalks so that the vehicles can be unloaded.


These are just a few things you can do on Bowen Island Ferry, BC. It does not matter if you go on statutory holidays (like Labour Day) or any other day; this beautiful place has a lot to offer.

There is a lot to do here, from scheduled sailing to bike rentals, your views about an island are subject to change. The route to and from the island are also equally beautiful.

Remember, you get all this for inexpensive fares. Let it be a Wednesday, for instance, where the fares stay in line to being cheap. Ticket sales tend to stay constant throughout the year.

Last Updated on by Icy Canada Team


  • Lionel Nestor

    Hi! It always feels good to be on the writing side and see people read my work. So, I always say, "I write to elicit what needs to be; you read to breathe peace, maybe to flee."

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