Home - Tourism Nanaimo
What to do
What to do
It’s the many options from sea to sky that attract visitors to Nanaimo. Discover the things to do here in Nanaimo, from outdoor adventure to festivals and events. Discover what to do
Where to stay
Where to stay
Nanaimo has no shortage of comfortable lodgings, from hotels to campgrounds. Check out our booking tool to find accommodations in Nanaimo and book your stay. Discover where to stay
How to get here
How to get here
Planning your transportation to and from Nanaimo is easily tailored to the type of experience you’re looking for on Vancouver Island. Learn about travelling by air, land, or sea. Discover how to get here

Nanaimo, British Columbia

The city of Nanaimo is a classic West Coast community, offering natural beauty at every turn, and vast recreation potential. Nanaimo has one of the longest shorelines in Canada, and a forested mountain backdrop just outside downtown. Here, you can go from the wilderness to the city centre in just a few minutes, and spend more time in the places you want to be.

Nanaimo, BC is located on the east coast of Vancouver Island, 113 km north of Victoria, and 55 km across the Strait of Georgia from Vancouver. The city projects out into the strait like a headland, affording waterfront on three sides and spectacular ocean views at every turn. The local landscape is defined by Mount Benson, which rises 1,006 metres (3,300 feet) just west of Nanaimo, and the Nanaimo River estuary, the largest estuary on Vancouver Island, which flows into Nanaimo Harbour at the south end of the city.

Nanaimo is the place to find natural wonders, festivals, culinary joys, and so much more. Discover your Nanaimo 360 by browsing things to do, places to stay, and how to get here.

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What’s Your Travel Type?

Have you ever wondered what type of traveller you are? Whether you’re more of a history buff, or perhaps a thrill-seeker? Destination Canada created this quiz to help you better understand exactly what type of traveller you are. If you’d like to see an itinerary that matches your traveller type, check out our custom itineraries.

Free Spirit

Free Spirits are most likely to be seen at a tourism hot spot, participating in a group tour, or dining out at a top restaurant.

Cultural Explorer

Cultural Explorers are most likely to be seen exploring heritage sites and museums. CE's also love to interact with locals.

Authentic Experiencer

Authentic Experiencers are most likely to be seen in nature reserves, hiking and enjoying the great outdoors, at a heritage site or a museum.

Latest blog posts

On This Spot: Jump Back In Nanaimo’s History

November 3, 2017

Andrew from the new On This Spot app chats with us about the app, his favourite points of comparison, and a bit of Nanaimo’s history. Can you tell us a bit about On This Spot? What do people need to know? The On This Spot app takes people on guided walking tours through the history that surrounds them. At each stop on their journey users will find themselves standing on the spot a historic photo was taken. They can view a then and now photo comparison, use the built in camera to create their own, and read about Nanaimo’s history […]

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Cedar Yellow Point Country Christmas Tour 2017

November 1, 2017

Christmas shopping a breezy adventure on Cedar and Yellow Point Holiday tour A relaxed Christmas shopping trip in the country in late November sure beats the prospect of competing for a parking spot at a crowded mall in December. The Cedar and Yellow Point Holiday Christmas Tour, Nov. 23-25, is a delightfully stress-free and slow-paced way to usher in the holiday season and check off your Christmas gift list at the same time. Make a weekend of it and, with Christmas gift list in hand, download the trail map to find the shops, farms, boutiques and galleries around Cedar Yellow […]

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Get into a Merry Christmas mood at the Kris Kringle Craft Fair

October 26, 2017

It’s easy to get into the merry spirit of the Christmas season when the Kris Kringle Craft Market gets underway in Nanaimo. There are plenty of reasons why more than 12,000 people from around Vancouver Island head to Beban Park to attend the four-day event, held this year from Nov. 16 to 19. If the twinkling lights, festive décor and the smell of gingerbread don’t put you in the Christmas spirit, the buzz of dozens of activities each day surely will. More than 150 artisan vendors will be selling goods such as hand-crafted soaps, unique jewelry, wooden toys and woolen […]

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Itineraries

The Real Nanaimo Harbour City

From sweet treats to a day out on the water, this is the authentic Nanaimo experience.
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Hikers Paradise – Find Yourself in Our Woods

Walk the beaches and groves of Nanaimo, while experiencing food and fun west coast style.
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Historic Nanaimo

Tour BC’s 3rd oldest community from walking through a replica mine to firing a cannon!
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Wolf & Waterfalls

After walking to waterfalls, explore Nanaimo's local craft beer and food scene.
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