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Bowen Island, British Columbia

Bowen Island is located close to Vancouver in Howe Sound, a particularly picturesque part of the Salish Sea. When you travel to Bowen Island you can enjoy vistas of rugged mountains, rocky coastlines, lush green islands and blue waterways that sometimes provide sightings of marine life, such as dolphins, seals, whales and birds.

Why visit Bowen Island? There are a number of wonderful things to see and do, depending on your interests. One of Bowen Island’s greatest assets is that it offers the best of both worlds: it is near the city, easy to access, even by public transit, and it provides an inexpensive vacation destination or day-trip getaway. Yet, even though Bowen Island is close to Vancouver, once you are here you will feel like you are a world away.

Bowen Island offers a West Coast island experience with an abundance of natural spaces and wild places to explore; a small, charming village reminiscent of days gone by; quiet beaches and quiet roads – you will not find any traffic lights on this island; and BC’s laidback lifestyle is the island’s modus operandi. Add to this a colourful heritage, a vibrant, artistic community and a good selection of restaurants, shops and amenities and you just might feel, when you are not too busy relaxing and enjoying life in the slow lane, that Bowen Island is a little bit of West Coast paradise.

Travelling to and from Bowen Island

Ferry: Travelling to Bowen Island is easy and relatively fast. The most popular route is by ferry from Horseshoe Bay. The ride is only 20 minutes long and there are a number of sailings each day. You can bring your car or simply walk on. BC Ferries’ website provides an up-to-date route schedule.

*Note: Your purchased ticket is a return fare.

Car parking
: Please note that there is limited car parking in Horseshoe Bay. During the summer and particularly on summer weekends, it can be very difficult or impossible to find a parking spot. If you don’t want to be stuck or forced to drive your car to Bowen, you may want to make alternative plans prior to driving to Horseshoe Bay.

Public buses: Public transit to Horseshoe Bay via the West Vancouver Blue Bus is a convenient option. The #257 is the Horseshoe Bay express bus and the #250 Horseshoe Bay bus is slower but its Marine Drive route offers lovely views of the Straight of Georgia. Find your specific transit details by visiting Translink’s Trip Planner page.

Water taxies: Alternatively, there are two water taxi companies providing regular services from Coal Harbour, Granville Island and Horseshoe Bay. Please visit their respective websites.

English Bay Launch
Cormorant Marine Water Taxi

Travelling on Bowen Island

You don’t need a car to enjoy Bowen Island. The shops and restaurants of Snug Cove are near the ferry dock and marina. Crippen Regional Park’s trails start in Snug Cove and there are three beaches all within walking distance. Artisan Square is also accessible by foot or the public community bus.

Bowen Island does not have a taxi service but it does have a small public community shuttle system connected to Translink, which means you can use your Translink bus pass and tickets. The two bus routes, C10 and C11, are designed to accommodate residents, but you can use the buses to go across island and to visit the western beaches. Search C10 and C11 on Translink’s Trip Planner for specific route information.


Bowen Island offers a terrific selection of bed & breakfast accommodations and vacation cottages and cabins. The island does not have, however, a hotel or camping facility. Reservations are highly recommended in advance to avoid disappointment, as during the busy summer months accommodations can be limited or fully booked. You can research accommodation options via the Internet or the following links have a good selection of listings:

Bowen Online
The Travel Guide to Lodging

Visitor Information

For further information about Bowen Island, please drop us a line. Phone 604-812-5041 or via email:

Additional visitor information is available on Tourism Bowen Island’s website: