A mild-weathered stretch of sandy beaches, rugged headlands and peaceful inlets running northwest of Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast offers some of western Canada’s best diving, boating and fishing. A popular spot for soft adventure and hiking, the Sunshine Coast Trail offers Canada’s longest hut-to-hut hike. The only tract of accessible coastline on mainland British Columbia, it’s a possible springboard to Vancouver Island: ferries depart from Powell River, the coast’s largest town, to Comox (on the Island). Most people on short trips make the run to Powell River and then turn tail for Vancouver – there is no alternative route back to the city unless you fly, but there’s plenty to see and do and the coastal journey offers beautiful scenery both ways. Although Hwy-101 ends in Lund, it’s no end of the road, as it’s a jumping-off point to access renowned Marine Park, Desolation Sound and Savary Island. If you are just coming out from Vancouver for the day, note that you will need to make ferry crossings en route: the first is from Horseshoe Bay, from there, it’s a short drive to Gibsons where you pick up Hwy-101 for the 79km run along the coast to Earl’s Cove, and the beautiful (and slightly longer) crossing to Saltery Bay, where the boat provides views of some fine maritime landscapes. The road continues 35km to Powell River before ending 23km later at the picturesque village of Lund.

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