Texada Island – A Sunshine Coast Dream

Peaceful, Breathtaking, Interesting; you could use any or all of these words to describe Texada Island. None are sufficient.

I visited Texada Island for the first time in July of 2020: masked up, socially distanced, and self-contained in my camper van, of course.

Remember to follow all Covid-19 protocols when visiting other communities. It is also a good idea to visit the social media community pages and ask if a visit would be welcome at this time.

I did for this visit.

Located between the Malaspina Strait and the Salish Sea, Texada Island is 300+ square kilometers of paradise. Everywhere you look, you will see something stunning—a beautiful fairyland forest in one direction, vast open ocean views in another.

How to Get There

Getting to Texada takes a little work but be assured you will not regret it. You can reach Texada from Comox on Vancouver Island or Powell River on the Sunshine Coast Side. 

Coming from Vancouver or the Lower Sunshine Coast; it will be a multiple ferry trip. 

Don’t know much about Texada Island?  Spend a little time learning about it before you go. There are hidden treasures you don’t want to miss.

Texada Island is a fascinating place whose first inhabitants date back over 3000 years. It was visited in the late 1700s by Spanish explorers from whom it got its name. The 1800s brought a minor gold rush and settlement.

Some of Texada’s current residents are the descendants of early pioneers. 

Texada Island’s fortunes have changed over the decades from mining (copper and iron), to forming limestone quarries, and finally small-scale logging. The wealth of industries have come and gone over time. Today, Texada Island has evolved into a charming community of artists and entrepreneurs.

Where To Stay 

There are three main campsites in Texada. 

  • Shelter Point
  • Shingles Beach
  • Bobs Lake

Shelter Point 

If you like amenities like potable water, showers, and flush toilets when you camp, Shelter Point Campground is for you. Aside from these apparent luxuries, you will find roomy campsites and ocean vistas. 

View from Shelter Point
– Photograph by Ramona Hartley 2020

Shingles Beach and Bob’s Lake

If your vibe is more of a roughing it wilderness camp style, you will love Shingles Beach and Bob’s Lake.

I drove up, up, up to Bob’s Lake campsite but did not stay there. I can tell you it is a gorgeous location and worth the drive.

You need to do the drive-up because the route takes you through jaw-dropping pastoral farmlands and breathtaking alpine meadows. 

The Drive to Bob’s Lake – Photograph by Ramona Hartley

I stayed at Shingles Beach campground for my Texada getaway, and I plan to stay there again. Shingles Beach has it all when it comes to large campsites, epic views, and a friendly camp host. 

You will need to bring potable water, and the bathroom facilities are on the rustic side. Shingles Beach Campground is a strictly – pack out what you pack in – kind of site. 

You can find Shingles Beach Campground, on the southwest-facing side of Texada Island.

Fun at Shingles Beach – Photograph by Ramona Hartley 2020

Note: Drive with caution as the island has a huge deer population, who are not afraid of the roads.

TEXADA ISLAND FAWN

Things to Do

Texada Island has all kinds of things to do; you can go kayaking and canoeing on one of the ten lakes. If you like birdwatching, you can try to spot some of the 250 species that call the island their home. From Whale watching to mountain biking, I swear you will not be bored. 

Hikes 

Leave your bear spray at home because there are no large predators on Texada Island. You will need to plan many return visits if you want to explore the Islands 33 hiking trails.

As usual, I wanted to do all of the things, but time was short, so I settled on two short hikes.

Stromberg Falls

Stromberg Falls is a mysterious place with a disappearing waterfall. One feature of this trail – the reason the waterfall disappears –  is the sinkholes. 

When there has been a lot of rain or runoff, the falls are in full flow. In the drier months, it disappears, and the water flows underground through the sinkholes. 

A word of caution, Stromberg Falls is a user-maintained trail, and as short as it is (1.6 km.), you will need to use care, especially around the sinkholes. Keep your kids, and pets close. 

Shelter Point Nature Trail

For a more family-friendly outing, try the Shelter Point Nature Trail. The paths are well-groomed, and they meander through old-growth forest, along bluffs, and beside beaches—a pretty walk. 

The Big Tree at Shelter Nature Trail

Photography

Don’t head to Texada Island without your Camera. The variety of landscapes you will encounter are incredible; the more you explore, the more you will find. Here are some of the images I captured on this trip. 

Heisholt Lake

Heisolt Lake started its life as a limestone quarry. The beauty of this spot is almost beyond description. The emerald water of the lake reflect the tall trees at it’s rim, the sky, and the rock pillars that jut up from its depths.

As Heisolt Lake is on private property I can’t share its location. But, if you want to find it, it is not hard, just look for the cars parked along side Shelter Point road.

By the time I got here I had lost the light.

Beaches and Bluffs

Every day I spent on Texada Island ended in a golden blaze. There is no shortage of places to capture a glorious sunrise or sunset. I caught this one off the bluffs at Shingles Beach Campground.

Sunset off the Bluff at Shingles Beach Campground – Photograph by Ramona Hartley 2020

Last Words

When visiting Texada Island or any part of the beautiful Sunshine Coast. Be mindful of the first peoples who inhabit these lands. Texada Island is the Tla’amin people’s home, and the island is peppered with important archaeological and protected heritage sites. Please be respectful; If you wander across one of these areas walk softly and leave quickly. Please do not disturb these areas. 

Thank You for joining me on another Sunshine Coast adventure. If there is anything you want to know about the Sunshine Coast, leave your question in the comments, I am always happy have a chat.

Watch this video of my trip To Texada Island

For more images of hikes and trips, check out my Instagram

If you enjoy my photography and would like to to purchase a print please visit my FAA website.

2 thoughts on “Texada Island – A Sunshine Coast Dream

  1. It is so serene! I find all you post fascinating with insight into a world so different from mine. The countryside, beaches, and verdant hiking trails, all look so wonderful. Thanks for sharing … I sometimes feel like I am tagging along on your sojourns.

    Liked by 1 person

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