BC Ferries Schedules
In the mid 1800s The Hudson Bay Company was the early pioneer of freight services and passengers between the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island. By 1901, the Canadian Pacific Railway had basically taken over the transportation side of things until the 1960s.
By the late 1950s Premier W.A.C Bennett realized the need for continual reliable ferry services on the West Coast and announced that the British Columbia Ferry Authority would be taking over that service under directive of the Provincial Government.
BC Ferries began with just two ships, only two terminals and about 200 employees.Today they sail with 35 ships with almost 50 destinations and upward of 4700 employees.
BC Ferries Current Schedules
Metro Vancouver-Vancouver Island Routes
Vancouver-Victoria (Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay)
Vancouver-Nanaimo (Tsawwassen-Duke Point)
West Vancouver-Nanaimo (Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay)
Sunshine Coast Routes
West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast (Horseshoe Bay-Langdale)
Sechelt Peninsula-Powell River (Earls Cove-Saltery Bay)
Powell River-Comox (Westview-Little River)
Bowen Island-Vancouver (Snug Cove-Horseshoe Bay)
Langdale-Gambier Island-Keats Island (passengers only)
Sunshine Coast and Powell River PDF
Saanich Inlet Route
Brentwood Bay-Mill Bay
Southern Gulf Islands Routes
Chemainus-Thetis Island-Penelakut Island
Day Trip from Swartz Bay
Galiano Island Departures
Horseshoe Bay-Bowen Island
Mayne Island Departures
Nanaimo Harbour-Gabriola Island
Pender Islands Departures
Salt Spring/Long Hrbr Departures
Saturna Island Departures
BC Ferries was first created in 1958 when employees of CP Steamships and the “Black Ball Line”, also known as the Puget Sound Navigation Company went on strike. At that moment, the government of BC, then run by the Social Credit Party, determined that a government owned and operated Ferry Service was required.
The first Ferry route was commissioned in 1960 between Tsawwassen in South Delta and Swartz Bay which is north of Sidney on Vancouver Island. As the Ferry service expanded, so did communities being serviced by what we know today as BC Ferries.
Through many changes of the Crown Corporation’s name and who ran what over the years, the original concept of BC Ferries lives on today. It is an essential form of commuting for many and provides a lifeline for a lot of the local BC tourism industry.
With BC Ferries running routes among smaller islands along the coast including through the Queen Charlottes, many residents looking to retire have had their options in BC multiplied. Real Estate has become much more available in so many places.
We invite you to visit a place along the BC Ferry routes. Make a mini vacation out of it. Our province is beautiful and our Provincial Ferry service can take you to so many beautiful places.