They’ve long been British Columbia’s little slice of paradise – but they may become the world’s in 2016.
The Southern Gulf Islands were named one of the New York Times’ “52 Places to Go” in 2016, the second straight year a place in B.C. has been named to the coveted list produced annually by the world’s most prestigious newspaper.
“We sort of viewed the Gulf Islands as a great getaway, certainly for locals, but also if you’re going to Vancouver, and you want an easy getaway from the city, it’s one that you probably haven’t heard of,” said Dan Saltzstein, the New York Times Travel Editor.
“A short ferry ride (as little as an hour) leads to a maze of Pacific islands dotted with small seaside villages, where summers can feel almost Mediterranean,” they write in their feature.
“Rocky coast and pebble beaches give way to rolling pastures and forested peaks. Winding roads lead from farms and wineries to cheeseries, breweries and artists’ studios. Each of the nearly dozen major islands has its own character and contrarian island culture, but all offer secluded coves and trails to explore, and abundant wildlife, from eagles to orcas.”
Tourism officials were hopeful that the good publicity would result in a traffic increase on BC Ferries in 2016.
“We feel really fortunate that they chose to pick up a great story about the Gulf Islands. It just goes to show that something special is going on in this region,” says Paul Nursey of Tourism Victoria.
“You have to be aware of a destination before you book an itinerary and actually go.”