Rated as one of the best cold water destination in the world for scuba diving, the water surrounding Vancouver Island and its neighbouring islands is second only to the Red Sea for clarity and diversity of marine life. Winter is the peak season for diving because the temperate waters provide incredible visibility around the Island(s). There are many sites in Ladysmith and Chemainus area and its vicinity for both shore dive and boat dive.
As a premier Vancouver Island B&B, there is direct beach access from Beachside Garden B&B for our guests!
One of these very convenient sites is the Rock Wall at the Elliott Beach Marine Park. Entry to the beach and the rock wall is easy through a ramp from the parking area. The current and tide at Elliott Beach do not present problem for diving, making this a very popular site. Many diving lessons are conducted here as well. There is a moderate amount of marine life such as shrimps, crabs, giant octopus, fishes, sea slugs and snails, sea anemones, sea cucumbers, starfishes, etc. The various species found here are well documented by Terry Fidler, and indeed Terry provides many fabulous pictures of these marine creatures. Here are a few samples:
Above: Giant Denodronotid – by Terry Fidler
Above: Short Plumose Anemones – by Terry Fidler
Above: Sunflower Star (almost 3 feet across) – by Terry Fidler
Other great dives around the 49th Parallel include:
- Boeing 737 and artificial reefs near Chemainus. This is the world’s only Boeing 737 dive site, and over 100 species of marine life have been identified living on this aircraft.
- Bare Point, Chemainus
- Various historical shipwrecks in Porlier Pass
There are various diving charters in the local areas, for equipment rental as well as diving adventures.
If you would like to stay at our Vancouver Island B&B, please get in touch and we’ll let you know how cold the water is!