Driving North on Vancouver Island along Oceanside Route 19A 

There is an allure to driving north along the Oceanside Route 19a starting around Nanaimo and finishing in Campbell River. The beauty of the forest laid out amongst the inlets, coves, and creeks all situated beside the Salish Sea. 

We were advised this route would add an hour or so, to the overall passage north to Port Hardy, Port McNeil and Telegraph Cove. 

Neither of us were concerned at the time we began up the coast looking at one small sea side town after another. Each town had its own appeals; pub, cafe, boutique shopping, seaside boardwalk and marina. 

We discussed the various forms of accommodations and housing which we came across: size, dilapidation, era, landscaping and overall appeal.

We were trying to answer a couple of easy questions for our future selves;

  1.  Does this town appeal to our current needs as people: coffee shop, golf course, gluten-free restaurants, hiking trails, and water sports 
  2. Is there ample lodging choices? 
  3. What are the local attractions: adventure sports, murals, totem poles or, hot springs

Our conclusion a little surprising to us as we drifted into Campbell River to fetch fuel for the car. 

We chatted and compared our recollections of the towns, that we liked and didn’t. Here’s our short list of places to revisit in no particular order:

  1. Parksville
  2. Royston 
  3. Courtney