Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Guided tours
No
Backcountry camping
No
Lodging
No
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Only a short distance from Vancouver's core, at the edge of the magnificent Howe Sound is Whytecliff Park. It's a perfect spot for a day trip when you're looking to escape the city. The park is well equipped with playgrounds, a tennis court, and some of the nicest washrooms you'll see in a public building. Its main draw is its unique beachfront and a small island. The main attraction is Whyte Islet, a granite island sitting in the bay connected to the mainland by a causeway of stones. This eye-catching feature makes it the darling of local Instagram culture, especially in summer evenings when the light is excellent.

The islet itself is fairly obvious to get to. A path of large rocks leads out to the island. A well-worn path on steep, rough granite runs up the spine to the top. For tide pools and smaller marine life, stick to the shoreline. A couple of trees dot the rock, but the main highlight is the wildlife. You get an excellent vantage point to observe the seals that live in the area and the seasonal sea lions that tend to hang out. Orcas frequently visit the area as well. It's worth checking tides as people do get frequently stranded out on the island when the tides come in and cover the causeway.  

This is an excellent spot to launch boats and paddleboards, but the access to the beach is a bit tricky with stairs and narrower pathways. Some finesse will be required, and a double kayak could be hard to get into the water here. But once on the water, you will have a great view of the island and the beach. Watch out for traffic and frequent big wakes as Horseshoe Bay Marina and Ferry Terminal are just around the corner.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Summer

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

Day Use Parking

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Iconic Whyte Islet. Good evening light. Amenities. Seals and sea lions.

Cons

Easy to get trapped on the island by rising tides. Lots of boat traffic.

Features

ADA accessible
Family friendly
Flushing toilets
Picnic tables
Covered picnic areas
Off-leash dog area
Geologically significant
Big vistas
Wildflowers
Wildlife
Bird watching
Tide pools
Whale watching
Tennis

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Adventures

Vancouver Metro Area, British Columbia
Vancouver Metro Area, British Columbia

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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