WEST COAST WILDERNESS, CLOSE TO HOME
The bustling energy of Victoria, British Columbia, makes for an exciting city experience. And for those who crave an escape to the wild, just minutes outside of the city boundaries lies a place teeming with nature.
Welcome to Goldstream Provincial Park, an area surrounded by an old growth forest, full of ancient trees, lush ferns, rushing waterfalls, and a constant chorus of wildlife. The park truly encompasses accessibility in its proximity to the most densely populated area on Vancouver Island. One of the best things about this park is its diversity of activities. With numerous avenues to explore throughout the park, naturalists, athletes, and explorers unite.
The park’s series of trails make hiking to and from its beautiful landmarks memorable. A range of trail difficulties allows everyone to be included, with some of the walks being accessible by wheelchair. Surrounded by nature, a feeling of home and belonging rushes over you no matter where you are in the park.
Camping is a big attraction at Goldstream, and for good reason. The carefully-maintained landscape of the park’s campground keeps the area wild, but clean of waste. In the middle of the space is an elaborate playground that blends into its natural surroundings with a BMX track that runs alongside it. A perfect spot for kids to play and embrace their endless energy. While some campsites can be quite open, the towering trees surround each campsite, creating the perfect amount of privacy. A mother of a Power To Be participant has brought her son camping on numerous occasions and loves the community feel of the park’s campground, “Goldstream is a great place to camp with kids as there are lots of other children and parents around. There is a sense of camaraderie and shared responsibility that makes it feel like a safe place to let them run and explore. Lots of other families hike the trails and the kids mix easily as they discover new aspects of natural life around the river.”
In addition to spending time simply enjoying the outdoors, the park offers numerous learning opportunities. The Goldstream Nature House is one of the best amenities in the park. Interactive learning stations are scattered throughout the centre with many fun activities. In addition, the on-site staff is always eager to offer insight to activities, as well as run programs and lectures on native wildlife and the history of the park. Just beside the nature centre is an estuary, where every year, chum salmon return from the sea to spawn. During the spawning season, the area is a feeding frenzy with numerous bald eagles flying overhead; and the observation platforms provide optimal viewing during this exciting time.
With so many options made available through the park, getting out in nature has never been so accessible and fun. Whether you want to camp, hike, play, or explore, Goldstream Provincial Park has something for everyone.