Nelson, BC, Canada is located on the West Arm of Kootenay Lake in the Kootenay region of British Columbia, Canada. The community is surrounded by adventure – both lake and alpine – including glaciers, natural hot springs, wildlife and the Selkirk, Monashee and Purcell Mountains.
To some, like us, the journey to Nelson, British Columbia, Canada from anywhere in the Kootenays is just as enjoyable as the destination. Part of the reason is the selection of travel routes complimented by the unlimited jaw-dropping scenery, unique villages and wildlife sightings along the way.
The best highway routes which connect to Nelson include Highway 23/6 and Hwy 3/3A and Hwy 31. Each highway providing a different perspective of the Kootenays while connecting with small communities. We have explored them all with great fan fare. All three routes are popular cruising routes for motorbikes, RVs, day trips and classic car runs. On this trip we met up with a refurbished ambulance and camper set up. So cool! So different!
Because we were starting from Revelstoke, BC on this particular journey of curiosity we wanted to reacquainted ourselves with Highway 23 and Hwy 6.
Hwy 23 is a rural route which follows the shoreline of Arrow Lake and includes a ferry crossing near the Arrow Lakes (Shelter Bay) Provincial Park. After the ferry crossing Hwy 6 takes over and visits with the villages of Nakusp and New Denver before connecting travelers with Nelson, B.C.
We love our ferry crossings in Canada. Some are short and sweet. Others take hours – some almost a day. The bigger vessels are like cruise ships. Smaller vessels, in comparison, are like Tonka Toys. There are even some, most in the northern part of Canada, which are attached to cables to assist in fighting river currents. Many of these northern crossings become ice roads in the winter season.
The D.F.V Galena met us at the docks on this particular journey to Nelson, BC. It is a small open air ferry. Many wait in their vehicles as the voyage is not much longer than 20 minutes. But for us social butterflies we always step out of the vehicle on a sunshine day and embrace the fresh air as we take pictures and mingle with others. It is very easy to start a conversation on the smaller ferries. Everyone seems so happy. Why is that?
We left Revelstoke, BC early for our day in Nelson. Before a traveler even reaches the ferry crossing on Arrow Lake there are many adventure temptations to discover along the way like the Begbie Falls Trail, Mt. Macpherson Trails and Blanket Creek Provincial Park and Sutherland Falls. We have visited them all.
After the ferry crossing Highway 6 takes over and guides you to sightseeing and adventure destinations like Summit Lake Provincial Park, Valhalla Provincial Park and the Rosebery Provincial Park. But the hidden gem on the way is the little known rest stop, just after the ferry, called the Ione Rest Stop. Why is it worth mentioning? Well… it is special because most people miss it and they should not because hidden in the back is an amazing easy access waterfall. A great photo moment for all abilities.
We arrived in Nelson and like we always do we parked and did a walk about around town. The colorful buildings, the unique shops and artistic boutiques draw us in every time. During the walk about the collection of colorful people in Nelson provided us with the entertainment. What do I mean by colorful? You will have to visit to see for yourself.
Next we walked down the hill to the waterfront of Nelson. The waterfront trail is a great way to view the community and to introduce yourself to Kootenay Lake.
The most developed part of the trail is in Lakeside Park. The paved walking path is well decorated with viewpoints, sitting benches, playing fields, grass lawns and picnic tables.
Like our previous visits the waterfront was alive with activities. On this visit we saw paddle boarders, sailboats, kayakers and – of course – motor boats on Kootenay Lake. The walking path entertained us with people jogging, walking (some with dogs), biking and swimming. There was never a lack of activity to tease our senses..
In Nelson there are parks to visit as well. We did not have time on this visit but you – on the other hand – should make the time. The parks and trails which have captured our hearts on previous visits include Cottonwood Falls , Grohman Narrows , Kokanee Creek Park , Kokanee Glacier Park and the Sproule Creek Trails .
We spent much of the rest of the day on the waterfront. Time flies when the scenery is right and the sunshine is bright. The next day we headed back to Revelstoke which is our new home base. On the way back along the same route we stopped at the Ione Rest Stop and much of the conversation was about the people watching of Nelson. One of our favourite places to visit in the Kootenays is Nelson. It never lets us down.
For Booking, Planning and Researching Travel and Adventure in Nelson, British Columbia, Canada visit ehCanadaTravel.com at : https://www.ehcanadatravel.com/british-columbia/kootenays/nelson.html