Alert Bay is a small First Nation community located on Cormorant Island which is part of the North Gulf Islands. The island is located off the northern tip of Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada.
The 3 mile long - 1/2 mile wide island is rich in First Nation history and culture. There are hidden beaches with midden shells ( piles of mollusk shells ). The coastline is lined with ceremonial Totem Poles. Carvers sit outside their homes working on their latest carving projects. And on the north end of the island is the U'Mista Cultural Centre.
Today, Cormorant Island, is home to a growing tourism industry. The main points of interest are the U'Mista Cultural Centre, the Totem Poles and the Traditional Big House. U'Mista is a traditional building housing First Nation masks, coppers, traditional clothing and artifacts. The Big House is used for ceremonial potlatches. The Totem Poles vary in size and age with the worlds tallest Totem Pole standing at 173 feet.
The village is small and colorful. Services are limited. Some of the services important to travelers located in the village and on the island include accommodations, a restaurant, a pub, a marina, a general store and some gift shops.
Some of the more popular activities enjoyed on and near Cormorant Island include wildlife tours, boating, fishing, kayaking, sailing, scuba diving, sightseeing and birdwatching. Alert Bay is known to many as the " Home of the Killer Whale" because of a rubbing beach located on the island and because of its close proximity to the Robson Bight Ecological Reserve. Some of the tours and guides operate from the small island, while others are based on Vancouver Island near Port McNeill.
Near Alert Bay are some self guided walks ideal for touring the island. The Boardwalk Seawalk follows the coastline exploring the community, burial grounds, sandy beaches and Totem Poles. Take some time and explore inland and there is an Ecological Park and a wetland with a boardwalk trail. An ideal site for birdwatching.
Travel Highway 19 to the community of Port McNeill which is located on the north end of Vancouver Island, BC, Canada. In the community of Port McNeill, on the waterfront, is a ferry terminal transporting people and vehicles to Alert Bay on Cormorant Island.