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Kayaking at Smuggler Cove

Porpoise Bay Provincial Park on British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast – A Great Place for a Camping Holiday

The Sunshine Coast has long been the kind of destination that is geographically quite close to Vancouver and the Fraser Valley but feels like a true getaway.

Porpoise Bay Provincial Park
Francis Point Provincial Park | K. Walker

Porpoise Bay Provincial Park is an ideal destination for family fun. At only four kilometres north of Sechelt and at the very south end of the Sechelt Inlet, Porpoise Bay Provincial Park makes an excellent base camp for a larger exploration of the Sunshine Coast. There are plenty of opportunities to get active, whether your chosen speed be relaxing and swimming at the beach, hitting the trails, or exploring the local waterways and marine parks.

If a relaxing, family-friendly getaway is what you seek, Porpoise Bay Provincial Park allows you to easily set up your campsite, wander down to the beach, and basically stay there for the rest of the week. The long sandy beach is ideal for afternoon naps and the gradual grade of a large portion of the beach makes it perfect for splashing around in the shallows. Just keep in mind that there are certain parts of the beach where the shore drops away quickly, and there are no lifeguards on duty.

Porpoise Bay Provincial Park Campground
Porpoise Bay Provincial Park Campground | K. Walker

Adjacent to the beach there is an adventure playground and grassy area perfect for keeping kids entertained. When your day in the sun, salt, and sand is complete, use the hot showers located at either the day use or the campground to tidy up.

From the campground, there are a number of walking trails leading along Angus Creek. After crossing a bridge, head out to the estuary mudflats, which can provide excellent bird watching. The trails are not lengthy and make for a nice morning or evening stroll. Please remember to keep your pets on a leash and stick to the designated trails to protect the sensitive ecosystem.

Porpoise Bay Provincial Park Sandy Beach
Porpoise Bay Provincial Park Sandy Beach | K. Walker

One thing of note at Porpoise Bay Provincial Park is that a clean air policy is in effect at this park. This means that individual campsites do not have campfire rings or allow fires. If there is no campfire ban in effect and s’mores are what you desire, find one of the three communal campfire sites in the campground and get to toasting!

Sechelt Harbour Sunshine Coast
Pender Harbour, Sunshine Coast | K. Walker

If a more active vacation is what you had in mind, exploring the local waterways and marine parks is easily done with Porpoise Bay as a base camp. Sechelt Inlet itself offers plenty of paddling opportunities including everything from relatively protected single day explorations close to the campground to multi-day trips north of Tuwanek and into Salmon or Narrows Inlets – watch out for afternoon headwinds and plan your paddles to maximize the typically calmer mornings when heading back to Tuwanek.

Kayaking from Porpoise Bay
Kayaking at Smuggler Cove Provincial Park | K. Walker

For those seeking a more exposed paddling experience, a number of marine parks dot the western side of the Sunshine Coast and make excellent day paddles. Smuggler Cove Marine Provincial Park is a lovely anchorage and is accessible by paddling around the peninsula from the launching point near Brooks Road. If you don’t have a boat, the marine park is also accessible by a four-kilometre long hiking trail, also leaving from Brooks Road.

Sundown at Porpoise Bay Provincial Park
Sundown at Porpoise Bay Provincial Park | K. Walker

Further up the coast, the community of Pender Harbour makes a good launching point to explore the protected waters of Pender Harbour. For those looking for a little more adventure, heading out around Moore Point and down to Francis Point Provincial Park allows you to really feel the wind in your hair! On your way back, take the time to poke around the many bays and coves inside Pender Harbour and dream about what it would be like to own one of the beautiful properties in the area.

Porpoise Bay Provincial Park on the Sunshine Coast is a beautiful destination with plenty of ways to enjoy the ocean. If land-based activities are more your speed, consider a trip to Skookumchuck Narrows Provincial Park (check out this blog) to take in the misty west coast vibe and marvel at a true wonder of nature.

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For camping accommodations in this area and elsewhere in British Columbia check out the Camping Map.

Share your BC travel and camping photos using hashtag #campinbc #explorebc #bcnice.

Published: August 19th, 2021

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