The Gulf Islands in British Columbia
There are over 200 Gulf Islands located in the Strait of Georgia between Vancouver Island and the mainland coast of British Columbia. They are known for their natural beauty, mild climate and relaxed way of life. The Gulf Islands are a popular tourist destination that attract visitors who enjoy the beaches, parks, wildlife and recreation opportunities. They are also home to a number of artists, writers and musicians so there is a thriving arts and culture scene. They islands are also home to a number of protected areas including the Gulf Islands National Reserve which encompasses several islands and provides habitat for a variety of plant and animal species. The islands are an important part of the traditional territory of the Coast Salish First Nations who have lived in the region for thousands of years.
It is fast becoming an attractive option and a very wise decision to invest in gulf islands real estate. They offer a unique and desirable lifestyle with access to beaches, parks, outdoor activities and a relaxed way of life. They are perfect for those looking for a vacation property, a retirement home or a rental property. Its important to do your research and understand the local real estate market before making any investment decisions. Prices can vary depending on the island, location of the property and the current market conditions. You should always consider the associated costs with owning a property in a remote location such as transportation, maintenance and property management. Many of the islands have strict regulations on land use, development, zoning and environmental protection which can impact your investment.
One of the most populous and largest of the Gulf Islands is Salt Spring Island. This goes hand in hand with the fact that it also offers the most amenities. Boasting a population of just under 11,000, the island offers modern conveniences such as banks, gas stations and grocery stores, along with luxuries locally owned business such as coffee shops, art galleries and even yoga studios. Real estate here can be a mix of modest cottages, rural properties and upscale waterfront estates. Prices tend to be higher than the average for the region due to its popularity and limited supply of available land. Any person looking to buy property here will enjoy the natural splendor of the island without missing out on the conveniences of the modern world. The list is endless!
Other Southern Gulf Islands with larger populations include Gabriola Island and Pender Island. Buying property on either of these two islands would allow the homeowner to enjoy slightly scaled-back conveniences but enjoy a much larger serving of wilderness that is great for wildlife observation or camping. The islands have a number of parks and trails offering stunning views of the surrounding area. Water activities such as kayaking, fishing and boating are popular here.
If a more rural setting is desired, then look no further than Mayne and Galiano islands. They combine the peace and quiet of an area with a lower population while still offering basic amenities. Groceries can be bought and banking can be done on either island and they both even play host to a few liquor stores so that a relaxing cocktail is never out of reach. This pairs perfectly with enjoying the setting sun on the beach or on the patio of a newly purchased home.
For the ultimate in off-the-beaten-trail gulf islands real estate, try Thetis or Saturna Island. These islands have a population of only a few hundred people each. They possess a rugged beauty and natural charm that is hard to beat for people that like to live on their own and need no help from the modern world.
Ferries run very infrequently and there are no businesses to speak of. If you work for yourself or are independently wealthy, these two islands will make a great break from society. Residents are left to their own devices and the people that do call them home absolutely love it.
The Gulf Islands offer a unique lifestyle in one of Canada's most natural habitats where the islands and surrounding ocean are rich with ecologically diverse plants and wildlife. If living here isn't for you, it's still an amazing part of coastal British Columbia to visit!
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Gulf Islands tourism & recreational activities.
If peace and privacy are what you seek, look no further Gossip Island which is located off the Eastern shore of Galiano Island. It is just a 5 minute boat ride from Whaler Bay on Galiano or a float plane ride if you prefer. It is approximately 4.25 kms or 11 acres in size and features rocky shoreline and dense forested interior as well as a small beach. It is not developed for tourism and is divided into just under 50 oceanfront lots. The homes here use a community water system along with any personal rainwater collection that they have added. Composting toilets are the preferred method of dealing with waste and the power on the island is delivered via an underwater cable that is managed by BC Hydro to have the luxury of electricity and optional internet via Starlink (courtsey of Elon Musk).
There is a shared community dock on Gossip and another one at the goverment dock at Whaler Bay.
If a nature walk is what you are looking for, there is a wildlife preserve in the middle of the island. Most amenities can be conveniently found on Galiano.
Depending on your needs, any of these locations near Victoria would make a great place to build a homestead. From modern to rustic, the Gulf Islands have it all.
'Just listed' - Gossip Island.
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453 Island Park Drive - $849,900
An incredible waterfront home in the heart of the Southern Gulf Islands. Just a five minute boat ride from Galiano Island. A Mediterranean-like climate off the British Columbia Coastline with approximately 91 feet of shorefront, this is an ideal spot for a retired couple or a perfect retreat for those seeking solace or a family getaway. Serenity comes easy with picturesque views from every window offering plenty of natural light. Integrated into nature with cedar sided exterior, an expansive deck and predominantly wood interior of cedar & fir tongue & groove. The open concept provides a seamless flow between living spaces with vaulted ceilings in the living & dining rooms up to the loft. Floor to ceiling windows capitalize on the panoramic ocean views. A vintage 'Heartland' wood stove in the kitchen keeps the home warm and belly's full through the cooler months with separate built-in range plus plenty of counter space and cabinetry with integrated wall oven to round out the heart of the home. Main floor Master bedroom with patio doors to the deck and a wood stove as a secondary heat source to the baseboard electric. A reading nook off the living room for office space or hobby room. A fully equipped workshop with a variety of hand tools & work bench along with a stand up freezer. Full laundry & 3 piece bathroom with composting toilet & outhouse. The almost half acre property has a guest accommodation, storage shed, greenhouse, a hot tub and extensive gardens. Approximately 10,000 gallons of rainwater collection along with access to the monitored community water system. * This property sale comes with all the furniture, carpets, dishware, tools, appliances, firewood & more. Here are some of the other inclusions along with the fees for amenities .
Gossip Island Docking Society - $275 plus GST. Currently a reserved spot on the common dock
Whaler Bay dock - $200 plus GST
Gossip Island Electrical society - $200 annual membership fee plus usage.
Gossip Island Improvement District (water) - $240 per year. GIID fees will go to $260 next year.
Boat with 9.9 hp motor (motor replaced 3 years ago - electric start)
Generator - older but working
Chainsaw- older but never used by current owner.
Table Saw under the house – older, needs maintenance
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