A Rejuvenating Weekend Escape to Nanaimo, BC

We had such a fun friends trip to Nanaimo, BC recently! We got to join our besties Lindsay from Treasures and Travels, Jesse Morrow, and our new local bff Tom Parker for a weekend exploring the wilderness and food scene of Nanaimo. And honestly, we totally fell in love with this charming city on Vancouver Island. It was the perfect weekend escape that was really rejuvenating and relaxing. Here's some of our favorite things to do in Nanaimo:

Nanaimo Hiking Trails

Getting outside and into nature is what Vancouver Island life is all about, and Nanaimo has a ton of easy, medium, and hard hikes for you to take on! Our first hike was to the Mount Benson waterfall, where we got to see beautiful fall foliage along the way.

Another hike was to Ammonite Falls, which wasn't too challenging...until we got to the end. It was super muddy, and to make your way down to see the falls you had to go down with a rope and, well, let's just say that Taylor was covered in mud by the end. Super pretty falls though! Just be careful.


If you're really not into hiking (don't worry, not everyone is) but you still want that beautiful PNW view, head to Sugarloaf Mountain. The name is deceiving as it's not really a mountain, more like a 5 min walk up some stairs and over big rocks, but the views were gorgeous and you could see all of Nanaimo!

Where to Eat in Nanaimo

We always love to find the best coffee shops wherever we go, and we love the guys at Regard Coffee Roasters. Stop in for a local roast and stay a while with their chess set, book collection, and conversational baristas.

We had a delicious breakfast at Gabriel's Cafe, and then headed to the harbour to take in part of the Nanaimo Bar Trail. If you know nanaimo bars, then yes, Nanaimo is where they started! So yummy, and the trail features a ton of super unique takes on the classic Canadian dessert. 

We never would have found the local gem Crow & Gate Pub if it hadn't been for visiting Nanaimo with a local! This place is kind of in the middle of nowhere, but it's so cool. It's a totally legit English-style pub, and it's full of lively locals sipping on pints and enjoying delicious comfort food. Definitely one of the best things to do in Nanaimo!

We decided to go out for a beach fire at Sebastian Fire for sunset, and it was so perfect to just hang out by the ocean with some of our favorite Postmark Brewing beers from back home. 

Stay tuned for more of our Nanaimo trip, and be sure to check out 5 Totally Fun Things to Do in Nanaimo too!