Powell River City Centre
Powell River city centre is a concentrated area of residences, shopping, community services and hotel accommodation. It is also where major events typically take place: International Choral Kathaumixw at the Recreation Complex, Seafair at Willingdon Beach, and Blackberry Festival along Marine Avenue, to name a few. The best part about our city centre is that you can go from Marine Avenue shops to secluded, tranquil nature within one hour!
Welcome to Powell River’s city centre. Here, you can find many hotel accommodations, the local airport, and ferry access to Vancouver Island. Marine Avenue is the hotspot for local shops, restaurants, and galleries, and is the site of the famous Blackberry Festival street party in August. There is also a recreation centre and Willingdon Beach, which has a campsite, nature trail, museums, and mini-golf just steps away.
The area around Cranberry Lake is largely residential, but a park on its north side offers a delightful view of its tranquil waters covered in lily pads. Just north of Cranberry Lake is Powell Lake’s Mowat Bay, a popular local swimming beach with nearby Sunshine Coast Trail access. Just past Cranberry’s cemetery, hikers can enjoy the 25-minute staircase to the top of Valentine Mountain, which offers stunning views of the Townsite and Malaspina Strait.
Townsite is one of three nationally designated historic districts in BC, a neighborhood of arts and crafts style homes and unique historic buildings from the early 20th century. The district was built around the paper mill on a Garden City plan designed to enhance the area’s natural beauty and attract newcomers to a single-industry town.
The neighborhood has a remarkable number of unique features: the longest running movie theatre in Canada, the world’s largest floating breakwater of WWI and WWII ships, and St. Luke’s Hospital, where the first medical plan in BC was introduced, to name a few. The area has undergone a revival in the last few years, with upgrades to the theatre’s sound and projection systems, new restaurants, permaculture gardens and a must-see Federal Building-turned-Craft Brewery. The Townsite Heritage Society offers tours of the area in the summer.
Beyond Powell River’s airport is an agricultural area known as “the Valley.” Visitors can find a lovely local market on Saturdays and Sundays at the fairgrounds just off McLeod Road. Those with 4x4 vehicles, or who are up for a 20-minute hike, can access West Lake via pole line just south of the Fairgrounds. The lake has warm water and is a great family swimming spot.
HAYWIRE BAY & INLAND LAKE
A vehicle-accessible gravel road in Cranberry takes lake-goers to some of the best swimming and camping spots in town. A mere 25-minute drive will take you from the city centre to Inland Lake, a fully wheelchair accessible provincial park. The peaceful Lake is circled by a low-grade 13-km trail and contains 2 Sunshine Coast Trail huts and a campground. Also nearby is Haywire Bay, a popular local family campground. Haywire has great Powell Lake swimming, a communal gazebo with a fire pit, and a new educational facility.