The restaurants we enjoy in Sechelt

 

restaurants in the Sechelt areaSheila & I love to cook and when we go out for dinner the bar is always high.  The restaurants in this list are the ones that we enjoy, so we’re comfortable recommending them.   I’ve included TripAdvisor ratings to add a more measured perspective, but one mediocre review can often skew the results. So take the rankings with a grain of salt,  perhaps a good quality sea salt from the west coast of Sicily… 

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It’s so relaxing here you may not want to leave… a survival guide to staying at Coracle Cove

We’ve noticed that a lot of our guests don’t want to leave Coracle Cove once they’ve arrived. It’s quite understandable – it’s very relaxing here and the view’s not too bad either…

Winter Sunset on Four Mile Point

Choosing between the hot tub on the waterside deck and the big Adirondak chairs on the dock  may be the toughest decision you’ll make all day. It can get pretty comfortable, and like others you might want to just stay put… Continue reading

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How to beat the winter blues – get up there to Dakota Ridge

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Grab your gloves and toque, winter is here and Dakota Ridge is a winter paradise just waiting to be explored. West coast winter rains mean fresh snow higher up on Dakota Ridge, and you’ll find world-class cross country skiing and snowshoeing right here on the Sunshine Coast. Continue reading

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Bird Watching Holidays on the Sunshine Coast – Cormorants at Coracle Cove

We continue to have periodic visits from these majestic birds throughout the year, and can often see them perched on our dock with their wings outstretched. Most studies suggest that Cormorants spread their wings simply to dry them, although some breeds do flap their wings as a courtship display. Continue reading

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Falling for the Sunshine Coast – Part 1

When I was working, the Fall season always seemed like a glass half empty.  But, now that I get to play all year round, I have time to appreciate its true beauty. I find myself looking forward to its approach, knowing of the opportunities to  capture its many colours…  like these golden leaves floating with some kelp in the bright, low lying sun… Continue reading

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Summer Days on the Sunshine Coast – your first day

The Sunshine Coast is an easy and affordable option for anyone needing a few days away from the daily grind. Imagine taking a stunning ferry ride to another world where the pace is slow, the scenery is breathtaking and the people are friendly.  The  Sunshine Coast is on Vancouver’s doorstep, and it’s only a scenic 40 minutes away, waiting to welcome you to BC’s best kept secret. In this series of seven blogs we’ll unlock the secrets and share some of our best insider tips to help you get the most out of your precious time away.

BC Ferries – Mini Cruise

Our first piece of advice is to get an early start to the day. There’s less traffic on the early morning ferries and you’ve just gained some extra hours for your getaway. Once you’ve boarded the ferry, grab your camera and head up to the outside deck. You’ll get some great pictures as the ferry winds its way through several small islands.

Lower Gibsons is our first destination, so break away from that pack of cars, turn left at the traffic light and follow this quiet country road. Lower  Gibsons was originally a fishing settlement and still holds some of that maritime charm.  There’s a good variety of galleries, coffee shops and some great gelato. Mike’s Gelato was recently named by Vancouver blogger 604 Pulse, as one of the Ten Best Places to get Gelato in the Lower Mainland.

Smitty’s Oyster House

Hungry for lunch? Head down the stairs beside Molly’s Reach where you’ll find Smitty’s Oysterhouse.  They offer the freshest of seafood and you’ll be seated at a communal table just a few feet from the salty brine. After lunch, walk along the boardwalk or head out onto the wharf to look at all the boats. There’s even a floating garden.

Sechelt is only a 25 minute drive from Gibsons so you’ve still got lots of time before your 3:00 check-in. You might even want to pick up a few supplies before-hand so that you can fully relax on our waterside deck after you’ve checked-in. There’s an IGA store along the highway, and a good wine selection at the Lighthouse Wine & Cold Beer store, just as you come into Sechelt.

dinner at the Lighthouse

Keeping with the relaxation theme, our dinner recommendation for tonight is casual and there’s no need to get dressed up. The Lighthouse serves good pub-style food and has a large variety of seating areas, including two large waterside decks offering great views of the busy little harbour and Sechelt Inlet beyond.

After dinner head back home and return to your favourite seat on your other waterside deck. As the evening sets in you’ll be treated to an amazing display of stars set against the dark, dark country skies. Are you starting to feel relaxed…. wait till you see what we’ve planned for tomorrow.

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Kayaking on Sechelt Inlet

Pedals & Paddles celebrated their 21st season on the Sunshine Coast with an Open House this weekend at their fabulous new location on Lamb Bay, just 5-minutes away from Coracle Cove. This is a perfect location to put in a kayak with its protected bay and several nearby islets to explore.

Owner, Laurie Reid is delighted with her new location, situated at the base of Mt. Richardson, saying it has allowed her “to put the pedals back into Pedals & Paddles” as the 78 acre site is riddled with a network of old logging roads just waiting to be explored. Her staff are just in the process of finishing a one-hour green level loop for novice riders and in preparation they’ve added mountain bikes to their line of rentals.

Pedals & Paddles offer rentals for kayaks, canoes and stand-up paddle boards and the latter has become an extremely popular water sport on the protected waters of Sechelt Inlet. They also offer a number of guided tours, both in the morning and evening, as well as once a month under a full moon.

The staff is extremely professional offering personal instruction for new comers to the sport. They provide all of the regulated safety equipment and take the extra time to ensure that you are properly prepared before you set off. The protected waters of Sechelt Inlet are appropriate for beginners, yet also enjoyed by experts for its easy access and spectacular scenery.

Imagine going from city to wilderness in just 2 hours. Sechelt Inlet offers abundant opportunities for viewing wildlife on the water, land and in the air. In the short time I was there I saw eagles soaring in the sky and seals bobbing their heads at the water’s surface. A few weeks ago, while in my own boat I saw a black bear at the shoreline and have been hearing recent reports again this year of dolphins frolicking in the water nearby.

Pedals & Paddles is just a five minute drive from Coracle Cove making it a great option for our guests looking for some outdoor adventure, and whether you’re just a newbie wanting to try something new or a seasoned expert, there’s a variety of choices to meet your needs.

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Hummingbirds at Coracle Cove

As a novice birder, I’ve approached this new-found interest with enthusiasm, and one of the great things that I’ve learned about birding is that it has a season. Migratory birds set off from distant points south, and arrive here on a schedule that has been in place for eons. The arrival of the Rufous Hummingbird is a much anticipated event among local birders here on the Sunshine Coast.

Hummingbirds are of course, are extremely hungry after their migration, which could have been up to 9,000 kilometres long. They’ll stay for most of the summer, providing us with lots of entertaining moments and opportunities for taking pictures like these. It’s one more reason why you should bring your camera when you come to stay at Coracle Cove.

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Spring Birding at Coracle Cove – Part 2

Spring is here and as you can see from this image, we’re having a little trouble keeping our bird feeders filled here at Coracle Cove.

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spotted towhee at feeder

I took this photo from the outside deck off the suite and caught this Spotted Towhee in the act. He’s a bit bigger than most of the others and has a real preference for these black oil sunflower seeds.

Song Sparrow belting it out

We have a large variety of LBJ’s (little brown jobs) mostly from the Sparrow family. This male Song Sparrow has one of the most beautiful mating songs which they sing upon arrival in the Spring to establish territory and attract a mate.

White-crowned sparrow

I think this White-crowned Sparrow is a particularly handsome chap with his black and white stripes, and he’s a pretty good singer as well.

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This is another of those LBJ’s that are sometimes difficult to identify. It looks like a sparrow but the yellow wing and tail feathers ID it as a Pine Siskin, one of the flock of Siskins in the opening image of this blog.

All of these images were taken just a few feet away from our feeders so be sure you bring your camera when you come to Coracle Cove.

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Summer Days on the Sunshine Coast – a day for relaxing

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When I hear the Vancouver traffic report on the radio, I often chuckle, thinking how fortunate I am to be on the Sunshine Coast. This morning, as I was enjoying my coffee down on the dock, I thought it might be fun to send out my own traffic report, and this is the picture that I posted to my Facebook account.

As you may have guessed, today’s blog is all about relaxation and taking time for yourself. This is the fifth in my blog series, Unlocking the Secrets of the Sunshine Coast, where I share my best insider tips to help you get the most out of your getaway.

There’s nothing better for relaxing than a Yoga class and my favourite studio is Yoga by the Sea.   The drop-in rate is only $15 for a two-hour class and they’ve got all the gear you need. The instructors always provide a great mix of both mental and physical activity; the classes are small; and you get as much attention and help as you want. So don’t worry about anything – give it a try.Screen Shot 2016-06-17 at 10.12.46 AM

My dinner recommedation for tonight is the Old Boot in Sechelt.  This is an easy and relaxing dining experience – the food is good, the servings plentiful, and the prices reasonable. The menu is just the right size with a selection of pastas, steak, ribs and seafood. After dinner head back to Coracle Cove and down to your favourite waterside seat on our dock. You’ve had a good day, feeding both the body and the mind, so take some time to remind yourself of how much you have to be happy about.

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