Why These Mystical Islands In BC Are On National Geographic’s Must-See list

Travel & Outdoors

Breathtaking, soul-stirring, mystical, sublime – these are just a few of the adjectives visitors use to describe the islands that comprise the Haida Gwaii.

Formerly known as the Queen Charlotte Islands, the Haida Gwaii form an archipelago off British Columbia’s west coast. On shore they are filled a lush, temperate rainforest, bountiful wildlife, and a rich culture.

National Geographic named Haida Gwaii as one of the 20 must-see places in the entire world, and it isn’t hard to see why.

Centuries old totem poles tower proudly in the sky in this mystical place, pointing to a long history rich in culture and spirituality. Even visitors feel the sublime spirit of these islands; nature’s presence is powerful here. Tourists recall hearing the sounds of the forest in a profound way. From songbirds to ravens, rushing rivers to gentle streams, each noise seems intense and crystal clear.

Visiting Haida Gwaii

Indeed, the islands are remote, and far-removed from the chaotic hustle of any major city. For those looking to visit from Vancouver, it will take a couple of plane rides or ferry trips; however, the trip is beyond worth it.

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“The southern part of Haida Gwaii is the first area worldwide to be protected from mountain top to sea bed and is known as the Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, National Marine Conservation Area and Haida Heritage Site. Ancient SGang Gwaay, one of the best examples of a traditional coastal First Nations village site, is on the UNESCO World Heritage list.” reports the Delta Optimist.

Researchers cite that the earliest evidence of human life may even be found in this area. There is evidence that dates back over 14,000 years ago.

Another incredible island experience is on Gabriola Island, where there is a network of sandstone caves near the shores. If you like hiking, this magical hike on Vancouver Island has a rope swing right on the beach!

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