Colourful Sidney – Home to Freedom Marine’s Vancouver Island Office
5th July 2021
Sidney is a beautiful boating destination. The tulips are blooming, irises have popped from their winter hibernation and the dogwoods are beautiful trees of color. The streets are swept clean and lined with colorful planter boxes. The outdoor and sidewalk seating at the restaurants is open.
Dogwoods in bloom
Outdoor dining in Sidney
Port Sidney Marina is a clean and well ran facility. Due to the narrow entrance, a blind 180-degree turn, and limited maneuvering room, arriving boaters are requested to hail the harbormaster on the VHF Ch. 66A low power and requested a slip assignment and permission to enter the marina. Reservations are recommended.
The floating Port Sidney Marina harbor office is hard to miss
The approach to the marina – which can handle vessels up to 140 feet in length – is between the red (U6) and green (U5) navigation markers, avoiding the reefs on either side of the marina entrance. A red-and-white day-marker to starboard identified the entrance between two overlapping arms of the rock breakwater. Entering through the north opening is not advised, due to rock and shallow depths.
Enjoy Yoga on the Docks hosted by the Port Sidney Marina team
The marina is a beautiful facility adjacent to downtown. The docks are lined with flower baskets hanging from the pilings. There is 30-, 50-, and 100-amp power, water, complimentary Wi-Fi, garbage, recycling, and pumpout station. The floating harbor office houses clean restrooms and showers, an excellent laundry facility with multiple washers and dryers, and a lounge area with TVs.
The charming seaside village of Sidney is pedestrian-friendly offering an excellent variety of stores, specialty shops, and businesses offering unique products and personalized service. With the vibrant boutique shopping district, outdoor activities, and many quaint dining options catering to all tastes, there is something for every crew member.
Wide concrete docks and large flower baskets hang from every piling
Attractions include the scenic 2.5 km Sidney’s Waterfront Walkway, enchanting street statues and murals, a 420 ft. Fishing Pier with a thriving marine life Artificial Reef and self-guided Walking Tour.
Sidney’s Waterfront Walk great place for a leisurely stroll
Stop by the Victoria Distillers, a waterfront distillery offering daily tours and tastings, and try one of Empress Gin’s colourful cocktails. Complete with a cozy lounge and outdoor patio with sweeping views of Mount Baker and the Salish Sea, the distillery will impress even the most discerning libation connoisseur.
Other attractions worth checking out are the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea with over 3500 marine animals offering an interactive, informative, and hands-on experience. The Sidney Museum contains over 8,000 artifacts, everything from calligraphy and Canadian banknotes. Or visit the BC Aviation Museum—kids can sit in the cockpit and get hands-on with the history of aviation.
There are many interesting sculptures and art objects around Sidney
Due to the pandemic and with the current restrictions in place, this year a modified Sidney Street Market has been organized. It will take place in the outdoor parking area at the Mary Winspear Centre every Sunday, May to October, 11:00 am to 3:00 pm.
Sidney is hard to resist when visiting the Gulf Islands.
(Deane Hislop in partnership with Freedom Marine)