Queen Charlotte City is located at the southern end of Graham Island
in the Haida Gwaii-Queen Charlotte Islands chain. Two communities
close by to Queen Charlotte City are Sandspit
32 km (20 miles) across Skidegate Channel on Moresby Island and
the Haida community of Skidegate 9 km
(6 miles) north-east on Hwy 16.
Ferries to Skidegate Landing
To get to Queen Charlotte City by vehicle you have to take the BC
Ferries sailing from Prince
Rupert to Skidegate Landing. Once at Skidegate Landing, travel
west for 2 km (1.2 miles) to arrive at Queen Charlotte City.
There are daily flights from Air Canada Jazz from Vancouver International
Airport to Sandspit. If you are coming from Prince Rupert plane
service can also be booked through North Pacific Seaplanes from
the Prince Rupert Seaplane base into Queen Charlotte City. Pacific
Coastal Airlines unfortunately only files into Masset.
Centre for Southern Graham Island
If you're low on supplies, require hardware or services, need a
place to stay or would like to have a meal, Queen Charlotte City
is the main centre for southern Graham Island servicing Skidegate
and Sandspit areas. Available services include a gas station, boat
repairs, a liquor store, Isabel Creek Store, a number of cafés
including a Chinese food restaurant and, for entertainment and cold
refreshments, Howler's Bistro & Pub.
A June tradition in Queen Charlotte City since 1909, Hospital Days
is an event for the whole family. Get out and enjoy the community
celebrating with a parade, midway, concessions, carnival booths,
salmon barbecue, food booths, a ball tournament and a coffee house
with local talent, all followed by a dinner and dance.
There are some very scenic waterfront parks that you can visit when
in Queen Charlotte City. One favourite is Spruce Point Park where
you can find a canoe and kayak launch plus a beautiful southerly
view from Bearskin Bay over to Moresby Island.
Skidegate, a Haida First Nation's community, is very close to Queen
Charlotte City just 9 km (6 miles) west on Hwy 16. Once here you
can marvel at the proud heritage that is displayed either at the
Haida Gwaii Museum or the longhouse displaying a carved pole by
Bill Reid, the famous Haida artist, all located at Qay'llnagaay
Lodge and Heritage Centre.
Edge of the World Music Festival'
A good time to visit Queen Charlotte City is in July when the 'The
Edge of the World Music Festival' takes place. This intimate music
fest features high-quality performers set in the unbelievable beauty
of the Haida Gwaii.
If you like either river fishing or fishing in the ocean, Queen
Charlotte City is an excellent destination. You can try your luck
for Steelhead or Coho on the famous Yakoun, Mamin or Tlell Rivers
or, if you don't mind a short drive, take the only access road to
the West Coast and try ocean fishing off Rennell Sound.
The gravel road to Rennell Sound is only 20 minutes north of Queen
Charlotte City on the Queen Charlotte Mainline, the road that eventually
goes to Juskatla. As soon as you cross the Yakoun River, turn on
the west road for Yakoun Lake and Rennell Sound. Once at the junction
for Yakoun Lake turn, on the road towards the ocean at Rennell Sound.
Once you arrive at Rennell Sound visit 5 Mile Beach where you can
find a picnic site and some excellent beach-combing territory. Some
people are lucky, sometimes stumbling across large glass balls that
the Japanese fish boats have lost from their nets. For Scuba divers
there is a small island off shore that has some underwater caves
plus a really abundant octopus and eel habitat.
Just past 5 Mile Beach you can find the Riley Creek Trail. This
45-minute easy-to-moderate walk takes you through an 'old-growth
forest' where you can find the spirituality feeling amongst 400-year-old
trees and beautiful West Coast ocean views.
After Riley Creek Trailhead, you will come to some short trails
to some more beach areas called Gregory and Bonanza beaches. Just
past Bonanza beach is the wilderness campground at Cone Head.
You can find a couple of fishing charters that work out of Rennell
Sound. The prices are fairly reasonable with excellent fishing action
similar to what you would find and catch off Langara
One of the Haida Gwaii-Queen Charlotte Island's most exciting tour
operates out of Queen Charlotte City with Inland Air Charters. If
you can afford, it this is definitely the ticket with various air
charters into pretty much all of the Haida Gwaii-Queen Charlotte
Islands. A couple of favourite flights include flightseeing tours
into Gwaii Haanas National Park or Hotspring Island.
Forest Service Roads
Just a word of caution when you are driving or travelling on the
backcountry forest service or logging roads around Queen Charlotte
City and the Haida Gwaii. Drive with your lights on, pull over for
large trucks or machinery and make sure that you pull off the road
Closures or Restrictions Telephone Numbers
QC Forest Service (250) 559-6200
Weyerhaeuser, Canada (250) 557-6810
Jones (250) 637-5323
on Queen Charlotte City