The SpaceAhoy Guesthouse is on beautiful Protection Island, a pedestrian-focused, pirate-themed island where everyone says hi to everyone. Easy walk to all beaches and parks, each one special in a different way. Quiet roads where kids can wander safely, and adults can stroll leisurely. Access via foot passenger ferry from downtown Nanaimo (just a short taxi from BC ferry Departure Bay terminal).
Ahoy Guesthouse includes 1100 square feet of privacy on the bright, ground floor of our home. Casual living with original art throughout. Your home away from home. Fully stocked so you only need bring your clothes and groceries.
Master bedroom with queen bed, 2nd room with twin beds - super comfy. Older double sofa bed in living room great for good sleepers. There is a playpen available. Extra blankets and linens as needed. Guests remark frequently on how quiet it is here at night and how well they sleep.
Living room is bright and spacious. Wide variety of books for adults and kids, including fiction, local history, guides to local flora & fauna. Adult, teen, family, and children’s DVDs - range of styles. Puzzles & games for all ages. Kids can spread out in their own play nook. Toys include lego, playmobil, dolls, matchbox cars, stacking cups, & more. In the winter, a charming woodstove keeps you cozy while you relax.
Kitchen includes full size fridge/freezer, microwave, hot plate, convection/toaster oven, crock pot, quesadilla maker, blender, kettle, coffee maker as well as enough dishes, pots, pans, and etc to make whatever you want. Propane BBQ with side burner on patio off kitchen. Pantry basics like organic fair trade coffee, a variety of teas, sugar, honey, 1 litre of milk, spices, oil, and condiments are included. Welcome organic fruit bowl and more. Guests tell us our kitchen cupboards and drawers are impressively stocked compared to other places they have stayed. High chair available.
Peaceful, backyard lawn with rainforest behind in Blackbeard Park. Adults can relax on private patio. Kids can enjoy the trucks, balls, and other toys, swing on the swing, and play in the west coast style playhouse. Older kids and adults can play badminton, fly a frisbee, and more. Beach towels and some beach toys provided for trips to one of the many beaches. Clothesline available for drying swimsuits, towels, etc.
Two bathrooms. Main bathroom is large and includes walk in shower. Towels, robes (4), hairdryer, soap, shampoo, conditioner, basic first aid items provided. Half bath ensuite is off master bedroom.
Notes: Wireless internet available approx. 830am to 1030pm. It is turned off during sleeping hours for health reasons. We can discuss exact timing if that is important for you - we'll be as flexible as we can.
If you have mobility limitations, please contact us to discuss if our guesthouse and the island will fit your needs. Guest AccessGuests have a lot of private space, as described above, as well as use of backyard. The main entrance and mudroom are shared with us, the hosts.
We may need to enter the guesthouse to access the house's electrical panel if there is a problem. As well, if you are staying more than a week, we may request to go through the guesthouse to access our private storage areas. Interaction with GuestsWe love to meet our guests, and we do our best to interact with them at the level of interaction that works for them and their vacation. Some guests want private, quiet space to themselves and that is fine for us. Others love to chat and we do too. We especially love to share information and stories about our unique island life.
We live on the upper floor so will be around frequently to answer any questions and help out as needed.
We welcome LGBT folk and their families. The NeighborhoodProtection Island is one of the smallest gulf islands with about 350 residents living year-round in a peaceful park-like setting. There are lots of trees and greenery, beaches, and gravel roads with 20 km/hr speed limit for bikes, golf carts, and cars alike. A ten minute ride on a quaint foot passenger ferry from downtown Nanaimo on Vancouver Island, B.C. brings you to our amazing island, and a scenic 10 minute walk leads you to Ahoy Guesthouse.
Once here, you can cross the street and walk one minute down a beautiful trail to the closest beach. Check out tidal pools at low tide. Use our beach guide to identify what you find. At very low tides, walk to beautiful Newcastle Island Marine Park (otherwise, you can take a ferry from Nanaimo to get there).
Walking around Protection Island is fun. Walk the rainforest trails, see the impressive community garden, beautiful parks and beaches, playground, the community hall, the "honesty store", and the community museum and library (open limited hours) and chat with friendly islanders. See wildlife up close: heron colony, lots of eagles, raccoons, deer, seals, otters, and more. Eat and drink at the floating Dinghy Dock Pub, bedecked in nautical paraphernalia. Kids section includes a fishing hole for the kids' entertainment! Finally, relax in our yard with the scent of sea and nature, and birdsong all around, or in colder months, inside the guesthouse by the cozy woodstove.
Protection Island is a wonderful and truly unique place with a strong community spirit and beautiful landscape. Guests are warmly greeted by Islanders and are welcome at many community events such as the bathtub race breakfast, annual garden tour, Easter egg hunt, fall fair, and more. There are also music and events at the Dinghy Dock pub, house concerts, and art workshops on the island.
There is one pub on Protection Island open for lunches and dinners and sometimes for Sunday brunch; minors are allowed in the family area. Note that the pub sometimes closes in the winter on certain days of the week. There are no stores on Protection Island but Port Place mall is right across the street from the ferry on the Nanaimo side.
Port Place mall in Nanaimo has Thrifty Foods grocery store, London Drugs, a dollar store, liquor store, Starbucks, a pizza place, other restaurants, and more. The Port Theatre is right by the ferry too and it often has very good shows on. Nanaimo's downtown near the ferry also has funky shops, restaurants, cafes as well as museums and an art gallery. There is a lovely waterfront walkway and a large playground at Maffeo Sutton park, a 10-15 minute walk along the water from the Protection Island ferry. Getting AroundIt is easy to get to Protection Island from downtown Nanaimo on Vancouver Island via the Protection Connection foot passenger ferry (10 min. crossing). Pay parking is available near by. We have a PDF document that we email to guests with details about parking and getting here.
On Protection Island, guests will need to walk. The island is small - takes less than an hour to walk around the whole island, and 10 minutes on low traffic and flat gravel roads to get to Ahoy Guesthouse. Like an islander, you’ll get your gear and groceries to our home using our wheelbarrow and wagon.
If you want to look around Nanaimo, Lantsville, or Parksville, you can take a public bus from a bus stop close to the Protection Island ferry. You can catch the ferry to Gabriola Island from a terminal that is just a minute away from the Protection Island ferry. There are buses from Nanaimo to other cities on Vancouver Island - contact us for more info.
If you need info on options for getting to Nanaimo which is on Vancouver Island, please contact us. Other Things to NoteThe Protection Island ferry takes foot passengers only (no cars). The Protection Island ferry takes 10 minutes and leaves hourly. Cost is $9 per adult round trip.
If you need to bring a car, you will need to park it in Nanaimo. If you are coming from Vancouver, we recommend leaving your car at home - get here by sea plane or by taking on the BC ferry as a foot passenger and a short cab ride to the Protection island ferry (and the grocery store, etc). Contact us if you need more info on the easiest ways to get here, and also for parking info.
Note that there are NO stores on island. The easiest way to get groceries is to shop at Thrifty Foods and then walk your groceries across the street to the dock and Protection Connection ferry. Guests will be provided with a wheelbarrow and wagon to get supplies from the ferry to Ahoy Guesthouse. Don't worry - it is very do-able and islanders are often willing to help, if you need it.
There is no taxi service or vehicle rentals on the island so guests will need to walk to and from the Guesthouse. If you have special needs, please contact us in advance to see if we can arrange some assistance.
The woodstove is available during colder months; it is a cozy addition to the electric baseboard heat that is used. In May, June and September, it is only available with special permission and there is a $5 fee for firewood per day's use. The woodstove is not available for use during the summer due to fire hazard.
While sound-proofing between the floors of our home is very good, plumbing sounds can be heard in the bedroom with twin beds.