BIA: Where is home for you, and why do you choose to vacation on Bowen Island?
Kristin: We live in Kitsilano (Vancouver). Bowen offers just about everything we want in a vacation spot—and it's so close. We spend as many weekends there as we can possibly fit in!
BIA: What is your favourite thing to do while here?
Kristin: There are so many things that we could characterize as our "favourite." We love hiking, wandering the town, eating in the fantastic restaurants... but if we had to choose, I think we'd say that our favorite thing to do is sit on the deck watching the ferries go by, listening to the sounds of the forest and chatting over a glass of wine.
BIA: You’ve stayed many times at Maureen Armstrong’s Evergreen Cottage. In fact it’s been 7 times this past year alone, a real compliment to Maureen and Bowen Island Accommodations, so thank you for that! With many other vacation rental offerings on Bowen Island, what makes you choose this property each time?
Kristin: Again, many things! Maureen is a wonderful hostess. She has really thought of everything. And the Cottage itself is in a perfect location—walking distance to town, yet a world away. Everything is accessible, yet it couldn't be more peaceful. The property includes a large area of forest with walking trails that we use multiple times a day. Perhaps most important for us is the fact that dogs are very welcome at Evergreen. Maureen is an animal lover and knows that some of us won't leave home without ours!
BIA: Now being very familiar with Bowen Island, do you have a vacation routine you like to settle into, and if so, what do you do, or do you enjoy exploring new things on Bowen each time?
Kristin: We do have a routine now. We can pack ourselves up, hop on the ferry and make ourselves at home in no time. Once there, we unpack and unwind. That's really the priority. That said, when a new business comes to town we love to check it out. This past summer we also invited friends to join us. It was great to be able to introduce people to Bowen.
BIA: What’s your favourite place to eat on Bowen, or do you cook at your residence?
Kristin: We like to cook at home. The kitchen at Evergreen has everything anyone could need to make a delicious meal, and the view while we're doing it is incredible! That said, there are lots of great restaurants in town. I don't think you can go wrong. We do have a routine of getting in line for the ferry on Monday mornings and then going to order take out from the Snug Café. You cannot beat the veggie wrap!
BIA: Do you have any other favourite Bowen businesses you’d like other visitors to know about?
Kristin: While we tend to bring everything we need for our time on the island, it is always good to know that if we have forgotten something we're just about guaranteed to be able to find it on Bowen. Whether it's groceries (including the delicious organic offerings at the Ruddy Potato), pharmacy items, things for our dogs... you can find them on Bowen.
BIA: Any recommendations for folks new to vacationing on Bowen Island (preparations, things to do, places to go, what to bring)?
Kristin: From a practical perspective, know that the ferry crossing is easy. Reservations aren't taken, but they're not needed. If you're there half an hour before the next sailing, you'll be on. I do recommend getting the Experience Card. There is information about it on the BC Ferries website. It saves you an awful lot of money on sailings. Beyond that, just prepare to slow down. The pace and atmosphere is much different from the city, in a very good way. If you do that, you'll get the most out of the time you have there.
BIA: You’ve been here in all seasons, what would you tell others thinking about booking a vacation to Bowen Island in the off-season?
Kristin: We love Bowen at all times of the year. We just spent Thanksgiving there and have spent the last two Christmases there too. Again, you can't go wrong. It's certainly different in winter—not as much time spent on the deck of course! But we trade the "deck time" for "by the wood-burning fireplace time." It's all good.
So glad to hear about what you love on Bowen Island, Kristin, I'm sure others will enjoy your recommendations and tips too!