Protection Island

Protection Island is beautiful to look at, but it is also the culture of this place that draws visitors. This is a community where people know their neighbours, and if you don’t say hello to the guy pushing a wheelbarrow down the street (most residents, no matter how wealthy, don’t have a car on this side), you might as well be wearing a “tourist” sign.

There is an interesting blend of types of people here, too, characteristic of the gulf islands in general; there are hippies and rednecks and yuppies, all living in reasonable harmony. There are disputes, but they are handled with the kind of respect that’s typical in intimate neighbourhoods.

Protection Island is so gorgeous, with its dense woods, and beaches that turn exotically sandy when the tide is out. There are heron rookeries in the arbutus groves, where the herons protect their young from predatory eagles by croaking in unison, an intimidating prehistoric chant. Seals and otters also circle the island, which is great for all the kayakers that come exploring, or who commute to the city by water every day.