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Vancouver Island - "Victoria Island" and other Misconceptions

Popular misconceptions vrs. facts about Vancouver Island:
Questions about our location and surroundings on Vancouver Island from callers around the world often reveal some basic misconceptions about our part of the world. Below are answered some of the more common misconceptions I have encountered.

: The name of the largest island off the pacific coast of Canada near Vancouver, British Columbia is Victoria Island.
Fact: The correct name is Vancouver Island. This misconception likely arose from the fact that the largest city on Vancouver Island is Victoria, British Columbia's capital city.

Misconception: Vancouver Island is part of the city of Vancouver.
Fact: Vancouver Island is separated from Vancouver, on the mainland of British Columbia, by the 30 to 40 kilometer wide Georgia Straight. 

Misconception: Vancouver Island is within easy reach for day trips while staying in Vancouver.
Fact: Vancouver Island is accessable from the Vancouver area by ferry. The crossing time from Horseshoe Bay, north of Vancouver, to Nanaimo on the central east coast of Vancouver Island is 1 hour and thirty-five minutes. When you include travel time to the ferry terminal and wait time at the terminal, three to four hours is generally required  to reach Vancouver Island.

Misconception: A day or two is enough time to take in most of the sights on Vancouver Island.
Fact: Vancouver Island, with an area of  32,134 square kilometers ( a little larger than Belgium ), is the largest island off the west coast of the continent. Vancouver Island has a wide variety of climatic and geographic zones. Port Hardy at the northern end of Vancouver Island is a seven hour drive from Victoria, at the southern end of Vancouver Island. Give yourself a week if you want to have a reasonable sampling of Vancouver Island as a whole. Plan on a whole summer if you really want to become familiar with the many different  aspects of Vancouver Island.

Misconception: Other communities on Vancouver Island are within commuting distance of Victoria.
Fact: A few are. Most are not.

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