2 Hour Family Fun Tour

2 Hour Family Fun Tour

July and August

Starting at $65 CAD / Adult

Rates

July 1st - August 31st

Adult $75
Under 14 $65
Check Availability
Trip Focus:
Family fun and relaxed nature interpretation
Start Location:
Telegraph Cove, Northern Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada
Arrival Time:
30 minutes prior to departure time (9:30 a.m. or 1:30 a.m.)
Start and end time:
Trips run from 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. & 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Start Dates:
Every day from July 1st to August 31st
Meals Included:
None. Bring a snack and something to drink
Experience Required:
None. We use stable tandem sea kayaks and provide all required kayaking equipment
Suitability:
This trip is suitable for all over 5 years old

Led by our experienced and qualified guides, spend two hours on our tour, paddling in and around the small islands and coves near Telegraph Cove. These trips are designed to be comfortable, approachable and fun for all! This tour will immerse you in the beauty of the pacific northwest whether you are travelling with children, friends, or solo.

Explore the shoreline, islets and coves surrounding Telegraph Cove!

We typically encounter bald eagles, seals, massive groves of bull kelp, entertaining jumping herring, sea stars and other intertidal life on our two-hour tours. The beautiful British Columbian mainland mountains create an incredible backdrop for an evening paddle. These tours are appropriate for anyone! Follow along next to your guide and you will likely find something you have never seen before.

Though our shorter tours are sometimes treated to incredible orca, humpback, sea lion, and dolphin encounters, we do not guarantee any larger marine mammal sightings. If larger wildlife is something you would like to see, consider joining us on a multi-day tour! The longer you spend on the water, the better your chances of spotting wildlife become.

Itinerary

We always get asked, “Will I see whales on an evening trip?” While chances of a whale encounter are minimal, they do happen on a few trips a week – especially from the last week of July to the first week of September. More frequently (but not on every trip), you will see Dall’s porpoises, seals, deer, minks and river otters. Sometimes, you’ll even spot a black bear searching the shoreline for a free meal. Your guide will be using a marine VHF radios to communicate with other guides regarding wildlife sightings. If there are any reports of orcas, bears or other large mammals in your immediate area, your guides will do their best to ensure your group does not miss the opportunity to see them!

The 2 Hour Family Fun Guided Sea Kayak Tour is ideal for those who are new to kayaking, visitors who only have a short period of time to spare or anyone who wants to get out on the water. No previous experience is required. We use very stable two-seated, enclosed sea kayaks. We also provide all paddling equipment, employ qualified sea kayak guides, and conduct a pre-departure training and safety briefing.

The 2 Hour Family Fun Kayak Tour is scheduled to depart every day in July and August, at 10am and 2pm, so there is bound to be a tour that meets your schedule. As we run these tours with small groups, we advise that you call ahead or come visit with us at the store in Telegraph Cove to reserve your place and avoid disappointment.

Features

Abundant Wildlife

The Queen Charlotte and Johnstone Straits attract an abundance of marine mammals in the summers but are much quieter in the winters. Because of this seasonality, we ask guests to pair their wildlife hopes appropriately with the dates of their visit. Please see our wildlife seasonality graph below:

Our Wildlife Seasonality Chart is based on data collected from 3-day trips. We do not guarantee sightings of any kind. The more time you spend on the water, the better your chances of wildlife sighting become!

Click here to view a larger version of the chart


Orca

Over 200 Northern Resident Orcas call this area home in the summer. These oceanic mammals travel in family pods and forage in the Johnstone and Queen Charlotte Straits for their favourite food: the chinook salmon. They reside in the Straits for an average of two months, typically arriving around mid-July and staying until early September.

Larger, more nomadic Transient Orcas (Bigg’s) are seen sporadically in the waters as well. They travel and behave less predictably, but occasionally pass by in a typically quiet and stealthy fashion (unless a porpoise crosses their path…).

Steller Sea Lions
Steller sea lions, the largest sea lion, call this area home all year round. However, many more arrive in August and can be seen (and smelled), lounging on their favourite rocks in large groups, sometimes encompassing more than 40 members. Sea lions are curious creatures and groups are often joined by friendly pairs as you paddle in Blackfish Sound.

Year Round Wildlife
Harbor seals, bald eagles, pacific white-sided dolphins, Dall’s porpoises, black bears, minks and salmon are spotted all year round in the straits. The cold, nutrient rich waters create an incredible ecosystem. Beyond mammals, the abundant intertidal life in the straits is often underrated. Sea stars, chitons, barnacles, limpids, anemones, and urchins thrive in the straits and are often easy to find at low tide. Their alien forms and behaviours are both interesting and illuminating as some intertidal creatures’ physical structures have remained relatively unchanged for over half a billion years.

Historic Telegraph Cove, British Columbia

Located in Northern Vancouver Island, approximately 200 km northwest of Campbell River, BC, the community of Telegraph Cove has around 20 year-round inhabitants. It was formerly home to a cannery, a mill for the Canadian Air Force, and a telegraph post. It now serves as a starting point for many forms of eco-tourism.

Telegraph Cove is the departure and return point of all our trips. Because we are based in the cove, we have priority access to boat launches, allowing you to be first on the water. After only two minutes of paddling, you will be in the heart of the dynamic Johnstone Strait.

Telegraph Cove, and its nearest neighbouring community, Port McNeill, have multiple accommodation options available for you, prior to your trip. Please see our list of recommended accommodations in the area. In addition to kayaking, a variety of other adventures are available during your stay in the cove: grizzly bear tours, boat assisted whale watching, hikes, an art gallery, beach access and excellent dining options. Please see our list of things to do in Telegraph Cove.

The incredible Whale Interpretive Center, located beside our shop, is home to over 30 marine mammal skeletons. It must not be missed! Finally, you will frequently see bald eagles, minks, river otters, black bears, and even whales before we leave the dock.

Experienced SKGABC Certified Guides

Our outstanding team of SKGABC certified guides is the backbone of our company, facilitating your experience from start to finish. On trips, our guides fill the roles of group leader, paddling instructor, naturalist, risk-manager, weather forecaster, chef, wildlife tracker, and your new best friend. Our team is made up of an incredible group of people, all with unique stories and backgrounds and inescapable passions for the outdoors and the area we operate in. This passion brings our guides back to the Strait summer after summer. On average, our lead guides spend three years at NIK, and Brad has been with us for 21!

Our team of returning staff means that your guide knows the area well. This allows them to craft your day around the local forecast, currents, and wildlife patterns from a position of knowledge and experience. If the fog rolls in, the wind picks up, or the sun shines down, your guide will know how to make the most of the day. We trust our guides fully to manage your experience with a focus on safety, comfort, and wonder. 

Quality Equipment

We provide all camping and kayaking equipment for our tours. Come with the clothing and personal items noted in the ‘What to Bring’ section and we do the rest. Some of the equipment we provide for our trips includes:

Double Kayaks
All of our day tours use durable plastic double kayaks. These kayaks are as stable as it gets. They have plenty of room for storage, bungees on their decks for quick access to water bottles, and comfortable seats and backrests.

Dry Bags
We will provide you with dry bags for any personal belongings you would like to bring. If you want your snacks to stay nice and dry, dry bags are the best way to store them. Dry bags are leak-free, 99% of the time, every time. Due to the small chance that dry bags can leak, we recommend storing electronics in a more rugged container within a dry bag.

Paddles, Spray Skirts, PFDs, and Safety Equipment
After we dress you up for your adventure, you will be ready for the runway! We have PFDs, paddles, and spray skirts that will work for everyone. Your safety and comfort are our highest priorities.

Fluid Itineraries

No two trips are the same! We pride ourselves on our fluid itineraries. The weather, tides, wildlife, and interests of groups are different every trip. Because of this, we both trust and empower our guides to adapt the trip as they see fit, so you can have the best experience possible!

What to bring

Day Trip Packing List

  • Warren B
    5 star rating

    Highlight of my summer! Absoluely amazing 4-day kayak tour with Marc and Mia. Both guides were oustanding. They were very knowledgeable, supportive, and placed our safety first, followed closely by enjoyment. The boats were comfortable, stable and tracked well. The camps were in beautiful locations, the tents were spacious, the beds comfortable, and the food was outstanding. Much to my chagrin I gained weight. Did I mention whales? There's nothing like waking up in the morning in your tent to the sound of humpbacks btreathing just offshore. Thank you NIK! I'll be back. …

  • EF
    5 star rating

    Fantastic - Day Trip Just finished a day tour a few days ago. First Telegraph cove is a great location to Kayak because of the scenery and likelihood of seeing whales. While seeing whales is hit and miss we were very lucky to catch multiple pods of Orca's. The key thing is our guide, Liv (sp?) knew there were some whales sighted and mentioned that us early in the trip. She was able to take advantage of that insight (info) and maneuver us to get great views (while still being safe). On safety, it seemed to be top of her mind also as we had to cut our trip a bit short due to heavy winds starting to role in... and that was the way it should be .. with novices like us …

  • Elaine C
    5 star rating

    The apex of summer We set out for the half-day (4hour) kayak trip at 1pm. The clouds vanished and we found ourselves in for a glorious afternoon. Our guide, Reed, was knowledgeable, competent, and friendly - he helped to make for a great afternoon. We saw a humpback whale in the distance, two pods of orcas quite close up, and then a variety of other creatures like old growth trees, sea urchins, and bald-headed eagles. Best afternoon! …

  • Jenn W
    5 star rating

    Amazing Experience I did the half day kayak with Mia and Nadia. They were amazing. So friendly and knowledgeable. Their instructions were easy follow. Definitely worth the trip! Thanks ladies. The scenery was beautiful and we lucked out with a nice low tide. Lots to see.

  • Zoela
    5 star rating

    2 hours of educational fun Todd our guide was well versed on safety, local flora and fauna. A fun 2 hours - especially for children!

  • Terri T
    4 star rating

    Great paddle showcasing Beautiful BC! Thank you to Todd who led an informative and entertaining 2-hour kayak tour for my husband, myself and our 19yr old daughter out of Telegraph Cove. We encountered several curious Sea Lions and a bald eagles but alas no whales nearby (tho we did see one spout about 3km away). The spectacular beauty of the pristine coastline and serenity of the sea were the real superstars today. The light rain at the end really made us feel at home! Would like to return one day for a multi day expedition which may yield more possibilities to see more wildlife and marine life. Best of luck to you Todd!! …

  • Richard C
    5 star rating

    Morning trip along the shore of Telegraph Cove Thank to our guides Nadia and Mia for the amasing morning trip that we had, that was really awesome and even the weather was on our side. I recommand North Island Kayak to anybody who want to try kayaking for the 1ers time or for those who just loved kayaking, go to Telegraph Cove... …

  • Olivia S
    5 star rating

    North island kayak is a can’t miss!! Just went yesterday for a day tour with Nadia and Vince. They were amazing and very knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna including the importance of the bull kelp forests for supporting the ecosystem. We saw lots of wildlife including a black bear and her cub, lots of orcas, and finding and holding sea urchins we found in the kelp forest. All around it was a fantastic day and I HIGHLY recommend it. If you want to experience BC the way it’s meant to be, kayaking in telegraph cove is a can’t miss! …

  • Mike C
    5 star rating

    Very rare to have a trip this amazing! Can’t say enough good things about our 6 day - 5 night kayak and camping trip with North Island Kayak. We did luck out with the weather, wind, tides and plentiful wildlife, but the things within NIK’s control were excellent as well. The food was unbelievable as we had fresh and delicious meals the entire time (no freeze dried camping meals here). Our route and itinerary was very well planned out. The one thing that really made the trip was our guides Al and Vince. These guys were so easy to travel with, fun to be around and they worked really hard doing all the camp chores so that we could just spend our time exploring and relaxing. These guys were the key to how awesome our trip was and if we were to go on another trip we would definitely ask for them. …

  • A P
    5 star rating

    Whale of a time We had a great tour with Mia earlier this week. Luckily we were the only two booked on the tour, which made things pretty speedy (we’re experienced kayakers). Mia knew loads about all the local wildlife, sea creatures and even the native plants and lichen. We learned some new things about whales too and were lucky enough to get to see several of them swimming in the strait! It was fantastic. …