If you're looking for waterfront privacy and immersion in nature, this Cortes Island cabin set in 10 acres of forest with stunning sunset views may be what you're looking for. Equipped w/ Wifi, full kitchen, phone. Rustic feel not for everyone.
Reachable by Ferry from Campbell River, Cortes Island is a small island with a progressive counter-culture vibe.
The cabin is fully equipped with full kitchen, bath with tub and sawdust toilet, WiFi, ipod dock (iPhone 4 or earlier connector), tv/dvd, phone for local calls. It has a rustic feel in harmony with nature.
Downstairs is an open living room, dining room and kitchen with wood stove and sunset views west out over Gorge Harbour. Upstairs is a large bedroom with 2 queen beds and 1 double bed.
Surrounding the cabin are large wooden decks built into the mossy bluffs. There is a small rocky beach just below the cabin for swimming and there is a canoe with life jackets and paddles that you can launch there (you'll likely need two people to launch it).
Note: the Wifi is new as of Aug 2014. Getting internet access to this remote spot is a expensive undertaking and there is limited monthly download capacity so we ask you avoid large downloads and it is not appropriate for very heavy users.
Peak summer rentals are Saturday to Saturday only and for a minimum of a week. Other periods the dates are flexible but with a 3 day minimum.
This cabin isn't for everyone so please check with us before booking and we'll make sure the place is right for you. Please also check the location of Cortes Island before booking, to get there from Vancouver requires 3 ferries and about 8 hours so it is not really suitable for a weekend trip from the city unless you are already on Vancouver Island.
Some details / frequently asked questions:
What is a sawdust toilet? There is an indoor toilet but it goes into a bucket (accessed from outside the cabin) which you must empty into an outhouse pit every few days.
We do not live on the island so support is limited. A neighbor can help with emergencies. We do have a cleaner that comes in between visitors but there is no laundry at the cabin and no time for her to do laundry. As such we request visitors either bring their own linens (sheets, towels) or launder any used at the laundromat before they leave. You are also responsible for making sure all your dishes are done, the kitchen is tidy and the toilet pail is emptied before you go. You must also take all garbage with you or to the dump before you leave.
The driveway up to the cabin is gravel and steep in parts. You don't need a 4WD but if there is snow on the ground you may be better off parking at the bottom of the driveway and walking the 300 m or so up to the cabin.
The cabin is spacious but there are just two big open rooms plus the bathroom. The upstairs is separated by an open stairway so keep in mind that you can't close a door and get full noise separation.
Not at all. You will have complete privacy. We are available by phone or a neighbor is available nearby in case of emergencies.
There are two ferries required from Campbell River to reach Cortes Island. One from Campbell River to Quadra Island and then from Quadra to Cortes Island. Check the BC Ferries website for schedule information.
Many visitors have asked us if they can get here without a car. We have had visitors arrive by boat (the harbour is very calm for anchoring but there is no dock) and I've cycled to the cabin myself. But there is no public transport (a taxi is sometimes available on the island) and the cabin is about 8km from either the ferry or most stores/restaurants (in the opposite direction at Manson's Landing) so it's pretty difficult to do without a car.
Distances by road / time driving to
Gorge Harbour Marina: 4.5 km / 6 min
Ferry Terminal: 8 km / 10 min
Squirrel Cove: 7 km / 9 min
Hague Lake (swimming): 7 km / 9 min
Manson's Landing Store, Coop, Community Hall: 8 km / 11 min
Hollyhock: 11 km / 15 min
Internet connection is limited; please no large downloads.
No smoking indoors.
Well behaved pets are ok but dogs must be leashed when outside.
You must bring your own linens (recommended) or launder them before you leave at one of the laundromats on the island (there are no laundry facilities at the cabin).
Kitchen must be left clean and all perishables and garbage removed from cabin on checkout.
Please review other house rules posted on the board when you arrive.
Listing description was accurate - beautiful waterfront spot, lovely cabin, tons of character & well loved. Location is ideal - so quiet and peaceful, and a short drive to access various corners of the island. Overlooking Gorge Harbour we enjoyed sunsets and moonrises, and took the canoe out for a few gentle paddles. The harbour is filled with ducks and shorebirds, and the occasional seal - much to look at while you sip your coffee in the morning.
If you're there in the winter, it's pretty chilly when you're not close to the woodstove, but it's nothing that a piping hot bath (great bathtub) followed by a wool sweater and slippers can't fix. The sawdust toilet is totally fine & a great system - didn't notice it at all.
Doug & Doris were both communicative, friendly, and made the whole process very easy.
Recommended for a quiet winter retreat, filled with reading and canoeing, cups of tea and hot baths. Would love to return in summer to see what it's like!
This cabin is really great. I think how rustic it is just adds to the charm. The hosts were readily available through email and the neigbours, Ben and Anne are great.
Doug's cabin was beautiful. So unique and full of character. You could really tell the place was built and maintained with love. We felt so at home there and can't wait to come back!
Great cabin in a wonderful location!
Cabin was nicely stocked, clean and warm.
Looking forward to the next visit.
Loved the cabin! It was so cozy and peaceful to curl up by the fire and walk along the rocky shore below. You can see harbour seals from the kitchen window, starfish and crabs from the shore, and it's so quiet you can hear ravens flying overhead. I spent a lot of time just staring out the window over the water, the scenery's so lovely. Instructions on finding the place were clear, and everyone on the island is super friendly. The neighbours are there to help if you need anything. This is a great place for a quiet get-away to recharge and be close to nature.
I have been both a guest and a host through Airbnb, and I have found that satisfaction in both cases is based on expectations, and how well those expectations are fulfilled by the host. I have to say that my wife and I were very, very happy with our experience having Doug as a host. The property was fantastic, very accurately described in text and photos on Airbnb and on the property's separate website. We loved the cabin, the property and the island. The views of the harbor from every window were terrific, the cabin was fully equipped and very comfortable. This is NOT a plush place, sterile and meticulously decorated; it is a cabin that has obviously been used and loved for years, developing a character that can't be created overnight. The location on the harbor could not have worked better for us: we arrived from Lund by ancient Boston Whaler, and we were able to anchor right off the shore with a bungee, the water being deep enough to give us access to the boat in spite of pretty significant tidal swings. We had a blast boating through the islands, including a couple of white-knuckle passages (these are big waters for a 17-foot open boat). It is truly a beautiful and memorable part of the world.
Doug was an ideal host, quickly and helpfully responsive to us when we had minor issues with the water system in the cabin. His mother, Doris, came to our rescue after we left our handheld GPS (full of waypoints and routes it had taken us years to accumulate) at the cabin: she had the next renters bring it to her in Vancouver, whereupon she mailed it to us. We really appreciated Doug and Doris.
The only even semi-negative thing we experienced was the sometimes brisk, even mildly hostile treatment we received from some of the islanders working at the stores and restaurants on the island. I guess after catering to the mega-yacht owners who pass through this beautiful harbor all summer, the usually-uber-friendly Canadians run out of friendly at some point.
Stay here if you can! Bring a boat!!