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Departure Bay is a beautiful oceanside neighbourhood, a bowl-shaped valley rising from a large beach.

It is a highly desirable area owing to its spectacular ocean views, large swimming beach and park, well-kept homes, and central location. Almost anyone who's been to Nanaimo will be familiar with Departure Bay as the large bay where the ferry arrives from Vancouver. (But the ferry terminal is not in the residential area referred to as Departure Bay - it's in the Brechin Hill neighbourhood.)

There are luxury waterfront houses down by the beach of course, but as you go uphill you'll find different types of neighbourhoods. At the southern end are Cilaire and Beach Estates - then further north is the Lynburn neighbourhood, also notable for its mid-century and higher-end postwar homes. There are some strata buildings close to the beach, and then to the north, the land rises as dark basalt bluffs covered in houses of wood and glass. Sherwood Forest is tucked into here (with streets named Prince John Way, Marion Way, Bowstring Close, Nottingham, etc.).

North of Sherwood Forest there is still a lot of undeveloped land (beautiful undulating lands with arbutus and moss and towering firs and hemlock), with multiple ridges rolling back toward the Hammond Bay area. These ridges are still being developed with beautiful newer custom homes, but a large area has also been preserved as hiking trails and protected lakes.

Amenities are very near with several big malls within a 10 min drive. But even closer are the many beaches and rocky shores, most notably Pipers Lagoon and Neck Point, and of course the long sandy Departure Bay Beach, a popular (but seldom crowded) swimming beach with a playground, grassy lawn, driftwood hide-outs and a coffee shop.

Need help buying or selling in Departure Bay? Contact me.

Properties for Sale in Departure Bay

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New
3570 Norwell Dr 1, Nanaimo

$430,000

3570 Norwell Dr 1, Nanaimo

2 Beds 3 Baths 1,235 SqFt 0 SqFt Lot Row/Townhouse MLS® # 890172

RE/MAX Of Nanaimo

New
3745 Elworthy Pl, Nanaimo

$629,900

3745 Elworthy Pl, Nanaimo

3 Beds 2 Baths 1,370 SqFt 8,277 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 890681

Sutton Group-West Coast Realty (Nan)

New
1455 Montrose Ave, Nanaimo

$724,900

1455 Montrose Ave, Nanaimo

4 Beds 3 Baths 2,466 SqFt 13,940 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 890488

460 Realty Inc. (NA)

New
2821 Biscayne Bay, Nanaimo

$849,900

2821 Biscayne Bay, Nanaimo

4 Beds 3 Baths 2,279 SqFt 10,890 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 890195

Sutton Group-West Coast Realty (Nan)

3245 Granite Park Rd, Nanaimo

$1,298,800

3245 Granite Park Rd, Nanaimo

0 Beds 0 Baths 0 SqFt 148,540 SqFt Lot Land MLS® # 890491

RE/MAX Of Nanaimo

2212 Departure Bay Rd, Nanaimo

$1,299,000

2212 Departure Bay Rd, Nanaimo

7 Beds 4 Baths 3,738 SqFt 13,068 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 890308

460 Realty Inc. (NA)

1415 Loat St, Nanaimo

$1,788,888

1415 Loat St, Nanaimo

7 Beds 4 Baths 2,517 SqFt 33,542 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 890138

460 Realty Inc. (NA)

103 Amphion Terr, Nanaimo

$599,999

103 Amphion Terr, Nanaimo

0 Beds 0 Baths 0 SqFt 5,228 SqFt Lot Land MLS® # 889451

Sutton Group-West Coast Realty (Nan)

3369 Barrington Rd A, Nanaimo

$799,999

3369 Barrington Rd A, Nanaimo

3 Beds 3 Baths 3,426 SqFt 8,712 SqFt Lot Half Duplex MLS® # 889313

Sutton Group-West Coast Realty (Nan)

3369 Barrington Rd B, Nanaimo

$840,000

3369 Barrington Rd B, Nanaimo

3 Beds 3 Baths 1,750 SqFt 8,712 SqFt Lot Half Duplex MLS® # 889305

Sutton Group-West Coast Realty (Nan)

1217 Manzanita Pl 104, Nanaimo

$989,000

1217 Manzanita Pl 104, Nanaimo

3 Beds 4 Baths 1,871 SqFt 38,333 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 889275

RE/MAX Ocean Pointe Realty (LD)

1217 Manzanita Pl 102, Nanaimo

$969,000

1217 Manzanita Pl 102, Nanaimo

3 Beds 4 Baths 1,844 SqFt 38,333 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 889274

RE/MAX Ocean Pointe Realty (LD)

View of dozens of Departure Bay homes among the trees

Nearby Schools:

  • Rock City Elementary ; 3741 Departure Bay Rd
  • Departure Bay Elementary ; 3004 Departure Bay Rd
  • Cilaire Elementary ; 25 Cilaire Dr
  • Wellington Secondary ; 3135 Mexicana Rd

Did You Know?

The first telephone line in British Columbia was installed here in the 1880s - it ran from the wharves at Departure Bay up to the coal town of Wellington (now part of Nanaimo, between Diver Lake and Long Lake). One of the mining engineers assembled the telephone system based on instructions he saw in a science magazine.

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Areas of Departure Bay, Nanaimo