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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.

Condos & Townhomes in Departure Bay

Properties for Sale in Departure Bay

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New
750 Quilchena Cres, Nanaimo

$795,000

750 Quilchena Cres, Nanaimo

2 Beds 2 Baths 1,560 SqFt 8,277 SqFt Lot Half Duplex MLS® # 970280

eXp Realty

New
3365 Departure Bay Rd, Nanaimo

$1,299,900

3365 Departure Bay Rd, Nanaimo

6 Beds 3 Baths 3,134 SqFt 23,523 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 970078

Oakwyn Realty Ltd. (NA)

2582 Highland Blvd, Nanaimo

$359,000

2582 Highland Blvd, Nanaimo

2 Beds 1 Bath 870 SqFt 872 SqFt Lot Row/Townhouse MLS® # 970102

Engel & Volkers Vancouver

New
3477 Maveric Rd, Nanaimo

$699,900

3477 Maveric Rd, Nanaimo

3 Beds 3 Baths 1,925 SqFt 3,485 SqFt Lot Row/Townhouse MLS® # 970057

RE/MAX of Nanaimo

1217 Manzanita Pl 106, Nanaimo

$1,024,900

1217 Manzanita Pl 106, Nanaimo

4 Beds 4 Baths 1,855 SqFt 0 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 969383

RE/MAX of Nanaimo

3268 Stoney Ridge, Nanaimo

$925,000

3268 Stoney Ridge, Nanaimo

3 Beds 3 Baths 2,520 SqFt 0 SqFt Lot Row/Townhouse MLS® # 969662

RE/MAX of Nanaimo

101 Prince John Way, Nanaimo

$1,773,000

101 Prince John Way, Nanaimo

5 Beds 3 Baths 3,168 SqFt 32,670 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 968907

Royal LePage Parksville-Qualicum Beach Realty (PK)

3198 Smugglers Hill Dr, Nanaimo

$799,000

3198 Smugglers Hill Dr, Nanaimo

4 Beds 3 Baths 2,182 SqFt 9,584 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 969369

Century 21 Harbour Realty Ltd.

2711 Country Club Dr, Nanaimo

$699,900

2711 Country Club Dr, Nanaimo

4 Beds 2 Baths 1,907 SqFt 7,406 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 969327

RE/MAX of Nanaimo

3745 Elworthy Pl, Nanaimo

$769,000

3745 Elworthy Pl, Nanaimo

3 Beds 2 Baths 1,370 SqFt 8,277 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 968932

eXp Realty

270 Prince John Way, Nanaimo

$1,324,900

↓ $24,100

270 Prince John Way, Nanaimo

5 Beds 4 Baths 3,196 SqFt 10,019 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 969019

Royal LePage Parksville-Qualicum Beach Realty (PK)

1447 Rose Ann Dr, Nanaimo

$1,099,000

1447 Rose Ann Dr, Nanaimo

4 Beds 3 Baths 2,732 SqFt 8,712 SqFt Lot Single Family Detached MLS® # 968844

RE/MAX of Nanaimo

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