Gwaii Haanas means “Islands of Beauty” and it is easy to see why the people of Haida Gwaii chose this name. This park is located in the southern portion of Haida Gwaii (formerly Queen Charlotte Islands) in Northern BC. The Gwaii Haanas protects a collection of 138 islands, including Moresby Island which is one of the largest. The islands in this national park are naturally diverse with a number of unique species that have evolved on the islands. The beauty of this area is arguably unmatched. With a permanent population of roughly 6,000 residents, the surroundings remain incredibly natural and rugged. This national park is home to a World Heritage UNESCO site and a variety of other sites of historical significance. The Haida people have inhabited these islands for thousands of years and the area is rich in history.
The Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site is a fantastic destination for outdoor and history buffs alike. There are a wide variety of activities to take part in, such as camping, fishing, hiking, kayaking, and visiting the cultural sites. You can take a trip to the Gwaii Haanas with an organized tour, or you can make a reservation and obtain a visitor’s permit. If you decide to explore Gwaii Haanas on your own and camp, be aware that there are no formal campgrounds; you may camp where you like, but there are guidelines to follow and it is advisable to plan your trip carefully. When camping in Gwaii Haanas, the objective is to try to have as little impact on the environment as possible.
Access to facilities in the park itself are limited, but there are amenities in nearby areas. Travelling to Haida Gwaii is relatively easy – with daily seaosonal flights to and from the region serviced by a few different airlines both from Vancouver and Prince Rupert. You can also access the islands via BC Ferries or private boat. The islands are quite accommodating of visitors with private boats, with several marinas and services for recreational boaters available.