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General Info & Climate

Pender Island is one of the Southern Gulf Islands BC located in the Strait of Georgia, British Columbia, Canada. Pender Island, BC is approximately 34 square kilometers in area and features open farmland, rolling forested hills, several lakes, as well as many coves and beaches.  The population includes about 2,500 permanent residents, as well as a large seasonal population.

Pender Island consists of two islands, North Pender and South Pender, which are separated by a narrow canal originally dredged in 1903. In 1955 the islands were connected by a one lane bridge, as it remains today.  The islands were named for Staff Commander Daniel Pender, who surveyed the coast of British Columbia from 1857 to 1870.

Most of the population and services reside on North Pender Island, with the highest concentration surrounding Magic Lake.  South Pender Island is generally more rural, but features the popular Poets Cove Resort and Spa.

Climate

As part of the Southern Gulf Islands, Pender Island BC enjoys a sub-Mediterranean climate. Drier than Vancouver and more protected than Victoria, the Gulf Islands are blessed with the mildest weather in Canada.

  • Spring comes as early as February, when blossoms begin to appear on trees and colourful bulbs emerge.
  • Summer is warm, sunny, and dry and never sweltering hot.
  • Fall is a magnificent season of vibrant colour, with temperatures remaining pleasant.
  • Winter frost is rare, and while the chance of rain is greater, the mild temperatures encourage hikers, cyclists, and kayakers to carry on with their activities right through the season.

Annually, the Southern Gulf Islands BC receive approximately 90 cm (36″) of precipitation and 2,000 hours of sunshine.

Pender Island is one of the Southern Gulf Islands BC located in the Strait of Georgia, British Columbia, Canada. Pender Island, BC is approximately 34 square kilometers in area and features open farmland, rolling forested hills, several lakes, as well as many coves and beaches. The population includes about 2,500 permanent residents, as well as a large seasonal population.Pender Island consists of two islands, North Pender and South Pender, which are separated by a narrow canal originally dredged in 1903. In 1955 the islands were connected by a one lane bridge, as it remains today. The islands were named for Staff Commander Daniel Pender, who surveyed the coast of British Columbia from 1857 to 1870.

Most of the population and services reside on North Pender Island, with the highest concentration surrounding Magic Lake. South Pender Island is generally more rural, but features the popular Poets Cove Resort and Spa.

History

At the time of Contact, Pender Island was inhabited by Coast Salish peoples speaking the North Straits Salish language. There is an Indian Reserve at Hay Point on South Pender Island,[2] which is home to members of the Tsawout and Tseycum First Nations.[3] The Poets Cove Resort was built on an ancient First Nations village site.[4] The provincial government’s 2007 settlement with the Tsawwassen First Nation included hunting and fishing rights on and around Pender Island—an arrangement to which the Sencot’en Alliance objected, saying those rights are theirs under the 1852 Douglas Treaty.[5][6]

A Spanish expedition led by Francisco de Eliza visited Pender in 1791, naming it “Ysla de San Eusevio”.[7] The islands, along with Pender Harbour on the Sunshine Coast, were given their current name by Captain Richards for Staff Commander, later Captain, Daniel Pender, RN who surveyed the coast of British Columbia aboard HMS Plumper, HMS Hecate and the Beaver from 1857 to 1870.[8]:134 The first permanent resident of European descent arrived on South Pender Island in 1886.[9]

Shopping

The island’s main shopping area is called the Driftwood Centre. The Driftwood has grown over the years, and is now home to Tru Value Foods, Pender Island Bakery, Pender Sushi, a BC Liquor Store, Pender Island Pharmacy, HSBC, a post office, Pender Island Realty, Angeline’s Hair Studio, Talisman Bookstore and Gallery, Revolution Fitness, Time to Play, Raeven Tool Rentals, Island Wine Cellars, an insurance office and House on Pender (a flower and tile shop).

The stores at Hope Bay are about a five minute drive from the Driftwood Centre. Hope Bay is home to the Red Tree Gallery (featuring local art), Sladen’s, Hope Bay Hair Salon, Touch of Wellness Massage Therapy, Dockside Realty, a cafe and a Goldsmith Shop. Hope Bay Studio is a rental hall with large windows looking directly at an astounding ocean view. Regular classes include yoga, Dance, Bellyfit, Art and various workshops. This space is available to rent from Dockside Realty.

Just North of Hope Bay is Southridge Farms Organic Foods, a grocery store featuring fresh Paninis and Coffee. Across the street is Home Hardware, the local building center and lumber yard.

On Saturday mornings from Easter through Thanksgiving, the Farmer’s Market at the Community Hall offers local produce and handcrafts, as well as entertainment. The Nu-To-Yu is a local second-hand store open Friday and Saturday throughout the year.

Morning Bay Vineyard on Pender Island is open for wine tasting and sales 12 months a year. Friday to Sunday in winter, and Wednesday to Sunday in Summer, Morning Bay sells estate-grown wines as well as a line of wines made from Okanagan fruit.

Real estate

Real estate in the area is in high demand, due to the island’s waterfront views as well as its proximity to both Vancouver and Victoria, BC. Pender Island is served by several realtors and local agencies. At least half of the properties sold on Pender Island are recreational properties, so the population of the island typically grows tremendously during the summer months as the “part time residents” return to the island. For all your real estate needs contact Howard Sanders of Dockside Realty located at Hope Bay.

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