Just south of the Hammond Bay neighbourhood lies Departure Bay. Similar to Hammond Bay, Departure Bay has some spectacular waterfront views. The closer to the water you go the higher the price tag for homes. There is a good mix of both newer and older homes in this established Nanaimo neighbourhood. Located on the edge of Departure Bay is the Nanaimo Golf Club. The Island Highway located just south of Departure Bay has access to the north end and the downtown core is just a few minutes away. The Country Club Centre shopping mall is located on the north-east end of the area and has all the amenities you could want including a grocery store, banking, pharmacy, restaurants and retail stores. Not only is the ocean just a few blocks away, but there are also a few parks in the neighbourhood.
Schools in the area include:
Cilaire Elementary – 25 Cilaire Drive, (250) 758-7941
Departure Bay Elementary – 3004 Departure Bay Road, (250) 758-6541
Rock City Elementary – 3741 Departure Bay Road, (250) 758-2434
Wellington Secondary – 3135 Mexicana Road, (250) 751-0126
Parks in the area:
Departure Bay Beach- Departure Bay Beach is a sandy beach beach park perfect for swimming, beachcombing and sightseeing. The beach is a launch site for kayakers looking to explore the coastline and in the winter this is where you can find the annual Polar Bear swimmers braving the cold waters. Picnic tables, a small playground and a grassy area also make this a favorite spot for families and anyone walking their dogs.
Linley Valley- Linley Valley is a hidden gem in Nanaimo. An hour or two can be spent surveying the main trail or several hours can be spent exploring wetlands, streams, natural woodlands, and meadows and bluffs on the interlinking trails. Cottle Lake is tucked in the forest and is home to ducks, geese and Cutthroat trout.
Kinsmen Park- Kinsman Park is located towards the south end of Departure Bay. It is populated with picnic tables and benches that overlook the beach and playground area.
Wardropper Park- Wardropper Park is a great park for pet owners! This “dog off-leash” park offers an area for dogs to run free and mingle with other dogs, while owners can mingle with other owners.
Sugarloaf Mountain Park- Sugarloaf Mountain Park draws sightseers from all over. The spectacular view is the great reward for trekking up the stairs and along the rocky path that follows. Sugarloaf Mountain may not be ideal for a picnic due to the lack of a grassy flat area, however, it is said to be a “must do” for visitors and residents alike with a camera.
Wardropper Park – Wardropper Park is one of the city’s many dog off-leash areas/parks and this open field park in the Departure Bay area is the perfect spot for throwing the ball around for Fido . You will find access to the park on either side of Departure Bay Road or Bay Street.
Woodstream Park- Woodstream Park is one of many homes for Nanaimo’s wildlife and plant life. This park is a lovely place for a tranquil walk through the forest and along Departure Creek. Woodstream Park is the perfect place to go and take in the beauty of Nanaimo.
Keighley Park- Keighley Park was acquired by the city of Nanaimo in 1980. It is located on the corner of Bay Street and Keighley Road. Keighley Park is a great place for the family to come! The kids are welcome to play and cool down on the nautical themed playground & waterpark, while parents are able to keep a watchful eye and enjoy the ocean view at the same time.