Best Place to Live on Vancouver Island, BC: Top Cities & Towns

Best Place to Live on Vancouver Island, BC – 2022

If you’re thinking about moving to Vancouver Island, congratulations – you’ve made a great choice!

This Island is one of the best places to live in BC, with its stunning scenery, friendly people, and incredible amenities. But with so many different communities to choose from, it can be hard to decide where to put down roots.

Best place to live on Vancouver Island, BC

From cosmopolitan Victoria to small-town Sooke, there’s a perfect place for everyone on Vancouver Island. Check out these places if you’re seeking the ideal location to live in Canada, start a family, raise a family, or retire.

To help you out, we’ve put together a list of our top picks for the best place to live on Vancouver Island.


Best Places to Live on Vancouver Island, British Columbia (BC) – Canada

Here are our top choices for the best place to live on Vancouver Island, in no particular order:

  1. Victoria
  2. Nanaimo
  3. Duncan
  4. North Saanich
  5. Sidney
  6. Sooke
  7. Oak Bay
  8. Campbell River
  9. Comox Valley
  10. Tofino
  11. Colwood
  12. Ladysmith
  13. Ucluelet
  14. Langford
  15. Cowichan Bay Village

And, of course, Victoria is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, from the iconic Butchart Gardens (located in Brentwood Bay, near Victoria) to the stunning beaches of Vancouver Island.

Now let’s dive into the details.

1. Victoria – The Capital of British Columbia

Victoria is the province’s capital and largest city, located on Vancouver Island.

Victoria is a major metropolitan area with all the amenities you could want. From great schools and hospitals to a lively arts and culture scene, Victoria has something for everyone.

It’s a vibrant, diverse place with something for everyone. From world-class shopping and dining to outdoor adventure and activities, Victoria has it all.

And with a mild climate and beautiful scenery, it’s no wonder Victoria is one of the most popular places to live on Vancouver Island.

Victoria is, without a doubt, the best place to live on Vancouver Island. With its mild climate, beautiful scenery, and abundance of amenities, it’s no wonder Victoria is such a popular destination. You’ll fall in love with the city’s charm as soon as you arrive.

And with its prime location on Vancouver Island, you’re never far from great outdoor activities or stunning coastal scenery.

Victoria is the ideal location to settle down and call home, whether you’re searching for an urban setting or a more laid-back lifestyle.

If you’re searching for a less expensive place to live on Vancouver Island, Victoria may not be the finest choice. Victoria is a beautiful destination, but if you’re willing to pay a little extra for quality of life and facilities, it’s well worth looking into.

  • Average Rent for a one-bedroom apartment: $1,650
  • Average house price: $600,000

Victoria is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island for many reasons. The city is located on the Island’s southern shore and has a population of about 350,000 people. Victoria has a warm Mediterranean climate, making it an ideal place to live. The city also provides a wide range of activities and services for residents to enjoy.

Some of the best things about Victoria include its beautiful architecture, vibrant arts scene, and world-class restaurants. The city is also home to various parks and gardens, which offer residents plenty of opportunities to enjoy nature. Additionally, Victoria is close to some of the best hiking trails on Vancouver Island.

Residents of Victoria also have access to excellent education and healthcare. The city has two universities, the University of Victoria and Royal Roads University. Additionally, Victoria General Hospital is one of the best hospitals in the province.

The best neighbourhoods in Victoria for families:

  • Rockland area
  • James Bay
  • Fernwood neighbourhood
  • Fairfield area

Overall, Victoria is an excellent place to live. If you are looking for a place to call home on Vancouver Island, Victoria should be at the top of your list.

2. Nanaimo – The Harbour City

Nanaimo is a close second when it comes to the best place to live on Vancouver Island. Nanaimo is a city at the southwestern tip of Vancouver Island, with just over 170,000 people (2021 census) in town and its suburbs. 

Nanaimo is a great place to live for those who want to enjoy an urban environment and still take advantage of all the outdoor activities that Vancouver Island has to offer.

This vibrant harbour city is full of friendly people. It has everything you need, from great schools and hospitals to an abundance of restaurants and shops.

Nanaimo is a large city located in the central part of Vancouver Island. It’s a popular place to live for its affordable housing, diverse amenities, and proximity to outdoor recreation.

There are many things to do in Nanaimo, from hiking and biking trails to fishing and kayaking. And, if you want a place to retire, Nanaimo is ranked as one of the best places in Canada to do just that!

Nanaimo is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island because it offers a great blend of urban and rural living. There are plenty of recreational opportunities available, and the people are friendly and welcoming.

If you’re looking for an affordable place to live on Vancouver Island, Nanaimo is definitely worth considering. And if you want to be close to the action, Nanaimo is a great option.

  • Rent for a one-bedroom apartment: $1,500
  • Average house price: $450,000

If you’re looking for a smaller city with all the comforts of home, Nanaimo is the place for you. Located on Vancouver Island’s east coast, Nanaimo is a vibrant community with a thriving economy.

Nanaimo is also home to some of the best schools on Vancouver Island (including Vancouver Island University), making it an excellent place to raise a family.

And with its proximity to the Island’s many parks and trails, Nanaimo is the perfect place for outdoor enthusiasts.

Nanaimo is a bustling city with all the amenities you need. From great schools and hospitals to various shops and restaurants, Nanaimo has something for everyone. 

Plus, its prime location makes it the perfect place to base your adventures on Vancouver Island. In addition, Nanaimo is well-connected to the rest of Vancouver Island, making it easy to get around.

The best neighbourhoods in Nanaimo for young professionals:

  • Downtown area
  • Harewood Neighbourhood
  • Brechin Hill Area

If you’re considering relocating to Vancouver Island, be sure to check out Nanaimo. It might just be the ideal place for you. With its great mix of urban and rural living, recreational opportunities, and friendly people, it’s definitely one of the best places to call home.

What are you waiting for? Come see what all the fuss is about! You won’t be disappointed.

3. Duncan, Vancouver Island

Duncan is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island because it offers a great mix of rural and urban amenities.

Duncan is also close to great outdoor recreation opportunities, with Cowichan Lake and Mount Tzouhalem less than 30 minutes away.

There are a few things that make Duncan stand out as one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island.

First, it has a great mix of rural and urban amenities. The city has a small-town feel with a population of just over 5000 people, but it also has several major retailers and restaurants as well as a hospital and college.

Duncan is also close to great outdoor recreation opportunities, with Cowichan Lake and Mount Tzouhalem both being less than 30 minutes away.

Second, the cost of living in Duncan is very reasonable. The average home price is just over $300,000, which is significantly lower than in other parts of Vancouver Island. Rent is also relatively affordable.

Finally, Duncan has a great community spirit. There are always events and activities going on, and the people are friendly and welcoming. There’s a strong sense of community pride, and it’s a great place to raise a family.

The best neighbourhoods in Duncan for retirees:

  • Central location near stores, banks, and restaurants
  • Quiet residential streets with little traffic
  • Proximity to parks and recreation facilities

If you’re looking for a great place to live on Vancouver Island, Duncan is definitely worth considering. It has everything you’ll need for a pleasant lifestyle, and it’s an excellent value for the money.

Check out Duncan today and see for yourself why it’s one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island!

4. North Saanich, Vancouver Island

North Saanich is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island because it is centrally located and close to all the services and amenities that you might need. It is also a beautiful area with plenty of parks and nature trails to enjoy.

If you are looking for a place on Vancouver Island to call home, North Saanich should definitely be at the top of your list. There are plenty of great things about living in North Saanich.

First and foremost, it is centrally located on Vancouver Island. This means that you are close to all the amenities that you might need, including shopping, restaurants, and entertainment.

North Saanich is also a beautiful area with plenty of parks and nature trails to enjoy.

North Saanich is the best place to live on Vancouver Island if you’re looking for peace and quiet.

  • Peaceful, rural setting
  • Proximity to Sidney and Victoria
  • Many parks and recreation facilities

It offers all the benefits of living in a small town combined with the convenience and amenities of a larger city. You will love the friendly community spirit and the abundance of outdoor activities to enjoy. Give North Saanich a try – you won’t be disappointed!

5. Sidney, Vancouver Island

Sidney is located on the eastern side of Vancouver Island in the province of British Columbia. It is situated in the core of the Victoria metropolitan area. It is considered one of the best places to live on the Island.

Sidney offers its residents a wide range of amenities and services, including access to beaches, parks, shopping, dining, and entertainment.

There is also a variety of housing options available, from apartments and condos to single-family homes and townhouses.

The town is also home to a number of schools, both public and private making it an ideal place for families with children.

Sidney is the best place to live on Vancouver Island if you love the outdoors.

  • Walking and biking trails.
  • Proximity to beaches.
  • Marina.

Sidney is a safe and friendly community that welcomes newcomers and provides everything they need to enjoy a high quality of life.

If you’re looking for the best place to live on Vancouver Island, Sidney is definitely worth considering.

6. Sooke, Vancouver Island

Sooke is the best place to live on Vancouver Island if you want to get away from it all.

  • Secluded location.
  • Nature trails.
  • Proximity to the Sooke Potholes Provincial Park.

If you’re looking for a quiet town with a strong community spirit, Sooke is the place for you.

This charming seaside village has everything you need, from great schools to a variety of shops and restaurants. Plus, it’s just a short drive from Victoria, making it the perfect place to raise a family.

7. Oak Bay, Vancouver Island

Oak Bay is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island because it has a lot of great amenities, like parks, beaches, and a variety of shops and restaurants.

It’s also a very safe and friendly community with a strong sense of community spirit. Plus, it’s close to Victoria and other great areas on the Island, so there’s always something to do.

If you’re looking for a great place to live on Vancouver Island, Oak Bay is definitely worth considering! It is the best place to live on Vancouver Island if you’re looking for:

  • a small-town feel in a big city.
  • quaint shops and cafes.
  • tree-lined streets.
  • proximity to downtown Victoria and other major amenities.

8. Campbell River – The Salmon Capital of the World

Campbell River, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. Beautiful view of residential homes on the ocean shore during a cloudy evening.

Campbell River is best known as the “Salmon Capital of the World.” With its rich fishing culture and stunning coastal scenery, it’s no wonder this city has become a popular destination for everybody worldwide. If you’re looking for a place to relax and enjoy the outdoors, Campbell River is a perfect choice.

Campbell River is a small city located on the east coast of Vancouver Island. It’s a popular place to live for its affordable housing, beautiful setting, and proximity to outdoor recreation.

If you’re looking for an affordable place to live on Vancouver Island, Campbell River is definitely worth considering.

  • Average Rent for a one-bedroom apartment: $1,450
  • Average house price: $450,000

And if you want to live in a beautiful setting, Campbell River is the perfect option.

If you’re looking for a great place to live and work, Campbell River is worth considering. This thriving community has everything you need, from top-notch schools and hospitals to a wide variety of businesses.

And with its stunning location on Vancouver Island, Campbell River is the perfect place to call home.

9. Comox Valley – The Adventure Capital of Vancouver Island

The Comox Valley is the perfect place for outdoor enthusiasts.

With its stunning scenery and endless opportunities for adventure, it’s no wonder this region is often called the “Adventure Capital of Vancouver Island.”

If you love skiing, snowboarding, kayaking, fishing, or hiking, the Comox Valley is definitely for you.

The Comox Valley is a scenic region on Vancouver Island’s central coast. With its mountain views, lush forests, and pristine coastline, the Comox Valley is one of the most beautiful places on the Island.

The Comox Valley is also home to a variety of recreational activities, including skiing, kayaking, and fishing. And with its growing economy and affordable housing, the Comox Valley is a great place to call home.

10. Tofino, Vancouver Island

If you’re looking for a breathtakingly beautiful place to live or looking for a place to call home on Vancouver Island, Tofino is a perfect choice.

This small town on the west coast of Vancouver Island is surrounded by lush forests and a rugged coastline, making it the ideal spot for nature lovers. And, with a population of just over 2,000 people, it’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life.

This coastal town is located in the far northwest corner of the Island and is known for its stunning scenery, rugged coastline, and abundance of outdoor activities.

Tofino is the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and enjoy some time in nature.

The town is surrounded by old-growth forests, sandy beaches, and towering mountains. There are many activities like hiking, biking, surfing, kayaking, and much more.

The community in Tofino is also very friendly and welcoming. There’s a strong sense of connection here, and people are happy to lend a hand when needed. This is the perfect town to relax and recharge.

So what makes Tofino the best place to live on Vancouver Island? Here are just a few reasons:

  • The scenery is absolutely stunning. Whether you’re hiking through the old-growth forests, kayaking in the sheltered bays or surfing on the open water, you’ll be surrounded by natural beauty.
  • There’s a great sense of community. Everyone knows everyone in Tofino, and residents have a real sense of connection.
  • There are plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy. There’s something for everyone, from hiking and biking to surfing and kayaking.
  • It’s a great place to raise a family. Tofino is safe and welcoming, with plenty of opportunities for kids to get outdoors and explore.

If you’re looking for a beautiful, peaceful town to call home, Tofino is definitely worth considering. See for yourself why this small town is the best place to live on Vancouver Island.

11. Colwood, Vancouver Island

Located on the southwest coast of Vancouver Island, Colwood is a beautiful city that offers its residents a great lifestyle.

With plenty of green space, including Royal Roads University and Hatley Park, as well as easy access to downtown Victoria, Colwood is an ideal place to call home.

The city is also known for its strong sense of community, with plenty of events and activities to get involved in. If you’re looking for a great place to live on Vancouver Island, Colwood should definitely be at the top of your list!

Some of the best reasons to live in Colwood include:

  • The city’s location is on Vancouver Island, which offers easy access to both downtown Victoria and the rest of the Island.
  • The abundance of green space, including Royal Roads University and Hatley Park.
  • The strong sense of community in Colwood, with plenty of events and activities to get involved in.
  • The city’s relatively affordable housing prices.

If you’re looking for a great place to live on Vancouver Island, Colwood should definitely be at the top of your list! You won’t regret choosing this wonderful city as your home.

12. Ladysmith, Vancouver Island

With a population of just over 9000 residents and plenty of outdoor activities nearby, this town is perfect for families or retirees alike. Ladysmith is definitely worth considering if you’re looking for a place to call home.

There are many reasons why Ladysmith is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island. Here are some reasons why it’s such a great place: 

  • Firstly, it has a great community spirit; everyone knows and looks out for each other. The town is also very picturesque, with beautiful mountain and ocean views. 
  • There are a lot of nature and recreation opportunities in the area, and it’s only a short drive to Nanaimo and Duncan. 
  • Ladysmith is a great place to live for people of all ages.
  • You’ll find everything from luxury condos to family-friendly neighbourhoods
  • The town is home to many festivals and events throughout the year, including a music festival, an arts festival, and a Christmas parade.
  • There is plenty of restaurants and shops downtown, as well as a grocery store and pharmacy.
  • Ladysmith is located just minutes from Nanaimo and Duncan, making it the perfect central location on the Island.

If you’re looking for the best place to live on Vancouver Island, Ladysmith should definitely be at the top of your list! It’s got everything you could possibly want in a town, and more. Check it out for yourself and see what makes this town so special!

13. Ucluelet, Vancouver Island

Ucluelet has a lot to offer residents and is quickly becoming one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island.

The town has a perfect balance of nature and modern amenities, making it ideal for those who love the outdoors and also want to be close to conveniences.

There are plenty of hiking and biking trails, as well as opportunities for fishing, kayaking, and surfing.

It’s also close to Tofino, which has excellent restaurants and lively nightlife. Ucluelet is also home to a number of art galleries and local businesses. You can find everything you need in Ucluelet, from groceries to hardware stores.

The people here are friendly and welcoming, and it’s a great place to raise a family. If you’re looking for the best of both worlds, Ucluelet is the perfect place for you.

14. Langford, Vancouver Island

Langford is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island because it offers a great quality of life. The city is growing rapidly, but it has managed to maintain a small-town feel.

Looking for a change of pace? Consider moving to Langford – one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island! The city offers plenty of parks, recreation facilities, and trails. Forests and beaches surround the city.

Langford is considered one of the most livable places to live in Canada.

Langford is also close to downtown Victoria, making it a convenient place to live. If you’re looking for a great place to call home, Langford is definitely worth considering – it should definitely be at the top of your list!

15. Cowichan Bay Village, Vancouver Island

Cowichan Bay Village is one of the best places to live on Vancouver Island because of its stunning natural beauty, friendly community, and wonderful amenities.

The village is situated on the east coast of the Island, near Duncan, and is surrounded by rolling green hills, pristine forests, and a rugged coastline.

The village has a population of just over 2,000 people, and it is a close-knit community where everyone knows each other.

The village has a variety of shops, restaurants, and services, and it is also home to the world-famous Cowichan Bay Cultural Centre. The centre features performances by local artists and hosts exhibitions of art from around the province.

In addition, the village has a number of parks and trails, making it the perfect place to enjoy the outdoors. Cowichan Bay Village is an excellent place to live for those who want to experience all that Vancouver Island has to offer.


FAQs: The Best Place to Live in Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

What is the best place to live on Vancouver Island?

The best place to live on Vancouver Island depends on your individual needs and preferences.

If you’re looking for a vibrant city with plenty of amenities, then Victoria is the place for you. If you want to be closer to nature, then Nanaimo or Campbell River might be better suited for you. And if you’re looking for a small town with a tight-knit community, then Comox Valley or Cowichan Valley could be perfect for you.

Where is the most affordable place to live on Vancouver Island?

The most affordable places to live on Vancouver Island are Ladysmith, Duncan, Campbell River and Courtenay.

What is the nicest part of Vancouver Island?

There are many great things about Vancouver Island, making it hard to choose just one nicest part.

The Island has a wide variety of landscapes, from the rugged West Coast to the rolling hills of the interior. There are also plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities, whether you’re looking to go hiking, camping, or fishing.

Vancouver Island is home to a number of charming small towns and vibrant cities. From the quaint fishing village of Tofino to the bustling metropolis of Victoria, there is something for everyone on Vancouver Island.

Is Vancouver Island a good place to live?

Yes, Vancouver Island is a good place to live. For those looking for a safe and vibrant place to call home, Vancouver Island should be at the top of their list.

Vancouver Island is often cited as one of the best places to live in Canada. And it’s not hard to see why.

The island ranks high for its natural beauty, mild climate, and low crime rate. It also has a strong economy and is home to a number of world-class universities. As a result, it is no surprise that many people are drawn to this beautiful island.

While it may not be the cheapest place to live, Vancouver Island offers an unparalleled quality of life.


Final Words: Best Place to Live on Vancouver Island, British Columbia (BC), Canada

There is no one best place to live on Vancouver Island. The Island is vast and diverse, with something to offer everyone. Vancouver Island has it all from quiet coastal towns to bustling cities, from lush rain forests to snow-capped mountains.

So, whether you’re looking for a place to retire or just starting your search for a new home, be sure to check out these great places to live on Vancouver Island! There’s something for everyone on the Island.

How do you decide which is the best place for you?

It depends on your needs and preferences. Do you want to be close to the action, or do you prefer a more laid-back lifestyle? Are you looking for an affordable place to live, or are you willing to pay a little extra for amenities and quality of life?

No matter what your needs and preferences are, there is sure to be a perfect place for you on Vancouver Island.

Here are some of the best places to live on Vancouver Island, based on different criteria:

  • If you want to be close to the action: Victoria, Nanaimo, or Campbell River.
  • If you prefer a more laid-back lifestyle: Comox Valley, Tofino, or Parksville.
  • If you’re looking for an affordable place to live: Duncan, Port Alberni, or Powell River.
  • If you want to live in a beautiful setting: Sooke, Qualicum Beach, or Saanichton.

There you have it – our top picks for the best places to live on Vancouver Island. These are just some of the best places to live on Vancouver Island. No matter what your needs, interests, lifestyle, and preferences are, there’s a place on this beautiful Island that’s just right for you.

We hope this list has been useful in your search for the best place to live on Vancouver Island. Remember, there’s an ideal spot for everyone, so get out there and explore until you find your forever home.

If you’re still undecided on which community is best for you, don’t worry – there’s no wrong answer. Every place on Vancouver Island has something special to offer its residents. So take your time and do some research; when you find the right place, you’ll know it!

So what are you waiting for? Get out there, start exploring and find the best place to call home!

If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to ask in the comments section below!

Where on Vancouver Island do you think is the best place to live? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


AUTHOR

founder-canadawiz

Charee Oisamoje

Charee's personal experiences as a Canadian immigrant and expertise make her uniquely qualified to write about this topic. With extensive educational credentials, she is an expert at collecting details, verifying facts, and making complex subjects easy to understand. ✔️MBA in Finance ✔️MScIB ✔️CCEA (#CCG 271) ✔️CPA Candidate ✔️CIP
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2 thoughts on “Best Place to Live on Vancouver Island, BC – 2022”

  1. The number portion for the rent, etc is way, way, way off. Rooms in houses can be rented for $700/800 a month but very rare in 2022 to find an apartment for those rates. Maybe be the further up island one goes as well as the house prices. The population is also off in article for Nanaimo as the census for 2021 was approximately 170,000 people not 70,000.

    1. CanadaWiz Team

      A.Prime,
      Thank you for your feedback! Inflation has definitely had an impact on rental prices, as well as the overall cost of living. We have updated the content accordingly. We appreciate your help in keeping our information up-to-date. Thank you again for your time and input!

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