Is the Island named Saltspring or Salt Spring? The Oxford Dictionary of Canadian Place Names indicates it was called Salt Spring Island by the Hudson's Bay Company in the early 1800s. In 1910 the name was changed to Saltspring by the Geographic Board of Canada, which often fused multiple-word place names. So, officially it is one word, but local usage tends to prefer two words, although it is not unanimous. Canada Post accepts both spellings of the name.
Salt Spring Island is renowned for it's artists, sculptors, and crafts persons whose work can be found in shops all year 'round. Artworks include jewelry, pottery, paintings, glass work, and weaving to name a few.
Salt Spring Island is the largest of the British Columbia Gulf Islands, the islands extending north of the San Juan Chain that themselves extend northward from Puget Sound. Our Island has much to offer in interesting diversity. Many of our place names reflect that history and the people who first populated the Island. Salt Spring offers many amenities, ranging from nurseries such as Cusheon Lake Nursery which benefits from our Zone 9 (Canada) Mediterranean climate. There are tropical plant materials growing here that normally would tolerate only climates much further south. Other interesting shops in Ganges include food and meat markets, bakery, galleries, pharmacies, beauty shops, barbers, restaurants, banks, post office, and specialty shops. All of these are within walking distance of the marina.
View From Ruckle Park
Head to the heart of Ganges every Saturday to see the wares and talents of the islanders on display at the local farmer's market (April to October). The colourful event includes a variety of impromptu musical performances and the occasional theatrical or dance exhibition. Ganges, the largest bustling seaside village in the Gulf Islands is located just outside of the marina gates.
Enjoy the theatre and live entertainment throughout the year at the Artspring Theatre in Ganges, Salt Spring Island's premier venue for concerts, theatre, exhibitions, and much more. Graffiti Theatre Company utilizes the talents of local artists whilst engaging theatre professionals from away to enrich and broaden their work.
Be sure to stop by in July for the annual Salt Spring Island Festival of the Arts, which presents a diverse and culturally rich program of talented performing artists.
Salt Spring is also known as a centre for arts and crafts. Many local artisans open their studios for tours, including spinners and weavers, sculptors and glass blowers, painters and potters. Studios showcase ceramics, woodcraft, jewelry, furniture, metal craft, stained glass, molded candles, wool & fleece products and many other unique island products. Pick up a studio tour map from the Visitor Info Centre in Ganges. The unique tour is a self-guided visit to over 30 resident properties of artists and artisans, showcasing their individual talents and creations for your enjoyment and purchase.
One of the biggest events of the year is the annual Fall Fair, held on the 3rd weekend of September, just outside Ganges. The two-day fair attracts thousands of visitors who attend to see award-winning displays of fruit and vegetables, prize-winning livestock, and riding exhibitions by local equestrians.
Tee off on either of the island's two golf courses. The challenging 9-hole Salt Spring Island Golf Club on Lower Ganges Road welcomes the public and operates on a first-come-first-served basis. Ten minutes south of Ganges is the Blackburn Meadows Golf Club.
Exploring offshore waters by kayak is the best way to discover the islands, either on day trips, paddles to marine parks rich in bird and wildlife, or guided multi-day camping expeditions. Kayak rentals and daily lessons are available from the tour organizations offering equipment. The landscaped Rotary Maritime Park in downtown Ganges overlooking the harbour, has a small dock for kayak and dinghy launching.
Cycling is a wonderful way to travel the island roads and trails, taking you on a tour of natural beauty leading you to hilltops for fabulous views, and down to the beach for an afternoon swim. Cycling is popular, but most roads are narrow and none have shoulders.
St. Mary's Lake near the north end of Salt Spring Island is an anomaly. There are few freshwater lakes on any of the islands and 8 on Salt Spring, 5 of which have public beaches. St Mary's Lake is large enough to hold the rest of them put together. Stocked with trout and small-mouth bass, the lake is reached from a small beach and boat launch at the junction of Upper and Lower Ganges Roads, and Vesuvius Bay Road. Power boats are not permitted here, except those with electric motors.
The wooded setting at Weston lake, about 2 miles (3 km) north of Fulford Harbour has a sandy beach here where you can enjoy a freshwater swim. Other lakes on Salt Spring Island include Stowell lake, and Cusheon Lake. All three of these lakes provide excellent trout and bass fishing, and great, warm, freshwater swimming.
Divers can explore sunken wrecks at Princess Margaret Marine Park on Portland Island, located between Salt Spring Island and the Pender islands . The maritime park is also a favoured kayaking destination. Camping is not permitted.
TEL: (250) 537-5242 | FAX: (250) 538-1719 | EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org | ADDRESS: 161 Lower Ganges Road, Saltspring Island, BC V8K 2T2
Copyright Ganges Marina 2016