Tsawwassen is a community in South Delta that’s home to one of the region’s two BC Ferries‘ terminals that connect the Lower Mainland with Vancouver Island.
Tsawwassen Town & Terminal
Tsawwassen is a small town in a largely agricultural area. In addition to being a major marine transportation hub, the area has a park, beach and a major outlet shopping mall.
Tsawwassen is home to Boundary Bay Regional Park, an exceptional place for bird watching that’s not far from the Tsawwassen ferry terminal. The park has a nice beach, cycling and walking trails. If you like birdwatching, or if you need to catch a ferry and have some extra time, go early, visit the park and don’t forget to take your binoculars.
Another good place for bird watching, also in Delta, is the Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary at 5191 Robertson Road on Westham Island which connects via bridge with River Road West.
Tsawwassen’s latest attraction is Tsawwassen Mills, the new outlet shopping mall that opened in September 2016.
Where to Stay in Tsawwassen
If you need to stay in Tsawwassen overnight, consider the Coast Tsawwassen Inn at 1665 56th Street. It’s affordable, pet-friendly and a saviour if you ever miss the last ferry and have to find a place for the night.
Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal
Tsawwassen is the busier and more commonly used of the Lower Mainland’s two BC Ferries‘ terminals linking Metro Vancouver to Vancouver Island. It’s slightly more convenient to get to for most people, plus it offers more destinations (including routes to both Victoria and Nanaimo) than Horseshoe Bay (which doesn’t connect so directly with Victoria).
Of the two ferry terminals, the one in Tsawwassen is the more developed, having a pleasant shopping area with a small selection of boutique stores and food court-style restaurants. The advantage with Horseshoe Bay though is the fact that the ferry terminal there is right beside the village, which makes it much more picturesque if you have time to leave the terminal and go for a stroll.
Events in Tsawwassen
The community of Tsawwassen hosts a couple of major events each year.
The Delta Polar Bear Swim takes place at Centennial Beach at Boundary Bay Regional Park on New Year’s Day each year. It’s a short event, but a couple of thousand people show up (of which over 100 actually go swimming).
Another event of interest in the community is the Tsawwassen Sun Festival which takes place over the BC Day Long Weekend. The main day of the 3-day festival is on the holiday Monday when there’s a pancake breakfast, parade, car show and family-friendly activities.
Click BC Ferries for information about ferry service to and from Vancouver Island and other Gulf Islands.