This iconic destination for thousands of visitors every year is famed for its ecotourism and a postcard waterfront setting featuring multicoloured clusters of buildings and homes that cling to the rocky shoreline. A century ago all that was here was a one-room telegraph shack from which loggers, fishermen and pioneers would stay in touch with the outside world. Telegraph Cove grew a little bigger when a fish saltery, sawmill, school and general store were built over the years. Many of these historic buildings were built above the water on stilts and joined by a boardwalk. Suites, cabin rentals, two marinas, a pair of RV parks and a luxury oceanfront strata subdivision have brought Telegraph Cove resolutely into the 21st century.
Situated in a sheltered inlet at the northern end of Johnstone Strait, across from the Broughton Archipelago, Telegraph Cove is a famed starting point for wilderness tours. Whale watching season runs from May to October, and a comfortable, modern fleet of watercraft set out daily in pursuit of resident and migratory orcas, humpbacks, dolphins and sea lions. Grizzly bear safaris depart by boat destined for Knight Inlet and the Great Bear Rainforest in the foothills of the mainland Coastal Mountain range. Other top activities include fishing, kayaking, diving, hiking and tours of the Whale Interpretive Centre. One bonus for visitors these days is a newly widened and realigned paved road dotted with scenic viewpoints on the way in from Highway 19.
Telegraph Cove is located 26 kilometres south of Port McNeill (25 minutes), and 5.5 hours from Victoria.
For information on Vancouver Island North see Drive BC provincial highway information.