Cormorant Island off the northeast coast of Vancouver Island is the traditional home of the ‘Namgis First Nation. They used the island as a place to bring their people who had passed on, and also lived on the Island on a seasonal basis for several thousand years.
Cormorant Island boasts the North Island’s oldest community, the fishing village of Alert Bay, which was an important trading centre for early residents in the area.
Alert Bay and Cormorant Island have an interesting history . Captain George Vancouver anchored his vessel, the HMS Discover, at Xwalkw (mouth of the ‘Namgis River) in the late 1700s. Cormorant Island is named after the HMS Cormorant, a coastal paddle sloop operating in the area in 1846.
Cormorant Island is very small, being only 4 kilometres long and measuring roughly 1 kilometre in width at the narrowest point of the island.
Today, this island fishing community hosts some of the region’s finest historical and cultural artifacts. In addition to enjoying the rich cultural heritage of Cormorant Island, visitors can enjoy many activities such as whale watching, eco-tours, kayaking, hiking and biking.
Location: Cormorant Island is located off the northeast coast of Vancouver Island, easily accessible by a scenic ferry ride from the community of Port McNeill on Vancouver Island to the island’s busy harbour at Alert Bay.