Situated off Canada’s Pacific Coast and characterized by picturesque beaches, old-growth forests and rocky shorelines, Vancouver Island is best known for a carefree spirit and endless opportunities for outdoor activities. The Canadian island is easy to get to by plane and also by ferry, many of which will drop you in the small city of Victoria, which sits at the southeastern tip of the island and serves as British Columbia’s capital. The west side of Vancouver Island is home to popular destinations like Tofino and Port Renfrew, where you’re invited to experience the laid back small town vibes. On the east side of the island are Nanaimo, Comox and Courtenay, which overlook the Salish Sea.
Vancouver Island’s mild climate makes it a perennial travel destination. While summers usually bring hikers, campers and beach goers, winters draw surfers and storm watchers to Tofino’s Chesterman Beach, as well as skiers and snowboarders to Mount Washington. There's plenty of wildlife to spot too, from orcas to otters, with peak whale watching season being from March to October every year.
With an expansive coastline and adventure towns dotted throughout the island, there’s no shortage of outdoor opportunities here, and an abundance of places to stay, too. From classic log cabins to lakeside cottages, here are 20 best Vancouver Island cabin rentals to call home while exploring this unique zone within British Columbia.
Vibe: Lakeside Fun
In the heart of the forest and offering spectacular lake views, this log cabin enjoys a location on seven acres of land that’s shared with seasonal RVs. With two bedrooms and a double bed in the open concept loft plus a sofabed on the main floor, this handcrafted log home comfortably sleeps eleven. Lounge on the private dock or take to the water by boat or canoe then fire up the outdoor BBQ and watch the sunset from the deck or cozy up for the evening next to the fire pit.
Vibe: Timeless Log Home
This chalet in Comox on the eastern part of Vancouver Island enjoys a pretty location overlooking Strathcona Park, which is loaded with hiking trails and hidden lakes. Though its interiors are admittedly plainly decorated, this log cabin is impressive in size: With six bedrooms and five bathrooms spread over three floors, it's perfect for large family getaways. There’s also plenty of room for entertaining and gathering with a spacious kitchen, a large deck for morning yoga sessions, a hot tub and a BBQ area for dinners outdoors.
Vibe: Small Town Livin’
This cedar cottage rental straddles the border of Courtenay and Comox and offers the feel of a small town while still being close to all the amenities you’ll need. The cottage is cozy and ideally fits two for a couple’s weekend getaway. Cook up some dinner in the fully equipped kitchen, or grill on the deck while gazing out at the trees. You’re only a short seven-minute drive to both downtown Comox and Courtenay, where you can search for carbs and caffeine, and there are plenty of beaches and hikes nearby, too. There's also a regional airport, and a ferry that goes across the Strait of Georgia to BC's Sunshine Coast.
Vibe: Wilderness Bliss
Surround yourself in nature with a stay at this custom-built A-frame home on one-third of an acre at the edge of Strathcona Park. Perched atop a mountain, this property offers ultimate privacy and is well positioned for a plethora of hiking, snowshoeing, and downhill mountain biking opportunities. After a day of adventuring, soak in the hot tub while gazing at the stars. With two queen bedrooms and a single in the loft, this home comfortably sleeps five for a group getaway.
Vibe: Tranquil Retreat
Built with the intent to bring the outdoors in, this cozy cabin/deluxe yurt features plenty of picture windows and skylights so you can gaze out in nature any time of day, even when you’re laying on the queen bed in the loft. Set on six expansive acres, this yurt is almost entirely off-grid. Inside, the space is filled with plants and dressed in earthy tones. wifi, self check-in, and a fully equipped kitchen make for a convenient stay on Vancouver Island's northeast coast.
Vibe: Off-Grid Bliss
The remote feel of staying in this home on a hill in Forbidden Plateau will inspire you to truly unplug, though there’s still wifi available. This rustic cabin is fully run on solar power, but you wouldn’t know it. Inside, get cozy by the fireplace and make dinner in the fully stocked kitchen, or soak in the wood fire hot tub outside beneath the stars. This cabin rental is somewhat inland but still comes with an A+ ocean view.
Vibe: Old School Turns Modern
For design lovers seeking a rustic-meets-modern getaway, this historic 1889 structure turned three-story home is the ideal space. It’s situated within reach of a vast network of hiking trails, yet is only a two-minute walk to the center of Cumberland. Inside the Camp House, you’ll find a loft, main floor, and lower studio with two fully equipped kitchens and an expansive wrap-around deck. Heated concrete floors and marble tile bathrooms give it its luxurious touches.
Vibe: Forest Charm
Nestled in the forest, this octagonal studio is the perfect tiny home getaway for two. Its windows give you a 360-degree view of the wooded area, and the space is decked out with a comfortable reading area, a queen bed, a piano, a clawfoot tub and a simple kitchenette with a microwave, mini fridge and kettle. Spend your days canoeing or kayaking at Shawnigan Lake, a 10-minute drive away, or bicycle to Cobble Hill Mountain, just 15 minutes away.
Vibe: Fit for a Fairy Tale
Fall asleep beneath the twinkling night sky on a queen bed in the solarium at this tranquil property set on 1.5 acres of land just north of Victoria. With amenities like a cozy library, fireplace, hot tub, and indoor wood stove, it’s hard not to zen out here. If you want to explore, head for the Horth Hill hiking trail which can be accessed directly from the property, or catch a ferry to Salt Spring Island and the rest of the Gulf Islands, or the San Juan Islands (which are in the US). Plus, the premise is fully fenced in, so rest easy letting your kids (or dog—the place is pet friendly) roam freely.
Vibe: Childhood Dream Come True
If you’ve ever dreamed of sleeping in a treehouse, this one among the cedars and maples just southwest of Victoria is the island getaway for you. Reaching 30 feet off the ground, its large deck offers unobstructed views that stretch from the Salish Sea to the snow-dusted peaks of Washington state. The property boasts a kitchenette with a microwave and toaster oven for quick and easy meals, a private bathroom, and easy access to beaches. Its location lends itself to easy access to the 28-mile Galloping Goose trail, downtown Sooke, and the Potholes.
Vibe: Made for Getaways
Situated on a one-acre property in the heart of Shirley, this oceanfront A-frame vacation rental enjoys a spectacular location on the West Coast of Vancouver Island. Aside from a stocked kitchen and two bedrooms—one with a queen bed and the other with a double—this cozy home also boasts a garden that serves as a tranquil place to relax. If you feel like venturing outside of the property, its oceanside location is convenient walking distance to French Beach Provincial Park and the Sheringham Point Lighthouse.
Vibe: Modern Luxe
Get away from it all with a stay at this luxe cabin rental in Jordan River, set amongst three acres of towering evergreens. Its two king-size bedrooms, cedar wood-fired hot tub, and meditation deck make this the ideal place to escape and reset. Plus, there’s an upstairs sundeck if you feel like catching some rays. Due to its remote location, there’s very little cell phone coverage and limited wifi. But with Jordan River Regional Park and secluded beaches right around the corner, you won't need any of that anyway.
Vibe: Endless Views
With old-growth forests and idyllic beaches just steps away, this oceanfront cottage is well positioned for outdoor adventurers looking to kayak, hike, paddleboard, and surf. The timber-framed home offers dazzling panoramic views of the Juan de Fuca Strait, and the two king bedrooms make this the perfect place to sleep in after a day of adventures, and don't leave without using the sauna and outdoor shower. The owners live onsite in the suite below.
Vibe: Eco-Friendly Retreat
This 150-square-foot property is an off-grid tiny home with a Japanese garden as its backyard. Built from reclaimed and recycled materials, the bunkhouse boasts an upper loft with a king bed and a banquette that converts into a queen if you’re traveling in a group of four. Outside, there’s a shower and composting toilet, plus a hammock for an afternoon snooze. It’s an easy one-minute drive to China Beach from here, or there’s a walking path that takes you to a more private beach.
Vibe: Rustic Meets Coastal Charm
This 1,070 square foot oceanfront cottage at Terrace Beach Resort consists of three stories. While the main floor has a living area with an electric fireplace, the upper floor boasts a bedroom with a queen bed and a two-person jetted tub. The lower floor also has a bedroom with a queen bed, with a deck that offers ocean views. Go wildlife watching or stroll the Wild Pacific Trail, a seven-minute walk from the beachfront property.
Vibe: Sleek and Stylish Capsule
True to its name, this waterfront cabin is set up for serene getaways. Situated on a large property of old growth trees, you’ll be enveloped by the silence of the rainforest, interrupted only by birdsong. Every part of the property encourages a connection to nature, like the porthole windows in the cozy capsule-style bedrooms and views of the forest and inlet from the deck. Even the bathroom looks out at nothing but the ocean and forest. With a cozy fireplace and a full kitchen, you’ll have everything you need for your stay.
Vibe: Vintage Charm
Nestled against the Pacific Rim National Park on its own 2.4 acres of old growth forest, this classic log cabin encourages its guests to immerse themselves in nature. A stroll along the Willowbrae Trail will take you to Florencia Bay and Halfmoon Bay. Inside the cabin, sink into the king bed, cozy up to the rustic river rock fireplace, and soak in the vintage copper tub for a truly relaxing experience. If that’s not enough, stargaze in the private hot tub set in the forest.
Vibe: Crafted With Love
Set on its own acre of rainforest, this custom-built timber frame cottage rental offers a wealth of indoor and outdoor experiences. Prep a gourmet meal in the fully equipped kitchen and relax in the generously sized soaker tub. With two bedrooms, equipped with a king bed in one and a queen in the other, this property is ideal for families or groups of four. Outside, enjoy a barbecue dinner on the large covered deck and cozy up by the fire pit.
Vibe: Scandi Surf Shack
Built with surf bums in mind, this sophisticated home is conveniently a few steps away from Chesterman Beach. Its three bedrooms comfortably accommodate six. An outdoor shower makes rinsing off easy after a day in the waves, and its heated concrete floors keep your feet warm as you head inside to dry off. Make your dinner in the fully outfitted open kitchen and dine al fresco on the outdoor patio before hopping in the six-person hot tub.
Vibe: Sleek Beach House
Immerse yourself in nature with a stay at the Pownall House in Tofino. On-site, there’s an outdoor saltwater hot tub nestled beneath the trees with enough room for four. The upper king bedroom boasts overhead skylights for stargazing. The nordic style cabin also has a full kitchen with a gas range stove and equipment to craft cocktails with. If you want to catch the waves, it’s an easy three-minute walk along a rainforest path to Chesterman Beach.