Getting Here

Getting to Nanaimo

There are a number of interesting ways to get to Nanaimo including ferry, helicopter, and float plane as well as Air Canada and Westjet.

  • Air Canada - regular daily flights from Vancouver
  • Westjet - regular daily flights from Calgary
  • BC Ferries - regular daily sailings from Horseshoe Bay or Tsawwassen
  • Helijet - regular weekday flights from Vancouver
  • Harbour Air - regular daily flights from downtown Vancouver or Vancouver Airport
  • Seair Seaplanes - regular daily flights from downtown Vancouver or Vancouver Airport to Departure Bay

Getting to the Campus


BC transit schedule - cost is $2.50 per trip


AC Taxi - 250.753.1231 Website

Yellow Cab - 250.751.1111 Website

Approximate price for a taxi trip:

  • from downtown to VIU is $11
  • from airport to VIU is $140
  • from Departure Bay Ferry Terminal is $13

Nanaimo Accommodations

There are a few hotel options in and around downtown Nanaimo, which is a quick 5 minute cab ride (or about a 35 minute walk if the day is nice).

There are many other small hotels in the area, so if you are on a tight budget and want to shop around, you’ll find options by looking at or TripAdvisor.

AirBnB and HomeAway are good options for some nice accommodations around the area.

Another option is the Vancouver Island University Residences, rooms are available from May - August starting at $55.

Visitor Parking on Campus

There are several parking areas open to guests to VIU. These General Parking areas are indicated in green on this parking map. Look for a ticket dispenser kiosk in the area near where you park. VIU is now using a License Plate Recognition parking management system. This means that once you pay the system uses your plate number instead of a parking pass.

Cost for 12 hours of parking is $8. Ticket dispensers in the General parking lots will take $0.25, $1, $2 coins as well as MasterCard and VISA.

The lots most likely to have capacity at any time are A & C, although, depending on the hour of day and time of year, you might find spaces available in other general parking areas.

For more information, please visit Parking info at VIU.

Where to Eat at VIU and in Nanaimo

On Campus

Lower Cafeteria Building 185: Monday - Friday 7:30 am - 2:00 pm, closed during the summer months

Upper Cafeteria Building 300:Monday - Friday 7:30 am - 3:00 pm

Discovery Room: The Discovery Room is VIU's fine dining restaurant run by the Culinary Institute of Vancouver Island. Lunch service is offered from Wednesday to Friday (with the exception of statutory and academic holidays and special events) from mid September to mid June with reservations from 11:30am to 12:30pm. Dinner service is offered on most Thursday and Friday evenings from early October to early April with reservations from 5pm to 6pm. Check out the Discovery Room website for more information or call 250.740.6338 for reservations.

In Nanaimo

There are many lovely restaurants in and around downtown Nanaimo, to name a few:

How to Find Us

From the Airport, BC Ferry Terminals or Harbour Air Terminal

Campus Map

Wireless Access on Campus

There are two options for accessing the wireless network on campus:

Eduroam - Website for instructions

viu-guest - Website for instructions