Snorkelling adventures around Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands

Snorkelling adventures around Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands


Arrowsmith Naturalists Club: June 27 2024
Vancouver Island Regional Library Kids Summer Reading Club (online): July 10 2024
Outer Shores Lodge Featured stay Oct 3-7 2024

Snorkelling and shallow freediving are amongst the greatest pleasures in my life, and I am blessed to live just minutes from the Pacific Ocean. Whilst you might not associate these cold Canadian waters with a snorkel destination, there is abundant underwater life in the kelp forests and on the rocky intertidal reefs. Over 25 species of seastars (including some of the largest in the world), many tens of outrageously colourful nudibranch species, anemones, corals (yes, we have corals!) and of course the signature giant Pacific octopus. I have seen over a hundred species whilst snorkelling around Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. Check out some of my photos in this Canadian Geographic article

Want to give it a go yourself? I have written a book about how to get started! The guide covers everything you need to know, starting from how to stay toasty warm in BC's chilly waters, over 100 colour photos of the most common marine species, detailed entries for over 50 locations and tips on the best locations for every watery whim.

Snorkelling Adventures Around Vancover Island and the Gulf Islands: The ultimate Guide is published by Harbour.

Find a copy in your local stores .

Buy it on!

About: Sara Ellison is a professional astronomer. She obtained her PhD from Cambridge University and worked for the European Southern Observatory in Chile before moving to the University of Victoria in 2003. In addition to her research activities (which focus on galaxy evolution), Sara is active in education and outreach and has given hundreds of public and professional talks to audiences across five continents in english, french and spanish.

Previous media and reviews:

Canadian Geographic
Nature Vancouver book review (vol 51, page 113)
You and Me magazine article (page 42)
Victoria Camera Club article.
Times Colonist article.
North Isle news article.
Pacific Yachting Magazine book review, October 2023
Coast Reporter article.
Vancouver Sun article.
Global News BC TV interview, morning show with Sonia Sunger.
CBC interview with Margaret Gallagher on North by Northwest.
Coast Connections TV interview with Liz Heinz.
CBC print article.
CBC interview on All Points West with Jason D'Souza.
Victoria News article.
Campbell River Mirror article.
CKNW Vancouver radio interview on the Mike Smyth morning show.

Past talks and presentations:

April 18 2023 - Book launch at Bolens Books, Victoria
May 21 2023 - Saturna Island Marine Research and Education Society (SIMRES)
June 10 2023 - Sooke Region Museum
July 6 2023 - Sea Cider, Saanich
August 17 2023 - Oceanfix, Campbell River
August 18 2023 - Cafe Guido, Port Hardy
September 7 2023 - Seaside Centre, Sechelt
October 12 2023 - Nature Vancouver, online
November 27 2023 - Victoria Natural History Society
April 22 2024 - Victoria Gyro Club
June 6 2024 - Berwick Seniors


#8 on the 2023 BC Bestseller's list
2023 Ocean Exposures photo competition: first place
2022 Ocean Exposures photo competition: second place

To contact Sara about her book, organize a speaking engagement or media enquiries: Email Sara