Kayak Guesthouse Vacation • 5 Days
Group size is six guests plus two guides.
Group discounts and family rates are available.
Each person is equipped with a Tyee single kayak.
Southwind and Looksha T double kayaks are also available.
This tour is suitable for relatively inexperienced paddlers,
as well as accomplished kayakers.
The Kayak Guesthouse Vacation provides an opportunity to explore the remote wilderness of Gwaii Haanas, while enjoying the overnight comforts of indoor accommodations.
This vacation allows for plenty of flexibility; guests have the option of joining guided kayak day-trips, or staying in Rose Harbour to relax at the guesthouse.
Nights are spent in the rustic Rose Harbour Guest House, near the southern tip of the archipelago. This wilderness facility was carefully hand-built by resident musician and guesthouse proprietor, Götz Hanisch.
The tiny, charming homesteader community of Rose Harbour is our base for kayak explorations. Butterfly Tours guide, Gord Pincock, leads daily kayak excursions and serves as interpretive host while guests interact with Rose Harbour's unique residents.
Enjoy wood-fired hot showers after your kayak day-trips. Savour delicious meals hosted by the local residents. These friendly homesteaders are happy to provide a glimpse into their unique self-sufficient lifestyles. For photos, please see our Rose Harbour album.
Day One - Kayak Guesthouse Vacation
The tour begins in Sandspit, British Columbia. Participants are picked up at Seaport B&B (or another Sandspit accommodation of your choice) for the one-hour van ride to Moresby Camp. Here, you board a speedboat for transport to the southern tip of the archipelago.
Arrive in Rose Harbour around midday and move into the guesthouse. Two guests share each room in this informal and rustic establishment.
A selection of three well-maintained composting outhouses are situated a short walk from the guesthouse (there are no flush toilets in Rose Harbour).
The guesthouse's indoor sink has running cold water. The hot running water is located at the ingenious wood-fired shower facility a few steps away.
Meals are served at the dining space near the neighbouring house in Rose Harbour. The menu includes locally-caught seafoods and all sorts of organic vegetables from the gardens. Breads, muffins and cookies are baked regularly. Desserts are often garnished with fresh picked berries. The dining atmosphere is genuine and delightful; this is not a restaurant, it’s a thriving homestead.
After lunch in Rose Harbour on day one, we provide an orientation to the kayaks and embark on an afternoon paddle.
Days Two to Four
There are numerous and varied day-trip possibilities from Rose Harbour. Kayaking options include sheltered local excursions, as well as slightly more challenging adventures to Hecate Strait, or toward the Pacific coast. Ride the tide through Houston Stewart Channel as we explore the many beaches, islands and waterways within this vibrant, remote region.
We may return to Rose Harbour for lunch after each morning's kayak excursion, or we could pack a lunch to enjoy our midday meal on a remote beach during an extended kayak day-trip.
Walk along shorelines to witness the vast array of marine life clinging to inter-tidal zones. Discover the rich bio-diversity thriving in the surrounding old-growth rainforests.
Visit the ancient Haida village of Ninstints on Anthony Island. This extraordinary historical settlement is a United Nations World Heritage Site, also known as SGang Gwaay. Numerous totem poles overlook the village and longhouse ruins are still visibly prominent.
Haida Watchmen on the island can explain the carvings on the poles and provide insightful interpretations of the village and their ancestors who once lived there. We spend several hours exploring the island and experiencing the sense of mystery that lingers in this ancient village.
The Kayak Guesthouse Vacation offers a uniquely comfortable Gwaii Haanas experience. Days are spent kayaking remote waterways, walking old-growth forests, exploring pristine beaches and enjoying the Rose Harbour community. The craftsman-built guesthouse provides the option of cozy, warm shelter any time of day or night.
After a morning paddle on our last day, the speedboat arrives in Rose Harbour. The group transports to Sandspit, touring the coastline of Gwaii Haanas along the way. At the end of the day, you are returned to Seaport B&B, or another Sandspit accommodation of your choice.
This map shows the Waters of SGang Gwaay tour and Cape Freeman Expedition.
The Kayak Guesthouse Vacation explores regions closest to Rose Harbour,
which is depicted by the little house with a flag.
- What is Included - Kayak Guesthouse Vacation
- Two-way speedboat transport between Sandspit and Rose Harbour.
Alternate boat or floatplane transport may be substituted.
- Four nights of shared accommodation at the Rose Harbour Guest House.
Guests on this five-day vacation will stay in Rose Harbour Guest House's detached accommodation facility. (Other visitors who stay only one night may be provided a guest room inside the proprietor's house.)
- All meals, from lunch on day one to lunch on day five.
- Certified and experienced sea kayak guide and assistant guide.
- Seaward Tyee single kayaks are provided.
- Two-way boat transportation between Rose Harbour and the ancient Haida village of Ninstints (SGang Gwaay).
- Gwaii Haanas National Park entrance fee is included.
- In the unlikely event of delayed transport due to weather or other factors on the last days of the tour, meals and accommodation are provided to guests in Rose Harbour.
- What's not Included - Kayak Guesthouse Vacation
- Transportation between your home and Sandspit, British Columbia.
- Accommodation and meals in Sandspit prior to and following the tour.
- Alcohol is not included.
Wine, beer and liquors are available at the grocery store in Sandspit; guests are welcome to bring their own alcohol to Rose Harbour. (There is no store of any kind in Rose Harbour.)
- Gratuities are entirely optional and always greatly appreciated.
- Appropriate outdoor clothing and items of a personal nature.
Arriving with appropriate outdoor clothing is essential to each guest's comfort and personal well-being during the trip. A detailed clothing and equipment list is provided upon registration.
- Electrical power outlets are not available in guest rooms.
The Rose Harbour Guest House is a rustic, wilderness facility; it does not have electricity. If you require an electrical outlet in your room, please consider the mothership cruise.
- If a guest misses our chartered speedboat, alternate transport costs are not included.
- In the unlikely event of delayed transport due to weather or other factors on the first days of the tour, additional expenses such as accommodation and meals in Sandspit are not included.
Rose Harbour offers an authentically alternative coastal experience. The Kayak Guesthouse Vacation is an extraordinary trip, yet it is not designed to be suitable for everyone. Those who prefer more of a mainstream holiday may not find what they are looking for here.
Rose Harbour Guest House provides our five-day guests with clean beds, blankets and sheets, one pillow per person, well-maintained composting outhouses and no Internet or electricity.
Guests on this five-day vacation will stay in Rose Harbour Guest House's detached accommodation. (Other visitors who stay only one night may be provided a guest room inside the proprietor's house.)
This vacation is based in the tiny, isolated community of Rose Harbour, which is populated by a handful of friendly maritime homesteaders leading a fascinating, organic lifestyle. Our guide Gord has worked with the Rose Harbour residents for decades. Butterfly Tours guides serve as interpretive hosts while our guests interact with Rose Harbour residents and their unique homesteading lifestyle.
Accurate expectations are important. The Rose Harbour Guest House is a remote wilderness accommodation with limited space available. Two guests share each room in this informal and rustic establishment. Guests traveling alone may be provided with a room-mate. A vacant room in the guesthouse may become occupied by a visiting traveler during your stay. Alternatively, guests may request the option of sleeping in a private tent, while using the guesthouse during the day.
Prospective guests are encouraged to read Gord's review of the Rose Harbour Guest House.
This trip is suitable for relatively inexperienced paddlers, as well as accomplished kayakers. Even with skilled kayakers, we ask each group member to cooperate with our professional risk management guidelines. Our groups remain with the guides when on the water; there are very limited opportunities to paddle without the guides. Those who may not appreciate this style of group-oriented risk management are encouraged to consider a self-guided trip.
Routes and itineraries remain very flexible to accommodate changeable west coast conditions. Alternate boat or floatplane transport may be substituted. In order to confirm this trip, two people must register in advance.