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Nelson (British Columbia)

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Nelson (British Columbia)

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Nelson is in British Columbia Canada. The 1987 film Roxanne starring Steve Martin was filmed in this town.
Nelson's Baker Street

Get in

Nelson is located 657 km ( a 9 hour drive) from Vancouver and 624 km from Calgary on hwy 3A. It is also 237 km from Spokane, WA, 496 km from Banff and 454 km from Kamloops.

  • Air Canada, [1]. Offering daily flights from Vancouver and Calgary to Castlegar Regional Airport, (40 km away), with shuttle service to Nelson provided by Queen City Limo. It is recommended to book shuttle in advance. Budget and National car rentals are also available in the Castlegar Regional Airport.
  • Greyhound, [2]. Offering twice daily bus service to towns and cities throughout BC. Buses from Vancouver and Calgary take approximately 12 hours in total, including stops.
  • BC Transit, [3]. Offering a regional bus service throughout BC, apart from the Greater Vancouver region.
  • Nelson Municipal Airport, offers a 3100x75 asphalt runway for private aircraft only. No commercial flights land here.

Get around

  • Budget car rentals are located in the foyer of the Prestige Inn.
  • Rent-a-wreck are located by Nelson Municipal Airport.
  • BC Transit, see above.


  • Museum of Art & History, 512 Vernon St. Tel: 250-352-9813, [4]. Displaying the culture and history of Nelson and District in its museum, archives and art gallery.
  • Nelson Mining Museum. Features thousands of rock, gem, fossil and mine core specimens from the West Kootenays and British Columbia. An extensive collection of books, mining publications and maps, both new and old, are available for public use. The facility is open year-round – check for daily and seasonal hours. Located at 215 Hall St. Tel: 250-352-5242
  • Nelson & District Visitor Info Centre, 225 Hall Street, Nelson, BC V1L 5X4. Telephone: (250) 352-3433 Fax: (250) 352-6355 Toll Free (877) 663-5706. Open year round.
  • Streetcar 23. Open weekends and all summer. Historic restored streetcar that used to run down Baker Street now runs from Lakeside Park to Chahko Mika Mall and beyond along the lakeside.


Nelson is an great base to explore the lakes, mountains and rivers of the surrounding area. The west arm of the Kootenay Lake flows past Nelson with several dams just below Nelson. The orange bridge is a local icon connecting the north shore to Nelson. Lakeside Park is a mix of grass and shaded trees and beach.

  • Spa/Retreat, [5]. Mountainwaters has many Spa services, treatments and packages. Also does weddings, wedding receptions and some accommodation. Located on the outskirts of Nelson, about 10 mins from downtown.
  • Yoga There are several yoga studios in Nelson, perhaps the biggest is Trinity Yoga, [6] who run yoga teacher training courses across Canada, as well as Yoga classes in Nelson. Shanti Yoga [7] are also worth noting and they run Yoga classes in town.
  • Kootenay School of the Arts [8], study fine craft production in clay, metal, jewelry and small object design or fibre. Community classes as well as two year Diploma programmes.

Enjoy the scenery of Nelson, go for a hike, snowshoe, or glacier swim!


  • Chahko Mika Mall, Located on the lake front., [9]. Contains approx 30 stores/services including restaurants, clothing, supermarket, Wal-Mart, newsagent, book store etc.
  • Still Eagle Planetary Persuasions, [10]. British Columbia's first hemp store and one of the largest distributors of hemp, organic and fair-trade clothing products in Canada.


Fast Food

Quizno's, KFC, A&W and Edo Japan are all located in Chahko Mika Mall, see above.

A&W, 512 Railway St.

Subway, Baker Street.


  • Max and Irmas -- wood fired pizzas, Italian california
  • Outer Clove -- everything garlic
  • Mike's -- Something for everyone
  • KC'S Kitchen -- The only good sushi in town, the Chinese is a miss
  • Jackson's Hole -- Dixie's Cafe in the movie Roaxanne, Something for everyone
  • Redfish Grill -- eclectic and conventional food
  • Bite [11] -- The fry truck from March to October on Baker - the very best burgers, fries, organic poutine, fries, wraps, salads and more.
  • Baker Street Cafe -- Great fish and chips, greek meals, burgers, meals, draft on tap.
  • Bogustown Pub -- A great atmosphere, daily specials. The patio is a great place to be rain or shine.

High End

  • All Season Cafe Where the locals go for a special dinner. Great wine list.
  • Rice asian cuisine in a trendy atmosphere
  • Bibo New restaurant to Nelson, beautiful patio, fantastic food and wine.


  • Bogustown Pub -- A relaxed atmosphere including an enjoyable patio, daily drink specials, and great service.
  • Spirit Bar located in the Hume Hotel, mixed crowd with DJ's on weekends and the occasional live act
  • The City of Nelson has its own brewery, The Nelson Brewing Company.[12].
  • The Library the lounge in the Hume Hotel, relaxing atmosphere, good food and drink, fireplace in Winter and live music in evenings



  • Kokanee Creek Provincial Park 20km from Nelson BC. [13] With a large sandy beach, adventure playground, hot showers and a host of other amenities you’re sure to be comfortable and find plenty to do for you and your family. Open May 1-Sep 30.


There are currently four hostels in Nelson all of which are in good downtown locations, close to bars, restaurants and stores.

  • The Backcountry Hostel (formerly the Flying Squirrel Hostel), [14]. Clean, friendly, a great place to meet new people, located right in downtown Nelson on Baker St. Rates (2006) from $20.
  • Dancing Bear Hostel [15]. Clean and quiet. Rates (2006) $22 to $50. Also group rooms at $68 to $152 per night, sleeping between 4 and 8 people.
  • New Grand Hostel, [16]. Recently refurbished, it is located downtown on Vernon St. Has some budget rooms available at (2006) $20 to $32 per night.
  • The Whitehouse Backpacker Lodge, [17]. Renovated grand Victorian building, it is located at the quiet end of Vernon St. Rooms are $25 - $30 pp/night (2007)


  • New Grand Hotel, [18]. In the same building as the 'New Grand Hostel', see above. Located downtown on Vernon St. Rates (2006) $79 to $109 per night.
  • The Prestige Inn, [19] Located by the lake shore on Front St. Rates (2006) $100 to $250 per night.
  • The Hume Hotel, Vernon St. (downtown), [20]. Rates (2006) $80 to $140 per night.
  • Solterra Guest House[21] Beautiful private setting, close to downtown and the Burlington trail.


  • BCTrip, [22]. Offering a range of luxury vacation rental homes around Nelson. Rates (2006) $1350 USD to $2500 USD per week.

Get out

  • Ainsworth Hot Springs, [23]. Located approx. 47 km north of Nelson on Hwy 31. This resort is open for day visits ($5 to $11) and also has rooms (approx. $100 to $200, depending on season) and a restaurant. Rates are 2006 prices.


  • Whitewater Winter Resort, [24]. Located just 10 miles from Nelson and boasts 20 km of cross country trails, groomed and track set for all abilities. Average snowfall is 45 feet. Rates (2006) $46 per day for adults.

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