Vibrant Community.  Wild Landscape.  And a little magic.

Cortes Island Smelt Bay

If once you have slept
   On our island ...
You’ll never be quite the same.
   You may look as you did before
And go by the same old name.
   You may bustle about
In street and shop;
   You may sit at home and sew;
But you’ll see blue water
   And wheeling gulls
Wherever your feet may go.

You may chat with your neighbour
   Of this or that
Or close to your fire keep;
   But you’ll see the trees
Hear the eagle’s cry
   And the waves beat thru your sleep
You won’t know why
   And can’t see how
Such changes upon you came;
   But once you have slept
On our island ...
    You’ll never be quite the same.
(by Anonymous)

Creative Spirit and Progressive Thinking

The Salish Sea is dotted with beautiful islands in the shadow of mountains.  Yet Cortes Island has stood apart as a refuge for thought leaders for generations.  The creativity of our artists and community leaders infuses an atmosphere of forward-thinking into our daily life.  Situated at the outer limits – both physically and metaphorically – Cortes Islanders are leaders in the progressive movement towards self-sufficiency and community.

Hollyhock, Canada’s lifelong learning center, located near Cortes’ southern tip, has brought world-class thought leaders to our shores for more than 30 years, infusing our community with the wisdom of their teachings.  More recent initiatives like the Cortes Community Forest Co-operative, the WildStands Alliance, and Friends of Cortes Island have allowed Cortes Islanders to share our unique vision and leadership with the broader world.

Infuse Your Vacation with Magic

Cortes Island is the perfect destination to relax and explore our beautiful wilderness.  It’s also a source of deep inspiration and revitalization.  You’ll find the playful and relaxing vacation that you expected.  You’ll be surprised by how long Cortes Island will stick with you once you leave.

About Cortes Island

Island Maps

Cortes Island Map

Island History

Cortes Island History

Frequently Asked Questions

Cortes Island Forests

Our Community

3 men sawing logs

Our Island

gorge harbour