Things To Do

We created this list of Sunshine Coast attractions and activities with dog owners in mind (from our days of operating a dog-friendly B&B), but we decided to leave it on the site because the Coast will never lose its appeal to visitors.

If you’re visiting from another area and are looking for accommodation, go to the Sunshine Coast Bed & Breakfast and Cottage Accommodation for a complete list of places to stay.

Skookumchuck Narrows is home to world-famous tidal rapids. Click here for a calendar showing the best viewing times. The 4-km hike to the viewing area is a gorgeous rainforest experience in itself.

The Sunshine Coast is home to artists of all kinds, and their studios and galleries dot the landscape. The Purple Banner program makes it easy to find particular artists or to map out a day of leisurely stops.

The Iris Griffith Field Studies and Interpretive Centre (off Highway 101, 1 km south of Ruby Lake) offers a full schedule of events of interest to all ages. This is an exceptional new facility; we’re delighted to have its presence in the area. Check the centre’s website at

These are but a few suggestions. One of our absolute favourite sites for all manner of Sunshine Coast activities is, where, among other things, you’ll find details about:

  • hiking
  • scuba diving
  • golfing
  • sea kayaking
  • mountain biking
  • fishing
  • mushrooming



We list here our favourite local trails; for a complete list of the Coast’s fabulous hiking and biking trails, go to Sunshine Coast Trails.

Pender Hill When you sit at the top of our driveway and look out over the view, you can see Pender Hill. It’s a 10-minute drive or a 60-minute hike to get to the start of its trail. The short, steep hike—about 30 minutes—rewards you with a fabulous view over the Harbour.

Mount Daniel This is a longer climb than Pender Hill, with another great view at the top. You can drive to the start of the trail in 10 minutes.

Daniel Point Marine Park Another lovely hike within minutes of Bluff Hollow. The steep trail takes you right down to the water – not a beach for swimming or wading, but a place to watch the waves and look for intertidal creatures.

Francis Point Marine Park This trail has fabulous views of the water, and at some points goes through some steep rocky areas above the ocean.

Skookumchuk No visit to Pender Harbour is complete without a visit to Skookumchuk Narrows. This is an easy 4-km hike, best if it’s timed to coincide with the tide change; we’ll provide you with that information.

Klein Lake Another beautiful hike that your puppies will love is the trail to Klein Lake. It’s not so “rain-foresty” as some of the other hikes, but you do get some lovely views.


Art in the Harbour

FibreWorks Studio and Gallery
12887-12889 Sunshine Coast Highway, Madeira Park

A rich display of fibre in the artist’s studio, plus a gallery featuring the creations of fibre artists from all over the world, all in a cluster of attractive yurts

Motoko’s Original Art
4590 Sinclair Bay Road, Garden Bay
604-883-9472 , toll-free 1-888-668-6567

Original contemporary art by Motoko, a gracious and talented painter

Copper Sky Gallery & Cafe
12904 Madeira Park Rd, Madeira Park

Selected artwork from Harbour artists, along with scrumptious homemade food


Watery Things To Do

Malaspina Water Taxi
Excursions to nearby islands and marine parks, custom kayaking and camping tours



Pender Harbour offers any number of dining experiences, from fine dining to pub food to take-out lunches, and everything in between.


Casual Dining

Garden Bay Pub

This is our neighbourhood pub, where you’ll find tasty pub food as well as sumptuous restaurant meals. The deck is one of the nicest places to be on a summer evening.

Backeddy Pub

After a hike to the Skookumchuck and back, you’ll be ready for a good, basic meal. The pub overlooks the narrows; there’s also a restaurant.


Fine Dining

Painted Boat

You wouldn’t expect to find fabulous food prepared by a world-class chef in our little village, but that’s what you get at the Painted Boat (closed during the winter months).

Rockwater Secret Cove Resort

Excellent food, served with style, in a beautiful location

Inlets Restaurant

First-class food with a spectacular view at the West Coast Wilderness Lodge in Egmont (closed during the winter months)

Ruby Lake Resort

Italian dining in a lovely lakeside setting (closed during the winter months)


Quick and Tasty

Copper Sky Café

Delicious made-from-scratch entrées, sandwiches, and desserts, along with a gallery featuring the work of local artists

Java Docks

A local stop for great coffee and yummy things to eat

Bud-a-Bing Burgers

This blue trailer serves fresh, wholesome burgers made by the talented butchers at the Oak Tree Market.

Laverne’s Fish & Chips

Here you’ll get heaps of classic fish ‘n chips, as well as burgers and sandwiches (closed during the winter months).

Crossroads Grill

Homemade soups, sandwiches, and burgers—you can eat at the picnic tables outside or in the heated hut on cool days.


Festivals and Special Events

Pender Harbour is becoming known for its festivals and special events, which bring visitors back year after year. Book your accommodation early if you plan to take part in these special occasions.

Annual April Tools Wooden Boat Challenge
April 29, 2017

A sure sign that spring is on the way! This wacky and creative event challenges teams of up to four individuals to build a boat within an hour and propel it around the Harbour. But there’s always a catch—on the morning of the event, teams find out the “twist” that must be incorporated into their design.

Pender Harbour May Day
May 20, 2017

Everyone returns to Pender Harbour for all the festivities surrounding the May Day Parade, a genuine community event.

Pender Harbour Blues Festival
Late May/early June
Garden Bay Pub, Garden Bay

Relax and take in some of the best blues music around, in the laid-back atmosphere of the Garden Bay Pub.

Pender Harbour Chamber Music Festival
Music School, Madeira Park

The 2014 Festival promises an exciting weekend filled with an eclectic selection of chamber music, including works by composers not heard before on our stage.

Pender Harbour Jazz Festival
Third weekend in September
Various locations around Pender Harbour

Groups play all around Pender Harbour, in tiny villages and corners (too small to be called villages) smack dab on the ocean. A local water taxi plies the Harbour, dropping folks off at venues. Great local crafts are available at the Copper Sky’s Craft Affaire in downtown Madeira Park.

9th Annual Sunshine Coast Mushroom Festival
October 13-15, 2017
Pender Harbour Community Hall

Spend a day examining an amazing variety of wild mushrooms found locally on the Sunshine Coast. Demonstrations, presentations, vendors of local produce and food products. Guest speaker, Friday and Saturday evenings: Langdon Cook, award-winning author and forager who embeds himself in the “fringes.” Attend a foray with Langdon on Sunday (pre-registration required), then return to ID and cook up the edibles.

Presented by the Sunshine Coast Society for the Hunting, Recognition and Observation of Mushrooms (SHROOM)

Sunshine Coast Art Crawl
October 17-19, 2014
10:00 am to 5:00 pm each day
Art galleries from Langdale to Lund

Meet artists in their studios and experience the vibrant arts and culture community on the Sunshine Coast.