Back for it’s 6th year celebrating local wine and food through a series of events, Parksville Uncorked showcases cuisine, culture and a few great sips we think are worth exploring. To make planning your weekend escape to this quaint beachfront town for the weekend’s festivities extra notable, see our highlights below…
First off, getting there can’t be any easier. Pack your bags and head straight from the office via BC Ferries (Horseshoe Bay to Departure Bay route), or nab a convenient flight directly from the downtown harbour (SeaAir and Harbour Air fly frequently).
Located about a half hour drive from Nanaimo, make your way north to festival central and book yourself into a suite at The Beach Club Resort. This recently re-done resort boasts plenty of luxury any young professional will appreciate – complete with spa offerings at Stonewater Spa, amazing dining and picturesque views off the eastern coast of the island.
Plan ahead and make your way there for Thursday and you’ll be able to catch one of the festival’s signature events: Parksville Untapped. Tickets are $49 each, and this year’s event features an Olympic theme, inviting guests to sample a selection of beer from regional breweries paired up with local cuisine. Take your custom “Parksville Untapped” beer glass as a souvenir… if you remember, that is.
Wake up the next day, grab your coffee to go and head down to Parksville Beach for a lazy, sobering stroll. Unwind lounging around at the resort’s indoor pool and hot tub before getting geared up for the night ahead.
You’ll want to check out Swirl (starting at 6:30pm until late) over at the stunning Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort, where the best BC wines and gourmet cuisine are brought together for one killer night. Tickets are $69 and it’s the perfect event for any type of wine geek or newbie looking to learn. Some notable participating wineries include Meyer Family Wines, Mistaken Identity, Red Rooster, See Ya Later Ranch as well as island-based Averill Creek and Rocky Creek Winery… and more.
The following day, book into The Grotto Spa back at Tigh-Na-Mara for a day of serious R&R. They boast more than 20,000 square feet of spa space and a 2500-square foot natural mineral pool for some detoxification. Nab a treatment; we suggest you partake in their full day of ‘Grotto’Fication for a day of serious pampering before you get ready to head to dinner.
Stay put and check out Road 13’s special winemakers’ dinner led by Tigh-Na-Mara’s Executive Chef Eric Edwards ($129), or The Beach Club Resort’s special Burrowing Owl winemakers’ dinner ($149) with Executive Chef Rick Davidson. Both guarantee they’ll deliver delectable local eats through multiple courses.
Work off the previous night’s excess by heading out for a hike at nearby Top Bridge Trail. This relatively easy trek is a great loop that will land you a stunning view (with plenty of time to spare for brunch).
As a perfect cap-off to the weekend, wind things down by catching Bubbles & Brunch at Tigh-Na-Mara for healthy, a la carte local bites complemented by a selection of BC’s best bubbles.
Learn more about the area and start planning your winter wine-themed escape here.