Picture Yourself Here: 9 Airbnb Gems in B.C.

Start daydreaming about a weekend getaway at one of these unbelievably cool B.C. Airbnbs

For as little as a hundred bucks a night, you can live out your B.C. wilderness fantasies in one of these extraordinary Airbnbs

British Columbia has a quirky, complex social history. The province is a little bit hippy, a little bit techy and a whole lot unique. It’s fitting then that Airbnb offers vacation getaways that show off such personality, such character, they could only be found out west.

Escape the city with a weekend at one of nine highly-acclaimed properties available through the web’s favourite short-term rental service…


1. Alfie the A-Frame, Sechelt, B.C. | $129 per night

Only the most charming inanimate constructs can claim an adorable nickname—and Alfie is one such example. This airy A-frame house offers guests a private, one-bedroom stay (with a pull-out couch in the living area for extra space) on the Sunshine Coast. The west-facing home boasts optimal sun in the afternoon and early evening along with a stunning view of the water. More than 220 reviews ensure a five-star rating and the owners are proud. “Our special little part of the world evokes a deep-seated breath of fresh air that you only realize once you are here,” say hosts Gary Bearchell and Jennifer Cox. Booking details


2. Cob Cottage, Mayne Island, B.C. | $160 per night

At first glance, one might mistake this distinctive Mayne Island spot for the summer home of the Smurfs—and that’s not far off. Designed in 1999 by Hilde Dawe, the Cob Cottage is inspired by fairy tales and storybook illustrations: a whimsical one-bedroom cabin hand-crafted from local materials, offering guests a sleek but ethereal setting to relax. “It’s a special experience to spend time in a space created with earth and driftwood and sculpted into curves by people’s hands,” explains owner Alexis Borsboom. A five-star rating is the collected consensus of the location’s 250 stellar reviews, with the words “magical” and “dreamy” exclaimed time and time again. Booking details


3. Waterfront Sunrise Cabin, Tofino, B.C. | $225 per night

Cedarwood Cove is less a quaint cabin and more a fully-realized lifestyle retreat. Partnered with a larger 3-bedroom property that is also available for rent, this private studio suite is located near Tofino, surrounded by breathtaking old growth forests and expansive ocean views. But the most unique feature for renters is the breadth of services available on-site from fully-certified hosts. “We offer unique stays that include wellness and wonder from the comfort of the deck,” says host Michelle Hall. “Wake up to morning yoga, rejuvenate with fresh juices, head to the surf on bikes, relax in the hot tub or sauna, cook fresh fish on the campfire, have a massage in the wellness shack or take a sunset paddle cruise from the private jetty before sleeping under the stars.” Truly, an entire world of luxury leisure is unearthed with every booking. And Airbnb guests aren’t stingy with the accolades: nearly 200 reviews tally up a five-star standing. Booking details


4. Scouse, Penticton, B.C. | $125 per night

A five-star rustic escape awaits guests at this cozy Penticton cabin, so expect an emphasis on nature versus nurture. The locale is off the grid with no heat, but wildlife viewing is amazing. Deer—and often big-horned sheep—simply graze past the doorstep. A full bathroom, steam room and laundry are available to guests a few steps away in the adjacent main house, as are WiFi and other amenities. More than 60 guest reviews praise this spot, which is just a short ride from the beautiful Naramata Bench and its many award-winning wineries. Booking details

5. Ymir Church Guest House, Ymir, B.C. | $140 per night

Travellers often joke they are searching for sanctuary when they flee the stresses of a bustling city and this guest house certainly provides—in the most faithful of ways. The converted church is located 25 minutes from Nelson in the West Kootenays. Built during B.C.’s gold rush, it features cathedral ceilings that lend a spacious feel even when all beds are spoken for and up to eight guests spend the night. With a five-star standing and over 40 reviews, the house also impresses with local artwork throughout. Booking details


6. Cottage Near the Beach, Hornby Island, B.C. | $120 per night

Hornby Island has long been a haven for artists and creative minds. This cottage is proof. Architecturally eye-catching, it offers guests one bedroom and an additional pull-out, close to Whaling Station Bay Beach and Helliwell Provincial Park. Due to high demand, only week-long rentals are available in July and August each year. Visitors applaud the cozy wood fire and open nature of the space in 65 reviews, averaging a four-and-a-half star rating. Booking details


7. Ultimate Modern Escape, near Golden, B.C. | $449 per night

Designed by Golden’s Form and Forest, this modern two-bedroom space sleeps up to eight comfortably (thanks to additional beds in common spaces). It’s burrowed in secluded forest with a stunning 180-degree view of local mountains and the Blaeberry River just steps away. “Our combination of contemporary architecture and wilderness alpine setting—coupled with a riverside location and Rocky Mountain views—gives people a truly unique escape to relax and rejuvenate far from the concerns of modern urban life,” says owner Ryan Jordan. The praise of over 65 visitors has helped the spot maintain a five-star reputation online. Booking details


8. Waterfront Treehouse Cottage, Sunshine Coast, B.C. | $199

Take to the treetops for a vacation at this smartly decorated Secret Cove hideaway. Nestled on the Sunshine Coast just minutes from Smugglers Cove Provincial Park, this cabin offers a private dock, hot tub access, newly-renovated interiors and even canoe adventures at your doorstep. Accommodating two guests, the treehouse boasts five-star acclaim with over 160 reviews extolling its virtues. Booking details


9. Padma Yurt, Cortes Island, B.C. | $95 per night

Another Gulf Island gem, this five-star rated yurt showcases the best of off-grid vacationing. A propane stove and lights power up the circular space, with solar providing hot water and an old-fashioned outdoor pantry keeping food cool. Hosts Inga Schumann and Natasha Meredith love the unique nature of the accommodation. “We wanted to offer our guests a moment to breathe, to step out of the white noise and feel what nature can give to us when we are listening,” they say. Over 50 glowing reviews confirm they have succeeded. Booking details