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“Great setting”

Dinghy Dock Pub & Floating Restaurant
Ranked #13 of 321 Restaurants in Nanaimo
Price range: $4 - $13
Cuisines: American, Bar, Seafood, Pub, Canadian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Kids, Special occasions, Bar scene, Local cuisine, Scenic view, Large groups, Dining on a budget
Dining options: Lunch, Drinks, Dinner, Late Night, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Television, Waitstaff, Wine and Beer
Description: The Dinghy Dock Pub & Restaurant has been an attraction in Nanaimo, British Columbia since 1989. The expansive views, relaxed atmosphere and great pub fare make us a popular destination year round. We are the only registered floating pub in Canada making your experience a unique one. We’re moored off beautiful Protection Island originally known as Douglas Island. The ramp that connects the pub to the island allows visitors to walk the rock beaches, visit the parks or view the heron rookery, making it feel like you’re on vacation. Whether you arrive by ferry, kayak or private boat it’s our goal to make your trip to The Dinghy Dock Pub and Protection Island a memorable one! The Dinghy Dock Pub was originally designed to function as a marina. This included a store with bait shop and showers. In 1989 patrons would order and pay for drinks at the bar and do the same for food through a hole in the kitchen wall! Over the years the Dinghy Dock Pub has expanded three times. The expansions included patios, a family area and enlargement of the kitchen. The original docks surrounding the pub were lower to the water to accommodate the dinghies of yachts anchored in the harbour. Presently our docks range in size and fit vessels as small as kayaks and as large as a 50′ sail or power boat. Along with the docks, we’ve evolved to become a full service pub and restaurant where minors can dine as well. The Dinghy Dock Pub and Restaurant are entirely floating, creating an amazing experience once aboard. Our menus show case delicious seafood, a twist on classic pub fare and local beers from Vancouver Island. Stunning views of the coast are featured from every seat in the house whether you’re inside or out. The fishing hole on the restaurant patio has great views of the Nanaimo Harbour and Vancouver island. Kids and their parents can try to make the big catch at our fishing hole while enjoying the sights and sounds of sea planes, boats and nature. Protection Island is situated between the beautiful Newcastle and Gabriola Islands. The population of Protection Island is 350 and measures a mile and a half long by a mile wide. The island is a relaxing walk before or after visiting the Dinghy Dock Pub. As you walk the island you’ll notice only a handful of cars and an abundance of golf carts. Most residents use golf carts for transportation and to haul groceries from the ferry or their private boat. Interesting areas of exploration are the community garden, beaches or parks and local museum. Next time you visit The Dinghy Dock Pub leave yourself extra time to check out this little island across the Nanaimo Harbour!
Gabriola Island
Level Contributor
4 reviews
“Great setting”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 18, 2012

We've been to this pub several times over the years, but not consistently. We tend to stop for lunch before we head off the island on the ferry. We have often enjoyed their fish and chips, but the last time we ate there, we were dissappointed with the quality. It was okay, but not great. On the up side, being right on the water is spectacular and the staff are very welcoming and friendly.

Visited October 2012
Thank hummingbirdlodge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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418 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Korean first
  • Any
English first
Ladysmith, Canada
Level Contributor
20 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“the little dock that did.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 11, 2012

This is a neat expierence. You need to go by boat a short distance, from the Nanaimo harbor.Our meal consisted of sea food which added to the beautiful harbor view and the activity of boats going here and thereA must if you are visiting or living in that area.

Visited May 2012
Thank reginladysmith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada
Level Contributor
14 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Amazing Location!”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 14, 2012

Dinghy dock wins for location as it's exactly what it sounds like, a floating pub! The Patio is an amazing place to have some beverages on a sunny day, but the food leaves a lot to be desired. Your basic pub type fare, but really nothing that good. It's unfortunate because if the food was better I would be much more likely to make the little ferry over more often!

Thank Mary B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver Island
Level Contributor
52 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Wonderful and Interesting”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 8, 2012 via mobile

My family of 4 enjoyed a trip over for brunch one Sunday. They make to die for eggs Benny...I really enjoyed the smoked salmon eggs Benny and my husband liked the traditional one. Nice sized servings. Excellent service. A really unique experience. Following our meal we walked around Protection Island and took a later ferry back to Nanaimo. We were staying at the Coast Bastion Inn and they provided us with free ferry passes, which was great otherwise it would have cost us $16. Well worth the visit!

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank canadianjess
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
13 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Used to be a must visit place”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 30, 2012

A little disappointed last trip here. Menu was ok but not inspired. Atmosphere seems to have suffered... not the lively place I recall from past visits with good food, upbeat service and fun menu and entertainment... (the new pirate logo is a bit gruesome) ....still a nice boat trip over and the food was ok, so would still recommend it on a nice summer evening.

Visited August 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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