Burgess and her husband Chris sit on top of their 12 passenger Cove Adventure Tours van.

Taking tourists off the beaten path of the West Coast

“Our goal is to give people an authentic feel when they go out there.”

After moving back to Port Hardy with her husband Chris, Anna Burgess wanted to spend her time touring the West Coast.

She partnered with her friends Kevin and Kristina, of Cove Apparel, and started Cove Adventure Tours.

Burgess said because Cove Apparel offers surfboard and stand up paddle rentals, Kristina would often have tourists inquiring about tours, and the idea took off from there.

“Our goal is to give people an authentic feel when they go out there – like what a local would do,” said Burgess, adding “to go to these off the beaten path places that are hard to get to, but make it easy for people, make it easy for people to get there.”

The group purchased a 12 passenger van with sturdy ties and decided to use their intimate knowledge of the North Island to take people to the different remote and stunning locations the region has to offer.

“There’s a lot of know-how you need,” said Burgess continuing, “we were out there yesterday on the west coast trail and it was full of huge sharp rocks because they just grated the road, so anyone with normal tires would have had a flat.”

She said it’s important for people who come visit the area to have a reason to stay. “Traditionally people would just come to Port Hardy for a night, get on the ferry the next day and leave. The tourism industry here is really trying to retain people for a longer period of time,” said Burgess.

Cove Aventure Tours mainly offers trips to San Josef Bay and Grant Bay, Burgess said they are offering custom tours that take people almost anywhere they want to go. “If someone called me and said I want to go to Little Husan caves or to some of the more remote places we would just say yes,” said Burgess adding “we are open to making anything happen right now!”

Burgess and her partners started Cove Adventure Tours earlier this year and are still determining what tourists want to do and see most.

“The great part about exploring the North Island is there’s no one else out there really,” said Burgess adding “west coast beaches are like nothing else” and she hopes Cove Adventure Tours will give people a new chance to get out and explore the island.

Hanna Petersen article