Port Alberni BC, on Vancouver Island has two exceptional dive sites at China Creek, and both have excellent beach access.
One of the two dives at China Creek is a nice wall with a fair amount of marine life to explore, as well as a sunken boom boat.
The other is a purpose sunk wreck, that was one of the original migrant ships apprehended off the B.C. coast back in 1999, and then cleaned up and sunk by the Alberni Reef society in 2001.
A note here, there were actually two ships scuttled at China Creek, but the second one took off when it hit the sandy bottom and kept on sliding until it was in over 300 ft of water (90m).
Diving here, as you approach "existing wreck", you can see a deep "V" cut into the sea floor created by the runaway ship!
Coincidentally, China Creek is also an excellent campsite as well as a popular sports fishing destination from mid May to mid September.
A caveat here!
It is important to note that generally the fishing does not interfere with the scuba diving, but there is the potential, so be aware of boat traffic that you may encounter.
Anyway, we have yet to have had any incidents.
Oh ya! If you camp here good luck sleeping in, fisherman get up early!
By the way, if you have not had the experience of diving through a
Halocline before, it's pretty cool.
A few times during the year when a lot of fresh water from China Creek is sitting on top of the salt water from the inlet, it creates a strange visual effect that is much like a heat mirage you see in the summer time.
Once you drop below the layer of fresh water though, the visibility is fine, so don't despair.
Here is an excellent link to
tide and current charts
for Nanaimo, BC.
At the bottom of displayed
chart you will see two links,
"other tide stations" or
"other current stations"
follow these links for
information from California
and right up to Alaska.