Riondel is a village of approximately 300 people in British Columbia. It is situated on the eastern shore of Kootenay Lake. It is about an hour away from Nelson on the west shore, via the Kootenay Lake Ferry, known as the world’s longest free ferry ride.
From 1950, Riondel was a bustling, thriving mining town until 1972, when the Bluebell mine closed for good. Most people moved on to other nearby towns, while the older employees stayed in Riondel and retired. Riondel became a popular retirement community; at one time it had more seniors per capita than any other postal code in Canada.
Today Riondel is a tidy village with streets, a lakeside campground, beach, community centre, playground, cable TV system, 9-hole golf course, grocery and liquor store, cafe, and pub.
The Riondel Golf Course offers a 9-hole, Par 3 course located on Galena Bay Wharf Road 10 minutes from the Kootenay Lake Ferry
The Riondel Beach and Riondel Campground are busy spots and a favourite for sunbathers, boaters, recreationists, hikers, fishing folk and campers.
Other outdoor opportunities in Riondel include canoeing or kayaking the waters of the 75-mile long and 5-mile wide Kootenay Lake (rentals available), swimming, wildlife and nature viewing, boating and sailing, and backcountry exploration.
The Riondel Community Centre is located in a former school, and it has an auditorium for community events. The Centre houses the Riondel Art Club, the Riondel Seniors’ Society, the Riondel Commission of Management, Riondel Community Library, and the Historical Society. Children may play on the playground outside.