In the Pacific Rim on Vancouver Island, Canada, visit one of the last areas of temperate rainforest on earth. Wander past towering 800 year-old giant Douglas Firs, learn about the complex web of interdependency that formed this unique environment - and don't forget to watch for bears foraging for berries!
A home away from home. There are both dorm rooms and very affordable private rooms. The owner and his team are warm, friendly, welcoming and helpful. They're happy to suggest plentiful activities locally or you can also snuggle up in the living room with the wood stove when it's cold and wet outside. You can hike, surf, kayak, there are live shows, galleries and beaches aplenty. The guesthouse has a kitchen where you can cook, dine and share some wonderful conversations with the other guests. Breakfast is included and it is probably the most reasonably priced place in town!
The west coast of the island is amazing. Buy a park permit which is a bargain - about $19 dollars for two days - and allows you access to all the car parks, trails and centres. Every trail between Uclulet and Torfino is worth doing for diversity. If you have a chance to join a trail walk with ranger Carl you must do so. His knowledge, enthusiasm and charm was a highlight of our holiday and changed the way I think about Banana slugs. This is genuinely a paradise park.
+1 250 726 3500
Google map: bit.ly/oEe27g
Uclulet is a very small town on the west coast. It was everything I hoped the Pacific coast would be. Stunning, quiet, rain forested, long beaches and amazing views and trails.
All the trails between Ucluelet and Torfino are worth exploring for sheer diversity. Must do Wickaninish beach, Schooner cove and the wild Pacific rim.
The Cabins at Terrace Beach are amazing, eat at Ukee Dogs or the Driftwood Patio.
Trips at Jamie's Whaling station are awesome. Get on a Zodiac with Narla. Her enthusiastic commentary is wonderful as we tracked a humpback whale and her calves. What a great place!
168 Fraser Lane, Ucluelet, B.C.
+1 877 726 7444
Google map: bit.ly/rsh8by
1090 Peninsula Road, Ucluelet, BC V0R 3A0
Google map: bit.ly/p9TpKm
1576 Imperial Lane, Ucluelet, BC, Canada
Google map: bit.ly/nVtQnN
1672 Cedar Ave, Ucluelet, B.C, V0R 3A0
Google map: bit.ly/nRwhjI
+1 (250) 726-2739
If you are near Courtenay or heading northwards along the east coast of Vancouver Island and you like small, simple rural hostels, then this is a must. Run by the delightful Bonnie, the atmosphere is so warm and welcoming.You can sit around a camp fire in the evening and if you are lucky like us, a large barred owl might watch you from a neighbouring tree. Black bears come into the garden looking for apples and blackberries,but the five lovely dogs scare them away and will take you for walks along the Comox river, if you are too nervous to head out alone.
A fly drive holiday in British Columbia and Vancouver Island is a really wonderful vacation and it’s very safe for families.
I had a few days in Vancouver then I picked up my campervan from Landcruise and drove to British Columbia Ferries for the beautiful journey over to Vancouver Island, where I saw all sorts of wildlife and whale watching (awesome).
Highway 19 is good and petrol is cheaper by half, than what it costs here in the UK, but not as cheap as it is in the southeastern part of America.
The campgrounds are all great and well maintained by the Province & National Parks www.env.gov.bc.ca/bcparks/ - www.pc.gc.ca/eng/index.aspx
At Port Hardy we got back on the ship and went up the inside passage to Prince Rupert and then drove back to Vancouver through the interior of this gigantic province.
My tour was put together by Landcruiser Canada which was a real help.
I love Canada and will be going again.
Kayaking Clayoquot Sound - located on the west coast of Vancouver Island, you can kayak pristine waters within a beautiful inlet and the open ocean. The islands of the inlet are covered in old growth coastal temperate rain forest and further inland you can see the snow covered peaks of the mountains (even in summer).
Kayak for days or weeks, camp on deserted beaches, fish salmon and cook it over an open fire. Then return to Tofino and stay at a nice hotel, eat great food and enjoy some surfing, walking, whale and bear watching ...
Tofino is located on the west coast of Vancouver island, BC in Canada - from Nanaimo turn westwards and drive for 3 hours via Port Alberni.
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