to Halfmoon Bay
to Florencia Bay
WHALES from March to
May in great quantities, then resident whales remain until October's
return migration. Can be seen from coastal viewpoints, or on
a Nature Tour. The Pacific
Festival is from mid March to early April.
SEALS peek at you from
the surf line as you walk the coast or follow you curiously if
you are in a kayak.
SEALIONS (especially common
& noisy in Ucluelet harbour). Can also be seen on rocks from
the coast or boat charters.
FISH Are also a great
attraction for sport fishing or watching the salmon return in
the fall. See (Great Fishing)
a serious pastime! Special bird sanctuaries have been
set aside in the Tofino Mud Flats, and both National and Provincial
Parks protect the birds. Migrating SHORE BIRDS often rest
and feed here - please do not disturb them! Bald EAGLES, oyster
catchers, herons and diving ducks are often seen. Keep your dog
on a leash.
BEARS: Most visible
outside the winter months. Some charter companies are now conducting
tours to view these animals
safely. Please note, keep all food and garbage securely locked
in your vehicle, bears are easily conditioned to human food.
(Trails with more than 1 sign)
Trails to beaches
Trails in rainforest
Trail numbers match
yellow circles on map above.
Click numbers on map
Scroll down for list.
Map # 1 & 2
This 2.8 km. round trip trail, traces a portion of the pioneer
route linking Ucluelet & Tofino. This wide gravel trail begins
from a small unpaved lane marked Willowbrae Road, found two kilometres
south of the Tofino - Ucluelet junction. (5 minutes. drive from
Ucluelet). After a few gentle hills the trail is relatively level
until the trail splits. Then very steep stairs & ramps descend
through the rainforest to either Half Moon (a quaint cove) or
Florencia Bay (an open, often misty beach). Not a good trail
for people unsure of their footing.
Gold Mine Trail
Map # 3
This trail was washed out several years ago by storm action along Lost Shoe Creek. All markers for the trail have
been removed and beach access is closed.
South Beach Trail
Map # 4
1.5 km round trip trail, departs from behind the Wickaninnish
Centre, and follows the moss-draped forest fringe of the shore
along coves such as Lismer Beach. Please resist any temptation
to collect shells or souvenirs! The trail is level until the
boardwalk ascends the headlands for a vista of the coast and
access to South Beach itself. This pebble beach is famous for
the music of stones rolling in the surf, and dramatic high waves
breaking over the rocks. Beware the waves. This trail is now
considered a side trail from the Nuu-chah-nulth Trail.
Map # 5
Newly renovated with cedar boardwalk and 12 richly illustrated
interpretive signs about the cultural, and natural history of
the First Nations peoples. This 2.5 km one way trail (formerly
the Wickaninnish Trail) links Long Beach to Florencia Bay. Access
from behind the Wickaninnish Centre, follow the beach-side trail
then turn left at the sign found at the top of the first hill,
for a nice rainforest walk. Watch for glimpses of old corduroy
logs under the moss, this is part of a pioneer road. Trail ends
at a parking area near a nice viewpoint. Descend to Florencia
Bay via stairs.
Map # 6
This 0.8 km. boardwalk loop is an easy & fascinating self
guided nature tour of the unique bog environment (ask for a brochure at the Kwisitis Centre). Stunted and
twisted shorepine trees, hundreds of years old, grow only metres
tall. Multiple color sphagnum, or peat moss, grows in hummocks
several metres deep, and tiny sundews with sticky leaves trap
insects for nutrients. Pamphlets describe many flowers, plants,
and the effects of poorly drained soil conditions in a climate
that receives 300cm of annual rain. WHEELCHAIR accessible.
Map # 7
Two 1 km trails explore the magical world of a pristine old growth
rainforest. The boardwalk leads you through centuries of growth,
where gigantic trees and ancient fallen logs are carpeted with
hanging gardens of moss, ferns and young trees. Loop A (across
the highway) uses interpretive signs to explore forest life cycles,
Loop B (at the parking lot) emphasizes forest structure and inhabitants
such as the salmon which spawn in the cool protective shade of
Sandhill Creek. Both loops can be walked easily with a few stairs.
Combers Beach Trail
Map # 8
500 metres one way. The dramatic effect
of the ocean's high winds and waves have eroded the coastline so access to the beach may be rough. This gentle
trail leads you from the parking lot on top of the headland, steeply down a wide gravel path to
the log fringe of the beach where the bent and weathered spruce
take a brave hold. The trail formerly connected to a boardwalk trail which has been deactivated, only a short section of boardwalk remains.
Schooner Beach Trail
Map # 9
This 1 km trail leads you through a lovely mature rainforest,
over a moss draped stream, and down a series of stairs to a very
scenic beach on Schooner Cove. This wide secluded cove is the
northern end of Long Beach. Day use only. a few muddy areas but
new stairs and sections of boardwalk have been added.
An overlook of the ocean can be enjoyed from the top
of this hill. Formerly cleared for a radar installation during
World War II, evidence of foundations can still be seen when
climbing the ramp. WHEELCHAIR accessible, but the views at the top are blocked by trees.
Beware some holes in the short road up the hill.
access via a trail
Famous as the longest stretch of surf swept sand on Vancouver
Island's west coast, this spectacular beach attracts surfers
& vacationers from all over the world. Surf guards are NOT on duty at any time. Be cautious in the
cold, powerful surf. Also, PLEASE respect the fragile beach environment.
Leave only foot prints and take only photographs! Two parking
areas service day use of the beach. WHEELCHAIR accessible.
The next two beaches are actually sections of Long Beach, but
carry their own names. It is possible if the tides are low to
hike between beaches such as Greenpoint and Combers then catch
the Beach Bus (operated by Tofino Bus) back to your car.
Here the confluence of the ocean with a small creek
can be seen. Rich bird life, and the effects of water erosion
on the foreshore are dramatically in evidence. Beach access must cross shifting sand and logs at the end of hike number eight.
Beach/Kwisitis Visitor Centre
Wickaninnish Beach is at the south end of Long Beach. This area
offers trails and viewpoints of storm waves from a safe distance.
The visitor centre and interpretive gallery is build right on the surf splashed rocks.
This remarkable centre has exhibits and movies exploring
the natural, and cultural history of the Pacific Rim. A whaling
canoe, murals of ocean life and whale bones are on display.
Park interpreters will assist you with info. Open daily mid March to mid October. November to March open Friday to Sunday.
Long stretch of scenic beach at the North end of Long Beach.
See hike number 9 for access information. No camping permitted.
This is a very scenic beach, ideal for long walks, but beware
rising tides. Beach access from Florencia parking lot down a
short series of stairs. The south end of this beach can be reach
via Willowbrae Trail and a long series of stairs.
Camping & Theatre
Indoor heated theatre for nightly park programs late June to
September. Popular campsites include walk-in non-reservable sites
or reservable drive-in forest sites (call: 1-877-737-3783). Pets
on a leash permitted in drive-in sites only.
Nothing brings a more memorable day of relaxing than time at
a spectacular beach. Remember the tide however or your picnic
will be a washout! Tides change every 6 hours, so there are two
low tides a day. Low tides expose rocks and reefs which offer
endless hours observing tiny crabs, anemone and urchins in tidepools
(please be warned, most shells contain something living and therefore
very smelly in a day or two). It is best to collect pictures!
Also be aware of large rogue waves anywhere near the edge of
Many people visit the Pacific Rim
in the winter to witness enormous breakers pounding the rugged
coast. Waves break more dramatically on rocky headlands or reefs.
SAFE viewing spots are the Ucluelet lighthouse/Wild
Pacific Trail, the Kwisitis Visitor Centre and trails
to South Beach or any path above rocky points. Avoid beaches
and rocks at this time, waves are faster and stronger than any
more detail on wild waves