LONG BEACH NATURE TOURS

Top 5 Things To Do In Tofino

Words by Liam Ogle | June 15, 2020

Tofino is an extraordinary playground. Whether you're a land lover or ocean lover, the west coast of Vancouver Island has so much to offer with a dizzying array of activities, most of which can be easily accessed by town. Here are our Top 5 Things to do in Tofino, with something for every level and ability:

1. HELI-HIKING Why go Heli Hiking in Tofino? That’s a good question with a short answer – Why not? Let’s go one step back and look into the key advantages of using a helicopter. Rather than seeing it as a costly way to get around, think of it as covering long distances in a short amount of time. A helicopter is able to access remote areas you wouldn’t have a hope of getting to any other way. So especially for time-short travellers, using a helicopter in combination with a hike makes total sense. It actually elevates a tour like this to a whole new level. And who doesn’t enjoy getting away from mainstream tourism – everyone loves that! Helicopters are widely used in British Columbia. In fact we have some of the best helicopter pilots in the world. Given the nature of British Columbia’s remote and wild locations, helicopters have been essential for research, conservation and tourism. In a matter of a few minutes you can escape into pure nature. No one has the time to go to these remote areas on foot – this would involve weeks of strenuous hiking, bushwacking and scrambling. What I personally find amazing is the total contrast between our sophisticated ‘coffee and surf culture’ and to the moss-covered classic coastal rainforest and snow-covered alpine peaks. Instead of traffic noise, you’ll get the pure sound bird song of the hermit thrush or the call of a white-tailed Ptarmigan. Two different worlds!  Seriously, you have to do it. It’s a life-changing experience that far outweighs any price tag.

2. BOAT CRUISE THROUGH CLAYOQUOT SOUND Clayoquot Sound is a primal place, rugged and wild, with crashing surf and exposed coastline out of tranquil and calm of narrow and mountainous fiords. Part of the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and within the Biosphere we have 16 Provincial Parks and 2 Ecological Reserves. This region has wildlife ranging from Stellar & California sea lions, seals, gray whales, to black bear and coastal wolves. Travel to what feels like the edge of the Earth or literally the end of the road on day, overnight, and multi day adventures through Tofino and Clayoquot Sound.

3. OVERNIGHT IN A BACKCOUNTRY HUT Most visitors don’t know that Canada has a network of hundreds of backcountry huts scattered throughout the country. The majority located in British Columbia and Alberta, managed by the Alpine Club of Canada, the huts range from popular and well-maintained 20-bunk hideaways to two-bunk rustic cots. If you want to see the best of Tofino’s backcountry, this is the way to do it. *Link to our 5040 hut trip* Only a short drive from the surf town of Tofino, you can experience this alpine environment from a lunch at the 5040 hut or spend the night and enjoy an epic sunset over the pacific ocean from the comfort of this alpine refuge.

4. TAKE A GUIDED COASTAL TREK With all this nature on hand, Tofino has more than its fair share of guides and tour companies. With increasing numbers of people engaging in wilderness activities, pristine and fragile coastal and mountain environments will suffer rising impacts. As a professional user who benefits from these areas, our company and guides will make extra effort to minimize impacts, will set an example for other visitors and instruct our guests how to reduce impact. Our guides are stewards of the environment as a profession and assist local ENGOs with ongoing initiatives. We hope that this will help ensure that our local ecosystem will remain relatively unchanged for the future. Experience the 4 day trek on the Nootka Trail, a remote and difficult region to access, taking a float plane from Tofino makes this a great jumping point to begin planning your adventure to this incredible trek. If you are tight for time, why not try Flores Island for a day hike from Tofino as a great introduction to Clayoquot Sound.

5. EXPLORE PACIFIC RIM NATIONAL PARK RESERVE Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is a 511 km² park located in British Columbia, Canada, which comprises three separate regions: Long Beach, the Broken Group Islands, and the West Coast Trail. It represents the Pacific Coast Mountains landscape which is characterized by rugged coasts and temperate rainforests. From Tofino and Ucluelet you have easy access to Long Beach and Broken Group Islands. Long Beach hosts a variety of wonderful trails and boardwalks and can be experienced fully when joining our guided Pacific Rim Traverse hike or if you're not a hiker, maybe try a surf lesson and embrace the Pacific Ocean as Long Beach and Wickaninnish Beach are world renowned for their surf breaks. The National Park is the backbone of our community and can not be missed during a visit to Tofino.

Based in Tofino BC, Long Beach Nature Tours strive to create a unique private experience for you, our guest. With a variety of trails to explore ranging from leisurely walks to more adventurous pursuits, your tour will be customized to your interests and abilities. Our hiking guides are accredited by Parks Canada, are experienced and professional interpreters and biologists. Our goal is to connect our guests with nature, to educate visitors to this region and to discover wild places.

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