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Overview

Named for its location on the edge of the Pacific Ocean, this park encompasses a long, narrow strip of coast on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The park comprises three units, each different in nature and accessed in different ways. The section at the end of Highway 4 is the Long Beach Unit, named for a 6.8-mile stretch of beach that dominates the landscape. Accessible by vehicle, this is the most popular part of the park and is particularly busy in July and August with those interested in hiking, beachwalking, and surfing. To the south, in Barkley Sound, the Broken Group Islands Unit encompasses an archipelago of 100 islands, accessible ...

Named for its location on the edge of the Pacific Ocean, this park encompasses a long, narrow strip of coast on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The park comprises three units, each different in nature and accessed in different ways. The section at the end of Highway 4 is the Long Beach Unit, named for a 6.8-mile stretch of beach that dominates the landscape. Accessible by vehicle, this is the most popular part of the park and is particularly busy in July and August with those interested in hiking, beachwalking, and surfing. To the south, in Barkley Sound, the Broken Group Islands Unit encompasses an archipelago of 100 islands, accessible by the MV Frances Barkley from Port Alberni. Farther south still is the West Coast Trail Unit, named for the 48-mile hiking trail between Port Renfrew and Bamfield that is considered one of Canada’s best long distance hiking trails. At the north end of the park, Tofino is a bustling resort town offering a wide range of accommodations in all budgets, a solid choice of restaurants, surf shops, whale-watching companies, art galleries, and an information center. Although summer is the busiest season in the park, winter is promoted for its storm watching opportunities, when huge waves roll onto the beaches.

Andrew Hempstead
About the Expert

Over the last 20 years, Andrew Hempstead has authored and updated more than 60 guidebooks for Avalon Travel, Frommer’s, Michelin, Odyssey, Dorling Kindersley, Michelin, and Sasquatch Books, including many books on Canada.

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Andrew Hempstead for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Pacific Rim National Park is located in British Columbia on Vancouver Island.
  • Language: English
  • Currency: Canadian Dollar
  • Research: Wikipedia | Tofino
  • Weather: Rainfall

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Summer, early fall, spring