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COVID-19/Travel Advisories

Trip Ideas in Ucluelet

Whether you just have a day or can spend the whole week, there’s no better way to unplug, unwind, and recharge than time in Ucluelet and the Pacific Rim. There’s so much to do, and so close at hand.

Make the most of your getaway— here’s a sampling of things to do to help you imagine your time here.

Whether you’re embracing winter storm watching waves thunder onto the rocky coastline or finding yourself walking the trails and strolling barefoot on the beach in calm summer, every season brings its own memories.

Remember, coming from near or far, give yourself enough time. For those who are near, don’t worry—plan to come back to old favourites and new discoveries – we’re only about 2.5 hours from Comox or Nanaimo, a beautiful 4-hour drive from Victoria, or about five hours from Vancouver! And for those from far away, let us help you plan your dream visit to Ucluelet.

Day Trips

If you only have one day to spend with us, don’t worry. While there are lots to do, don’t feel you have to do everything! Remember: any time spent in the Pacific Rim will always make you feel better than hours spent staring at a screen.

  • Wild Pacific Trail’s Lighthouse Loop: It takes only about 45mins to 1hr, and you’ll enjoy some fantastic ocean views, a rainforest walk, and arrive at the historic 100+-year-old Amphitrite Point Lighthouse along the way.
  • Visit the Ucluelet Collect & Release Eco Aquarium (seasonal: open from March to end of November). The entire family always loves to see the octopus and the fantastic interactive touch tanks!
  • Stop into one of our many tea and coffee shops for homemade lunch and delightful treats. Don’t even dream of exploring on an empty stomach!
  • Grab a day pass (or Annual Pass) for the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Iconic Long Beach is a must, along with Kwisitis Interpretive Centre at Wickaninnish Beach, the Shoreline Bog Trail (800m trail dubbed the “Broccoli Forest”  because of the stunted, twisted 300-year-old trees; if you can go when it’s foggy, even better!).
  • Compare Shoreline Bog Trail to the Rainforest Trail in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve (Each trail is 1km). Don’t forget to make your way to the top of Radar Hill to take in a fantastic view of the coastline in both directions.
  • If you’ve traveled this far, you need to go and stand on Chesterman Beach in Tofino and pop into one of their local restaurants for a bite to eat before venturing back to the eastside. But before you go, regardless of the time of year, make sure you stick around for a West Coast sunset; you’ll never see colours like this elsewhere!

If you’re coming to visit a rainforest, there may be rain. But we’ve mastered it, and so can you: Gore-Tex and gumboots are always in style. It may be sunny, foggy, or raining in Ucluelet, but the rainforest will reward you with some of the purest, cleanest air you may ever experience.

Outdoor Fun

  • Surfing is awesome in the rain! Make sure to take a family-friendly lesson with one of Ucluelet’s local surf shops; there are many options for all levels of experience. More info.
  • Ocean Kayaking is another great outdoor option during a mild rainy day. Paddling in the rain can be a wonderful experience (dress accordingly, no cotton). The Ucluelet Harbour is well protected for short kayak excursions year-round. More info.
  • Whale Watching & Wildlife Tours are stellar West Coast experiences that you can indulge in, even when it’s rainy and not too windy. Going on a boat, whale watching, bear and wildlife viewing really is not to be missed West Coast experiences. More info.

Indoor Fun

  • The Ucluelet Aquarium is a must-do when you visit the West Coast. This eco-friendly collect and release Aquarium will get you up-close and personal (with their touch tanks) and an amazing array of intra-tidal local marine life. Don’t miss the octopus! The Aquarium has incredibly knowledgeable and attentive staff that is always eager to share their passion for what lives in our coastal waters. More info.
  • Big Beach Cinema… Did you know that Ucluelet has its own cinema? That’s right! Big Beach Cinema runs year-round and is located in the Ucluelet Community Centre’s George Fraser room; they offer great films at family-friendly prices. More info.
  • West Coast Fitness Centre. Need to keep in shape and it’s raining way too hard for you to want to go outside? Go swimming, work out in the gym or take a sauna at the West Coast Fitness Centre (located inside the West Coast Motel). More info.
  • Yoga anyone? Stop by the Ucluelet Community Centre & Library and choose from a range of physical activities! Check out their many classes from yoga to Zumba, lots of program options, and don’t forget the library (all classes allow for drop-in attendance). More info.
  • Shopping & Art Galleries From local hand-crafted artisan gifts to jewelry, clothing, and art; take some time to discover Ucluelet’s local shops and art galleries. More info.
  • Howler’s Family Restaurant. It’s a fun family restaurant with a retro bowling alley, vintage arcade, and billiards. They are open 7 days a week, hours vary on season. More info.
  • If you don’t feel like going out, you can simply grab your favourite beverage, curl up in bed, get a fire going, read a book, listen to the rain and enjoy the sound of the ocean lapping against the shoreline. Prepare to unplug and reconnect.

Disconnect your devices and reconnect with your family. Ucluelet and the Pacific Rim are a wonderful escape from the busyness of everyday life, and a chance to share big and small adventures together.

  • Wild Pacific Trail’s Lighthouse Loop: It takes only about 45mins to 1hr, and you’ll enjoy some fantastic ocean views, a rainforest walk, and arrive at the historic 100+ year-old Amphitrite Point Lighthouse along the way.
  • Visit the Ucluelet Collect & Release Eco Aquarium (seasonal: open from March to end of November). The entire family always loves to see the octopus and the fantastic interactive touch tanks!
  • Grab a day pass for the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve – Iconic Long Beach is a must, along with Kwisitis Interpretive Centre at Wickaninnish Beach, the Shoreline Bog Trail (800m trail dubbed the “Broccoli Forest” because of the stunted, twisted 300-year-old trees; if you can go when it’s foggy even better!).
  • Experience a West Coast sunset! Go to Big Beach, the Lighthouse, or even Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and bask in the glow of a classic West Coast sunset; you’ll never see colours like this elsewhere!
  • Go on a Whale, Bear & Wildlife Tour. Get ready for an experience of a lifetime! Local whale and wildlife tour operators provide a fantastic opportunity for you to experience the breathtaking beauty of coastal British Columbia and the majestic whales and wildlife in their natural environment. March to October is the peak season for tours.
  • Stop into one of our amazing local restaurants for an outstanding meal (no franchise chains here!), dine in one of the top restaurants in all of BC, or pop into a local tea and coffee shop for homemade lunch and delightful treats. Don’t even dream of exploring on an empty stomach!
  • Go surfing in Canada! Just a short drive down the road from Ucluelet are some of Canada’s longest beaches that you can surf year-round. People come from all over the world to catch a wave in what is considered one of Canada’s top surf destinations! The most accessible surf beaches from Ucluelet are Wickaninnish Beach and Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Ucluelet has fantastic family-friendly local surf shops that provide everything from lessons to rentals.
  • Go Ziplining! On your way out to the west coast just past the rocky corner bluff (Wally Creek), stop to experience the thrill of soaring above the waterfalls and rapids as you glide down the Kennedy River Canyon. The guided tour through the old-growth rainforests is not to be missed! Operates spring to mid-October.
  • Few natural experiences can match Storm Watching on the West Coast of Canada! Nothing is more exhilarating than the fury of the wind, rain, and waves during a winter storm. The raw power of nature draws visitors from around the world. The best time for storm watching is November through March, as gale-force winds tear along the coast at over 70km an hour (appx 45mph). Please be sure to pack for all weather conditions (Gore-Tex is always in vogue).

Multi-Day Trips

A three- or four-day stay gives you a perfect chance to sleep and dream. After a day of hikes, walks and exploring, wake to the sounds of the coastal rainforest at dawn. A few days of this will bring you back to life, and you won’t soon forget them.

  • Wild Pacific Trail’s Lighthouse Loop: It takes only about 45mins to 1hr, and you’ll enjoy some fantastic ocean views, a rainforest walk and arrive at the historic 100+ year-old Amphitrite Point Lighthouse along the way.
  • Walk the full Wild Pacific Trail from Brown’s Beach parking lot all the way to the Ancient Cedars Loop (see some trees over 800 years old!) and a truly breathtaking walk along the ocean, with stunning vistas as you make your way through the majestic rainforest. A ‘do not miss’ walk. Be sure to sit on Oyster Jim’s (the founder and builder of the Wild Pacific Trail) deck and the main deck perch about halfway—just sit and watch the ocean for a while!
  • Visit the Ucluelet Collect & Release Eco Aquarium (seasonal: open from March to end of November). The entire family always loves to see the octopus and the fantastic interactive touch tanks!
  • Grab a multi-day pass (or Annual Pass) for the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Iconic Long Beach is a must, along with Kwisitis Interpretive Centre at Wickaninnish Beach, the Shoreline Bog Trail (800m trail dubbed the “Broccoli Forest”  because of the stunted, twisted 300-year-old trees; if you can go when it’s foggy, even better!).
  • Compare Shoreline Bog Trail to the Rainforest Trail in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve (Each trail is 1km). Don’t forget to make your way to the top of Radar Hill to take in a fantastic view of the coastline in both directions.
  • Stop into one of our amazing local restaurants for an outstanding meal (no franchise chains here!), dine in one of the top restaurants in all of BC or pop into a local tea and coffee shop for homemade lunch and delightful treats. Don’t even dream of exploring on an empty stomach!
  • Go to Tofino for the day! You need to stand on iconic Chesterman Beach (rated one of the top 50 beaches in the world) and pop into some of their world-class, top-rated restaurants for a bite to eat. Soak in the vibe and culture of Canada’s #1 Surf Town.
  • Go surfing In Canada! Just a short drive down the road from Ucluelet are some of Canada’s longest beaches that you can surf year-round. People come from all over the world to catch a wave in what is considered one of Canada’s top surf destinations! The most accessible surf beaches from Ucluelet are Wickaninnish Beach and Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Ucluelet has fantastic family-friendly local surf shops that provide everything from lessons to rentals.
  • Experience a West Coast sunset! Go to Big Beach, the Lighthouse or even Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and bask in the glow of a classic West Coast sunset; you’ll never see colours like this elsewhere!
  • Go on a Whale, Bear & Wildlife Tour. Get ready for an experience of a lifetime! Local whale & wildlife tour operators provide a fantastic opportunity for you to experience the breathtaking beauty of coastal British Columbia and the majestic whales and wildlife in their natural environment. March to October is peak season for tours.
  • Kayak the Broken Group Islands of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. One of the top ten kayaking destinations in the world! Kayaking through the archipelago of over a hundred islands, you will discover sandy white beaches, calm lagoons, blowholes, diverse wildlife and unique native history on a day trip or multi-night tour. Watch harbour seals, sea lions, eagles, bears and the occasional whale from your unique vantage point on the water while gliding past the rocky Pacific Coast shoreline.
  • Head out and do some saltwater fishing. Year after year, Ucluelet has some of the best saltwater fishing in North America. The fishing charter business here is booming; people come from all over the world to fish off our pristine coastline. Barkley Sound—minutes from Ucluelet—has been called the ‘Salmon Superhighway’: coho, sockeye, pink, chinook and chum can all easily be fished from here, as well as halibut and lingcod.
  • Go Ziplining! Soar through the old-growth rainforests, spot the waterfalls along the way and feel the roar as you glide down the Kennedy River Canyon near the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. It’s a not-to-be-missed family fun experience!
  • Few natural experiences can match Storm Watching on the West Coast of Canada! Nothing is more exhilarating than the fury of the wind, rain and waves during a winter storm. The raw power of nature draws visitors from around the world. The best time for storm watching is November through March, as gale-force winds tear along the coast at over 70km an hour (appx 45mph). Please be sure to pack for all weather conditions (Gore-Tex is always in vogue).

Five days is usually a work week—but five days here will work magic to help you destress, recover and rediscover your inner calm. You’ll be able to enjoy a lot of the wilderness and adventure close by, and still get as much downtime as you need.

  • Walk the full Wild Pacific Trail from Brown’s Beach parking lot all the way to the Ancient Cedars Loop (see some trees over 800 years old!) and a truly breathtaking walk along the ocean, with stunning vistas as you make your way through the majestic rainforest. A ‘do not miss’ walk. Be sure to sit on Oyster Jim’s (the founder and builder of the Wild Pacific Trail) deck and the main deck perch about half way—just sit and watch the ocean for a while!
  • Visit the Ucluelet Collect & Release Eco Aquarium (seasonal: open from March to end of November). The entire family always loves to see the octopus and the fantastic interactive touch tanks!
  • Grab a multi-day pass for the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve—iconic Long Beach is a must, along with Kwisitis Interpretive Centre at Wickaninnish Beach, the Shoreline Bog Trail (800m trail dubbed the “Broccoli Forest” because of the stunted, twisted 300-year-old trees; if you can go when it’s foggy even better!)
  • Compare Shoreline Bog Trail to the Rainforest Trail in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve (Each trail is 1km). Don’t forget to make your way to the top of Radar Hill to take in a fantastic view of the coastline in both directions.
  • Stop into one of our amazing local restaurants for an outstanding meal (no franchise chains here!), dine in one of the top restaurants in all of BC or pop into a local tea and coffee shop for homemade lunch and delightful treats. Don’t even dream of exploring on an empty stomach!
  • Go to Tofino for the day! You need to stand on iconic Chesterman Beach (rated one of the top 50 beaches in the world) and pop into some of their world-class, top-rated restaurants for a bite to eat. Soak in the vibe and culture of Canada’s #1 Surf Town.
  • Go surfing In Canada! Just a short drive down the road from Ucluelet are some of Canada’s longest beaches that you can surf year-round. People come from all over the world to catch a wave in what is considered one of Canada’s top surf destinations! The most accessible surf beaches from Ucluelet are Wickaninnish Beach and Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Ucluelet has fantastic family-friendly local surf shops that provide everything from lessons to rentals.
  • Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) in Ucluelet’s protected beach and coves; Little Beach, Terrace Beach and the Ucluelet Harbour (access from the free Pat Leslie Public Boat Launch) are perfect to go SUPing. Pop by one of our local surf shops for full rentals.
  • Experience a West Coast sunset! Go to Big Beach, the Lighthouse or even Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and bask in the glow of a classic West Coast sunset; you’ll never see colours like this elsewhere!
  • Go on a Whale, Bear & Wildlife Tour. Get ready for an experience of a lifetime! Local whale & wildlife tour operators provide a fantastic opportunity for you to experience the breathtaking beauty of coastal British Columbia and the majestic whales and wildlife in their natural environment. March to October is peak season for tours.
  • Take a cruise or private charter through the Broken Group Islands! Full-day, half-day or sunset cruise; hop aboard and head out on an adventure of a lifetime. Beautiful boats. Beautiful meals. Beautiful hosts. Unforgettable memories, take in the stunning scenery with a touch of luxury.
  • Kayak the Broken Group Islands of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. One of the top ten kayaking destinations in the world! Kayaking through the archipelago of over a hundred islands, you will discover sandy white beaches, calm lagoons, blowholes, diverse wildlife and unique native history on a day trip or multi-night tour. Watch harbour seals, sea lions, eagles, bears and the occasional whale from your unique vantage point on the water while gliding past the rocky Pacific Coast shoreline.
  • Head out and do some saltwater fishing. Year after year, Ucluelet has some of the best saltwater fishing in North America. The fishing charter business here is booming; people come from all over the world to fish off our pristine coastline. Barkley Sound—minutes from Ucluelet—has been called the ‘Salmon Superhighway’: coho, sockeye, pink, chinook and chum can all easily be fished from here, as well as halibut and lingcod.
  • Get an eagle’s-eye view! Experience the West Coast from above on a Flight Tour you will never forget. See the rainforest, beaches and the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve from the air—it’s a unique way to witness the pristine coastline of Canada.
  • Go Ziplining! Soar through the old-growth rainforests, spot the waterfalls along the way and feel the roar as you glide down the Kennedy River Canyon near the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. It’s a not-to-be-missed family fun experience!
  • Few natural experiences can match Storm Watching on the West Coast of Canada! Nothing is more exhilarating than the fury of the wind, rain and waves during a winter storm. The raw power of nature draws visitors from around the world. The best time for storm watching is November through March, as gale-force winds tear along the coast at over 70km an hour (appx 45mph). Please be sure to pack for all weather conditions (Gore-Tex is always in vogue).

Imagine a week away from the world—time enough to fully experience the magic of this unique place between the wild open sea and the deep green calm of the rainforest. Fill your days with adventure and discovery, or fill your senses with the unmatched serenity of a long beach or trail walk. You’ll have time to do it all.

  • Wild Pacific Trail’s Lighthouse Loop: It only takes about 45 mins to 1hr, and you’ll enjoy some fantastic ocean views, a rainforest walk and arrive at the historic 100+ year-old Amphitrite Point Lighthouse along the way. You never know, you might get to see whale spouts in the distance.
  • Walk the full Wild Pacific Trail from Brown’s Beach parking lot all the way to the Ancient Cedars Loop (see some trees over 800 years old!) and a truly breathtaking walk along the ocean, with stunning vistas as you make your way through the majestic rainforest. A ‘do not miss’ walk. Be sure to sit on Oyster Jim’s (the founder and builder of the Wild Pacific Trail) deck and the main deck perch about half way—just sit and watch the ocean for a while! It’s also a stunner of a location for storm watching.
  • Visit the Ucluelet Collect & Release Eco Aquarium (seasonal: open from March to end of November). The entire family always loves to see the octopus and the fantastic interactive touch tanks!
  • Go on a Whale, Bear & Wildlife Tour. Get ready for an experience of a lifetime! Local whale & wildlife tour operators provide a fantastic opportunity for you to experience the breathtaking beauty of coastal British Columbia and the majestic whales and wildlife in their natural environment. March to October is peak season for tours.
  • Kayak the Broken Group Islands of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. One of the top ten kayaking destinations in the world! Whether it’s a day or multi-day trip, kayaking through the archipelago of over a hundred islands, you will discover sandy white beaches, calm lagoons, blowholes, diverse wildlife and unique native history. Watch harbour seals, sea lions, eagles, bears and the occasional whale from your unique vantage point on the water while gliding past the rocky Pacific Coast shoreline.
  • Go surfing In Canada! Just a short drive down the road from Ucluelet are some of Canada’s longest beaches that you can surf year-round. People come from all over the world to catch a wave in what is considered one of Canada’s top surf destinations! The most accessible surf beaches from Ucluelet are Wickaninnish Beach and Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Ucluelet has fantastic family-friendly local surf shops that provide everything from lessons to rentals.
  • Stop into one of our amazing local restaurants for an outstanding meal (no franchise chains here!), dine in one of the top restaurants in all of BC or pop into a local tea and coffee shop for homemade lunch and delightful treats. Don’t even dream of exploring on an empty stomach!
  • Head out and do some saltwater fishing. Year after year, Ucluelet has some of the best saltwater fishing in North America. The fishing charter business here is booming; people come from all over the world to fish off our pristine coastline. Barkley Sound—minutes from Ucluelet—has been called the ‘Salmon Superhighway’: coho, sockeye, pink, chinook and chum can all easily be fished from here, as well as halibut and lingcod.
  • Stand-up paddleboarding in Ucluelet’s protected beach and coves; Little Beach, Terrace Beach and the Ucluelet Harbour (access from the free Pat Leslie Public Boat Launch) are perfect for paddleboarding. Pop by one of our local surf shops for full rentals.
  • Experience a West Coast sunset! Go to Big Beach, the Lighthouse or even Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and bask in the glow of a classic West Coast sunset; you’ll never see colours like this elsewhere!
  • Go Ziplining! On your way out to the west coast just past the rocky corner bluff (Wally Creek), stop to experience the thrill of soaring. Soar above the waterfalls and rapids as you glide down the Kennedy River Canyon. The guided tour through the old-growth rainforests is not to be missed. Spot the waterfalls along the way and feel the roar as you glide down the Kennedy River Canyon near the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. It’s a not-to-be-missed family fun experience.
  • Take a cruise or private charter through the Broken Group Islands! Full-day, half-day or sunset cruise; hop aboard and head out on an adventure of a lifetime. Beautiful boats. Beautiful meals. Beautiful hosts. Unforgettable memories, take in the stunning scenery with a touch of luxury.
  • Grab a multi-day pass (or Annual Pass) for the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Iconic Long Beach is a must, along with Kwisitis Interpretive Centre at Wickaninnish Beach, the Shoreline Bog Trail. This 800m trail is dubbed the “Broccoli Forest” because of the stunted, twisted 300-year-old trees; if you can go when it’s foggy, even better!
  • Compare Shoreline Bog Trail to the Rainforest Trail in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve (each trail is 1km). Don’t forget to make your way to the top of Radar Hill to take in a fantastic view of the coastline in both directions.
  • Head to Half Moon Bay along Willowbrae Trail in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve at low tide and walk along the edge of the Pacific Ocean on the secluded sandy beach.
  • lorencia Bay in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is over five stunning kilometres of beautiful sandy beach. “Flo Beach” (as locals call it) seems to have it all. The descent down a remarkable set of wooden stairs onto this fantastic beach is breathtaking.
  • Get an eagle’s-eye view! Experience the West Coast from above on a Flight Tour you will never forget. See the rainforest, beaches, and the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve from the air—it’s a unique way to witness the pristine coastline of Canada.
  • Go to Tofino for the day! You need to stand on iconic Chesterman Beach and pop into some of their world-class, top-rated restaurants for a bite to eat. Soak in the vibe and culture of Canada’s #1 Surf Town.
  • Hot Springs Cove is a wonderful day trip from Tofino by boat or floatplane. Once you land at the cove, a 25 min boardwalk is up and through the rainforest to the Hot Springs. Kept at about 50C/122F, the Hot Springs flow from a small waterfall through five natural hot spring pools and onto the ocean. Please note: bring food and water as there are no food facilities. No glassware is allowed, and swimsuits are required. It’s best to bring neoprene footwear that can handle rocks and water.
  • Be like the salmon and the bears—visit the Thornton Creek Hatchery in fall. Hatchery staff and volunteers provide tours during the salmon run (late Sept – mid-Nov). The local non-profit focuses on education and safe wildlife viewing, and they rely on public support from visitors for their work. The dedicated staff are very welcoming and explain in detail how the facility works. Entry is by donation.
  • Few natural experiences can match Storm Watching on the West Coast of Canada! Nothing is more exhilarating than the fury of the wind, rain and waves during a winter storm. The raw power of nature draws visitors from around the world. The best time for storm watching is November through March, as gale-force winds tear along the coast at over 70km an hour (appx 45mph). Please be sure to pack for all weather conditions (Gore-Tex is always in vogue).

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