Here is a list of most of the beaches, hiking trails, and other points of interest in the Tofino, Ucluelet and Pacific Rim National Park area including some islands in Clayoquot SoundBeaches
Tonquin Park Beach Tonquin Beach is a small sandy beach backed by rock cliffs and dense old growth forest. The beach is small in size compared to many beaches in the area but does not disappoint in scenic beauty and privacy. Many beach goers arrive at Tonquin Beach to get away from the crowds of the larger beaches. This is a great place to relax, read a book or picnic. If the timing is right, you may even see whales from the shore. The trail is about a 5-10 minute hike with a mix of boardwalk, stairs and gravel trail.
Middle Beach Middle Beach is a very small and private beach that can only be accessed from a trail beside Middle Beach Lodge.
Mackenzie Beach A smaller sandy beach that is excellent for skimboarding and snorkeling as it is much more protected that any other beach in Tofino. Mackenzie Beach is also a great place to surf in the winter when it's too dangerous to surf everywhere else, although rips can be quite strong. Access is at the end of Hellesen Rd, beside Ocean Village Resort.
North & South Chesterman Beach Chesterman Beach is only steps from your door and is the pride of the Tofino area. This 2.4 km (1.5 mi) beach is exceptional for walking, surfing and bike riding. At low tide you can explore the marine life in the tidal pools of Frank Island and other islets that become exposed. You can also view a natural tombolo; an unusual geographic phenomenon describing a beach that extends outward from the shore and connects to an island. The offshore island, or stack, bends the incoming waves around it so that their energy sweeps sand onto the tombolo from both sides.
Cox Bay / Sunset Point Cox Bay is a sandy beach popular with surfers, storm watchers and nature lovers. Cox Bay tends to be quieter than other beaches in the area. It often has some of the largest surf as it’s a narrow bay that the swell has to force through. It can be absolutely incredible to watch from South Chesterman Beach. Public accesses to the beach are at; 1. Maltby Rd. , and 2. The 1431 Cox Bay Development. If you climb to the top of the right point (looking toward the ocean) on Cox Bay there is a bench on the rocks and the sunset is phenomenal.
Radar Beaches Part of the Long Beach Unit of beaches, Radar Beach is rich in rugged beauty and becomes quite fierce with rough surf. Radar beaches can be seen from the Radar Hill lookout.
Schooner Cove Schooner Cove used to be a camping site, located at the end of the Schooner Cove trail. It is a wide secluded beach at the north end of Long Beach. A little ways north of Schooner Cove brings you to a setting of rocks out in the ocean that shows the beauty of the rugged West Coast.
Long Beach Perhaps Canada's most famous beach; excellent for surfing, Long Beach has a surfguard tower in the summer and public showers year round. The long, sandy stretch of beach is a must-see on a visit to the Pacific Rim. There are 2 parking areas just off the highway. The smaller beach-front parking lot fills up quickly but there is usually more parking available in the larger lot, only a few hundred meters south of the first lot.
Wickaninnish Beach Wickaninnish Beach has an impressive amount of logs and driftwood that has collected over the years. Sometimes a steeper beach, it has the most extensive sand dunes on Vancouver Island. This beach can have great waves for the more experienced surfer. It also has some of the strongest rip currents in the Tofino area and is frequented by sea lions. Swimming is not recommended. At the south end of the beach, Pacific Rim Park operates Wickaninnish Interpretive Center; a great stop for all ages. During the summer months there is also a dining room that has a phenomenal view.
South Beach Located at the left side of the Wickaninnish Center in the Park, this beach is incredible for storm watching. Pebble beach with mesmerizing sounds of waves throwing stones. This trail is about 15 min from the parking lot and is a mixture of gravel trail and boardwalk. A fork in this trail leads to Florencia Bay.
Florencia Bay This is a long curved bay that feels very private and has a variety of sand, pebbles and large rocks. The beach is backed by tall sandy cliffs. Beach can be accessed from Wickaninnish Rd. or from the South Beach Trail, or from the Willowbrae Trail, south of the Tofino/Ucluelet junction. Short trail with short but steep set of stairs.
Half Moon Bay A very small and beautiful bay at the end of the Half Moon Bay Trail, this beach is fun for picnics or short day trips and is excellent for skimboarding. Access from the highway is not well signed. The beach can also be accessed from Florencia Bay. Trail is about 30 min with gravel, boardwalk and steep stairs.
Tonquin Park Trail This trail leads to Tonquin Beach. It is a mixture of boardwalk, stairs and gravel and should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete. The raised boardwalk is built along the cliffs through the trees leading down to the cove.
Tofino Lighthouse Trail Trailhead leads from the Tofino Community hall to Third Beach; a small secluded beach between Tonquin and Middle Beach. Easy to moderate hike consisting of gravel trail with some stairs, 1.5km long.
Spruce Fringe Trail This trail is accessed from the Combers Beach parking lot. The shoreline forest is a unique blend of ocean and land influences. Discover plants capable of surviving the salty mists and sand-filled winds of the open Pacific. Walk beneath the sculpted Sitka spruce and find out how they form a living fortress that protects the forest behind them. This trail features some steep gravel sections.
Schooner Cove Trail The trail descends through young and old stands of cedar-hemlock forest, gradually giving way to the Sitka spruce fringe. Along the way, it crosses a small trout and salmon-spawning stream. Coming to the beach, you will catch glimpses of the village of Esowista belonging to the Tla-o-qui-aht who have lived along this shore for centuries. Trail is approximately 1 km each way and does have some long flights of stairs. Access to Schooner Cove may be cut off during high tides.
Rainforest Loop Signs on both trails help you explore the temperate rainforest. Gigantic western red cedar and western hemlock reach up to the sunlight, their boughs thickly carpeted with hanging gardens of moss. Scan the upper canopy for forest birds, listen to the trickle of water and smell the life of this highly productive forest. If you want to see truly big trees, this is the place to go. Loop A signs emphasize forest cycles. Loop B signs emphasize forest structure and inhabitants. Trail A is located on the opposite side of the highway from the parking lot. Trail B starts from the parking lot. Each trail is a 1 km loop consisting mostly of boardwalk with many short flights of stairs.
Gold Mine Trail Trail is CLOSED for safety reasons. Access Florencia Beach from Florencia Bay Road or Willowbrae Trail.
South Beach Trail South Beach offers spectacular, but potentially dangerous, wave watching. Very large waves and strong currents form at this pebble beach. Please be careful! Trail is 800 m each way with some stairs.
Shore Pine Bog Trail (wheelchair accessible) This is old growth coastal temperate rainforest with a twist. Search for the plant that kills small and unwary insects and learn what kind of an environment might lead a plant to such deeds. Interpretive brochures are available at the trailhead during the park operating season. This 800 m loop does not have any stairs or beach access but is worth checking out.
Nuu-Chah-Nulth Trail This historic trail crosses Quisitis Point linking Wickaninnish Beach and Florencia Bay, starting from behind the Wickaninnish Interpretive Centre. Parks Canada and the Central Region Nuu-chah-nulth Language Group worked together to provide walkers with a glimpse into Nuu-chah-nulth culture. Learn what “Hishuk ish ts’awalk” means and how this belief influences the lives of the Nuu-chah-nulth-aht. Trail is 2.5 kilometers each way with some stairs.
Half Moon Bay Trail This trail winds through an old growth cedar-hemlock forest where fallen trees serve as nurseries for seedlings, giving way to a spruce fringe forest on the steep climb down to the sheltered bay and sands of Halfmoon Bay. This trail is 500 meters long and is accessed near the end of Willowbrae Trail totaling 1.7 kilometers from the Willowbrae parking lot. Trail has long flights of stairs and can also be accessed from the South end of Florencia Bay.
Willowbrae Trail Located 4.2 km south of the Ucluelet-Tofino junction, the Willowbrae Trail leads to both Half Moon Bay and Florencia Bay. Trail access is not signed from the highway. Turn west onto Willowbrae Road to the trailhead parking lot. This trail is 1.4 kilometers each way and has long flights of stairs. This historic trail formed part of a two day travel route between Ucluelet and Tofino prior to the road built in 1942.
Wild Pacific Trail This trail is located in Ucluelet. Skirting the cliff-edges along the extreme outer coast, including the Amphitrite Point Lighthouse site, hikers get an up-close-and-personal look at the ocean's fury while viewing from the protection of the trail itself. Trail has several sections of varying distances and levels of difficulty.
Meares Island Beach Tree Trail Only accessible by boat, Meares Island has a grove of ancient old-growth rain forest with many giant cedar trees, including the Hanging Garden tree that is 61 feet in circumference and about 1500 years old!
Cougar Annie’s Garden This garden is only accessible by boat. Surrounded by the tall trees of the West Coast rainforest, Cougar Annie's garden is a place of strange and compelling beauty. The garden consists of a five-acre clearing, crisscrossed with over two kilometres of meandering pathways and dotted with outbuildings that once housed goats and chickens. Resurrected from a tangle of salal, Scotch broom, and salmonberry, this garden has endured for nearly one hundred years. Operated under the auspices of the Boat Basin Foundation (a non-profit foundation whose prime asset is 117 acres of wilderness land) the garden is located inside Hesquiaht Harbour in Clayoquot Sound.
Other Points of Interest
Radar Hill (wheelchair accessible) The short, steep trip to the top is rewarded with panoramic views of the ocean, inlet and mountains found nowhere else in this national park. Although technically wheelchair accessible, the 100 meter pathway is quite steep.
Hot Springs Cove Only accessible by boat or float plane, Hot Springs Cove is a wonderful option to do something unique. Half day tours include whale watching on the way, a beautiful nature walk, and a soak in the undeveloped springs. Contact one of the local whale watching companies or float plane operators for more info.