Situated at opposite ends of the UNESCO Biosphere designated Pacific Rim National Park, the small towns of Tofino and Ucluelet sit on the windswept west coast of Vancouver Island. Whilst Tofino has become the better known, through its offering of wildlife excursions and soft adventure activities, Ucluelet quietly offers pretty much the same, just down the road.
The rocky shorelines of the Sounds on either side of this area – Clayoquot to the north and Barkley to the south – provide excellent foraging locations for black bears and so bear viewing boat trips are one of the most popular excursions in this area. Equally whale watching is popular as gray whales, humpback whales and orca all feed in this area. The sheltered waters of the Sounds also provide a good environment for kayaking whilst the exposed Pacific Ocean beaches provide great conditions for surfing.
The towns themselves offer a host of boutique arts and craft galleries, souvenir shops, cafés and restaurants, and manage to retain a charming sense of cool imperturbation despite attracting a high number of visitors throughout the summer months. The lifestyle here is laid-back and this attitude oozes out of every local and the landscape alike; it’s infectious – expect to be enchanted!