This short adventure to the Pacific Rim is a great way to escape the city for a few days. To make the most of your time, you'll catch a floatplane flight from downtown Vancouver which takes you directly to Tofino and to your lodge along the coast. Within the park, you can hike, bike, paddleboard, or sea kayak your way through the coastal rainforest and island chains. In the evenings, choose from a variety of world-class restaurants, galleries, and local craft breweries.

Highlights

  • Hit the trails through coastal rainforest and driftwood-strewn beaches
  • Delight in some of the province's best restaurants in Ucluelet and Tofino
  • Sea kayak through the beautiful Broken Group Islands
  • Watch the storms break against the rugged pacific coastline

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Vancouver to Pacific Rim (1 hour) Pacific Rim
Day 2 Explore Pacific Rim National Park Pacific Rim
Day 3 Day Trip to Hot Springs Cove Pacific Rim
Day 4 Pacific Rim to Vancouver (1 hour) Vancouver

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Vancouver to Pacific Rim (1 hour)

Float plane departing downtown Vancouver
Float plane departing downtown Vancouver

Today, you'll be flying directly to Tofino in the heart of the Pacific Rim by floatplane from downtown Vancouver. It's a short scenic flight with views of the Gulf Islands and Vancouver Island along the way. A haven for surf fans, families, and city-escaping Vancouverites, Tofino sits at the end of the long and narrow Esowista Peninsula on sheltered Clayoquot Sound and offers a wide range of food options and outdoor excursions. Catch a wave on a surfboard or spot whales, bears, and sea lions on a boat tour (to avoid disappointment, book tours well in advance).

Flying time (Vancouver to Tofino): 45 minutes

Day 2: Explore Pacific Rim National Park

Wild Pacific Trail at sunset
Wild Pacific Trail at sunset

Spend the day simply enjoying the beautiful coastline, rainforest trails, and communities of the Pacific Rim. You can also hire a local guide and join a small group tour for part of the day, either on land or out on the ocean by boat or kayak.

Hiking & Walking Trails. In the early morning, Schooner Cove is a great spot to walk the tidal pools and sand dunes. The sheltered, kayak-friendly Grice Bay is another good spot to catch views of wildlife. Besides the countless hiking trails that stretch between Ucluelet (in the south) and Tofino (in the north), there are remote lakes and islands to explore and great local galleries, breweries, coffee shops, and restaurants in the towns.

Paddleboard Clayoquot Sound. The calm waters off the coast of Tofino offer the perfect place to paddleboard. A motorboat will transport you to a few ideal locations where you can paddle around the small islands and catch glimpses of wildlife along the shores.

Day 3: Day Trip to Hot Springs Cove

Aerial view of Pacific Rim National Park
Aerial view of Pacific Rim National Park

Departing from the Tofino Marina, local companies run trips to Hot Springs Cove in Maquinna Marine Park, which is only accessible by boat or floatplane. The natural hot springs have a series of pools and waterfalls that are reached via a boardwalk that takes you through old-growth forest. The boat ride, itself, is also a highlight of today as you'll likely see wildlife such as grey whales, bald eagles, and even black bears. Most of the guided trips depart in the early afternoon and return at sunset and use zodiac boats.

Day 4: Pacific Rim to Vancouver (1 hour)

Float plane docked in Tofino
Float plane docked in Tofino

Say farewell to the Pacific Rim and head to Tofino's harbor for the floatplane flight back to the mainland. You'll arrive in downtown Vancouver and settle into your hotel. Take the afternoon and evening to explore on your own and catch the sunset from one of Vancouver's coastal parks or seawalls. 

Flying time (Tofino to Vancouver): 45 minutes

Map

Map of Pacific Rim Adventure: Vancouver to Tofino by Flight - 4 Days
Map of Pacific Rim Adventure: Vancouver to Tofino by Flight - 4 Days