“Surfing is a popular activity on the west coast of Vancouver Island with both locals and visitors. The area surrounding Ucluelet offers some of the most accessible surf breaks on the west coast of Canada. Sandy beach breaks roll in along 25 kilometres of shoreline, much of which is within the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. This long, open shoreline catches waves suitable for both experienced and beginner surfers.
The most popular beaches, and the most accessible from Ucluelet, are Wickaninnish Beach and Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Suit up and paddle out past the break and see an offshore view of the wild, untouched shoreline. Discover your passion for the ocean and nature from the water. Once you catch your first wave - you will be hooked!
Other popular water activities are skim boarding and boogie boarding. Skim boarding is similar to surfing except that it's done from the shore in the washed up waves. Drop your skim board and use your momentum to skim over the water's surface into waves breaking close to the shore, then ride those in. Or kick out on a boogie board and ride on your stomach on waves, splashing through tubes! There's a wave for every skill, ability and age level. Get out there and catch a wave!
Surfing near Ucluelet is a year round activity. Although the air temperature varies depending on the season, the ocean temperature stays around 50°F (10°C) all year. Wetsuits are strongly recommended and can be rented at Relic Surf Shop and Surf School in Ucluelet. Surf, skim and boogie board rentals are also available throughout the town. Ask about joining a surf lesson, or hire your own instructor for the afternoon. If you are unsure about the weather or swell, any of the surf shops in Ucluelet will be able to give you the latest surf report and send you to the right spot.
The ocean is an amazing place to play! Come to Ucluelet and experience it for yourself.”
Pacific Rim National Park
“The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve of Canada is made up of the Long Beach Unit, the Broken Group Islands Unit and the West Coast Trail Unit. The Long Beach Unit is located just moments from the outskirts of Ucluelet on Highway 4. Ucluelet also offers water access to the Broken Group Islands Unit, an archipelago of islands, inlets, and coves sheltered in Barkley Sound.
The Long Beach Unit offers many hiking trails through rainforests and beaches. You can spend days exploring the trails or the seemingly endless sandy beaches. With sand between your toes, the smell of moss and ferns below towering trees, and opportunities to view wildlife in their natural habitat - a trip to the park is a must when visiting Ucluelet.
From late June to early September the Kwisitis Visitor Centre offers many indoor and outdoor activities and educational programs for all ages. Go on a guided rainforest walk, explore and learn about tide pool ecosystems, discover the rich heritage of the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations of the area, and participate in creating west coast art!
There are also educational films playing in the summer months at the Green Point Campground. You do not need to be a registered guest of the campground to attend these evening shows. If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask the Park Interpreters at the Kwisitis Visitor Centre on Wickaninnish Beach.”
Wild Pacific Trail
The Wild Pacific Trail carves through old-growth thickets of twisted trunks, roots, ferns and moss of the temperate coastal rainforest as it hugs the wild coastline of the Ucluth Peninsula. Watch the fury of the open Pacific Ocean with spectacular views of the rocky shoreline, Barkley Sound, and the Broken Group Islands from this easy to navigate trail.
The Wild Pacific Trail is being developed from private, business and government donations to the Wild Pacific Trail Society. The trail is divided into three sections: Lighthouse Loop, Big Beach Section and Brown's Beach to Ancient Cedars Section.
The Lighthouse Loop (2.5km) offers dramatic views of Barkley Sound and the Amphitrite Lighthouse. This loop can be completed in 45-60 minutes and offers several viewpoints and bench lookouts. This section offers amazing sunset views and if you are lucky, you might see some whales from the rocky shoreline.
There are two areas for parking on Coast Guard Road. The first is about half-way to the station with the trailhead just to the left. Facilities and easy access to the trail can be found here. For larger vehicles and RV's, additional parking can be found at the end of the road, near the Coast Guard station itself. Take a short walk around the station and you will find signage directing you to the trail. You may also choose to start at the He-Tin-Kis Park parking lot on Peninsula Road.
The Big Beach Section (1km) starts at the intersection of Marine Drive and Matterson Drive. You can either follow the trail along Marine Drive, or for the scenic route go down to the beachfront picnic area at Big Beach and head up the stairs on the right to the boardwalk.
The Brown's Beach Section (3km) starts at a new parking lot north of the Blackrock Oceanfront Resort on Marine Drive. After a short section of trail following the road, you'll reach the wilderness coastal trail.
The Artists Loop (0.5km) branches off the Brown's Beach Section, bringing hikers closer to the shoreline and ocean swells. Take time to enjoy the views from the 5 tiny tree forts known as Painter Perches. Make sure not to miss the new 1.5km trail extension that takes you past scenic rocky bluffs and into an old growth rainforest called Ancient Cedars.
For the return trip, keep to the coastline and double back to enjoy the spectacular views in reverse! You can also exit at the bike path along the highway and turn right to walk back to town. If you parked at Brown's Beach, follow Forbes road to the sports field parking lot. A forest trail leads back to your car.
“Ucluelet is a kayaker's paradise - bring your own kayaks or join a guided kayaking adventure tour.
Kayaking the calm, sheltered waters of Ucluelet Harbour is an ideal way to discover the history, culture and industry of this working west coast harbour. Watch harbour seals, sea lions, eagles, bears and the occasional whale from your unique vantage point on the water.
Ucluelet gives easy access to the Broken Group Island Unit of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Kayaking through these islands you will discover sandy white beaches, calm lagoons, blow holes, diverse wildlife and unique native history. The west coast is not so wild in these protected waters!
Local kayaking operators offer guided tours of Ucluelet Harbour as well as multi-day kayaking and wilderness camping trips in the Broken Group Islands, tours of Barkley Sound and open water whale watching tours. Kayaking lessons are also available for those wanting to improve their skills on the water. Your kayak trip will be an adventure you will never forget!
Surf kayaking is a growing sport on the west coast. Strong and skilled paddlers can be seen along the many surf beaches in the area.”