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Trip 230 - September 1, 2021 (Wednesday)

Tofino BC Visit

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Tofino Location: The middle of the West coast of Vancouver Island, at the end of Highway 4.

Liked: Harbour/ocean/mountain views, interesting buildings, interesting garbage cans, quirky town feel.

Of Note: Tofino is a very small town with limited services. Tsunami hazard zone - head to higher ground upon hearing tsunami sirens. Parking could be an issue.

Related Websites: Google Maps - Tofino, Tourism Tofino, Wiki - Tofino BC.

Vancouver Island Backroad Mapbook (9th edition) Tofino Coordinates: Page 14 (Tofino) C4.

Another Trip in Tofino Area: Pacific Rim National Park Reserve.

Other BC Cities, Towns and Locations We Have Visited: Agassiz, Bella Coola, Bralorne, Chilliwack, Fort Nelson, Gold Bridge, Harrison Hot Springs, Hope, Horseshoe Bay, Merritt, Mission, Nanaimo (Old City Square), Port Alberni, Prince George, Prince Rupert, Smithers, Squamish, Telkwa, Tumbler Ridge, Vancouver (Seawall), Vancouver (Stanley Park), West Vancouver (Ambleside Park).

 

The town of Tofino with all of its (give or take) 2,000 residents is located on the West coast of Vancouver Island, pretty much in the middle. It's very far from any city of substantial size, that being Port Alberni, 2 hours and 120 kilometers to the East via Highway 4. Another hour and 85 kilometers are needed to reach an even larger city of Nanaimo, which has several ferry terminals connecting Vancouver Island to the mainland British Columbia.

Tofino is known for its surfing, with several beaches right by the town, and with Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and all of its beaches (especially an enormous Long Beach) being very close, also along Highway 4. Today, we walked around downtown Tofino, where the majority of its attractions are located.

For those folks who are interested in camping in their vehicle, it's going to be complicated, as forest service roads are pretty far from Tofino, and there are dozens of others who want to camp there too. Camping on Tofino streets is not allowed. Overnighting on any of the Pacific Rim Park's lots is also a no go. So, it's either one of the fee-based campgrounds in the Tofino area, or a motel/hotel, or a pretty long drive to the nearest FSR.

We visited Tofino many years ago, and don't remember much about that visit. This time, Tofino pleasantly surprised with having an appearance of a nearly upscale resort location, with a quirky feel, numerous fine ocean/harbour/mountain vistas, and many very interesting-looking buildings. The only issue of note is that Tofino is very small and very popular, so finding a parking spot could be complicated during the busy season, especially for a larger RV. Numerous signs prohibit parking of RVs or trailers on the street in downtown Tofino, which is the most popular part of the town. It's a good idea to have a campground reservation before arriving to Tofino, park there, and then just walk to all of the attractions, which should not be too far.

There appears to be only one public washroom in Tofino downtown, and it's pretty easy to find - it's located in a park on Campbell Avenue (the continuation of Pacific Rim Highway / Hwy 4) between 3rd and 2nd Streets (closer to 2nd Street).


37. Having visited First Street dock/pier, we returned to Main Street and turned right. Soon, Main Street became West Street (on the right).


Main Street at West Street Tofino BC Canada

38. West Street is only a few hundred meters long, and ends at the harbour.


West Street Tofino British Columbia Canada

39. At the foot of West Street, there is this most unusual sight. Can you guess what it is without looking at the next photograph's caption?


Tofino BC Canada

40. This is "Wildpod Waterfront Glamping" - six yurt-like guest houses.


Tofino Wildpod Waterfront Glamping

41. This would not look out of place on Mars.


Wildpod Waterfront Glamping Tofino BC

42. The building across the pods looks pretty good too.


Tofino British Columbia

43. We are now walking back on Main Street, with First Street straight ahead. Turning left would've led to the pier/dock which we have already visited, so turned right this time upon reaching the intersection.


Main Street Tofino BC

44-45. A few blocks further, on the corner of First Street and Neill Street, there is this most colourful Common Loaf Bake Shop.


First Street at Neill Street Tofino BC

Tofino Common Loaf Bake Shop

46-47. Diagonally across the street is Tofino General Hospital.


Tofino Hospital

Hospital in Tofino BC

48. We then turned left onto Neill Street. Residential houses are on the right side, and a large "Village Green" park, with tennis courts, basketball court, skate park, picnic tables, public washroom and lots of green space is on the left. The main thoroughfare (Campbell Street) is on the other side of the park, located between Second Street and Third Street.


Neill Street Tofino BC

49. Here are the tennis courts.


Tofino Tennis Courts

50. A skate park.


Tofino Skate Park

51. People chilling.


Village Green Park Tofino BC

52. Welcome to Tofino sign on the corner of Third Street and Campbell Street, the only thing we remember from our first visit to Tofino many years ago. A sign by the park indicates that downtown Tofino revitalization was done in 2013 and 2014. Well done.


Welcome to Tofino Sign

53. Diagonally from this sign across the street is Tofino RCMP detachment building.


Tofino RCMP Detachment Building

54-55. Tofino-style humour on Campbell Street.


Tofino Humour

56. On the corner of Campbell Street and Second Street is this neat-looking Roy Henry Vickers Gallery.


Roy Henry Vickers Gallery Tofino BC Canada

57. Another impressive garbage can nearby. With a very Tofino theme.


Tofino Surfing Garbage Can

58. The last but not the least - they do, they do exist. Ladies and gentlemen, a pink Jeep!


Pink Jeep

Tofino is far, very far. But what a fine little town it is.


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