(Flight Network/The World's 50 Best Beaches)

Tofino is Vancouver Island’s number one tourist destination, popular not only with local residents but also for people across BC and the rest of Canada. 

The sprawling beaches, the surfing, and of course the delicious food. Tofino is a paradise on our very own Island. 

The journey from Victoria to Tofino is long but there is plenty to check out along the way!

We have created a list of must see spots to check out along your route, to help break up the long drive and make your trip even more memorable.

If you want to see a visual of where all these spots are along your route, check out a map here!

Now that you’re ready to go, here are 10 must see Vancouver Island destinations to check out on your way to Tofino:

Petroglyph Provincial Park

Petroglyph Provincial park has an incredible amount of prehistoric rock carvings, drawing in tourists to see for themselves. The traditional carvings are over 1,000 years old and were created by First Nations peoples. 

Visitors can also enjoy an interpretative area with information boards which gives insight into the rich history of the park as well as some petroglyph deciphers. 

  • Location: 990-960, Trans-Canada Highway, Nanaimo
  • Distance from Victoria: 108km

Englishman River Falls

Englishman River Falls Provincial Park is picturesque, featuring two waterfalls. The park includes a day-use area, campgrounds and several hiking trails. The lower falls end in a deep, crystal-clear pool perfect for a summer swim. 

  • Location: 2245 Errington Road, Errington
  • Park Hours: 7:00 a.m., to 11:00 p.m., Monday to Sunday
  • Distance from Petroglyph Provincial Park: 51.5km

Mount Arrowsmith Brewing Company

Take a break to fuel up on your road trip at Mount Arrowsmith Brewing Company. The tasting room, kitchen and pizzeria are open daily! Purchase some beer to go to enjoy in Tofino!

  • Location: 425 Stanford Avenue E #109, Parksville
  • Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., Monday to Wednesday, 11:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Sunday
  • Distance from Englishman River Falls: 15km

Little Qualicum Cheeseworks

Little Qualicum Cheeseworks was started in 2004 by the Gourlay family. The farm features its own store where you can purchase their delicious delicacies. 

You can explore the farm, watch cheese being made, meet the animals and visit the old milking parlour the “Mooseum”.

  • Location: 403 Lowrys Road, Parksville
  • Hours: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday to Sunday
  • Distance from Mount Arrowsmith Brewing Company: 7 km

Cathedral Grove

Cathedral Grove, located in MacMillan Provincial Park, is a network of trails under ancient Douglas Fir trees, some over 800 years old. You’ll also find Western red cedar standing nearby Cameron Lake.

  • Distance from Little Qualicum Cheeseworks: 30 km

Goats on the Roof

The Old Country Market is a popular Coombs attraction, made famous by the goats who graze on the live grass roof of the market! Along with the playful goats, the Old Country Market includes the Market Bakery itself, Billy G’s Doughnuts, Billy Gruff Creamery as well as three restaurants. 

  • Location: 2326 Alberni Highway, Coombs
  • Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday to Sunday
  • Distance from Cathedral Grove: 19.2 km

Coombs Country Candy

Coombs Country Candy’s website calls their store ‘Vancouver Island’s sweetest secret”. Here you will find everything from chocolates and ice cream to caramel corn and brittles . All products are made by hand, in store. 

  • Location: 2101 Old Nanaimo Highway Road, Port Alberni
  • Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., Monday to Sunday
  • Distance from Goats on the Roof: 32.5 km

Hole in the Wall 

If you want to break up your road trip, give your legs a stretch and do a quick hike, visit Hole in the Wall. The path to your destination is a 1.3 kilometer moderately trafficked out and back trail and is good for all skill levels. 

  • Distance from Coombs Country Candy: 2.3 km

Wally Creek

Being in a car on a long summer road trip can be uncomfortable. Break up your trip with a quick dip at Wally Creek, which was named one of Vancouver Island’s best hidden swimming spots. The water is icy, perfect for a refreshing dip. 

  • Distance from Hole in the Wall: 60 km

Ucluelet

If you want to make a quick detour, turn off on your way to Tofino to visit the beautiful Ucluelet. The growing fishing destination offers beautiful beaches in a quieter setting. When you’ve completed your visit, there is only 40 minutes from there to reach Tofino, your final destination!

  • Distance from Wally Creek: 45 km

 

 What are your must-sees on a Tofino road trip?

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