Camping in Tofino

I went camping in Tofino with my family last month. It was such an amazing trip that I completely forgot about reality, I forgot that I was even going back to school, I forgot about COVID and what was going on in my life (ok, not completely, but ya’ll get the point). 

Tofino is one of Canada’s most popular tourist destinations with gorgeous beaches, national parks and coastal art and culture. It is a small coastal town on Vancouver Island.

Image Credit: S Malla

Ferry/Driving

Since Tofino is on the island, we had to take the ferry. We left home at around 6 am to the Tsawwassen ferry terminal, about 45 minute drive from our house. Then we boarded our ferry at 7:30 am, and the ferry took exactly two hours to reach Duke Terminal in Nanaimo. After that, it’s almost three hours of driving from Nanaimo all the way up to Tofino. We stopped at Port Alberni for about half an hour for the washroom and coffee. I got a chocolate milkshake that tasted like vanilla ice cream in chocolate milk. It wasn’t worth wanting to drink something cold. I felt that we should have gone to Tim Horton’s instead. Altogether I think we travelled about five and half hours including ferry and driving by car.

Tent set up

As soon as we got to the campsite, we cleaned up the area a bit and set up all tents one by one. We got a new tent this time, it’s taller, so it felt more spacious. I helped to set up the sleeping mats and sleeping bags in the tent. It’s fun to set up the tents and the camp area. Altogether there were five tents since we went with family friends.

Image Credit: S Malla

Food

After the campsite set up, we had lunch. The campsite we stayed at didn’t allow keeping food out while we weren’t there or overnight because of bears in the area. So there was lots of effort taking food out and putting them back again in coolers and then in a car. Unlike other times going camping, this time we decided to spend less time on food prep and spend more time doing activities. So, most of our meals were sandwiches, burgers and barbeque. We ate momo (Nepali style dumpling, not the statue) with sauce for dinner on the first day, though.

Image Credit: S Malla

Explore the area

On the first day, we went to Amphitrite Point Lighthouse. It was kind of gloomy that day but the lighthouse was still nice, especially the waves around it. While we were hiking around the trail near the lighthouse, we could hear the whistle buoy (it sounds like a foghorn) the entire time. It’s activated by the wave action of the ocean and is louder when the sea is rough.

Image Credit: S Malla

On the second day, we wandered around the city for a while. We visited the Himwitsa Native Art Gallery, owned and operated by local First nation members. I got a pair of super cute earrings with a wolf print on them. We also got fish and chips from a local fish and chips fry, just so that we didn’t have to go back to the campsite again. It was actually pretty good, they even put a fried pickle in the package and it was sooo good. I’d actually wanted to try fried pickles for so long (I’m a pickle lover), but that’s besides point.

Beaches/Forests

Tofino is mainly known for its waves and there are literally the biggest waves there. The beaches are gorgeous. We went to Long Beach on the second and third days. It is the longest sand beach on the west coast of Vancouver Island, stretching over 16 kilometers. I saw lots of surfers, kayakers, swimmers, walkers and book readers enjoying the beautiful beach. I plan on going surfing there next year. Tofino is the home to one of the best surfing areas in the country. We also visited Wickaninnish and Cox Bay beaches and they were not that crowded like Long beach.

Image Credit: S Malla

Pacific Forest running to the edge of the beach was beautiful. Pacific Rim National Park, located in Clayoquot Sound, is one of UNESCO’s protected Biosphere Reserves.

Campfire/Smores

No camping is complete without smores. We were not allowed to use logs for campfires due to the restrictions to prevent wildfires. So, we used a propane camp campfire for smores. (They were so good, but a bit hard to eat because of my braces)

So that’s how my camping trip went. We felt that three days wasn’t enough, should have stayed more. I forgot to mention, on the day we were returning, we were five minutes late for our reservation for the ferry (we should report 30 minutes prior to departure to a secure reservation spot). We lost our reservation,  and had to wait about two hours at the terminal to board the 11:45 pm ferry, and we ended up getting home at around 2:30 am. That was also an experience, and it wasn’t that bad either. So yeah, it was a pretty memorable trip.

Have you ever been camping?

Published by Aadhya

My name is Aadhya, and I am 12 years old. I love going camping, cooking, hanging out with my friends, and trying new activities! In this blog, you will find all sorts of stories about my experiences. I would love to have feedback from you. P.S. New posts every two weeks on Mondays.

23 thoughts on “Camping in Tofino

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