Hiking on the Wild Pacific Trail Vancouver Island

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Wild Pacific Trail

Hiking on the Wild Pacific Trail on Vancouver Island

We experience the Wild Pacific Trail Lighthouse Loop, an easy version of the Pacific Trail on Vancouver Island, probably one of the most beautiful hiking trails on Canada's west coast in April this year. We actually chose this time of year because we wanted to experience one of the infamous Pacific Rim storms. Instead, the weather gods gift us with a stay full of sun and wonderful weather. There was no sign of the famous storms on Vancouver Island's West Coast! Well, that certainly wasn't the last time we visited this wonderful part of the world. And so we take advantage of the opportunity to hike on the southernmost part of the hiking trail, which stretches - in sections - between Ucluelet and the Pacific Rim National Park. The Wild Pacific Trail is an experience not to be missed on a trip to Vancouver Island. Map



The Lighthouse Loop on the Wild Pacific Trail, Ucluelet BC

The plan is for it to one day cover the entire length between the fishing village and the national park. At the moment there are several sections, each one more beautiful than the last. Since I love lighthouses, we decide on the section that starts south of Ucluelet and leads past the Amphitrite Lighthouse through the coastal rainforest, offering wonderful views of the cliffs, the Broken Islands and Barkley Sound.

This section of the trail is just two and a half kilometers long, and we'll take a good hour to complete it - some will say that's a lot. We'll say that's not enough, because the wonderful views along the way invite you to stop and marvel, but above all to enjoy. Another advantage of this section of the Wild Pacific Trail near Ucluelet BC is that it's a circular trail. It starts and ends at a parking lot where you can easily park your car.


Bench at the Wild Pacific Trail Lighthouse Loop
Bench at the Wild Pacific Trail Lighthouse Loop


Hike on the Lighthouse Loop Trail

Cozy leads the well-maintained path in a circle through a forest area. Most of the time we walk along the edge of the forest with ever-changing views of cliffs, wild surf and offshore islands. In between, there are small lookouts, sometimes with, sometimes without a bank, from which you can enjoy the wild coast even better. In some places I like it so much that I would like to spend the whole day here.


Ucluelet Lighthouse on the Wild Pacific Trail
Ucluelet Lighthouse on The Wild Pacific Trail Lighthouse Loop


The Broken Island Group from the Wild Pacific Trail

In the southern part of the hiking trail there are views of the Broken Island Group. Behind it we see the mountains that extend south on the west side of Vancouver Island. This region cannot be reached by road. The only means of transport that get there are seaplanes or chartered boats. Alternatively, you can hike along the coast along the rugged West Coast Trail. However, this demands the utmost from hikers. You are on the road for several days. Climb over stick and stone. Uses shaky cable cars that you operate on your own to cross deep gorges. Spend the night in the wild. An adventure for anyone looking for a wilderness experience.


Broken Island Group
Broken Island Group


A hiking trail for connoisseurs

The Wild Pacific Trail is completely different: this hiking trail is a well-developed path that runs along the coast. Sections cross the coastal rainforest. Here the hiker experiences the nature of the West Coast up close - but in a tame way. Another advantage of the Wild Pacific Trail is that it is accessible to everyone at all times. In contrast to the West Coast Trail. If you want to hike this, you have to register. Because on the route through the wilderness only a certain number of hikers are allowed per day. Registration also ensures that those who embark on this adventure will log out after the adventure ends. In this way, the authority keeps an overview that all hikers arrive safely at their destination. Actions like this are not required on the Wild Pacific Trail.


Coastal rainforest
Coastal rainforest


The coastal rainforest on the Wild Pacific Trail

Sections of the Lighthouse Loop run through the coastal rainforest. Here, too, the Wild Pacific Trail offers an easy option to get to know the typical flora of the region. The paths are well maintained and easy to walk. In the Pacific Rim National Park a few kilometers further north there are also paths that lead into the coastal rainforest. However, these are more difficult to master than the Wild Pacific Trail. As you climb and hike across boardwalks through the harsh world of forests, the Wild Pacific Trail path is an easy trail that contains only a few easy climbs. This makes it easy for most hikers to master.



The Wild Pacific Trail offers hiking for slow travelers

Unlike the West Coast Trail, which begins on the other side of the estuary and stretches south on adventurous trails on the west coast of Vancouver Island, the Wild Pacific Trail also allows inexperienced hikers to experience the beautiful nature of the Pacific Rim up close. This path can be mastered without climbing sections, gorges and rock crossings. You should only bring enough time and leisure to enjoy the scenic beauty of this nature intensively. Take it especially in spring and autumn when the Gray whales on the coast passing by, enough time, you can maybe even watch the whales from the coast.



The second section of the Wild Pacific Trail at Ucluelet

The second section of the Wild Pacific Trail starts at the Black Rock Resort's car park and winds its way along the coast for about three kilometers. Again, there are lookout points that offer the best views. However, you have to go back this section again, as this piece is not a circular route, as in the southern section.


What needs to be in the suitcase?

  • Be sure to pack appropriate ones walking boots .
  • An rain jacket you should also have it with you. The Pacific Rim has a maritime climate, meaning it rains regularly.
  • A pair of backpack will also serve you well on a trip to the west coast of Vancouver Island. There are many hiking trails, and also a beach walk Long Beach is it practical.
  • In our hiking checklist You will also find everything you need for hikes.
  • Forget yours Camera not. The coast on the Pacific Rim is breathtakingly beautiful and also offers many photo opportunities.


A hike on The Wild Pacific Trail Lighthouse Loop should be a must for every visit to the Pacific Rim, because you can hardly experience the great nature of this region more beautifully than here. It can easily be divided into a Road trip through Vancouver Island plan on.


Viewpoint at Amphitrite Lighthouse
Lookout at Amphitrite Lighthouse - The Wild Pacific Trail Lighthouse Loop


Stormwatching vantage points along the Wild Pacific Trail

The west coast of Vancouver Island is famous for its storms. Even though we didn't experience any of them on our trip, they are notorious. They mainly occur between October and April. This is when the biggest waves hit the west coast of the island.

Along the hiking trail there are always places where the bare rock reaches into the water. This is an indication of how high the waves can reach. They tear away any vegetation clinging there. These places are also dangerous for hikers. Waves are faster and stronger than humans. Therefore, one should not go to the bare rocks on the coast. Waves can appear unexpectedly.

A safe viewing point is located at the Amphitrite Lighthouse, and there are numerous vantage points along the trail from which you can observe the storms.

Guided tours of the Wild Pacific Trail on Vancouver Island

From March to October you can also take part in a free guided tour of the hiking trail. The topics range from natural history to the cultural history of the region. The tours usually last an hour and go along easy paths.

There are no fixed themes for guided tours. These vary from appointment to appointment. You can find the current topics on the Website of the Wild Pacific Trail.

Example topics are:

  • tide pool and beach exploration
  • What is in the peat bog?
  • Bears - how do they change their behavior
  • Salmon Trails - Insight into forest, fish and ecosystems

Guest speakers also give lectures on guided tours along the trail.

Questions and Answers about the Wild Pacific Trail on Vancouver Island near Ucluelet:

What is the best time of year to hike the Wild Pacific Trail?

The best time to hike the Wild Pacific Trail is during the summer months, when the weather is at its best and the wildflowers are in bloom.

How long is the Wild Pacific Trail?

The Wild Pacific Trail is a total of 10 km long and is divided into several sections, each offering different scenic highlights.

Can I spot wildlife on the Wild Pacific Trail?

Yes, if you enjoy spotting wildlife, you won't be disappointed on the Wild Pacific Trail. Seals, otters, bald eagles and even whales can be spotted in the area.

Do I need to be physically fit to hike the Wild Pacific Trail?

The Wild Pacific Trail is suitable for all fitness levels, but it's important to wear appropriate walking shoes and clothing, and bring plenty of water and snacks. A backpack does a good job.

Are there guided hikes on the Wild Pacific Trail?

Yes, the community of Ucluelet, which manages the Wild Pacific Trail, also offers guided hikes and other activities. A guided tour can be a great way to learn more about the region and visit the best places.


Travel Arrangements:

Parking at the airport

Here you can reserve your parking space at the airport.

How to reach us

Compare and book flights here*. The nearest airport is in Tofino. International flights land in Vancouver. From there you can then take a rental car or a Caravan drive to Tofino. Then you should plan 2-3 days for the journey.

Rental car

Car * you can rent at the airport in Vancouver. You should know that landslides occur on the Pacific Rim road after long rains.

Do you like to travel on The Wild Pacific Trail in an RV?

  • Do you want to rent a mobile home? Then you will find information and a selection of booking options.
  • Be sure to check our packing list for campers to see whether you have packed everything for your motorhome tour.
  • For example, locally there is the Ucluelet Campground, 260 Seaplane Base Rd, Ucluelet, BC V0R 3A0, Canada. However, there are still campsites in the region.
  • The guide is also helpful:

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Other Slow Travel Tips You can also find it here.


Wild Pacific Trail Ucluelet BC
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Source: On-site research supported by Tourism British Columbia and Tourism Tofino. However, our opinion remains our own.

Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline
Photos: © Copyright Monika Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline
Video: © Copyright Petar Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline

Hiking on the Wild Pacific Trail Vancouver Island

Monika Fuchs

Monika Fuchs and Petar Fuchs are the authors and publishers of the Slow Travel and Enjoyment travel blog TravelWorldOnline Traveller. You have been publishing this blog since 2005. TravelWorldOnline has been online since 2001. Your topics are Trips to Savor and wine tourism worldwide and Slow Travel. During her studies, Monika Fuchs spent some time in North America, where she traveled to the USA and Canada - sometimes together with Petar Fuchs - and spent a research year in British Columbia. This strengthened her thirst for knowledge, which she pursued for 6 years Adventure Guide for Rotel Tours and then for 11 years as Study tour guide for Studiosus Reisen tried to breastfeed all over the world. She constantly expanded her travel regions, but curiosity still gnawed at her: “What is beyond the horizon? What else is there to discover in this city? Which people are interesting here? What do you eat in this region?” These are the questions she is now trying to answer as a freelance travel journalist (her articles have appeared in DIE ZEIT, 360° Canada, 360° USA, etc.), among others. travel writer and travel blogger answers in many countries around the world. Petar Fuchs produces the videos on this blog as well as on YouTube. Monika Fuchs from TravelWorldOnline is below Germany's top 50 bloggers in 2021 Other Information about Monika and Petar Fuchs. Recommendations on LinkedIn from tourism experts Further recommendations from cooperation partners and tourism experts Professional experience Monika on LinkedIn