Southern Vancouver Island: The Trails around Ucluelet

Just south of Tofino and the Long Beach section is an area around the town of Ucluelet that has some great trails. Both the Wild Pacific Trail and the Lighthouse Trail are easy to navigate and give near-constant views of the rough waters off the west coast of Vancouver Island as you navigate the trail.

Map image of the area from the Wild Pacific Trail Website

We started in the parking lot near Brown’s Beach. There are signs in the parking area directing hikers towards the trail. After a short jaunt we reached the coastal part of the trail.

To get the most scenic views, follow the various artist’s loops found along the trail. Instead of taking a straight path through the woods, these scenic loops take visitors close to the ocean with better views.

About half way through the trail you can take a detour through an ancient cedar forest. It’s a short detour and well worth the extra 30 minutes.

This one had fallen not long ago, exposing the immense root system

Then it was back along the trail back towards the rocky bluffs. When we started the walk there was a steady mix of locals and visitors on the trail. Further from the town it was much quieter with relatively few people passing by.

Plenty of benches along the trail
As we got near the end of the rocky bluffs section, the sun briefly came out.

Once you reach the bluffs there is a fenced off section and you have to turn back. However, the trail is not difficult and you can skip the artist’s loops on the way back if you want to save time, so it won’t take so long.

After having lunch we we on. Just a 10 minute drive from the Wild Pacific Trail parking lot is the start of the Lighthouse trail. It’s a very easy walk around the southern tip of the town and takes around an hour to do.

Map image of the area from the Wild Pacific Trail Website
Starting the Lighthouse Loop
Along the trail

We soon reached the Amphitrite Point Lighthouse, named after the Greek goddess Amphitrite, wife of Poseidon. The area is famous for wave-watching, as storms often produced impressive (and dangerous) crests. But on this day things were much calmer.

The trail around the point was an easy one
Yet another trail leading to an ocean view
A part of the trail that was closed off. The sign made perfect sense

There were a few opportunities to get close to the water along the trail It was too cold for swimming, but some of the coves had calm waters, a contrast to other parts of the trail.

Eventually we looped back to the parking lot, finishing a great hike by the ocean.

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