Tofino Tour OperatorsUcluelet Marine Tours 


The West Coast is a thrilling area to explore by land, sea and air. There is so much to see and do, it's difficult to narrow it down. Hopefully this page will help you do just that! Many different operators in both Tofino and Ucluelet offer a wide variety of boat tours and activities. Whale watching, bear watching, hot springs, exploring, fishing and simply sightseeing are all possibilities.  

 

Whale watching

Numerous local companies offer whale-watching tours in the Clayoquot and Barkley Sound areas. There are resident pods of humpback and grey whales, and many migrants also make the trip northward from their rearing water in Baja, California to hang out here for the season. Orca whales are also often seen on the West Coast, with residents and transient pods present here. You can choose a covered boat with indoor seating or a zodiac boat for you whale-watching adventure. If you choose the latter, you will be provided with a full survival suit that doubles as a personal flotation device and keeps you warm on the open ocean. Whale-watching tour guides are very knowledgeable about the area and will share their knowledge of wildlife with you on your trip. They operate under regulations that govern how close they can come to the whales, but you will be able to get a good view of them so bring your camera! 

 

Bear watching

Many of the whale-watching companies also offer bear watching tours from their boats as well. These tours normally take you to protected areas in Clayoquot and Barkley Sounds. Being on a boat means you can view all sorts of wildlife safely from the water, especially the area's magnificent black bears. They come down to the water's edge to feed on salmon, and this is where you'll most likely catch a glimpse of these gorgeous creatures.

It's also possible to view wildlife at Thornton Creek Hatchery in Ucluelet. Please use extreme caution, bears are wild animals and therefore unpredictable. Do not approach the bears; safest viewing is from your vehicle. Juveniles often frequent the hatchery from March-June, and adults from mid-October-November. The hatchery is accessible off Hwy. 4 by turning towards Port Albion and continuing approximately 2km until you see a sign for the Thornton Creek Hatchery. Turn right and continue for 1km, the hatchery is on the right-hand side. You can tour the hatchery operation; donations are most appreciated.  

 


 

Ucluelet/Tofino wildlife viewing companies:

 

Archipelago Wildlife Cruises 250 726-8289   http://www.archipelagocruises.com

Beachcomber Ocean Tours 250 726-8921

Jamie's Whale Station 250 726-7444

Subtidal Adventures 250 726-7336   http://www.subtidaladventures.com 

 

Tofino wildlife viewing companies:


Jamie's Whaling Station 250 725-3919

Ocean Outfitters 250 725-2866

Remote Passages 250 725-3330

Seaside Adventures 250 725-2295

West Coast Aquatic Safaris 250 725-9227 


 

 

Hot Springs

Tours departing from Tofino go regularly to Hot Springs Cove, located in Maquinna Marine Provincial Park. This idyllic setting is located 27 nautical miles northwest of Tofino, or roughly one and a half hours. Home of the Hesquiaht people, this area is also home to a natural hot springs that bubbles up from a crack in the earth. The springs are located at the end of a boardwalk forest walk. The simmering sulfur water flows as a gentle brook and then cascades as a waterfall into five natural interconnected pools. It's the most incredible meeting of the cold ocean with a naturally heated hot spring.

Getting there from Tofino is half the fun. A number of different tour operators offer transportation via water or air. Most of these tours usually include whale watching, bird watching and other eco-interpretive activities along the way. Once at the dock it's a 30-minute hike to the hot springs. You can also take a floatplane from Tofino harbour to Hot Springs harbour and do some sightseeing along the way.   

 


 

 

Tours companies offering trips to Hot Springs (all departing from Tofino)

 

Clayoquot Eco Tours Whale Centre 250 725-2132

Eagle Eye Adventures (Ahousaht) 250 670-9587

Hymax Charters 250 266-0147

Jamie's Whaling Station 250 725-3919

Ocean Outfitters 250 725-2866

Pacific Whaler 250 725-2895

Remote Passages 250 725-3330

Seaside Adventures 250 725-2295

West Coast Aquatic Safaris 250 725-9227

Åtleo River Air Service 250 725-2205 


 

 

Hesquiaht Harbour and Cougar Annie's Garden

Hesquiaht Peninsula Provincial Park occupies most of the eastern shore of Nootka Sound and is where Cougar Annie's Garden is located. A significant area for hiking, boating and sea kayaking, this remote area is without facilities and recommended only for experienced outdoors campers and kayakers. You can take a boat or plane from Tofino to visit Cougar Annie's Garden on a day trip. Early 20th century homesteader Ada Annie pre-empted this land, bore 8 of her 11 children here and carved a magical garden out of the wilderness. This is the only wilderness homestead that endured in Clayoquot Sound. The five-acre garden and heritage site is now managed by the Boat Basin Foundation. The foundation conducts tours of the garden, visit www.boatbasin.org. Marvel at the amount of work it would have taken to clear this plot from rainforest using no modern machinery at all. A visit to Cougar Annie's garden is unforgettable! 

 

 

Tour companies that offer trips to Cougar Annie's and Hesquiaht Harbour

 

 

Ocean Outfitters 250 725-2866

Atleo River Air Service 250 725-2205 

 


 

Fishing

There are a number of fish guiding businesses in the area that cater to all who are looking for the big catch during their trip to the West Coast. Salmon and halibut are the most common catches while off shore fishing, and local guides are well versed in the best areas, both off shore and in shore to find your prey. Most fishing trips are half-day, departing either in the morning or early afternoon, but all-day charters are available. Most guides will also be willing to fillet your catch for you to cook up. Fishing licenses are required, enquire with your guiding company.  

 


 

Tofino Fishing

 

Al's Fishing Charters and Tours 250 725-3417

Biggar Fish Charters 250 726-8987

Bobby Kimoto Charters 250 725-3882

Chinook Charters 250 725-3431

Clayoquot Ventures Fishing 1-888-534-7422

Hymax Charters 250 266-0147

Lance's Sportfishing Adventures 1-888-725-6125

Osprey Fishing Charters 250 725-2133

Scottie Jaynes Sports Fishing Charters 250 522-0060

Tofino First Class Fishing 250 725-2047

 


 

Ucluelet Fishing

 

Ucluelet Charters 250 726-3644    www.uclueletcharters.com

Long Beach Charters 250 726-3474

Tighlines Fishing Charters 250 266-8000

West Coast Fish Expeditions 250 726-8221 

 


 

Boat charters and cruises

Archipelago Wildlife Cruises 250 726-8289

Browning Pass Charters 250 725-3435

Tla-ook Cultural Adventures 250 725-2656

Hymax charters 250 266-0147 

 


 

 

Kayaking 

 

Kayaking in Barkley Sound (Broken Island Group) and Clayoquot Sound is an opportunity to experiences the amazing sights, sounds and tranquility of the area. View vast rugged shorelines from afar, see the temperate rainforests that hug the shorelines, view all sorts of marine wildlife from eagles and herons, to shorebirds, anemones, sea lions, seals, sea otters and even whales! Beginners are welcome on tours that range from harbour tours in Tofino, to Meares Island Big Tree Trail tours to overnight trips in the Broken Group Islands.   

 


 

Kayaking Guides and Rentals

 

Tofino


Inter Island Excursions 250 725-3163

Paddle West Kayaking 250 725-3232

Rainforest Kayak Adventures 250 877 422 WILD

Tofino Sea Kayaking 250 725-4222


Ucluelet

 

Hello Nature Adventure Tours 250 726-2035  http://hellonature.ca

Majestic Ocean Kayaking 250 726-2868   http://www.oceankayaking.com

 

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