On the southwestern tip of Vancouver Island lie some of the most beautiful and rugged beaches in North America. Juan de Fuca Provincial Park and Juan de Fuca Marine trail feature seven beaches that are the perfect retreat into the Northwest.
Juan de Fuca Marine trail weaves through all seven beaches of Juan de Fuca Provincial Park and is about a three-day backpacking excursion (if you don't stay too long on just one beach). It is easy to drive to trails that lead to each beach separately if you are not interested in backpacking. This is one of my absolute favorite summer locations because of the cool weather, gorgeous beaches, and mountainous trails. China Beach, Mystic Beach, Bear Beach, East Sombrio Beach, Sombrio Beach, Botanical Beach each offer tide pools, white sand, huge trees, rocky shores, waterfalls and lots of critters big and small.
The first time I discovered this part of Vancouver Island my mom and I stayed in a little cabin at Point No Point Resort. This is by far one of my favorite places to stay IN THE WORLD, with cozy cabins, an exquisite 5 star restaurant, a point leading to a little island, a tide pool beach, a sandy beach; and it's far away from civilization (the closest town is 45 minutes away).
A few summers later, I was craving the ocean air and the Canadian pine smell again, so I took my husband there. We found a great little AirBnb just up the road from Point No Point Resort, a less expensive option, and still ate at the 5 star restaurant at Point No Point.
From our location close to Point No Point we explored and hiked to different beaches everyday. Each beach has a very different feel. China Beach and Mystic Beach feel like sandy escapes, Sombrio falls out of the big trees and into water, and Botanical Beach (my favorite) puts you on the edge of the world with tide pools, cool rock formations and little islands (at low tide) to explore. There are crabs of all kinds, cute weasels, seals, huge sea otters, bears, whales, and mountain lions in the area. While hiking at Point No Point, I turned a bend and came face to face with a sea otter that must have been six feet long. Hiking the loop to Botanical Bay and Botanical Beach, hikers warned us that they had just seen a black bear just cross the trail.
This is a place for nature lovers, a retreat away from civilization and into the rugged Vancouver Island coast.
Did this inspire your marvelous wanderings? Let me know!