Relax and contemplate life as you follow snail tracks along the sandy beaches of Vancouver Island and chase cheeky crabs into rocky crevices. Search through seaweed and barnacled driftwood and hunt amongst stranded tree trunks for those precious little treasures the sea so generously yields at every ebb of the tide. Mussels, periwinkles, clams and hermit crabs, they’re all there – you just have to find them! Rich tidal pools, a shoreline full of life, and fantastic geological features attract visitors to Botanical Beach, northwest of Victoria, one of the most amazing places on the entire BC West Coast, particularly at low tide. You can spend days walking the sandy beaches along Long Beach, between Ucluelet and Tofino, and the beaches on the east coast of Vancouver Island offer fabulous expanses of firm white sand that stretch for miles at low tide.
The best known and most visited of the 3 regions of Pacific Rim National Park is Long Beach, famous for the long sandy beaches of Schooner Cove and Wickaninnish and Florencia Bays, stretching between the two villages of Tofino and Ucluelet.
Juan de Fuca Provincial Park offers scenic beauty, spectacular hiking, marine and wildlife viewing, and roaring surf along the Pacific coastline of the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
Without a doubt, Sidney Spit Marine Park boasts the finest beaches of all parks in the Victoria region of Vancouver Island. One of the main attractions of the park is the famous sandbar, the Sidney Spit .
Today, Pender Islands, with a balmy sub-Mediterranean climate, seven parks and over 20 clearly marked public beach accesses, these friendly rural islands are fabulous for family vacations, romantic escapes, seminars and retreats.
The warm ocean water and sandy beach makes Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park a family camping favourite. At low tide, almost a kilometre of sandy flats are exposed, perfect for beachcombing. When the tide rolls in over the sun-baked sand, the warmed water is unbeatable for swimming.
Located on Hornby Island, the 95-hectare Tribune Bay Provincial Park is known for its beautiful white sandy beach and unusual rocky shoreline formations.
While anytime is ideal for dipping your toes in the ocean, the broad safe sandy beach at Miracle Beach Provincial Park is perfect for sandcastle building or studying the marine life of tidal pools.
Rebecca Spit Provincial Park – sandy beaches line both sides of the narrow spit at sheltered Drew Harbour, backed by open uplands interspersed with stands of mostly second-growth trees, shrubs and grasses.
- Available year-round
- Low tide is best – check newspapers for low tide times
- Collecting is prohibited in parks
- Protect the fragile ecosystems and their tiny inhabitants
- Replace organisms and rocks as you found them
- Beachcombing Tours available