Vancouver Island combines large forests, rugged landscapes, rocky mountain peaks, and mysterious coastlines. After living in this beautiful place for a combined 10 years, we’ll break down the 10 MOST INCREDIBLE places you have to visit on Vancouver Island (footage accumulated over the years):
10. Cameron Lake & Cathedral Grove
These are located near each other in central Vancouver Island, sitting between Parksville and Port Alberni. Cameron lake is a tranquil spot on the island with many other natural attractions in the area. Witness the old-growth giant trees at Cathedral Grove and more.
9. Goldstream Provincial Park
Located right outside of Victoria, Goldstream Provincial Park is a great spot for hiking, camping and connecting with nature. Explore the beautiful “Niagara” waterfall or do a challenging hike to the neighboring peak of Mount Finlayson.
❗NOTE: Goldstream Trestle has now been CLOSED to the public
Sitting on the southern end, Victoria is the most popular and accessible destination on Vancouver Island. Within a 20-minute driving radius of the city, there are tons of things to do in Victoria. You can choose to explore the British colonial Downtown on foot, take a tour to the magnificent Butchart Gardens, see the stunning Hatley Castle, or explore the wildlife on a whale watching tour.
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7. Port Renfrew
The fishing village of Port Renfrew is another place you cannot miss on Vancouver Island! Also called “Wild Renfrew”, this area is known for its ancient rainforest, world-class hiking trails, and its stunning beaches.
6. Cowichan Valley
Cowichan Valley is another unique place to visit on Vancouver Island. Activities to enjoy here include hiking or biking Mount Tzouhalem, sipping wine at one of the idyllic vineyards, exploring the largest totem pole collection in Duncan, and seeing the sea lions in Cowichan Bay.
5. Lake Cowichan
Lake Cowichan is another amazing travel destination worth mentioning on its own. This freshwater lake is about 30 km or 18.6mi long and sits to the west of Duncan, in the Cowichan Valley.
4. Shawnigan Lake
Located about 40km north of Victoria at the southern edge of the Cowichan Valley, Shawnigan Lake is a popular place to vacation. The lake is 7km long and great for fishing, swimming, and sunbathing in the summer. But what we like the most in this area is hiking.
❗NOTE: The Quarry has now been CLOSED to the public
3. Sombrio & Mystic Beach
Mystic Beach has a beautiful waterfall that Cascades into the ocean, whereas Sombrio Beach has the best vibe for beach camping. Sombrio is a popular weekend getaway with friends or family during the summer and also offers some hidden waterfalls of its own.
2. Tofino & Ucluelet
Tofino and Ucluelet are both great destinations to get away and relax in nature on Vancouver Island! There is amazing hiking and surfing, and you will find the sandiest beaches on the island here! Our top pick of beaches include Cox Bay, Mackenzie Beach, Chesterman Beach, Long Beach, and Wickaninnish.
1. Strathcona Provincial Park
Located in the heart of the island, Strathcona Provincial Park has the purest nature, richest wildlife and most breathtaking scenery on all of Vancouver Island. Our top picks in the park include Landslide Lake, Myra Falls, and Cream Lake.
🎦 Note: some (drone) footage is courtesy of Canva
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🎵 MUSIC CREDITS:
Rejoice in the morning by The David Roy Collective
California in the spring by Michael Shynes
Tomb by Veshza
Moments to remember by Josh Leake
Clouds by Ziv Moran
The other side by Michael Shynes
🎥 VIDEO CHAPTERS:
1:30 Cameron Lake & Cathedral Grove
3:51 Port Renfrew
4:37 Cowichan Valley
5:22 Lake Cowichan
6:19 Shawnigan Lake
7:06 Sombrio & Mystic Beach
7:56 Tofino & Ucluelet
9:01 Strathcona Park
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