Beachcombing

Port Renfrew is the gateway to some of the most beautiful coastlines in the world.

Beachcombing

Port Renfrew is the gateway to some of the most beautiful coastlines in the world. Take time to explore the Island. If there’s one landscape most associated with oceans, its beaches. Finding the best ones along the southwestern coast is not difficult as almost all of them have been protected as provincial parks. Beginning at French Beach, a necklace of sites is strung north to Port Renfrew, where the most fabulous of all, Botanical Beach is located.

French Beach

French Beach Provincial Park offers much more than just beautiful hiking trails through lush forests. It is a perfect location for young families, with no long hikes dragging the kids to reach the beach, as there’s paved access right from the parking lot.

Bring your frisbees, kite, ball and picnic basket. On your way to the beach, there are large lawn areas, picnic tables and a kids’ play area with slide and swing.

Sandcut Beach

Sandcut Beach is situated between French Beach Provincial Park and Jordan River, just 31 kilometres west of Sooke on Highway 14. Access to the beach is clear with a gravel parking lot and it is only a 15 minute hike from the parking area along a rugged wooded trail leading to a stone and pebble beach with sandstone and waterfalls. Note that small children and anyone with bad knees may need help with stairs. There are quite a few stairs to climb down on the way there.

Jordan River

Jordan River in Vancouver Island is located approximately 70 km (43 mi) west of Victoria and is known for great camping, surfing and kite surfing.

It might be small, but its surf scene is not to be ignored. Patience is required as the waves can be inconstant. You will need to have the tide, wind and swells align in your favour to enjoy the best surf conditions. Waves can range from a modest two feet to a more impressive ten feet.

China Beach

China Beach is a large fine sand beach, ideal for picnics, sand castle building and relaxing. The easy 15 min graded trail from the parking lot to the beach allows easy access for most everyone. There’s a long set of stairs just before arriving at the water.

Mystic Beach

Mystic beach is still one of my favourite hikes. At about 2km (45 min) hike from the parking lot to the beach through beautiful ancient forest and well maintain trail. You will pass a cool suspension bridge about half way. There are small caves on the western side of the beach that you can reach and explore during low tide and the waterfall on the east side is for sure going to catch your attention. At low tide, you can walk right under it.

Sombrio Beach

Sombrio Beach is a hidden gem for surfers and less crowded than Jordan River; more private and inviting too. Sombrio Beach is only an easy 15 minute hike from the parking lot. Once at the beach, look for the hidden waterfall, unless someone tells you about it, you could easily miss it, despite it being so close. Click below for more info about Sombre Beach and directions to find the hidden waterfall.

Botanical Beach

Botanical Beach is known for its tidal pools, the great Botanical loop trail, Storm watching in the winter months and Abundance of wildlife.

Visiting Port Renfrew and not hiking at Botanical Beach would be like visiting New York City and not going to the Statue of Liberty. Botanical Beach and nearby Botany Bay can be accessed at the end of Cerantes Road from the large roundabout parking lot in the Juan de Fuca Provincial Marine Park which includes a great nearby picnic table area.

Pacheedaht Beach

Pacheedaht Beach is located on the First Nation reserve in Port Renfrew, near the beginning of the West Coast Trail. This 2 km beach is a popular place for campers and beach lovers. The sandy beach with its mass of driftwood (and logs) is a delight for dogs playing catch in the water. In the winter months, Pacheedaht is good for surfing as well.

French Beach

French Beach Provincial Park offers much more than just beautiful hiking trails through lush forests. It is a perfect location for young families, with no long hikes dragging the kids to reach the beach, as there’s paved access right from the parking lot.

Bring your frisbees, kite, ball and picnic basket. On your way to the beach, there are large lawn areas, picnic tables and a kids’ play area with slide and swing.

Sandcut Beach

Sandcut Beach is situated between French Beach Provincial Park and Jordan River, just 31 kilometres west of Sooke on Highway 14. Access to the beach is clear with a gravel parking lot and it is only a 15 minute hike from the parking area along a rugged wooded trail leading to a stone and pebble beach with sandstone and waterfalls. Note that small children and anyone with bad knees may need help with stairs. There are quite a few stairs to climb down on the way there.

Jordan River

Jordan River in Vancouver Island is located approximately 70 km (43 mi) west of Victoria and is known for great camping, surfing and kite surfing.

It might be small, but its surf scene is not to be ignored. Patience is required as the waves can be inconstant. You will need to have the tide, wind and swells align in your favour to enjoy the best surf conditions. Waves can range from a modest two feet to a more impressive ten feet.

China Beach

China Beach is a large fine sand beach, ideal for picnics, sand castle building and relaxing. The easy 15 min graded trail from the parking lot to the beach allows easy access for most everyone. There’s a long set of stairs just before arriving at the water.

Mystic Beach

Mystic beach is one of my favorite hikes for many years. At about 2km (45 min) hike from the parking lot to the beach through beautiful ancient forest and well maintain trail. You will pass a cool suspension bridge about half way. There are small caves on the western side of the beach that you can reach and explore during low tide and the waterfall on the east side is for sure going to catch your attention. At low tide, you can walk right under it.

Sombrio Beach

Sombrio Beach is a hidden gem for surfers and less crowded than Jordan River; more private and inviting too. Sombrio Beach is only a 15 minute hike from the parking lot. Once at the beach, look for the hidden waterfall, unless someone tells you about it, you could easily miss it and never know it was there, despite it being so close. Click below to learn more.

Botanical Beach

Botanical Beach is known for its tidal pools, the great Botanical loop trail, Storm watching in the winter months and Abundance of wildlife.

Visiting Port Renfrew and not hiking at Botanical Beach would be like visiting New York City and not going to the Statue of Liberty. Botanical Beach and nearby Botany Bay can be accessed at the end of Cerantes Road from the large roundabout parking lot in the Juan de Fuca Provincial Marine Park which includes a great nearby picnic table area.

Pacheedaht Beach

Pacheedaht Beach is located on the First Nation reserve in Port Renfrew, near the beginning of the West Coast Trail. This 2 km beach is a popular place for campers and beach lovers. The sandy beach with its mass of driftwood (and logs) is a delight for dogs playing catch in the water. In the winter months, Pacheedaht is good for surfing as well.

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