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Hiking the Tonquin Trail in Tofino, BC

The beautiful Tonquin Trail in Tofino, British Columbia is a must do trail while you visit the coastal town.  Offering beautiful views of Clayoquot Sound the trail begins at Tofino Community Hall and winds through the old-growth forest to Tonquin Beach and Third Beach.  If you are looking to a beautiful but easy trail to hike while visiting Tofino the Tonquin Trail is must do!

Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia

Here is our guide to hiking the Tonquin Trail in Tofino, British Columbia!

Getting to the Tonquin Trail

There is three access points onto the trail which allows you to do a loop instead of having to double back on the same trail which is what we suggest!

The first access point is off Arnet Road by Tofino Community Hall.  Drive to Arnet Road off 1st Street and head west.  This is a dead end road that will take you up a hill to the parking lot.  You can park here and start from the top of the trailhead.  There are two access points here one takes you to the beach more directly and the other winds you through the forest towards Third Beach.

Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia

The second access point is where Leighton Way and Peterson Drive (off of Arnet) meet.  There is a gravel path at the corner of Leighton and Peterson where you can walk straight down the gravel trail where it meets up with the path from the first access point off Arnet Road.

The last access point is where the road forks at Arnet Road and Tonquin Park Road.  At the fork stay left and head down Tonquin Park Road where you will come to a set of wooden stairs and bridge that gives you the first look of Tonquin Beach.  Head along the wooden pathway where you will come to a set of concrete stairs that the trees have grown thick around and on the other side you will end up on Tonquin Beach!

Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia

Our suggestion for a complete loop and the easiest loop is park along the side of Arnet road before the hill and walk up towards Tofino Community Hall and take the path on your right.  You will walk down a series of hills on the gravol path that will take you to the stairs leading down to the beach.  If you want to extend your trip and see all the view points along the trail towards Third Beach keep left and make sure to stop at each of the view points and see the beautiful views of the Clayoquot Sound.  You will have to double back on this extension of the trail and then head down the stair to the beach and watch the waves roll in onto the sandy Tonquin Beach.  To have an easier hike back out take the third access point back towards Tonquin Park Road where you will only have to deal with a series of staircases and no stairs and hills if you head backtowards Tofino Community Hall.  This way you also get the opportunity to see more of the trail!

Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia


Distance of Hikes on Tonquin Trail

The Tonquin Trail in its entirety is 2.6 kilometres round-trip.  The distance from Community Hall to Tonquin Beach is 850m and Community Hall to Third Beach is 1.3km.  The difficulty of this hike is easy to moderate as there are some areas with steep gradient and a series of stairs.

Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia


Must See Spots While on the Tonquin Trail

Tonquin Beach – Tonquin Beach is a must see location – this wide sandy beach that is perfect to swimming or just exploring the sandy coast line.  The beach offers beautiful views of the Clayoquot Sound.  Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia Tonquin Trail Tofino British ColumbiaMaze Lookout – Maze lookout is probably the nicest lookout along the trail.  With its nice boardwalk that juts out over the water overlooking Templar Channel, Wickannish Island and Lennard Island. The bent trees hanging low off the trail are part of the iconic look of the area.

Tonquin Trail Tofino British ColumbiaTonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia

Bridge Leading to Tonquin Park Road  – This bridge was difficult to find but we were determined to find it.  From Tonquin Beach there is a small opening with old concrete steps leading into the forest – here you will find a beautiful wooden bridge that offers a great lookout spot back onto Tonquin Beach.

Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia


This beautiful Tonquin Trail is an absolute must do while visiting Tofino!  Where is your favourite spot to go while hiking the trail?

Hiking the Tonquin Trail Tofino British Columbia

Ultimate Packing Guide for Tofino

The beautiful coastal town of Tofino is well known for its epic storms that roll off the Pacific Ocean.  Your trip to Tofino can be sun filled or equally beautiful with its moody rain storms.  It is really important when packing for your trip to make sure you are ready so you can enjoy your time here rain or shine.  When preparing your packing guide for Tofino make sure to check the weather forecast and be prepared for all types of weather since you will be on the coast.

Packing Guide for Tofino

Make sure to check out our guide on what to do in Tofino when it is raining to be sure you don’t miss out on any of the great experiences Tofino has to offer!

We have prepared our packing guide for Tofino so you are sure to be ready when you visit!

Everyday Packing Guide for Tofino

Packing Guide for Tofino

Tofino is known as a surftown and their attire reflects that with its relaxed lifestyle and casual attire that is accepted everywhere throughout the city.  Be prepared to dress in layers as the tempature can change throughout the day and with a change in the weahter as well.  Make sure to pack light weight shirts, sweaters or a fleece layer, warm socks, hat and mitts and a hair tie to help keep your hair from blowing around in the wind.


How to Prepare for the Rain

Tofino when its raining

To make sure you are well prepared for the possible rain make sure you pack a waterproof jacket, rain boots, rain pants if you plan on going outside.  A spare change of clothes is also recommended considering you may soak through your gear depending on how long you spend outside.  If you forgot to bring a part of your rain gear we highly recommend heading over to the Tofino Pharmacy located at 360 Campbell Street right in the downtown and they have everything you could need from rain boots, rain jackets and pants to food, souvenirs and more.  To top it all off Tofino Pharmacy is incredibly well priced for their rain gear – we both got a pair of rain pants for $30/each!


Hiking in Tofino

Hiking in Tofino

Planning on heading out for a hike in Tofino? Make sure to have hiking boots or sturdy running shoes.  If any of your shoes are waterproof or have waterproof soles that is even better as if it is not raining the trails could still be wet or muddy and no one likes wet feet!  Make sure to bring water and a snack on the trails with you as some of the hikes are quite long and you could find yourself in need of a drink or snack and there are no conveniences along the trails.  A hat and sunglasses are ideal on sunny days and a rain jacket or wind breaker are a good idea to bring with you if there is rain in the forecast.