Vancouver Island Bucket List - What to do on Vancouver Island
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Shoreline at Parkinson Beach

Parkinson Beach

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Port Renfrew

Parkinson Beach - Botanical Beach Without the Crowds

Activity:
Hike, Beach
Difficulty:
Easy-Moderate
Location:
Port Renfrew
Time:
1hr
Distance:
2km (1.2mi)

Activity:

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Accessibility:

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Where to this weekend, Vancouver Island: Exploring the Vibrant Sea Life in the Mesmerizing Tide Pools of Vancouver Island's West Coast

If you’re seeking tide pools like Botanical Beach but without the crowds, Parkinson Creek Trail leads to a shoreline that’s an excellent alternative. The rugged landscape and 360-degree wildlife make it a great spot.

Parkinson Creek trail signThe Parkinson Creek trailhead offers a nice afternoon exploring the area or a starting or ending point for a day-long hike to Botanical Beach, which is 10 km away, or a 9 km hike to Sombrio Beach. The trail is moderate and takes you through a stunning mature forest. The trailhead can be found just off of the Parkinson Creek Parking Lot, where washroom facilities are available.

Although Parkinson Beach is a smaller version of Botanical Beach, you will still find spots to explore, an abundance of tidal pools and all without crowds. 

The entrance to the trailhead is located down a dirt road just off the highway to the left, about 10 minutes from the Sombrio Beach entrance. The 4km road can be rough with rocks and potholes but take your time, and as long as you aren’t driving a sports car, you shouldn’t have any problems.

Juan de Fuca trail signYou want to head down the Juan de Fuca trail from the parking lot, following the signs toward Payzant Cove. The 1km trail starts off easy with nothing to worry about regarding strenuous hiking. However, there are a few places where you have to climb roots and scramble across rocks on the beach.

It’s a simple hike but there are some challenges when exploring, and it’s one of the easiest sections of the whole Juan de Fuca trail. The entrance to the beach is marked with some stray buoys that dot the Juan de Fuca, showing routes off the beaches to follow in case the tide is in and alternate routes are needed.

Looking into a tide pool at Parkinson BeachThe shoreline opens out to this vast volcanic landscape with black rock everywhere. Check tide times before you go; you want to come during low tide. if you make the trip during high tide, you will miss out on all of the tidal pools. Each pool was filled with life, from Hermit Crab to Starfish and everything in between. 

 

 

 

 

 

Rocky shoreline Parkinson Beach

 

 

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Gear Tips For Vancouver Island

When you’re gearing up for an outdoor adventure on Vancouver Island, the key is to dress in layers, no matter the season. The island’s weather can throw curveballs, with conditions varying significantly from the sheltered forests to the breezy coastlines.

For those cool winter escapades, your go-to should include quality rain gear, topped off with a cozy beanie or toque, and a pair of light gloves to keep the chill at bay.

Summer explorers, don’t be fooled by the warmer temps; that same waterproof shell that kept you dry in the winter will be your best friend against the cool ocean breezes.

Remember, the right clothing and gear can make or break your outdoor experience on Vancouver Island, ensuring you enjoy every moment, come rain or shine.

THE NORTH FACE women's waterproof antora jacket sq
THE NORTH FACE Women's
Waterproof Antora Jacket
North face mens antora Rain Hoodie black sq
THE NORTH FACE Men's
Antora Rain Hoodie
Helly Hansen Mens seven J waterproof rain coat sq
Helly Hansen Men's
Breathable Rain Coat
Polygon 32 oz waterbottle sq
32oz Water Bottle
for Fitness and Outdoor
Osprey Sportlite 20 Hiking Backpack sq
Osprey Sportlite 20
Hiking Backpack
adventure first aid kit
Adventure Medical Kit
Ultralight and Watertight
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A girl in a pink rain jacket looking down into the tide pools at Botanical Beach in Port Renfrew on the shores of South West Vancouver Island
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Botanical Beach

Botanical Beach needs to be on your Bucket List, tide pools, gnarly trees, rock formations
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Esquimalt Lagoon

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Original Author:

Modified: January 3, 2024
Last Visit: July 9, 2023

Thank you for visiting – I hope you found the information you were looking for at VIBL (Vancouver Island Bucket List) please continue to discover all of the great places that makes Vancouver Island so great! 

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Pack Out:
We love Vancouver Island and want to keep the natural beauty. Please respect the places you visit and pack out what you pack in and leave the area better than when you arrived. We all know how much trash can spoil an experience and the environment, so please help us keep it clean!

Wildlife:
Vancouver Island is a land of natural beauty and abundant wildlife. Please be aware of your surroundings and take the usual precautions for personal and wildlife safety.
Black bears, cougars and even wolves are common on Vancouver Island for more on Wildlife Safety Click Here 

Tide and Seasonal Safety:
Changing seasons and tides can have a drastic effect on most locations on Vancouver Island. Please be cautious as the information in this post may vary depending on the time of year and weather. Make sure to check for current weather and tide information before you make your journey! Click here for the tides in your area. 

Be aware of ocean currents before swimming, paddle boarding or kayaking.

Land Acknowledgement:
We would like to acknowledge the land we appreciate daily within the 50 First Nations that make up the traditional territories of the Coast Salish, Nuu chah nulth, and Kwakiutl–the first peoples of Vancouver Island .

Disclaimer:
The information on this website should not be taken as accurate, complete or up-to-date. Please check and look into the information yourself. We do not assume any liabilities for the use of this information. It is unreasonable to rely solely upon the information from this website. 

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