Tofino is a small district in the remote west coast of Vancouver. It’s popularly known as a prime destination for surfing, beach time, exploring numerous outdoor activities under the sun, and appreciating the beauty of the wild. With its charming landscapes and quiet fishing-village, Tofino is indeed a magical and hidden gem of Vancouver Island.

For some frugal travelers, Tofino is a place out of reach. For instance, spending a night at the famous Wickaninnish Inn during the summer months would cost around $500 or bed and breakfasts in town start at about $200. It’s indeed a luxurious vacation experience, but it’s still possible to tour the amazing district without paying the hefty prices.

This article covers how to spend and enjoy your time at the lush wilderness outpost of Tofino without blowing your budget.

How To Get There

Flying to Tofino from Vancouver takes only less than an hour, but there’s a cheap and fun alternative way to reach the district. If you want to witness the “Left Coast” culture, you may book your ticket for BC Ferries ride for only $16. Not only will it cost less, but you will also have a chance to meet friendly folk musicians, extreme cyclists, and backpackers through the West Vancouver Nanaimo route.

When you reach the Departure Bay, you can ride a bus to get to Vancouver Island and bring you to Tofino. The drive might take approximately 4 hours, but it’s warranted to be one of the most amazing experience as you’ll get to witness the spectacular views of the vistas of the sea, forests, and clear blue skies.

Where To Stay

Contrary to what most people presume that you need to spend a lot of money to book a night, Tofino actually has a lot of budget-friendly accommodations. Ecolodge is one example that is both well executed and well-priced. What’s great about this lodging is that they focus on being environmentally sustainable and energy-efficient.

Ecolodge is run by a non-profit organization and is situated at the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve gateway. Their room rates start at $79 for a hippie-chic room inclusive of breakfast, tea service, robes, and an entrance to the well known Tofino Botanical Gardens.

Moreover, you can also enjoy having chats with other guests in the lodge’s communal room. Generally, the lodge attracts an international crowd, the mid-30s to mid-50s, which can be an exciting opportunity for you to enjoy the company and interact with other nationalities.

Another budget-friendly accommodation option for you is the Whalers on the Point Guest House. This local hostel is an affordable and comfortable place to stay at in Tofino. They may also arrange discounted activities for you, such as kayaking trips, whale-watching excursions, and hot spring tours. Their dorm room rates fall around $28 only, while a private double room is worth $61.

Where To Eat

When it comes to the food scene, cheap but delicious delicacies can also be found at Tofino. You may visit Big Daddy’s Fish Fry that serves drool-worthy chips and halibut or the Wild Side Grill for their signature breakfast sandwich with house sausage. For chocolate enthusiasts, Chocolate Tofino offers handcrafted chocolates in different locally inspired flavors. The original Tacofino truck is a must visit for fresh, cheap and delicious food.

What To Do

Tofino is rich with beautiful beaches – Chesterman, Tonquin and Mackenzie. These beaches are free of charge, so you can freely enjoy some sunbathing or unwind under the sun. In Coastal Bliss, you may opt for yoga classes along the beach that costs around $10. You may also try roaming around the Wickaninnish and indulge with the relaxing music of waves crashing the shore.

If you are feeling adventurous, you could splurge on surfing lessons. If that’s too much, try renting a fat tire bike and riding along the beach in style. It’s a workout and a whole new way to take in the scenery.