Discover what all the fuss is about while road tripping to some of Vancouver Island’s wildest destinations. Connect with your inner adventurer while walking among the giants in the old-growth rainforests and lose yourself on windswept beaches or snowcapped peaks. Abundant with natural wonders, bustling cities and quirky roadside towns, Vancouver Island offers a diverse range of road trips guaranteed to tick items off your bucket-list while creating memories that will last a lifetime. Check out these four routes that are sure to show you the very best this island has to offer.
Pacific Marine Circle Route
A drive for the city-slicker and nature enthusiast alike, the Pacific Marine Circle Route will take you from urban sprawl to the wild west coast and back again. This 289 km loop starts in Victoria and heads west through the funky oceanside town of Sooke and onto Port Renfrew, where the waves are as big as the drinks are cold. Take a day or more to enjoy the many stunning beaches, quaint cafes and sweeping waterfalls dappled along a winding road through the rain forest while making your way back to Victoria through Duncan, the City of Totems.
Victoria to Tofino/Ucluelet
Switch your street shoes for gumboots and put your driving skills to the test with this one-of-a-kind East-to-West Vancouver Island trek. You’ll travel from the major urban hub of Victoria to the untouched old-growth forests of Tofino and Ucluelet, soaking up that island vibe all along the way. World-class accommodations, intoxicating culinary delights and exhilarating wilderness adventures await, but be sure to take it slow through the mountain passes while you enjoy the awe-inspiring scenery.
Nanaimo to Campbell River via the Oceanside Route
Take it easy while enjoying all the natural wonders Vancouver Island has to offer with this leisurely oceanside trip from Nanaimo to Campbell River. From sandy beaches and fishing villages to vast valleys and mountainous terrain, this trip offers you a chance to savour it all.
You’ll get acquainted with the beauty of the eastern coastline before the road takes you into the Comox Valley, nestled beside the island’s tallest mountain in Strathcona Provincial Park.
You can do this trip in just a few hours or take your time with a day trip to delve deeper into the treasure trove of this Central Island adventure.
Nanaimo to Port Hardy
Choose your own adventure along one of the longest – and most wild – Vancouver Island road trip routes. This 385 km trip from Nanaimo to Port Hardy varies in travel time depending on the season but its rugged beauty is gorgeous year-round. The potential for animal sightings will have you at the edge of your seats with excitement but you’ll also find comfort in the warm embrace of trees towering around you. The northernmost town on Vancouver Island, Port Hardy is the end of the road – well, at least the paved road, but for the more seasoned outdoors enthusiasts, it’s here that the adventure really begins.
Need To Rent A Sweet Ride When You’re Here?
Travelling to Vancouver Island without a vehicle? No sweat, you can still plan a memorable road trip by renting something that perfectly suits your travel needs. For simple car, van, or truck rentals, there are a number of car rental companies across the island to serve you almost anywhere.
If you’re looking for a more all-in-one solution to sleep and travel in, check out the following providers: