Where to stay in Parksville, BC: Tigh-Na-Mara Resort and Spa

The first thing my kids noticed upon entering the grounds of Parksville BC's Tigh-Na-Mara Beach Resort was the pool house. Then the kids' club space. Then the playground and the basketball and tennis court. Finally, they spotted the beach access leading to one of Parksville's famous warm sand beaches. The first thing I noticed was the Cedars restaurant and Grotto Spa. To say Tigh-Na-Mara has it … [Read more...]

Where to find tide pools in Tofino, Vancouver Island, BC

Every tide pool we saw in Tofino, BC on Vancouver Island's west coast was more amazing than the last. After a while, we stopped exclaiming about it and learned to expect to be stunned by the intertidal beauty of this area. Where to find the best tide pools in Tofino? Below are our top picks: 1. MacKenzie Beach: Just a few miles south of Tofino, MacKenzie Beach stretches widely in low tide, … [Read more...]

What to do in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve with kids

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve on Vancouver Island's scenic west coast is a must-do for families visiting Vancouver Island. The park is divided in to three sections: Long Beach, Broken Island Group, and West Coast Trail. The Broken Island Group is off-shore, and accessible only by guided kayak tour if you're inexperienced (and best for older children of at least 12 years old), and the West … [Read more...]

Where to stay in Tofino BC: a review of MacKenzie Beach Resort

As you might guess, the outdoor excursion, storm-watching, and surfing mecca of known as the west side of Vancouver Island offers more lodging in Tofino than anywhere else we visited on our July 2012 Vancouver Island trip. Families can choose from B&Bs, five-star resorts, vacation home rentals, and our favorite, beachfront resorts with individual cottages for let. We made the MacKenzie … [Read more...]

Hiking in Tofino BC: Visiting Meares Island with Remote Passages

For families looking for a budget-friendly Tofino excursion or are simply low on time, Remote Passages offers a 1.5 hour round-trip Vancouver Island hiking adventure of Big Tree Trail on nearby Meares Island. Hiking in Tofino: Located just a few fun Zodiac boat turns from the Remote Passages boat dock, Meares Island is uninhabited and protected by a local First Nations land conservation … [Read more...]

Tofino whale watching with Remote Passages

I'd heard the West Coast of Vancouver Island called the Galapagos of the Northwest, and never is that more apparent than while on the water, whether families are exploring tide pools, kayaking, or in this case, on the open ocean on a Remote Passages whale watch in Tofino BC. Tofino whale watching: Our Tofino whale watch with Remote Passages just may have been the crown jewel on the treasure … [Read more...]

Kayaking the Vancouver Island west coast with Majestic Ocean Kayaking

Families don't have to venture far into the Pacific or spend a whole day (and a whole lotta cash) seeing nature up close on a Vancouver Island west coast kayaking tour. When we joined Majestic Ocean Kayaking on their half-day harbor tour, we hadn't even pushed off from the boat dock before Calvin spotted a massive sea star glowing purple and pink under the shallow water. "What, that little thing?" … [Read more...]

Where to stay in Ucluelet, BC: Black Rock Oceanfront Resort

What everyone needs after an active day hiking, kayaking, or touring Vancouver Island's west coast: a plunge pool and hot tub, rain shower, and cheery fire waiting at their resort. Families vacationing in Ucluelet BC get all that and more in Black Rock Oceanfront Resort. What, precisely? Try heated bathroom tiles, dramatic views, and fine dining, but more importantly to parenting traveling with … [Read more...]

University of British Columbia’s Museum of Anthropology

Vancouver's Museum of Anthropology is the perfect first stop for visiting families (and a great option during rainy weather, too). Much more comprehensive than we thought it would be, the Museum of Anthropology, or MOA, features not only an impressive main gallery of First Nations totem pole carvings, but also room after room of artifacts of native peoples (both of Western Canada and elsewhere). … [Read more...]

Where to stay in Vancouver BC: Coast Plaza Hotel and Suites

Vancouver, BC may be one of the best cities to tour with kids. It's full of outdoor experiences active kids crave--biking, beaches, parks and suspension bridges--while retaining the sophistication parents enjoy and seek to introduce to their children. And all within a stone's throw of the action (but please don't throw stones) is the Coast Plaza Hotel and Suites Hotel. Located in … [Read more...]