Part 1 – Kayaking from Tofino to Hot Springs Cove – Video

The first of three parts of our recent month long kayaking journey on the west coast of Vancouver Island. In this part, we paddled from Tofino north to Hot Springs Cove via the inside passages on Vargas and Flores Islands – some of our favorite paddling places in the world.



6 thoughts on “Part 1 – Kayaking from Tofino to Hot Springs Cove – Video

  1. Finally someone that did tofino-hot spring coves by kayaking !! ^^ I’m looking to do that for my bf birthday, I’m curious ; how long did it take you?? Kayak rental places are talking about 5 days, it seems a lot to me…

    • Hello! Awesome to hear from you Lily 🙂 Kayaking from Tofino to Hotsprings Cove is absolutely amazing and you guys will have a wonderful time.
      If you want to power up there, the weather conditions are perfect and you are both strong kayakers, you can do it in 3-4 days – Day 1 from Tofino to Cow Bay on the outside of Flores and then Day 2 on the outside of Flores Islands to Hotsprings Cove and then reverse. Warning however, this is the shortest possible, everything-is-going-perfect scenario. We waited for 3 days up at the north end of Flores Island to come back south on the outside but it was gale force winds everyday and we ended up coming back on the inside…but then we paddled with a pod of orcas at dawn for about 2 hours! There are two routes – the inside, which is more protected and a little longer, and the outside, where there are possibilities of seeing grey whales and it is a little shorter but completely exposed. Inside route is broken up into three nights.

      I would say 5 days minimum…and maximum is up to your imagination. We have spent two weeks paddling up to Hotsprings Cove and back….and then returned another year to do a month paddling around Clayoquot Sound and then down to Barkley Sound. Stunning beaches, exploring the calm channels at the back and even try your luck paddling up the Megin River for a bit! Wolves are infamous at Whitesand Cove (Flores) and at Ahous Bay (Vargas) and even if you don’t see them in person, you will see their footprints everywhere. You can take days off hiking from Whitesands Cove – including the Walk the Wildside Trail up to Cow Bay (so if you do the inside route, you can see check out the outside) and up to the Ahousat Springs through the temperate rainforest. Camping at Whitesands/going on the hikes is a part of the Wildside Trail and someone will come by and collect $25 from you but it’s totally worth it.

      My recommendation is to take as much time as you can 🙂

  2. Hi there! Thanks for the info here. I was trying to look at your map for your trip from but the link appears to be broken. I’m hoping to do this trip and am wondering where the Whaleview Bay is that you camped? It sounds like the land outside of the park is indian reservation. Did you instead camp across the way on Flores Island?

    • Hey there!! The E end of the beach is an Indian Reservation, which if I remember correctly is shady and not the best place to camp anyways. Check out BC Marine Trails….it’s an awesome resource for kayakers.

      Here is info of Whaleview Beach copied from BC Marine Trails:

      Coordinates: lat 49° 21.586′ lng -126° 13.836′
      Land Tenure: Provincial Park
      Landing Comments: Well protected from S. Easy landing on sand, shell and gravel beach.
      Camp Comments: Random wilderness camping allowed. No fees. Beach camping might be possible at Neaps but beach floods at Springs. Avoid the Indian Reserve at E end of beach. Small forested upland sites.
      Tent Sites: 4 or more
      Other Comments: Small, quiet protected site. A good alternate to Halfmoon Bay in poor conditions. Flores Island Provincial Park.

      Hope that helps! Let me know if you have any other questions. Another option is the next beach over called Halfmoon Bay, which is actually more popular with kayakers!

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