Tofino, ‘Surf Capital of Canada’, lies on the west coast of Vancouver Island, right out there on the edge of the Pacific Rim. The Editors’ Choice Awards from Outside Magazine gave Tofino the title ‘Best Surf Town in North America, and the title ‘Best Beach in Canada’ came from TripAdvisor’sTraveler’s Choice Awards.
No matter the moniker or who has bestowed it, it’s easy to see how they are accumulating when you start to visit the beaches of tofino, like Chesterman, Long and Cox Bay. Chesterman Beach is known for good summer waves, Long Beach has the largest stretch of sand which seems to just draw surfers in, and Cox Bay gets strong wave action, more than others in the summer.Tofino creates a unique surfing adventure, and wetsuits and other gear are a necessary blessing when surfing here.
Tofino weather is not that typical of the climates you usually find surfers; ocean temperatures are on the average 50°F/10°C, but the exquisite terrain of
Popular Tofino Surf Spot
Some beaches are better for newbies to learn how to surf and some are better for pros to ride the waves. The beaches of Tofino are good surf beaches for both novices and seasoned surfers, as they tend to have flat and sandy bottoms. And while some of the beaches are sheltered, making them a bit kinder and gentler to surf, some of them face the Pacific head-on, which creates a more challenging surf, so there is a range of surfing possibilities, even including kayak surfers.
You could do a 5-10 minute drive from downtown Tofino to get to the Beaches or you could do what the locals do, and bike to the beach of your choice, with your board on-board.
Tofino’s Surf Schools
The nine surf schools in Tofino offer equipment rentals, comprehensive lessons regarding safety, technique and the etiquette of the waves:
- Bruhwiler Surfschool – Surf with Canada’s best known pros
- Island Longboards – Lots of Longboards and SUP
- Live to Surf – Original Tofino Surf shop that provides Surf, Skate and Skim, Sales, Rentals, and Lessons for all ages.
- Long Beach Surf Shop – Large selection of rental and retail gear; largest selection of CD’s and vinyl
- Pacific Surf School – Learn from our coastal crew on the Island’s rugged west coast.
- Storm Surf – High quality surf gear, sales and rentals
- Surf Sister Surf School – Canada’s only women surf school (gents welcome as well)
- Tofino Surf School – Tofino’s newest surf school!
- Westside Surf School – Most advanced techniques learnt from director Sepp Bruhwiler, Canada’s internationally known pro
- Do a quick hour lesson as a brush-up, or take a day or two and learn the basics. Take a 2, 3, or 4 day excursion or plunge into the world of surfing with a week-long option.
Tofino – O’Neill Cold Water Classic and Surfing Events
In 2009 and 2011, Canada’s first professional surfing event, the O’Neill Cold Water Classic was hosted in Tofino, with hundreds of professional surfers from all over the world in attendence, including some of the local surf pros, including 2009 winner Peter Devries, Jeremy Koreski, Noah Cohen and Raph and Sepp Bruhwiler.
Tofino Annual Events that have surfing
- Pacific Rim Whale Festival (March)
- Feast! (May to June)
- Rip Curl Stew (June)
- Queen of the Peak (October)
Come out and experience the Tofino surfind adventure, or just watch some surfing – it’s a beautiful sport to observe.
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