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    FEAST Tofino is gearing up for its delicious May 1 to 29 events including a Beachside BBQ at Pacific Sands on May 16...

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BEACH BLOG

BEACH BLOG

Welcome to the Pacific Sands Beach Resort Blog where we share local stories, happenings and what matters in Tofino BC, our spectacular corner of the world.

March 25, 2014
Beachfront BBQ at Feast Tofino event May 16
The 4th annual FEAST Tofino is gearing up for its delicious May 1 to 29 culinary journey with guest chefs, 17 participating restaurants, 16 events and climbing. One of those events just happens to be right here at Pacific Sands when we spark up our beachfront Gazebo BBQs on Friday, May 16.
February 27, 2014
Naturally, romance flourishes here year round, but every February in celebration of that Saint named Valentine, there’s a heightened sense of that lovin’ feeling. So we couldn’t let the month go by without telling you about Chocolate Tofino, a chocolate-lover’s happy place named “The best handmade chocolates and gelato on Vancouver Island” by Frommer’s Travel Guides.
January 17, 2014
Tofino's Eco-Future thanks to Raincoast Education Society - photo: Wayne Barnes
As you can appreciate, everything about the Tofino region’s rainforest ecosystem involves conservation efforts. From protecting shorelines and wildlife to sustainable living, if it’s something environmentally oriented, the Raincoast Education Society (RES) is involved. And whether it’s the full-scale UNESCO Biosphere Reserve calibre projects RES has on the go, or Kids Camps right here at Pacific Sands, we’re big fans on every level.
November 25, 2013
With its downtown meets laid-back Tofino vibe, Spotted Bear Bistro is known for its upscale comfort food–the kind of food that makes your stomach growl. And when they say they focus on locally sourced Vancouver Island products, they mean it. The menu is in constant transition, offering seasonal produce, cheeses, sustainable seafood and specialty meats from local farms and waters. But what’s most refreshing about Spotted Bear Bistro is how deliciously unassuming it is.
October 30, 2013
Canada's first surf museum to preserve 60+ years of history in Tofino BC
The history of surfing runs deep in these waters. From pioneering characters like Jim Sadler–who arrived on horseback from Alberta in the late 1940s and paddled the swells on a 13-foot plywood board–to hometown hero Pete Devries winning the 2009 O’Neill Cold Water Classic, the stories spanning over 60 years are as unique as they are legendary. And now thanks to Tofino local Devorah Reeves–Curator of the West Coast Surf Museum project–this celebrated surf culture is on track to be preserved for generations of wave riders to come. Read on for how you can help.
September 26, 2013
Top 10 Things to Enjoy in a Tofino Rainforest
It rains here. There we said it. Not all the time of course, but it’s called a rainforest for a reason. And if you haven’t experienced the magic of Tofino’s rainforests, you haven’t looked through the magnificent eyes of Mother Nature herself. Imagine trees so ancient, gnarled and huge you feel itty-bitty beside them. Dense mossy banks in more shades of green than you thought possible. Long sandy beaches and misty, relentless surf that shimmers as the sun breaks through. And the lure of countless unique things to do, inside and out.
August 31, 2013
Learn how to standup paddleboard in Tofino BC
Let’s set the scene: picture paddling along the pristine shores of Tofino in your cozy wetsuit, breathing in the intoxicating sea air, cruising by towering forests and eagle’s nests, wait…there’s a seal. All this while getting a great workout standing up on a paddleboard; the fastest growing water sport in the world. Sounds like all these boards need is cup-holders to be the perfect vacation sport!
July 25, 2013
Pacific Sands Family Photo Contest Tofino BC
This summer, Pacific Sands 40th Anniversary celebrations continue behind the lens. As announced in the July Pacific E-News, we’re amping up our popular Monthly Photo Contest with a family spin in July & August. Our Family Photo Contest is a salute to family and those Pacific Sands moments captured in photos that live on for generations. Two talented winners will get to make even more family memories with a 3-Night Family Escape in a private 2 Bedroom Beach House.
June 28, 2013
TTofino Coffee Co. opens new cafe
Coffee is one of those things in life that makes everything feel better. A simple pleasure that makes us pause – even on the busiest of days – to ponder and put things in perspective. It wakes us up, brings us together, enhances a brunch and finishes a great dinner. And for anyone that’s enjoyed a Tofino beach walk with a coffee and the sound of the surf, it can be a religious experience. But as local roaster Tofino Coffee Co. will attest, there’s a science to good coffee.
May 21, 2013
Japan Tsunami debris cleanup efforts in Tofino BC
Who can forget the shocking devastation of the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan, claiming some 19,000 precious lives. With the 8.9 magnitude quake sweeping an estimated 25 million tons of debris into the Pacific Ocean, officials estimate that as much as 1.5 million tons of it could wash up on BC shores. Travelling at an average of 10 miles per day, it took a full year for debris to start showing up in Tofino. As memories from Japan continue to sporadically float in, the community rallies with volunteer cleanup efforts.
April 19, 2013
Tofino Food & Wine Festival Package
June 7 to 9 marks the 11th Tofino Food & Wine Festival, an annual destination weekend event celebrating BC’s bounty of food, award-winning wines and more. The main event on June 8, Grazing in the Gardens, is at the magical Tofino Botanical Gardens; a 12 acre stage of foodie fun surrounded by rainforest trees, flowers, ponds and boardwalks. It’s sort of like “Alice in Wonderland” meets Tofino…with a glass of wine and a smorgasbord.
March 28, 2013
Learn to surf in Tofino BC
Tofino’s surf culture continues to surprise and delight warm water surfers as profiled in this CNN iReport video. Check out travel reporter Tracy Bymoen’s candid interviews with locals to get the scoop on what makes Tofino’s surf scene so special.
February 28, 2013
Flavours of Tofino Cookbook in celebration of Tofino chefs and Pacific Sands 40th Anniversary
Pacific Sands is turning 40 and we’re celebrating food and the friends and family that have shared memories around the table here for generations. Hot off the press, Flavours of Tofino brings our finest chefs and eateries together with a collection of over 40 recipes featuring food imagery so mouth-watering, you’ll want to lick the pages. More than a cookbook, this spectacular keepsake commemorates a slice of history, telling the story of Pacific Sands and the legendary love that built it.
January 28, 2013
10 Romantic Things to Do in Tofino BC
According to Hallmark and the tradition of Valentine’s Day, ‘tis the season for a little extra romance. At the risk of sounding overconfident, when you’re as stunningly beautiful as Tofino, it’s romantic every single day here. But out of respect for Saint Valentine’s philosophy and the magic of love, we thought we’d shine a spotlight on just how amorous it gets with the following 10 romantic things to do in Tofino (in no particular order):
December 09, 2012
Enjoy seaside fully-equipped kitchens at Pacific Sands in Tofino BC
As the only resort in Tofino with fully-equipped kitchens in every suite, we know how much that means to our guests. The ability to cook seaside with family, friends, or romantic meals for two is part of the Pacific Sands experience and has been for generations. We have most kitchen basics covered for culinary adventures during your stay, but as of Dec 21 visiting chefs will be able to borrow even more kitchen tools, appliances and cookware with our new Gourmet Pantry program.
November 25, 2012
Glass blowing artistry at Spirit of the Fire in Tofino BC
If you’ve never seen glass blowing in action, there’s something about watching molten glass being shaped and changed with colour at around 2000 degrees that’s almost hypnotizing. Glass meets rain forest at the Spirit of the Fire Glass Studio where local Tofino artist Sol Maya plays with fire. Given the main ingredient in glass is sand, Sol has plenty of natural resources to draw from.
October 25, 2012
Chanterelle & Porcini Risotto recipe - photo by woodfiredkitchen.com
Besides being beautiful, BC’s forests can be edible. It’s where wild mushrooms flourish – that down-to-earth seasonally indulgent ingredient that perks up a fall meal like nothing else can. As many food enthusiasts know, it’s now prime time for a forest jewel called chanterelle mushrooms. Not just any mushroom, chanterelles are stars in the wild mushroom category of savoury flavour, versatility, and earthy goodness. And foragers are now out in full force hunting for golden treasure.
September 26, 2012
Beach wedding in Tofino BC
Some things just go together naturally – beaches, weddings and love. Imagine getting married on a majestic beach dotted with sand dollars, Pacific breezes, sand between your toes, and misty surf – you can’t write that picture, but you can do it here. Which is why we’re so excited to be part of a Beach Wedding Dream Team. The perfect trifecta of blissfully easy beach weddings combining our all-suite Tofino accommodation beachfront on Cox Bay, professional wedding planning, and onsite catering. Somebody queue the whales and violins!
September 05, 2012
The ultimate Tofino BC heli-experience with Atleo Air
The whole point of travelling is to get a new perspective on things right? What better way than from the air with a helicopter adventure tour of one of the most jaw-droppingly beautiful areas on the continent. (Is jaw-droppingly a word? It is now.) For a sea-to-sky trip that will leave you breathless, check-out the Mount Ursus Glacier Heli-Experience by Tofino’s Atleo River Air Services.
August 20, 2012
Pacific Surf Package in Tofino BC
“Epic vertical”, “dropping in”, and “sick waves”… surfing lingo you might hear if you happen to find yourself floating in the spectacular waters around Tofino waiting for the next swell. As Canada’s surf capital, Tofino is renowned for its year round surf-appeal, miles of sandy surf-able beaches, world-class waves, and top teaching expertise including Surf Sister; a cool crew of accredited, female instructors that specialize in fun.
July 24, 2012
Maybe we’re a little biased, but along with daily line-ups of loyal, hungry fans, we happen to think the fish tacos at Tacofino could go head to head with Baja beach huts – and win. Fuelled by the food truck phenomenon, Tacofino from Tofino BC is making massive foodie waves with a menu of flavours so fresh they should be twitching.
June 29, 2012
Tofino Summer Kids Camps
With so many summer camps to choose from, kids have lots to keep them busy...sports camps, dance camps, wilderness camps, and you-name-it camps. Which is probably why Pacific Sands Summer Kid’s Camps have always been a hit! Where else can kids discover the magic of a tide-pool, stroll through the jaw-dropping wisdom of an ancient rainforest, learn handy survival skills and get cozy with sea lions?!
June 13, 2012
Help support Tofino's Tuff City Bike Park - Like our Facebook post
Like every activity in Tofino – including surfing – mountain biking can either be easy or epic. Meaning you can cruise the hard-packed beaches, enjoy the bike paths from town through Pacific Rim Park, or tackle the rugged rides where only experts go. And now with the Tuff City Bike Park opening this Saturday June 16th, riders of all skill levels can check-out dirt jumps, stunt trails and North America’s first manufactured pump track.
May 22, 2012
Meet Chef Tim May of Tofino BC
Having cooked professionally for over 30 years including top hotels in Toronto, Whistler, Vancouver as well as The Clayoquot Wilderness Resort, Chef Tim May is now blazing culinary trails with Tofino’s RedCan Gourmet. And when it comes to Pacific Sands, from Beachside BBQ’s and catering resort events to delivering breakfast and pizza, he’s our resident culinary rockstar.
April 25, 2012
Family Time in Tofino BC
Without question, Tofino is a favourite family vacation destination. With no shortage of things to do and explore, it can be as ADD on activities or as low-key as you need it to be. And yes, Pacific Sands is an ideal adventure hub, as ocean front as it gets, and the #1 resort on TripAdvisor for a reason. But why is it that Pacific Sands is the accommodation of choice for decades of returning families? Probably because it’s been built on family for 39 years.
April 10, 2012
Chefs of FEAST Tofino - just one of many fun upcoming Tofino festivals & events - photo by Marnie Recker
Besides the natural attraction to Tofino’s majestic old growth rainforests, long sandy beaches, and endless crashing surf, it’s also a hotbed of annual festivals and events. From celebrating shorebirds and colourful public markets to world-class food & wine festivals, Tofino’s activity line-up over the coming months is non-stop fun.
March 22, 2012
Easter comes early this year and while we can’t guarantee bunnies at the beach, we’re rolling out a red carpet of fun April 5 to 8 including our FREE Easter Kid’s Camp. We make dinner easy too with ready-to-serve Easter Ham Dinner delivered to your door.
February 10, 2012
Whale Watching in Tofino BC
Since 1982 when Jamie Bray formed the first whale watching tour company on the west coast of Vancouver Island, he’s been blazing trails and boat wakes. With 20,000 grey whales now showing up on queue for their annual migration, boat tours are buzzing with excited whale watchers heading out to spectacular Clayoquot Sound for a closer look. We’re excited too! For Spring Break, we’ve teamed up with Jamie’s Whaling Station for an exclusive Pacific Sands 2 for 1 offer.
January 19, 2012
Thanks to cool old western movies, Juan Valdez, the allure of European cafes, and cups called Starbucks, Tim and Joe, coffee is deeply entrenched as our favourite habitual social drink. We’ve been weaned on caffeine-fuelled culture that wakes us up and brings us together. Coffee’s especially big on the west coast, probably because it goes well with beach walks.
November 29, 2011
Making Travel Logistics Fun & Easy in Tofino BC
As our legacy of guests will attest, part of the adventure of coming to Tofino is the road-trip. From check-lists and packing to travel logistics, it takes some pre-planning. But with value-added bonuses like our new BC Residents’ Bonus Package, it doesn’t have to be an Amazing Race episode.
October 26, 2011
Oyster and Bacon Sandwich - photo by Nick Kindelsperger
Besides Tofino’s legendary storm watching season kicking-in big time in November, it’s a month that’s also famous for oysters. The succulent, shuck and slurp kind that the Pacific region is renowned for – over 50,000 gallons of oysters a year – are celebrated at the annual Clayoquot Oyster Festival; Nov. 17 – 19, 2011. Check out the fun details and our delicious recipe tribute: Pan-Fried Oyster & Bacon Sandwich (mmm)
October 10, 2011
Queen of the Peak - Womens Surf Competition Tofino BC
It’s all about big waves and girl power this week with the kick-off of the 2nd annual Queen of the Peak women’s surf competition. Presented by Surf Sister and Shelter Restaurant, the short and longboard competitions are set for Oct 15 & 16. With $1,500 cash and a spanky new surfboard up for grabs, it’s a celebration of Tofino’s unique women’s surf culture including fun festivities for competitors and surf fans all week long.
September 28, 2011
Green Key Eco-Rated Resort Tofino BC
“Eco” is one of those hip yet controversial words we hear a lot these days. Usually in the same sentence as “environmental”, “conservation”, “sustainability” and more 4+ syllable words that ultimately mean one thing… how you/me/we impact the future of this planet we all call home. At Pacific Sands we take the small role we play in the big picture very seriously and are very proud to have recently been awarded 4 Keys in the Green Key Eco-Rating Program.
September 14, 2011
This Thanksgiving weekend, you could spend days in the kitchen or days at the beach. Enjoy room service Pacific Sands style with our Gourmet Express Oven-Ready Thanksgiving Dinner for up to six people - delivered for your night of choice Oct. 7 to 10, 2011. The ultimate in culinary ease, simply listen for the doorbell, turn on your in-suite oven, follow the enclosed instructions and set the table. From there it’s all about family, friends and the sound of the surf.
August 24, 2011
New Herb Garden at Pacific Sands Tofino BC
Whether you’re a foodie, aspiring cook or passionate chef, when it comes to herbs there’s a universal mantra. Fresh herbs take cooking to new levels on the flavour scale. Nothing against jarred herbs – they’re certainly handy – but for an aromatic, exotic and delicious complement to your favourite recipes, fresh herbs blow dry away every time. Taste for yourself next time you enjoy Tofino accommodations at Pacific Sands with our new Herb Garden. Simply snip what you need for dinner or have a culinary adventure with this yummy Tofino Dungeness Crab & Herb Butter recipe.
August 09, 2011
Win a 2012 Summer Vacation to Tofino BC
How great would it be to know your summer vacation next year is covered? That all you have to do is pick your dates, travelling compadres, pack, and enjoy the ride to Pacific Sands. That’s the idea behind our Win a 2012 Summer Vacation Contest. Stay with us between August 25 and October 6, 2011 and you’ll be automatically entered to win a 5 night vacation next summer for up to 6 people in a 2 bedroom Beach House.
July 29, 2011
Experience the wide-eyed wonder of The Tofino Lantern Festival, a don’t miss summer event when the Tofino Botanical Gardens transforms into a Disneyesque fantasyland with candle-lit lanterns lighting up the night sky. Locals and crafty visitors look forward to this event every year… planning, plotting and inventing their handmade lanterns to show-off on Festival night. And these are not your average lanterns!
July 13, 2011
Catered beachside bbq all summer long in Tofino BC
Check out this video of one of our catered Beach n’BBQ events featuring Chef Derek Sandercock from Addictive Foods…and guest-starring some of his delicious dishes. Held beachside in the Gazebo every Wednesday and Saturday in July and August, it’s a great way to have someone else do the cooking so you can relax and enjoy the view (psst! BYOB).
June 22, 2011
Dave Pettinger Presents Tourism Bursary to Emily Lamarche
If you ever met Bill Pettinger over the years, you’d remember... especially his kindness and generosity, his passion for life and his love for Pacific Sands. It was Bill and his wife Joan that discovered and bought “Pacific Paradise Motel” in 1972. Bill was a legendary visionary that knew ambition when he saw it. Which is why it’s not surprising Bill made sure “big dreams” were a part of him and his beloved’s legacy. In 2007 The Bill and Joan Pettinger Tourism Bursary was established - we're thrilled to announce local graduate Emily Lamarche is the 2011 rebursary.
June 08, 2011
Tofino Air Now Flying From Downtown Vancouver
No question the drive to Pacific Sands is a must-do on the spectacular scale, but when you just want to get here, flying is a brilliant way to be at the resort faster than you can say “let’s hit the beach”. There are scheduled and chartered flights to Tofino from both Vancouver and Seattle with a variety of airlines, but for the ultimate in convenience from downtown Vancouver, Tofino Air now operates out of the new Vancouver Harbour Flight Centre.
May 25, 2011
Just in time for Stanley Cup hockey playoff action, Tofino Brewing Company is serving up their new handcrafted ales to rave reviews. Specializing in small batch, sustainably produced ales, the brewery offers tours, merchandise and frosty tastings with two signature beers on tap.
May 11, 2011
The accolades from TripAdvisor travellers are rolling in and we’re excited! Tofino is still celebrating being voted #1 Beach in Canada in the 2011 Travelers’ Choice Best Beaches Awards last month…and NOW Tofino has been voted the #10 Top Destination in Canada in the 2011 Travelers’ Choice Destination Awards.
April 27, 2011
The only thing better that the slap, sizzle and smell of a BBQ is enjoying it at the beach! Add to that someone ELSE doing the cooking (and clean-up) for you and your family so you can relax, watch the surf and enjoy a refreshing libation… and you’re now in the range of BBQ nirvana. Staying with us during FEAST! Tofino-Ucluelet? We’re celebrating with Catered Beach ‘n BBQ’s on Wednesday May 18 & 25 at our beachfront Gazebo.
April 13, 2011
Tofino BC beaches voted #1 in Canada on TripAdvisor
We’ve always had a feeling the beaches around Tofino were pretty special (wink)... turns out we’re not alone. The votes are in and Tofino was ranked #1 in Canada in the 2011 Travelers’ Choice Best Beaches Awards on TripAdvisor – the World’s largest travel website for unbiased travel reviews. Award winners all over the planet were based on the most highly rated beach destinations by travelers. (We're so humbled...)
March 30, 2011
Photo by Chris Pouget & Duncan Booth for Wickaninnish Inn
What do you get when you combine a renowned, regional hotbed of seafood and a month-long marathon of fun foodie events? Introducing FEAST! Tofino-Ucluelet… a culinary celebration and collaboration of local chefs and restaurants, fishermen, activities and accommodation from May 8 to June 4.
March 22, 2011
Photo by Michal Grajewski - Rick Mercer Report
Tofino has been tearing up the TV networks lately with some fantastically funny coverage! From winter surfing with Rick Mercer on CBC to Dungeness Crab adventures with Chef Lynn Crawford on the Food Network, our lively local hosts did a great job showing off the area.
February 22, 2011
Whale watching in Tofino BC
March is a celebration of many things… the arrival of spring, more daylight, new blooms, and all-things-fresh. It’s when Mother Nature takes her coat off and exhales a deep, warm breath. In these parts, March is also all about whales… lots of them actually because March is when we celebrate the arrival of over 20,000 grey whales as they migrate north from the Baja Peninsula, up our coastline on their way to Alaska.
February 10, 2011
Facebook Contest Winner Shannon Clarke and her Valentine
Nothing against Hallmark but it’s Valentine’s Day every day at Pacific Sands. We offer our Pacific Romance Package year round for a reason. Day after day love stories unfold here, and it’s been that way for decades. So hopeless romantics that we are, we decided to have a “Tell Us How You Met Your Sweetheart Contest” on Facebook. We invited fans to post their story… the “most-liked” story with the highest number of votes would win a 2-Night Romance Package.
January 25, 2011
Welcoming children and families from Canuck Place Children's Hospice and Victoria General Hospital with "Oceans of Love" program
When a child in BC is diagnosed with a progressive, life-limiting illness, two very magical places are there to assist with pediatric palliative care services for the child and their entire family - Canuck Place Children’s Hospice in Vancouver and Victoria General Hospital. As a tribute to the incredible work these organizations do and the families involved, Pacific Sands is honoured to be a partner in the "Oceans of Love" program.
January 11, 2011
New Year's 2011 fireworks light up Cox Bay in Tofino BC
We did a bang-up job welcoming 2011 with a fireworks celebration for the record-books! The moon was shining over Cox Bay as the festive spectacle lit up the surf in a dance of colours to ooh’s and ahhh’s from the crowd. Turns out we’re not the only ones who think Pacific Sands is a magic place to bring in the New Year – travel bloggers Alex and Luke voted the resort one of the Top 3 Places in North America to Spend New Year’s Eve.