Mini West Coast Trail
In our hearts, we all live on the land. That is the real world. We take away the obstacles to experience what is real, to experience your bliss. We show you the way. That's Coastal Bliss Adventures.Look For Your Bliss Now
We Take Care Of You
We do the planning, logistics, and support. You do the experience and the fun.
From pickup to return, we cover everything you need, except your personal items. We take you to and from the trip start, and feed you well along the way. We can't guarantee weight loss on our tours.
Our guides get out into our areas. They know the ins and outs of the trip and provide exceptional interpretation of flora, fauna and history. You'll know more after you leave.
We give you an entire packet of information on how to prepare, what to bring, how to pack, and a plan for training so you can fully enjoy th trip. Our care for you starts before you even arrive.
Mini West Coast Trail
4-day Backpacking Tour
This is a mini tour that enters Pacific Rim National Park at Nitinaht Lake. The hiking is shorter, with less weight, hits some trail highlights, and makes a connection with the Ditidaht First Nation. This four day mini adventure explores highlights of the trail, such as Tsusiat Falls, an old Ditidaht Warrior village at Tsuquadra, hidden caves, and the location of early European settlements near the Cheewhat River. Watch whales feeding near the beach, eat local seafood, and conditions permitting, take a boat ride out through Nitinat Narrows on a marine life tour.
- HIKING DAYS: 2.5
- TRAVEL DAYS: 1
- RATING: Easy to Moderate
The West Coast Trail is a premiere adventure destination on Vancouver Island.
The full 75 km is also a challenging hiking trail, through muddy forest, along a variety of boardwalk sections, and along sandy beaches. This hike requires careful preparation and planning, and is not suited to everyone’s idea of fun.
However, the West Coast trail is much more than a challenging hike. It is a breathtakingly beautiful hike, if you give yourself time and allow us to show you the best locations. Hidden along its pathways, the West Coast Trail also has remnants of history that take you through the footsteps of the First Peoples, European settlers, mariners, and the lives of the few that currently choose the west coast as their home.
In addition to the full 75 km tours, Coastal Bliss Adventures now offers scheduled and custom West Coast Trail Mini Adventures for those who want to enjoy the beauty, history, and culture of this amazing area. We tell stories of the First Peoples, the shipwrecks, the settlers, and the local heroes that shaped this place and allowed Canadians to recognize it as a national treasure.
This is our typical itinerary for this tour. Because we are travelling in wilderness, itineraries can change. There are many factors that can affect how a tour actually runs. We confirm pickup times by phone, email or SMS at least 12 hours before.
This trip begins in Victoria or Cowichan, where we will arrange your pickup to drive to the location where we begin the activity.
Our van picks you up from a hotel near Swartz Bay or Victoria. (Nanaimo pickups can be made by arrangement.) The start of the drive takes you over the scenic Malahat highway to Cowichan Bay (1hr), where we head west to Cowichan Lake, (a short stop to buy any forgotten items). We will have lunch on route. Our journey takes us along an unpaved road to the Carmanah /Walbran Provincial Park, which is home to some of the world’s largest spruce and gnarled cedars trees. Some of these trees are estimated to be over 1,000 years old.
Following this walk through the old growth we will drive to the Ditidaht First Nations village at the end of Nitinat Lake.
Our boat ride up Nitinat Lake leaves from the dock at 8am. We will be taken through the famous Nitinat Narrows and be treated to a whale and marine watching tour, before being dropped off at the narrows, for a 2.5 km hike to Tsuquadra (Comfort Camping). Tsuquadra was once home to over 600 young Ditidaht warriors, who stood watching over the seas, guarding the entrance to the Nitinat Lake. Remains of longhouses can be seen among the trees and between the newly built tented cabins. This site also has a beautifully secluded beach, with several caves. The world famous West Coast Trail runs alongside Tsuquadra. We will spend the night relaxing at this simple, yet beautiful former warrior village.
We will hike along a section of the West Coast Trail to one of its most spectacular natural features, Tsusiat Falls. On route, or on our return (tide dependant), we will spend time at ‘Hole in the Wall’. Arriving at Tsusiat after most hikers have moved on, we may have this tranquil location to ourselves, to enjoy swimming under the Falls and relaxing on the beach. We will head back to our camp at Tsuquadra during the afternoon.
We will hike back along the trail to the Nitinat Narrows, along cliffs overlooking the west coast and Olympic Peninsula. Once across the narrows we will hike to the Cheewaht River and the long, sandy beach there, where unsuspecting families once purchased land from the West Coast Development Company with the promise of a new life and community. Despite the beauty of this place, its remoteness and unrelenting winter storms made it inhospitable. All that remains now is an old school house and stories of the people and their struggle to make the best of their lives. We will share some of these stories with you, whale watch from the beach, where humpbacks feed close by. After lunch, we will hike back to the narrows. The ferry dock serves up fresh crab, salmon or Halibut, and baked potatoes. We will feast on this before the boat journey back to the Nitinat Lake village and our van. From here we will decide on our driving route back to Victoria via Cowichan Lake retracing our incoming route, or along the Pacific Marine Circuit route and Port Renfrew.
*Please note: Our itinerary is subject to change due to weather conditions and safety considerations. It may be necessary to shift the whale and Marine life tour to an alternate day, and in rare situations cancel this activity (Costs related to this would be reimbursed).
This tour will run with a minimum of 2 people, however, we will run it for a single person with a supplement of $300.
Included Not Included Transportation from and to the departure location (pick up and drop off) Your transportation to the departure location (from your home) All backcountry park fees and camping fees National Park entry fees (may change as Parks alters their policies) Professional guides Hiking Boots (should be less than 5 years old) All meals (except on travel days) Some food (on travel days and special options) Tent (shared) Hiking Boots (should be less than 5 years old) A substantial preparation guide Backpack (available for rent) Gear rental options Sleeping bags or mats (available for rent) Gratuities are not included. Recognizing your guide for their hard work and care is always appreciated; $10-20/day per guide is recommended.
Getting There And
Where To Stay
If you are travelling into the Vancouver, Victoria, or Nanaimo area from afar, you should arrive at the departure location for your trip the day/evening prior to the trip start date and plan to leave the day following trip return. Try the following Canadian online travel booker: flightnetwork.com.
You can fly to Vancouver (airport code YVR) or Seattle (airport code SEA) then connect to Vancouver Island using ferry, bus, or air, or arrange flights directly to Vancouver Island.
Flying to Victoria (Airport code YYJ)
Flying to Nanaimo (Airport code YCD)
Nanaimo Airporter shuttle service.
Servicing all of Vancouver Island from airports to ferrys to cruise ship terminals. Tel: 1 250 758-2133
BC Ferries 1-888-BC FERRY (1-888-223-3779)
We will let you know the ferry to take for travelling to Vancouver Island, but if you want to check out times, you can go the the BC Ferries website at:
Where to Stay
Victoria Pick up & Airport Hotels
Pick up: Schwartz Bay Ferry Terminal, or the following Accommodations near the ferry or airport:
Travelodge Sydney Airport Hotel
Travelodge may offer Coastal Bliss Guests a lower rate per night (ask us for the discount code before you book) and is an easy place for us to pick you up/drop you off before and after your tour with us.
2280 Beacon Avenue, Sidney, BC, CA, V8L 1X1
Phone:1 250 656 1176
Hotel Zed is near downtown Victoria, but not right downtown. It has built up a very good reputation and has reasonable rates. Ask for Coastal Bliss Adventures Special Room Rate when making your reservation.
3110 Douglas Ave. Victoria, BC, CA, V8Z 3K4
Phone:1 250 388 4345 Or 1 800 997 6797
If you are arriving in Vancouver and staying there before getting to a pick up location on Vancouver Island, the Accent Inn is close to the aiport.
Accent Inn, Vancouver Airport
10551 St. Edwards Dr. (off Hwy #99)
Richmond B.C. V6X 3L8
Ph: 604-273-3311 Fx: 604-273-9522
(Our guests may be able to receive a discount at Accent Inn, contact us for details.)
If you are staying in Victoria after the tour, consider these near downtown Victoria accommodations:
The Strathcona Hotel
Address: 919 Douglas Street, Victoria B.C.
Ocean Island Inn
Address: 791 Pandora Ave. Victoria BC, Canada
Phone: Toll Free 1.888.888.4180
229 Gorge Road East
Victoria, BC V9A 1L1
Toll-Free Reservations: 1-800-565-3777
Preparing For Your Trip
How you prepare for your adventure is important. Being well prepared will enhance the quality of your experience. Because we are travelling in wilderness, it is very important for you and for the rest of your adventure group that you are fit enough to handle the level of difficulty and demand with no problems. Our guides know how to minimize the impact of these demands as much as possible, but they cannot remove them. The depth of your experience can only increase if you have made sure that you have prepared well.
Your preparation will be different for different activities. Preparing for a kayak trip is different from preparing for a hiking trip. We have provided some basic information that can be downloaded through the following links to pdf documents. If you do not have the Adobe Reader, you can download it from the Adobe site by clicking here.
Use the links below to download some of the preparation files for this hiking or kayaking tour. When you book your tour, we will send you a complete preparation packet to help you get ready.Please take this seriously. Most people are unaware of the demands of a coastal environment, particularly with keeping dry and warm. Your preparation will really help make your coastal hiking or kayaking tour a great experience.Gear Rental
We have gear available to rent if you don't want to buy a particular piece of equipment, or need to travel without it.
Look over the following list to help you decide whether you want to rent. If you decide to rent gear, you can tell us on the phone or book it online with your tour.
Item Price Sherpa for Hiking Tours $2399.00 Backpack Rental $55.00 Sleeping Bag Rental $55.00 Thermarest Rental $20.00 Gaiter Rental $15.00 Hiking Pole Rental (one) $7.50 Rental Bundle 1-Sleeping Bag+Thermarest+Gaiters or hiking pole $80.00 Rental Bundle 2-backpack+gaiters+hiking pole $76.00 Rental Bundle 3-backpack+sleeping bag+Thermarest $117.00