The challenge in British Columbia is not figuring out what do to, but how to do it all. There are myriads of municipal, provincial and national parks in which to walk, hike and cycle. Thanks to a temperate climate, golf enthusiasts can indulge in their passion nearly year round. Theatre and performing arts, shopping as well as professional and spectator sports all have a large presence in cities and smaller communities. Spectacular viewpoints, bird-watching and wildlife viewing abound no matter where you travel in the province. There are also many sites of historic interest throughout BC.
British Columbia has every type of beach imaginable: remote, urban, sand, pebble - even nudist! There are some spectacular ocean beaches along the BC mainland coast as well as Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and Queen Charlotte Islands. Inland, many of the regions boast warm lake waters or scenically rugged settings, making them popular for water recreation that includes: swimming, canoeing, fishing (appropriate license(s) required), boating, windsurfing, waterskiing and kayaking. The best sunning and swimming months in the province are July and August.
There's a wonderful selection of beaches in the Vancouver, Coast & Mountains region. Mild waters and sandy shorelines in both secluded and bustling settings await the arrival of even the most discerning beach enthusiasts. Enjoy the sunny shores of White Rock. Relax in the tranquil community of Crescent Beach. Swim in the waters of Savary Island - the warmest waters north of Mexico. Jet ski or boat on action-packed Cultus Lake. Take a dip in Harrison Lake and follow it up with a soak in the warm mineral pools.
Vancouver Island region will leave you satisfied. Clean and scenic beaches are scattered all along the coastal shoreline. The two main beaches in the Parksville area are Parksville and Rathtrevor Beaches. Parksville Beach is located directly in front of the town of Parksville, while Rathtrevor Beach is found slightly further away, inside Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park. Both beaches are suitable for swimming, sunning and picnicking. Parksville Beach is replete with recreational facilities such as ball fields, tennis courts, a lacrosse box, an ice arena, beach volleyball areas, a large playground and a water park. Rathtrevor Beach lends itself to quieter outdoor activities, such as nature walking and bird watching.
Chesterman and MacKenzie are the closest beaches to the community of Tofino. They are easily accessible from the highway and are part of a series of wide, sandy beaches along the shoreline between Tofino and Ucluelet. Long Beach, also part of this series, lies inside Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and must be accessed via the park's entrance.
Qualicum Beach is a popular spot for swimming and beachcombing. It offers lovely views of the Strait of Georgia, Texada and Lasqueti Islands as well as the Coast Mountain Range.
The Cariboo Chilcotin Coast has thousands of lakes, many of which feature stretches of sandy beach. Some also have designated swimming areas.
Visit Hello BC, the official state tourism site for British Columbia or Explore Travel Canada, the official tourism guide for Canada.