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Tofino combines the rugged Canadian frontier (the road ends here, literally) with the mellow vibe of a California surf town—think Mendocino in a toque. Cafés line the streets; foodies line up at Sobo; and a hike, bike, or paddle is right outside your door. Old-growth forest meets the relentless surf of the Pacific and explorers from age two to 102 dig into sand, tide pools, and surf. Talk to the locals and you'll be sure to hear some interesting "How I came to live in Tofino" anecdotes.
Tofino's 1,400 or so permanent residents host about a million visitors every year, but they've made what could have been a tourist trap into a funky little town with several art galleries, good restaurants, and plenty of opportunity to get out to the surrounding wilds. Reservations are recommended any time of year. While many outdoor activities are confined to spring through fall, surfing continues year-round, despite the chilly water. November through February is devoted to storm watching (best enjoyed from a cozy waterfront lodge).
Tofino at a Glance
Sports and Outdoors
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