Tofino

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Tofino
District Municipality
View toward Meares Island
View toward Meares Island
Official logo of Tofino
Logo
Tofino is located in British Columbia
Tofino
Tofino
Location of Tofino in British Columbia
Coordinates: 49°08′38″N 125°53′30″W / 49.14389°N 125.89167°W / 49.14389; -125.89167
Country  Canada
Province  British Columbia
Regional District Alberni-Clayoquot
Incorporated 1932
Government
 • Mayor Josie Osborne
Area
 • Total 10.53 km2 (4.07 sq mi)
Elevation 10 m (30 ft)
Population (2011)
 • Total 1,876
 • Density 178.2/km2 (462/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
Postal code span V0R 2Z0
Area code(s) 250
Website www.tofino.ca

Tofino is a district of about 1,876 residents on the west coast of Vancouver Island, in British Columbia, Canada, located at the western terminus of Highway 4, on the tip of the Esowista Peninsula, at the southern edge of Clayoquot Sound.

The settlement of Tofino first acquired the name in 1909 with the opening of the Tofino Post Office, named in association with Tofino Inlet nearby.[1] Tofino Inlet was named in 1792 by the Spanish commanders Galiano and Valdés, in honour of Admiral Vicente Tofiño de San Miguel y Wanderiales (or Vanderiales); born in 1732, in Cádiz (Andalucía-Spain); and death in 1795, in San Fernando (Cádiz-Andalucía-Spain),[2] under whom Galiano had learned cartography.[3]

A popular tourist destination in the summer, Tofino's population swells to many times its winter size. It attracts surfers, nature lovers, campers, whale watchers, fishermen, or anyone just looking to be close to nature. In the winter it is not as bustling, although many people visit Tofino and the west coast to watch storms on the water. Close to Tofino is Long Beach, a scenic and popular year-round destination, at the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Nearby Maquinna Marine Provincial Park,[4] with its natural hot springs, is located about 45 kilometres (28 mi) north of Tofino and is also a popular day-trip destination for tourists although it is only reachable by boat or float plane.

Transportation[edit]

Tofino has a small airport located 11km south of the town. Tofino Airport is accessible to private and commercial aircraft. Floatplanes land on the inlet in town. Coastal fog is a common morning phenomenon in the summer, complicating access by air until the weather clears.

Accessing Tofino by car from the North American mainland involves taking a ferry to Vancouver Island from Vancouver, Powell River, Seattle, Anacortes or Port Angeles to either Victoria or Nanaimo, then driving a little over 3 hours northwest across the island, along Highway 4. Ferry access from Vancouver to the island is provided by BC Ferries. Ferry access from Anacortes, WA is provided by Washington State Ferries. This ferry will also stop at Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands.

Tofino Bus [1] also services Tofino from Victoria, Vancouver, Nanaimo, Parksville, Coombs and Port Alberni.

Festivities and events[edit]

Every March, the migration of thousands of grey whales is celebrated with the Pacific Rim Whale Festival.[2] The last weekend of April is the Tofino Shorebird Festival. The first week-end of June brings the Tofino Food and Wine Festival, featuring British Columbia wines and showcasing the creations of Tofino chefs. The end of August brings the Tofino Lantern Festival (voted Tofino's most popular event by Tofino Time Magazine), and mid-September brings "Art in the Gardens," a two-day local arts and music festival.[3] The O'Neill Coldwater Surf Classic was held October 25–31, the first professional ASP surf event ever held in Canada.[4] The highlight of November is the Clayoquot Oyster Festival, which hosts the annual and popular Oyster Gala, an evening of local chefs competing for the favorite oyster creation, slurping contests, British Columbia wines and beers, and live music.[5]

Climate[edit]

Due to Tofino's warm winters (warmer than both Victoria or Vancouver) yet cool summers, this gives the location the very definition of temperate. Tofino's winters are so mild that it can grow some of the most exotic palm trees in Canada[6][7]. Summers are the driest season with only 76.8mm of rain in July. During the cooler season however, there is a lot of precipitation with 474.9mm in November alone. Most of the precipitation that falls throughout the course of a year is rain with 203 days with rain and only 9.8 days with snowfall. However, this is only average; the median snow amount is 0, meaning most years do not receive any at all.[5]

Climate data for Tofino Airport
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high Humidex 18.3 18.4 18.1 23.0 27.6 32.9 35.5 42.7 33.6 25.9 20.6 15.2 42.7
Record high °C (°F) 20.1
(68.2)
18.9
(66)
18.7
(65.7)
22.8
(73)
28.2
(82.8)
32.2
(90)
32.8
(91)
32.8
(91)
29.4
(84.9)
23.9
(75)
21.1
(70)
15.6
(60.1)
32.8
(91)
Average high °C (°F) 8.3
(46.9)
9.0
(48.2)
10.1
(50.2)
11.9
(53.4)
14.5
(58.1)
16.8
(62.2)
18.9
(66)
19.1
(66.4)
17.8
(64)
13.6
(56.5)
10.0
(50)
8.1
(46.6)
13.2
(55.8)
Daily mean °C (°F) 5.3
(41.5)
5.4
(41.7)
6.5
(43.7)
8.0
(46.4)
10.5
(50.9)
12.9
(55.2)
14.7
(58.5)
15.0
(59)
13.4
(56.1)
10.0
(50)
6.8
(44.2)
5.0
(41)
9.5
(49.1)
Average low °C (°F) 2.3
(36.1)
1.9
(35.4)
2.7
(36.9)
4.0
(39.2)
6.5
(43.7)
8.9
(48)
10.5
(50.9)
10.8
(51.4)
9.0
(48.2)
6.3
(43.3)
3.6
(38.5)
1.9
(35.4)
5.7
(42.3)
Record low °C (°F) −15.0
(5)
−9.2
(15.4)
−5.5
(22.1)
−1.7
(28.9)
−0.2
(31.6)
2.2
(36)
3.9
(39)
4.4
(39.9)
−0.6
(30.9)
−3.5
(25.7)
−12.7
(9.1)
−12.2
(10)
−15.0
(5)
Wind chill −17.9 −16.7 −8.7 −6.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 −5.9 −13.8 −16.1 −17.9
Precipitation mm (inches) 486.6
(19.157)
336.1
(13.232)
329.8
(12.984)
269.9
(10.626)
153.0
(6.024)
129.7
(5.106)
71.0
(2.795)
88.1
(3.469)
132.8
(5.228)
341.9
(13.461)
492.1
(19.374)
440.0
(17.323)
3,270.7
(128.768)
Rainfall mm (inches) 477.4
(18.795)
327.3
(12.886)
325.7
(12.823)
269.2
(10.598)
153.0
(6.024)
129.7
(5.106)
71.0
(2.795)
88.1
(3.469)
132.8
(5.228)
341.8
(13.457)
489.4
(19.268)
432.0
(17.008)
3,237.2
(127.449)
Snowfall cm (inches) 9.2
(3.62)
8.7
(3.43)
4.0
(1.57)
0.7
(0.28)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.1
(0.04)
2.8
(1.1)
7.9
(3.11)
33.3
(13.11)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 22.7 18.7 21.7 18.4 15.7 13.8 10.0 10.9 11.7 19.4 22.9 21.9 207.8
Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 22.1 18.4 21.5 18.4 15.7 13.8 10.0 10.9 11.7 19.4 22.6 21.6 205.9
Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 1.9 1.5 1.3 0.4 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.9 2.0 7.8
 % humidity 83.6 76.7 75.6 73.2 71.3 71.7 71.7 74.8 73.2 79.3 82.9 84.6 76.5
Mean monthly sunshine hours 58.6 81.6 126.3 170.3 203.1 190.9 226.7 199.6 175.8 116.1 62.5 56.5 1,668.1
Percent possible sunshine 21.7 28.5 34.3 41.5 42.9 39.4 46.4 44.8 46.4 34.6 22.7 22.0 35.4
Source: [6]

Telecommunications[edit]

A cold front edge moving over Cox Bay

Tofino has modern cell phone and land line access (including Internet, ADSL) -- as well as television relays of CBC-SRC.

Health and education[edit]

Public education is offered by the School District 70 Alberni, through the Wickaninnish Community School in Tofino and Ucluelet Secondary School in Ucluelet. The town's hospital is the Tofino General Hospital, operated by the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA).[7]

Cultural references[edit]

Sand dollar on a Tofino beach

Music[edit]

Film and television[edit]

  • Alaska (1996) - (Filmed in Summer 1995) Tofino fills in as the quaint Alaskan village, from which the adventure stems. Utilizes many of the stunning aspects of Clayoquot's scenery.[citation needed]
  • Going the Distance - (Filmed in Summer 2003) The opening scenes take place in Tofino. It is the home of the main trio of characters and it is the starting point for their trans-Canada road trip that takes place in the movie. The movie was released in the United States as National Lampoon's Going The Distance.[citation needed]
  • The Fog - Remake of John Carpenter's The Fog (1980) . (Filmed in Spring 2005) The beach scenes were filmed on MacKenzie Beach, in Tofino.[citation needed]
  • One Week - (Filmed in Fall 2007) A man who has been diagnosed with cancer purchases a motorcycle and goes from Toronto to Tofino. He ends up eating at Tuff Beans, a popular visitor and local coffee stop.[citation needed]
  • The Big Year - (Filmed in May 2010) A comedy about three birders competing to see the most birds in a single year. Starring Jack Black, Owen Wilson, and Steve Martin.[citation needed]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

  • Media related to Tofino at Wikimedia Commons
Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Tofino.

Coordinates: 49°08′38″N 125°53′30″W / 49.14389°N 125.89167°W / 49.14389; -125.89167