Vacation Lessons #2 – No Room at the Inn


Thank god I wasn’t expecting to birth my (likely not-so-) immaculately conceived (and thankfully non-existent) child any time soon, because while on our wee excursion, Neil and I broke the (until that point rumoured but not really believed) 11th commandment:

Thou Shalt Not Arrive in Tofino and Expect to Find Suitable Accommodations if Thou Hast Not Booked WELL IN ADVANCE!

That rule holds up doubly so if thou hast a dog as thine travel companion.

We (foolishly) figured that the whole “All of Tofino books up ahead of time” thing was just an overblown rumour, and decided to chance our luck with just “showing up” anyway. After all, it was mid-week and nowhere near a long weekend.

Boy were we wrong!

The Scene went something like this:

  • Order coffees and sit down with Accommodation Guide,Tourist Centre Printout and cell phones
  • Garner strange looks from locals
  • Phone place of lodging inquiring about rooms available for that night
  • Get laughed at by proprietor of said lodging
  • Get laughed at by curious locals realizing what we’re up to
  • Lather, rinse, repeat, weep.
  • We eventually stayed at a somewhat scuzzed out motel in the middle of town and snuck the dog in the back door.

    For those not in the know: the actual town of Tofino blows goats. The beaches and campgrounds are where it’s at. Unfortunately, with no reservations or plans on what we were doing or how long we were staying, we didn’t get to enjoy them at all.

    Thankfully we did salvage a couple fantastic meals out of it all (I highly recommend UpStairs for dinner and Schooners for breakfast), and got to poke around at the Long Beach Lodge Resort, and the Wickaninnish Inn. We were surprised that even the two priciest locations in Tofino were completely sold out for the week – but they’re both gorgeous and we do have plans to go back.

    And we’ll definitely remember to call first next time!

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    5 thoughts on “Vacation Lessons #2 – No Room at the Inn

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    2. Darren

      As a former Tourism Victoria reservations specialist let’s just get it out of the way: you foolish, foolish woman.

      Did you try Ucluelet? It blows goats even more, but is up-and-coming and has some nice lodging options.

      Also, I’m certainly not a food man, but one of the few exceptions to Tofino blowing goats is a great bistro on the right hand side as you come into town. It’s nothing to look at, but foodies assure me that the cuisine is excellent.

    3. peechie Post author

      We did check out Ucluelet (by the by – is that first L silent, or not?) but weren’t suitably impressed or interested in finding a pet-friendly place to hunker down for a few days.

      We never made it for food other than the Schooners/Upstairs duo, which were both excellent, but I’ve got food and accommodation recommendations aplenty for a trip back.

    4. peechie Post author

      We’re somewhat torn between a splurge at the Wick or at Long Beach Lodge. Both look lovely outside and in, so it may be a matter of availability and wallet size when we do decide to go (likely sometime over the late winter).

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