Ucluelet is actually really easy to say (u-CLUE-let) but I only say it correctly when I say it out loud. In my head, I say u-CLAY-let and that, I blame solely on my husband. Yes, I am publicly outing him for mispronouncing this word. It was such a big part of our trip (laughing at his inability to just say it right, for heavens’ sakes). One of the unofficial games we played as we drove across Vancouver Island was Who Can Say Ucluelet Worse Than Dad? My 4 year old took the prize with ukulele-let.
Where We Stayed
We had a fabulous time in the rugged beauty of Ucluelet, B.C. where we spent 2 days and one night perched on a cliff at the Black Rock Oceanfront Resort. To say the views from our Two Bedroom Trail Ocean View Suite were incredible is a bit of an understatement. The windows in the bathroom, each bedroom, and living room all revealed gorgeous black rock, sparkling blue water, driftwood and beach that was all, literally, steps away.
It was the perfect suite for the 6 of us and I would love to book the same one in storm watching season!
What We Ate
As I mentioned in my article for Surrey604, Ucluelet is a quieter town than Tofino and we didn’t find a lot of family dining options. Armed with a couple of recommendations, we made our way to the main drag and found ourselves parking at Howler’s Family Restaurant. Not only did we hear the food was delicious – we were intrigued by the fact that it has a bowling alley right in the restaurant! The kids LOVED this! After stuffing ourselves with fresh fish ‘n chips, fish tacos and grilled cheese, we made our way to the lanes.
My favourite part about this restaurant experience (aside from the fish taco – totally recommend it!) was meeting another family who were visiting Ukee for the first time. They were originally from Ottawa but now living in the Yukon. And they spoke French! If you’ve followed along on this blog or my Instagram stories, you know that I am currently learning Spanish. French is a language I used to be fairly fluent in. Since high school, I haven’t practiced it regularly at all, but learning Spanish has made my French come back with a vengeance. So, I was thrilled when this random encounter afforded me a chance to practice it. We had a great conversation (I was slow and imprecise) during which I learned that she had spotted some whales earlier that day. In fact, we heard this from people we were to meet the next day as well. We kept our fingers crossed for a sighting story of our own but weren’t so lucky this time!
Where We Played
I’d say the highlight of our short stay in Ukee was the Wild Pacific Trail. The Lighthouse Loop of this trail is a gorgeous MUST for people of all ages. My 4 year old did amazing as we walked among stunning foliage that hugged some of the most beautiful coastline I have ever seen. We couldn’t have asked for better weather; the sunbeams sparkled on the deep blue, interrupted only by jet-black rock.
I would love to go back and do more of this trail (sans enfants) as well as make Ucluelet a romantic destination during storm watching season (sans enfants aussi, bien sur).
One of my favourite photos from this trip was in front of this mural we found on the side of a motel – I mean, what’s a trip without a spontaneous pose in front of public art? Plus, we figured this could count as our whale-sighting story!
Although I opened with ‘Ucluelet is a quieter town than Tofino’, I don’t say it like that’s a bad thing. Ukee is the perfect getaway for any Nature-lover. As well, anyone who travels to small towns knows that one of the perks of an intimate space is the ease with which you can meet a local, share a conversation and learn more about the hidden gems.
Have you been to Ucluelet? What is your favourite memory from there? Is there another small town you’ve visited that I might appreciate? I’m looking for the perfect writing retreat and would love any of your recommendations!