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The Pacific Marine Circle Route is located along the remote southern shore of Vancouver Island—and it features some of the most spectacular scenery in the province. While the landscape is wild (think no cell service), the winding road is totally paved and makes for an easy road trip for anyone who wants to spend a day exploring off the grid. Set out early and do the whole loop in a day, or just pick select spots to stop in at halfway. From cute cafes to lush hikes and sandy beaches with sweeping views, there’s so much to see!
With its A-frame roof, pretty back garden, and wonderfully friendly staff, Shirley Delicious is arguably the most adorable cafe on the island—not to mention their food is incredible too. Delicious, we might say! Think homestyle brunch and lunch dishes like veggie hash and corn fritters, freshly baked goods (their cinnamon twists and muffins are a must), rich and frothy espresso drinks, and so much more.
Dotted with abandoned cabins, Jordan River might look a little eerie when you first drive through it. But it’s all part of its unique charm. On your left is completely unobstructed views of the ocean (it’s a popular spot for surfers) and a sandy beach, and, on your right, is the Cold Shoulder Cafe—you’ll know they’re open if the bonfire in their parking lot is blazing. Stop in for a pastry and a warm drink, then walk across the street to enjoy it as you take in the wild west coast views.
Turn into the China Beach day use parking lot in the Juan de Fuca Provincial Park, then hike about two kilometres in, across the suspension bridge, and you’ll find yourself at Mystic Beach. The hike is lush and beautiful, and the beach is, indeed, mystic—a waterfall rushing over a cliff, sparkling purple sediment in the sand, sandcut caves, and spectacular views.
This road trip makes for a perfect activity during a fall staycation on the island. And to make your getaway even more complete, book a guest room or suite with Best Western Carlton Plaza Hotel. Our Vancouver Island hotel is conveniently located in downtown Victoria, with clean, comfortable, and spacious accommodations and excellent amenities. Get in touch today—and be sure to ask about our special rate for BC residents.