Pacific Rim Whale Festival

Festivities each spring are centred around the migration of the Grey whales, travelling from Mexico to the Arctic. Watch the whales silently gliding past from the beautiful shores of Vancouver Island.

Festival Dates: -
Listing Updated:
Location: Tofino, British Columbia

About the festival

The annual Pacific Rim Whale Festival marks the opening of the region’s renowned whale-watching season and the annual migration of more than 20,000 Pacific grey whales on their 13,000-kilometre journey from the waters of Mexico’s Baja Peninsula to the Bering Sea.

Known for the abundance of grey, humpback and orca sightings year-round, the west coast of Vancouver Island is one of the world’s premier whale-watching destinations with more than a dozen operators based in Tofino and Ucluelet, conducting boat tours from March through October.

More than 30 years ago a group of concerned citizens wanted to create awareness about the island's pristine eco-system, the then-endangered grey whale population, and coastal traditions. They formed what is known now as the Pacific Rim Whale Festival Society.

Thankfully, the grey whales' numbers have increased; and the celebration continues. Festivities each spring are centred around the migration of these great ocean giants — from Mexico to the Arctic. You can see whales gliding past from the beautiful shores of Vancouver Island.

The 9-day festival consists of many educational and cultural presentations as well as performances, kids activities, family-oriented events and events for both locals and visitors alike. 


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Festival schedule, Mar 16 - 24, 2024

  • Mar 17: Parade of Whales and Wonders
  • Mar 19: Maritime Kids Day, Tofino
  • Mar 21: Maritime Kids Day, Ucluelet
  • Mar 22: Island Art Paint Night
  • Mar 23: Beach Clean, Long Beach
  • Mar 25/26: Closing Gala

More details to be announced soon, see the latest on the festival website.

Get your tickets

Access to many festival events and activities is by-donation, through the purchase of festival button (drawn by local children) at $5 each. Additional ticketed events will be sold separately. Go to 

Grab a preview of the Pacific Rim Whale Festival here.