August 16, 2011 | Tips from Travellers >
Sooke, Beaches & Swimming
Find more information about Sooke - Beaches & Swimming
View a larger image on flickr.com
Having the opportunity to discover hidden gems and trails off the beaten path is one of the many things I love about living in BC. Since moving to Vancouver Island, the chance for new discoveries has only increased. Botanical and China Beaches along the Juan De Fuca Marine Trail are just two of the gems I’ve recently had the chance to experience.
Walking on the rocks during low tide on Botanical Beach, we had a great view of the cliffs carved out of the hillsides majestically overlooking the beach. Just a few feet away from the entrance connecting Botanical Beach to the Juan De Fuca Marine Trail led us to a completely different world. Instead of the dark rocks we saw when we first left the trail, the rock in this section of the beach was sandstone; layers upon layers of rock grains that were compressed to form slabs.
The sandstone rocks also contained several depressions, some of them quite deep, filled with water that the ongoing tide couldn’t displace. These tidal pools are home to some of the most unique ecosystems I’ve ever seen up close and personal. Filled with mussels and other shells, hermit crabs and plant life, it was one of the most unique things I’ve ever had the opportunity to take a photo of.
China Beach, our second stop, was home to the soft sandy beaches and white driftwood that everyone associates with the perfect beach. It was the kind of beach I’d like to set up a clambake and evening bonfire on with a few good friends.
It was a great trip to see some of Vancouver Island’s best beaches and next time, I’d like to go back to China Beach and if possible, have a nice picnic meal with friends and watch the waves crash against the shoreline.