Found on the stunning Strait of Juan de Fuca, French Beach Provincial Park provides campers with some of the best Vancouver Island Camping and nature that British Columbia offers.
We think French Beach Provincial Park offers the best Vancouver Island Camping to explore day hikes along the Juan de Fuca Trail.
Because of its excellent location, French Beach Provincial Park is often busy, particularly during the peak season, so it’s important that you book your place as soon as possible to guarantee that you and your family/friends get to enjoy an unforgettable holiday!
Welcome to French Beach Provincial Park
With fabulous views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and situated right next to French Beach and around lush forests, the French Beach Provincial Park is a haven for anyone who enjoys all that nature has to offer.
The 55-hectare park is just a few minutes’ walk away from a pebble beach, which not only provides a beautiful area to explore and relax on, but also doubles as the perfect place to whale-watch, as gray whales migrate north during the spring and return south in the fall.
As well as this, it’s not uncommon for other magnificent creatures, such as killer whales, seals, sea lions, and otters to be spotted offshore, as well as numerous types of birds, including ospreys, bald eagles, and seabirds. So, if you and your family are animal fanatics, then French Beach Provincial Park will be ideal for you.
If you prefer the more adventurous parts of camping, then you’ll be pleased to know that there are many interesting and entertaining activities that you can participate in at French Beach Provincial Park. Cycling, fishing, hiking, swimming, and windsurfing are just some of the most popular activities that campers at the park find themselves enjoying.
French Beach Provincial Park itself offers many facilities for their campers. Picnic areas with picnic tables and fire rings are available for use at their large, grassy day-use area. Campfire rings are also provided at each campsite and firewood is available for purchase.
While pets are allowed in the park as long as they’re on a leash, they are not allowed in the park buildings or beach areas.
The day-use area also offers a fantastic playground for the kids.
French Beach Provincial Park Camping
The main camping season at French Beach Provincial Park begins from mid-March until the end of October, and it’s recommended that you reserve your spot if you plan on camping between May and August, as these are the busiest months.
The winter camping season comes in effect between the start of November until mid-March, but it should be known that along with the fees, some services are also reduced.
The French Beach Provincial Park has 69 vehicle-accessible campsites. Cold water taps for drinking water and pit toilets are found throughout the park, although the taps are shut off during the off-season. There is also a sani-station/dump that is available to park users and is found near the park entrance.
The only downside to this park is there are no showers. (Or power, as is the case with most BC Provincial Park Campgrounds.)
When we visited this area, power and showers were important to us as we explored the area for 9 days. So we had to stay back in Sooke River Campground to access power and showers. It was certainly not as beautiful and natural, but it was a sacrifice we chose.
French Beach Provincial Park also offers group camping. There is one group campsite at the park, which easily accommodates a group size of 50 or less.
With several tables and plenty of counter space, a group fire pit with seating, a large grass tenting area, and hot water, double sink, woodstove, and electrical plug-ins, the campsite is perfect for large groups.
The location itself is about 100metres away from beach access but is still in a very private location. So, if you and a large group of friends fancy a break, you might want to consider the French Beach Provincial Park!
Some facilities and trails are wheelchair accessible. For more information, visit French Beach Provincial Park on BC Parks website.
Strait of Juan de Fuca
The Strait of Juan de Fuca is a body of water that connects the Salish Sea and the Pacific Ocean and runs between Vancouver Island and Washington State. The Strait is a magnificent sight to take in, and is largely enjoyed by campers as it is a reflection of the beauty of nature.
Oftentimes, the Strait is home to whales, seals, and sea lions, so be sure to keep an eye out for them swimming by when you’re visiting! However, although the Strait of Juan de Fuca is stunning, you should bear in mind that the water is incredibly cold and windy, and so not ideal for swimming in unless you are a skilled and experienced swimmer. The Strait is also not suitable for canoeing or kayaking, because of the strong currents.
French Beach Trail
If you like hiking with stunning views, then the French Beach Trail may be ideal for you. At only 0.3km long and with a 6m elevation gain, the trail is fairly easy to complete as a family. While dogs are welcome on this trail, they do need to be on a leash.
The trail is super close to the French Beach Provincial Park, and in fact is just a few minutes’ walk away from the campground, meaning that you don’t have to worry about driving there.
So, if you and your family would enjoy a scenic, relaxed hike, you should try the French Beach Trail. But don’t be dismayed if you tend to prefer longer, more difficult trails! The areas surrounding the Juan de Fuca Provincial Park is home to plenty of trails of various lengths and difficulties, so you’re sure to find a few that are perfect for you.
To reach this serene park, access Highway 14, 20 km west of Sooke. There are directional signs posted along the way, which you should look out for and follow. It may be helpful to know that the French Beach Provincial Park is found on the west coast of southern Vancouver Park, approximately 11km away from Jordan River.
Discover some of the Best Ever Vancouver Island Experiences:
Vancouver Island Beaches:
- Mystic Beach
- Sombrio Beach
- French Beach
- Sandcut Beach
- Chesterman Beach
- Long Beach
- Rathtrevor Provincial Park
- Botanical Beach
Vancouver Island Waterfalls:
Tofino Camping Spots:
- Crystal Cove Beach Resort
- Bella Pacifica Campground
- Mackenzie Beach Campground
- Surf Grove Campground
- Green Point Campground