The town was busy for locals and visitors during recent Ukee Days celebrations

Ucluelet tourism efforts paying off

“We have one of the highest engaged Facebook pages for tourism in Canada,” says Denise Stys-Norman.

John Harding


This busy summer tourism season in Ukee is a continuation of a red-hot start to 2016, said the executive director of Tourism Ucluelet.

Marketing efforts by local businesses, wide-reaching media reports, a social media strategy that’s working, the relative strength of the U.S. dollar and the increasing popularity of the Wild Pacific Trail are just some of the factors boosting the number of tourists visiting the district, says Denise Stys-Norman.

“Ucluelet is starting to become an area that’s more recognized and that’s been building over the years,” she said.

Revenues for Tourism Ucluelet – derived from a two per cent hotel room tax – were up 21 per cent in the first four months of 2016 when compared to the same months of 2015. The great weather the district has enjoyed this summer hasn’t hurt either, said Stys-Norman, who also pointed to the success of social media efforts.

“The last year we worked quite hard on our social media.” she said. “We have one of the highest engaged Facebook pages for tourism in Canada.”

Attractions like the Ucluelet Aquarium and the Wild Pacific Trail are starting to get wide attention too.

“The Wild Pacific Trail has really positioned itself as a must-see in B.C.,” said Stys-Norman. “That’s put a lot of eyes on Ucluelet. And the aquarium is phenomenal, a draw in its own right.”

Tourism Ucluelet concentrates its efforts on outward marketing, i.e. reaching out to potential visitors in their home cities and towns. The local chamber of commerce is responsible for the visitors’ centres in the district. Local businesses do their own marketing too, explained Stys-Norman.

The region has a special visitor this week – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his family – and even if they aren’t staying overnight in Ucluelet, the district could see experience some positive exposure from the visit, “as long as they are enjoying the West Coast,” said Stys-Norman.

August may be winding to close and a new school year just on the horizon, but the events in the district are by no means slowing down.

The popular Otalith Music Festival is scheduled for Aug. 19-20 (visit for details) and the Cultural Heritage Festival Aug. 28 through Sept. 4 has a special theme this year: Emily Carr’s West Coast (visit



Just Posted

“Intense” storms coming to Tofino and Ucluelet this week

“If you are near the water, it is important to be ‘Coastsmart,’ by staying above the high tide.”

Ucluelet’s indoor market keeps vendors humming through the off-season

“It brings people out, which is great and we showcase different talents, which is great.”

Tofino and Ucluelet ready to clean Kennedy Lake

“You don’t want people to start thinking that this is a dumping ground.”

VIDEO: Orcas put on a show near Hornby Island

Louis Jobodin shares photos and video of his experience

Tofino waits for new library

No immediate plans for end to library limbo.

VIDEO: Storm watching at Wickaninnish Beach

This footage of Wickaninnish Beach was taken from the Kwisitis Visitor Centre… Continue reading

Winter storm coming to B.C. this weekend

The bets are on as to how much snow the province will actually get in the coming days

B.C. civil rights group files complaint about RCMP arrest of man who later died

Dale Culver, a 35-year-old Indigenous man was arrested in Prince George last July

Lawyer says former B.C. government aide ‘barely guilty’ in ethnic vote scandal

Brian Bonney pleaded guilty to a breach of trust charge

Quite a few tears as homemade quilts distributed to residents of Ashcroft Reserve, Boston Flats affected by last summer’s fire

Quilters in B.C. and Alberta worked through the summer and fall to create more than 100 quilts.

Island Health: No need for alarm in wake of Victoria needle-prick incidents

Three incidents in a week prompts meeting between health authority, city service providers

B.C. coast loggers celebrate history, hope for improvement

Truck Loggers Association awaits B.C. NDP government’s new direction

Global Affairs aware of report of two Canadians kidnapped in Nigeria

The foreigners were heading south from Kafanchan to Abuja when they were ambushed around Kagarko

Whistler role in potential Calgary Olympic bid would be welcome: IOC

Calgary is mulling whether to vie for the 2026 Games, and could look to facilities in B.C.

Most Read