B.C. is known for natural beauty, and Tofino, on the west coast of Vancouver Island, shows off some of its best features. Many are drawn by the call of the wild — ancient rainforests, ocean swells and sandy beaches — and winter promises a more serene chance to take it all in, with smaller crowds and wide-open spaces for a tranquil stay.

A 45-minute direct flight with Pacific Coastal Airlines, from YVR to YAZ (Tofino-Long Beach Airport), will get you there quickly. Or you can make the journey part of the adventure: take the Horseshoe Bay ferry from West Vancouver to Nanaimo, followed by an approximately 3.5-hour drive with stunning views of lakes, rivers, mountains and coastal rainforests — a scenic stretch worth the extra travel time. Once you’ve arrived, here’s how to make the most of a wintry weekend in Tofino.

For a sound sleep: Tofino Resort + Marina (634 Campbell St., Tofino)

The only full-service resort situated on the inlet, Tofino Resort makes for a cosy home base. The 63 rooms are equipped with the creature comforts you crave, with the town of Tofino within a five-minute walk. Wake up to tranquil views of cloud-crowned mountains and soaring eagles, then head out for your day’s adventures feeling refreshed.

For wildlife watching on the water: Marine Adventure Centre (634 Campbell St., Tofino)

A private, four-hour boat tour will take you through stunning Clayoquot Sound, a UNESCO biosphere region. Toss crab traps into the water, and then cruise around in search of whales, sea lions and black bears, while learning about the area’s rich history: Tofino sits on the traditional territory of the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation of the Nuu-chah-nulth peoples. On your return to the harbour, if Dungeness crabs have taken your bait, your catch could become your dinner. As an add-on, round out your day with the “Cook Your Catch” program at 1909 Kitchen (634 Campbell St., Tofino), where the culinary team will prepare your crabs for an unforgettable feast.

For seaside steaming:  Tuff City Saunas (Mackenzie Beach Resort, 1101 Pacific Rim Hwy., Unit BC-4, Tofino)

Whether you’ve spent the day surfing the swells of Cox Bay or storm watching on Chesterman Beach, warm up with the new oceanfront Finnish sauna experience by Tuff City Saunas. A cedar shack with a traditional wood-burning stove, it’s set up by the water’s edge on Mackenzie Beach, where the experience involves alternating between soothing sauna steams and salty ocean plunges; the jarring contrast of hot and cold is surprisingly rejuvenating.

For a flame-cooked dinner: Roar (1258 Pacific Rim Hwy., Tofino)

Enjoy the slow-roasted brisket at Roar, which specializes in cooking over a live fire.

Live fire and local ingredients are paired to create the perfect plates at Roar. The smoked and slow-roasted brisket, served with spiced corn cake, fennel, charred salsa and crème fraîche, is a melt-in-your-mouth meal; enjoy it washed down with a delicious cocktail, such as the cleverly named “Lesser of Two Evils,” a modern take on a classic pisco sour.

For yoga by the ocean: Ancient Cedars Spa (Wickaninnish Inn, 500 Osprey Ln., Tofino)

Practice your poses beside crashing waves at Wickaninnish Inn's spa.

De-stress with a semi-private Hatha yoga session at Wickaninnish Inn’s spa. Practicing in a room perched over the Pacific Coast, you’ll be mesmerized by the crashing waves as you breathe, pose, stretch and meditate. After a weekend of adventure, it’s an ideal way to completely wind down before your return home.