Diana Krall's Heaven on Earth: Tofino, Vancouver Island
The singer Diana Krall finds it “impossible to resist the charm” of Tofino, a little fishing village on Vancouver Island.
My husband Elvis [Costello] and I now mostly divide our time between Vancouver, New York and London, but my favorite place will always be Tofino, on Vancouver Island. I grew up in Victoria, a five-hour drive away, and it's impossible to resist the charm of this little fishing village on the west coast and its magnificent scenery.
It's a pretty wild place and is probably best visited in the summer – but having said that, if you want to get up close and romantic with someone special you can go at any time. A lot of people go storm watching at the Wickannish Inn (001 250 725 3100; www.wickinn.com) – a great place to stay – which might sound kind of kooky but is actually a pretty awe-inspiring thing to do in such a remote place on the edge of the world.
Tofino also boasts fantastic whale watching. I've seen humpback and grey whales among other sea creatures and birds. The hiking is terrific, too, and in the West Coast Trail – a near 50-mile long backpacking trail – it has one of the world's great trails. In fact, the area has so much to recommend, particularly if you love the Great Outdoors, it being on the edge of Pacific Rim National Park (www.pc.gc.ca)
I love taking seaplanes when I visit, which always seems so romantic – like something from a bygone age. It's also a great place to get away from it all and recharge your batteries and, from a songwriter's point of view, get some inspiration. I wrote a song during one stay.
You'll have the best seafood you'll have in your life in Tofino. Everything I've eaten at the Wickannish Inn has been superb, and I can also highly recommend the Blue Heron Restaurant (250 725 4266), which has a fabulous waterfront location.
Lastly, you just can't leave town without hugging the Eik cedar, probably the most famous tree in Canada – an 800-year-old western red cedar that was saved from destruction by the good citizens of Tofino. That's part of the deal.