Cathedral Grove

Vancouver Island

This spiritual home of tree-huggers is the mystical highlight of MacMillan Provincial Park. Located between Parksville and Port Alberni, it's often overrun with summer visitors – try not to knock them down as they scamper across the highway in front of you. Short accessible trails on either side of the road wind through a dense canopy of vegetation, offering glimpses of some of BC's oldest trees, including centuries-old Douglas firs more than 3m in diameter. Only huggable in groups.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Vancouver Island attractions

1. Horne Lake Caves & Outdoor Centre

5.42 MILES

BC's best spelunking, a 45-minute drive from Parksville. Some caves are open to the public for self-exploration, though the excellent guided tours are…

2. Alberni Valley Museum

6.66 MILES

Don't be put off by the unassuming concrete exterior: this is one of Vancouver Island's best community museums. Studded with fascinating First Nations…

3. Coombs Old Country Market

10.92 MILES

The mother of all pit stops, this wood-framed and turf-roofed food and crafts menagerie is stuffed with bakery and produce delectables. It attracts huge…

4. Milner Gardens & Woodland

12.1 MILES

This idyllic outdoor attraction combines rambling forest trails shaded by centuries-old trees with flower-packed gardens planted with magnificent…

5. Morningstar Farm

13.67 MILES

Check out the region's 'locavore' credentials at this delightful and highly welcoming working farmstead. Let your kids run wild – most will quickly fall…

6. Cumberland Museum

28.09 MILES

A wonderfully quirky museum located on a row of false-fronted buildings that looks like a Dodge City movie set, with evocative exhibits on the area's…