Aboriginal canoe tour, Howe Sound (Patrice Halley photo)
British Columbia has the highest diversity of distinct First Nations in Canada, with more than 50 First Nations in more than 200 communities.
Interpretive centres, museums and tours throughout the province provide opportunities to learn about Aboriginal stories, ceremonies and traditions.
Aboriginal artwork, carvings and totem poles can be seen at galleries and museums, or even standing in their original, historic locations.
Some highlights include the Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver, the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre in Whistler, the Haida Heritage Centre on Haida Gwaii, and the Nk’mip Desert Cultural Centre in Osoyoos – but these are just a few of the many places and tours sharing Aboriginal cultural experiences in BC.
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24 Aboriginal Experiences in British Columbia
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2 Second Beach Rd
Skidegate, British Columbia
The Haida Heritage Centre at Kaay Llnagaay in Skidegate on Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands), opened in July, 2007. The Centre, located at the site of the old Haida seaside village of Kaay Llnagaay, or "Sea Lion Town", showcases the living culture of the Haida, dating back over 12,000 years. Six monumental cedar totem poles carved by Haida artists stand in front of the Haida longhouses, which are connected by interior walkways & atrium space. The Centre incorporates the Haida Gwaii Museum, a gift shop, canoe house, carving shed, performing house, the Bill Reid Teaching Centre & a cafe.
Miniature Train In Stanley Park
Vancouver, British Columbia
Enjoy the warmth of our Aboriginal Summer Village in Stanley Park this summer. Klahowya Village is a family-friendly Aboriginal cultural experience that features daily Aboriginal cultural performances, artisans & demonstrations. After a successful fourth season in 2013, the Village now features more than 20 interactive & visual displays linked to a Klahowya Village 'passport' that includes a download code for the audio story of the 'Journey of the Salmon' on iTunes, a season pass to ride the miniature train, admission to a craft workshop, colouring pages, & an area to collect stamps from interactive display stations.
This season's story, 'Journey of the Salmon', focuses on the significance of the salmon from an Aboriginal culture point of view as we celebrate the four-year cycle of the returning salmon.
7468 Mission Rd
Cranbrook, British Columbia
Hoodoos and other geological features are prominent in the Ktunaxa creation story, which reveals much about the Ktunaxa history. This fascinating story can be heard at the Ktunaxa Interpretive Centre at the St. Eugene Mission Resort, a Spanish colonial building constructed in 1910 (which operated for 60 years as a residential school for Aboriginal children). The Ktunaxa Kinbasket Tribal Council has transformed the building into a modern full-service resort. On-site is the Interpretive Centre that showcases Aboriginal contemporary arts, culture and heritage. On display are historic photographs, scale models of traditional tipis, a sturgeon-nosed canoe and many other artifacts.
1000 Rancher Creek Rd
Osoyoos, British Columbia
Experience "The Land, the Legends and the People" at Nk'Mip Desert Cultural Centre, a cultural and outdoor desert experience. View arts and cultural exhibits, audio-visual presentations and interactive displays featuring Okanagan First Nations culture and desert plants and animals. The 22 ha site features walking trails through the sagebrush habitat, outdoor sculptures & hands-on displays. Highlights include a reconstructed aboriginal village and in the summer, features daily guided walks, cultural programs and rattlesnake demonstrations. Visit Coyote's Gifts for First Nations art, jewelry, books, clothing and giftware. Located in an award-winning, sustainable building.
34 Weway Rd
Quathiaski Cove, British Columbia
The majestic backdrop of Discovery Passage frames the Village of Cape Mudge on Quadra Island, home to Nuyumbalees Cultural Centre. Established in 1979, Nuyumbalees was the first museum of its kind in Canada, designed specifically to house the Sacred Potlatch Collection. This unique grouping of masks, ceremonial items and regalia was repatriated from the federal government.
Visitors can view over 250 items removed during the Anti-Potlatch era (1884-1951), as well as stone tools displays, pre-contact basketry, and historic Totem and Welcome Poles located in our Carving Shed. At the Ah Wah Qwa Dzas guests will see several petroglyph, more than 2500 years old. Traditional Salmon BBQ dinner & dance performances held May - Sept (reservations are required).
Gift Shop and Tours are available throughout the year.
200-355 Yellowhead Hwy
Kamloops, British Columbia
Museum exhibits feature oral history and legends of the Secwepemc (Shuswap) with historical photos and artifacts. Visit archaeological remains of a 2000 year old village, reconstructed pithouses, ethnobotanical gardens showing traditional plant use. A marsh attracts many birds for viewing.
Ahousat, British Columbia
Aboriginal First Nations Eco-Cultural Experiences. Join us for a guided experience that will last for a lifetime: Experience our First Nations culture, our home & what we do today. Exchange stories with elders, local artists & singers. Enjoy traditional Aboriginal foods. Gather seafood, harvest hystuup from the reefs & fish for the tyee. Explore the Ahosuaht Hahoothee for spiritual connections, eagles, whales & other local happenings. Friends, Family & Storytelling.....See you soon!
4584 Blackcomb Way
Whistler, British Columbia
2013 BC Cultural Centre of the Year, the Squamish Lil'wat Cultural Centre showcases Whistler's Aboriginal heritage through tours, singing & drumming, Native art, interactive & outdoor exhibits, crafts, food & film. The Centre features a great hall, museum, theatre, contemporary gallery, cafe & gift shop. Our exhibit map is available in several languages. This world-class attraction is a fun, family-friendly activity that provides a genuine cultural experience. Check our website for programming updates & special events. Visit our online art gallery for our full store online!
Venue rental available for private receptions, weddings & events. Please view floor plans & capacity charts on our website.
4971 Hicks Rd
Boston Bar, British Columbia
Tuckkwiowhum Village (pronounced Tuck-we-ohm) is a First Nations heritage site & village located in Nlaka'pamux territory, 5-km south of Boston Bar, BC.
Tuckkwiowhum was given its name by our people, and means "great berry picking place". The area still boasts rolling hills & lush forests of wild huckleberries, blueberries & medicinal plants.
We offer our guests an opportunity to experience the Nlaka'pamux village lifestyle before the arrival of Europeans. See the summer lodges, smoke house, food caches, sweat lodge, earth ovens & an awe-inspiring pit house. Whether you're looking for a peaceful weekend getaway, a quick stop on the way through the canyon, or to immerse yourself in our rich lifestyle & culture, you'll find what you're looking for at Tuckkwiowhum Village.
Williams Lake, British Columbia
The Xat'sull community invites you to visit and experience our spiritual, cultural and traditional way of life. We offer daily tours and cultural workshops where you take part in a variety of educational and recreational activities. We are situated on a sunny plateau overlooking the Fraser River. Meet our friendly, knowledgeable guides who will take you on a memorable journey through the history of the Northern Secwepemc people. Learn to cook a traditional meal, listen to stories around an open fire and fall asleep to the beautiful sound of the Fraser River in the distance.