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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22 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 welcomes you to celebrate & experience our vibrant culture through song, dance, art & cuisine. There will be dance performances Fridays through Sundays (and Holiday Mondays) & programming throughout the day, every day, by artisans - weaving demonstrations, crafts for budding artisans, aboriginal cuisine & artisan kiosks. More lasting memories if you hop aboard the Spirit Catcher train for a fun ride through nature. Gate admission to the Village is FREE. Charges apply for Spirit Train rides.
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.
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.
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.
Other businesses with Aboriginal Experiences
3 1371 Island Hwy
Campbell River, British Columbia
Family owned business offering Whale Watching, Wildlife & Adventure Tours & Grizzly bear viewing. Our Grizzly Bear Journey is on Aboriginal lands with viewing platforms at Orford River, in the Bute Inlet. Explore with us the beautiful water ways of the Discovery Islands. Possibly view killer whales (Orca), humpback whales, dolphins, sea lions, seals, black bears, eagles & so much more!
In operation since 2000 & is one of Campbell River's most experienced tour operators with over 40 years experience on these waters. Transport Canada certified. Guaranteed sightings; see website for details.
Rated by TripAdvisor as the #1 attraction in Campbell River.
639 Hornby St
Vancouver, British Columbia
A public gallery for Contemporary Aboriginal Art of the Northwest Coast named after the acclaimed Haida artist Bill Reid (1920-1998). The Gallery showcases the permanent collection of Bill Reid alongside changing exhibitions of contemporary Northwest Coast art. Highlights include stunning gold & silver jewelry, monumental sculptures & a towering totem pole by James Hart of Haida Gwaii. Visit the Gallery Gift Shop for a selection of original works & prints by local Northwest Coast artists, distinctive jewelry, accessories, books, cards & more. Located in the heart of downtown, just steps from the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver & Canada Line skytrain.
999 Canada Place
Vancouver, British Columbia
Canada Place, an inspiring national landmark famous for its five white sails, welcomes you to Canada's Pacific Gateway.
Canada Place Corporation is the coordinating landlord for the organizations at Canada Place including the Pan Pacific Hotel, Cruise Ship Terminal, World Trade Centre, Vancouver Convention Centre East, Vinci Park & the newest addition, FlyOver Canada, which opened in summer 2013.
Canada Place Corporation hosts a number of marquee annual community events including National Aboriginal Day, Canada Day & Christmas at Canada Place.