Historic & Heritage Sites
Parliament Buildings, Victoria (Brendan van Son photo)
Most heritage sites in BC tell stories of determined people that carved out lives among a landscape of gigantic mountains, thick forests and the vast Pacific Ocean.
Ninety-one National Historic Sites, ten Provincial Historic Sites and three UNESCO World Heritage sites provide a wide range of experiences, many of them interactive and at well-maintained, restored locations.
Hop in a stagecoach and pan for gold at Barkerville Historic Town, or ride a clattering rail car at the Britannia Mine Museum. Learn about fur traders at Fort Langley National Historic Site and fishermen at the North Pacific Cannery. The Kettle Valley Rail Trail follows a historic route through tunnels and over trestles – cycle a section or hop on the 1912 Kettle Valley Steam Railway.
Other historic sites in BC are off the beaten path – perfect for adventurous types with vivid imaginations. Step in ancient dinosaur tracks at Tumbler Ridge, or hike to the Burgess Shale and uncover bizarre fossils in Yoho National Park. Wander through weathered wood cabins in ghost towns such as Sandon. Or, tread softly between massive Haida First Nations mortuary totem poles on the Queen Charlotte Islands.
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45 Historic & Heritage Sites in British Columbia
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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.
2616 Pleasant St
Victoria, British Columbia
Historic house museum built in 1861; home of the O'Reilly family for 3 generations. Original furnishings & personal effects displayed as in the 1890-1920 period. Early Victoria pioneers. Heritage garden presently being restored to original plan. Afternoon tea served on the lawn overlooking the water 5 days a week May-August. Visitors can arrive by Harbour Ferries from Inner Harbour to our dock for $5.
Admission to house & gardens is $6 (adults), $4 for students, $3 for those 6-12. Tea includes tour; $28 including tax. Site available for rentals.
751 Hwy 97B NE
Salmon Arm, British Columbia
R.J. Haney Heritage Village and Museum is the Shuswap's largest heritage attraction. Tour through the restored Haney House and explore the Village rich in history with 14 historical or replicated buildings. Discover interesting exhibits in the Museum, then let the kids pan for "Haney Gold" or explore the Blacksmith Shop. Take a walk on our beautiful nature trails. Visit Marjorie's Tea Room and enjoy lunch or deserts. Sure to be a highlight of your visit, Villains and Vittles Dinner Theatre runs July and August with shows, Wednesday, Friday & Sunday. A home style meal & play promises to delight audiences.
324 Front St
Kaslo, British Columbia
An International treasure, the SS Moyie is the oldest surviving intact vessel of her type in the world. At the edge of Kootenay Lake, the sternwheeler rests permanently in her former port of call at Kaslo. Owned & operated by the Canadian Pacific Railway, the SS Moyie plied the waters of Kootenay Lake for nearly 60 years. The ship has been restored with special attention to preserve her unique & elegant features. Launched in 1898 to provide connecting service to Nelson from the CPR's Crowsnest Pass line from the east, the Moyie remained a fixture on Kootenay Lake until 1957.
835 Humboldt St
Victoria, British Columbia
Former girls school & convent, St. Ann's Academy National Historic site is located just 1 block from the Inner Harbour. St. Ann's features 2.5 ha (6.25 ac) of restored grounds & historic interiors featuring the 1858 restored chapel, Victoria's original Catholic cathedral. Self-guided tours available in Interpretive Centre. Restored grounds are open dawn to dusk daily; great for a break from shopping with the kids & the dog. Seasonal programing include Christmas concert series & ghostly walking tours for Halloween.
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.
31187 Douglas St
Yale, British Columbia
Visit our 1870's 'Creighton House' museum where artifacts and collections from Yale's historic past are on display. For 2012, our special exhibit, 'The Sasquatch Mystery' is on site. Tour St. John the Divine Church (1863) and then step back in time to the Living History 'tent city', and learn what life was like in the early days of the 1858 gold rush. Try your hand at gold panning or take a historic walking tour. Pioneer Cemetery tours are also available.
Our gift store carries a wide selection of items for all ages. Be sure to take away a Sasquatch souvenir!
Other businesses with Historic & Heritage Sites
We offer multi-day cruises through Haida Gwaii's (Queen Charlotte Islands') Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, Northern Vancouver Island, the Great Bear Rainforest, North Coast/ Khutzeymateen and Southeast Alaska. Our 68' vessels provide the perfect base from which to tour remote coastlines. On these world-class learning journeys we expect to see whales, bears, rich intertidal zones, and a great number of birds. With our First Nations guides we visit ancient villages, see totem poles and hope to catch a glimpse of the Kermode. Our experienced Crew and on-board naturalist will take you places that few have visited on our award-winning expeditions.
Britannia Beach, British Columbia
It was once the largest copper mine in the British Empire. Today, the Britannia Mine Museum opens up a little-seen world that fascinates all ages. Just like miners did, you'll climb aboard a mine train and rumble into an authentic tunnel. Entertaining guides describe the workings of drills and tools from the past century. Every visit includes gold panning with the chance to take home frequent findings. The Family Play area keeps young ones entertained. A glittering gift shop offers unique stones and giftware. To reach the Britannia Mine Museum, head north on the Sea to Sky Highway. Watch for signs mid-way to Whistler.
3735 Capilano Rd
North Vancouver, British Columbia
Appreciate nature from three breathtaking perspectives - world famous Capilano Suspension Bridge, the seven bridges of Treetops Adventure & the thrilling new Cliffwalk, a heart-stopping journey along the granite cliff high above Capilano River.
The 137 m (450 ft) long, 70 m (230 ft) high Capilano Suspension Bridge has thrilled visitors since 1889. While the wobbly bridge has become a Vancouver landmark, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park offers an all-encompassing BC experience. History, culture & nature are presented through knowledgeable staff and interpretive signage. Seasonal events like Raptors Ridge birds of prey June to October & Canyon Lights in December enhance this year-round destination.