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Carmanah Walbran Provincial Park
(JF Bergeron photo)

Vancouver Island

Museums

Antiques in a window (David Gluns photo)

Antiques in a window (David Gluns photo)

Museums on Vancouver Island celebrate Aboriginal culture, maritime exploration, forestry, beachcombing and even fossils.

The U’mista Cultural Centre (in Alert Bay) is home to a significant First Nations potlatch collection, while the Quw’ustun’ Cultural Centre (in Duncan) brings history to life with traditional dancing demonstrations.

Learn about industries such as logging, fishing and the railway at the BC Forest Discovery Centre (in Duncan), Alberni Maritime Museum (in Port Alberni) and the Museum at Campbell River.

Prefer something that’s off the beaten path? Billy’s Museum at Echo Bay is home to a collection of random objects that have washed ashore.

Visitor Centres have information on local museums and historic sites. Check the hours of operation for museums, as they may vary by season.

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17 Museums in Vancouver Island

1 - 10 of 17 Results

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1

BC Forest Discovery Centre - Duncan

2892 Drinkwater Rd
Duncan, British Columbia
V9L 6C2
Toll-free866-715-1113
Phone250-715-1113

The BC Forest Discovery Centre is a 40 ha (100 ac) open air museum. With 2.5 km of narrow gauge rail line visitors explore the site on one of the Centre's gas or steam locomotives. Large logging equipment, vintage industrial vehicles & historical buildings make up only a portion of the Centre's unique collection of forestry-related artifacts. A mature second growth forest, trails through Somenos Wetlands & a picnic site on Somenos Lake make this a must see attraction for Southern Vancouver Island. Easy to find, located just north of Duncan on the Trans Canada Hwy.

2

Comox Air Force Museum - Comox

19 Wing Comox/CFB Comox
Comox, British Columbia
V0R 2K0
Toll-free
Phone250-339-8162

Come celebrate the history of 19 Wing Comox & West Coast Canadian Military Aviation. Relive the daring exploits of BC's Airmen in the short-lived Royal Flying Corps of Canada (1917-1918) & Canadian Air Force (1918-1924) through the glory years of the Royal Canadian Air Force (1924-1968), the consolidation of the forces in 1968 & on into the present day, all with a local focus. All of 19 Wing's squadrons, past & present, are represented. Our museum has a Heritage Air Park, exhibiting aircraft from the past including the Y2K Spitfire Restoration Project, a well-stocked Gift Shop & an aviation reference library. Admission is by donation.

3

Courtenay & District Museum - Courtenay

207 4th St
Courtenay, British Columbia
V9N 1G7
Toll-free
Phone250-334-0686

Visit the Courtenay & District Museum. For over 45 years, we've been keen about the natural & cultural heritage of the breathtaking Comox Valley & we like to show it off. Are we serious about what we do? You bet - science, academic research, interpretation, preservation & having fun! Be our guest to find out why the Comox Valley - past & present, is one of the most plentiful places on earth. Take a fossil tour & travel 80 million years back in time; browse our galleries to delve into the stories that make our history come alive. Check out our website for Kids Camps!

4

IMAX Victoria in the Royal BC Museum - Victoria

675 Belleville St
Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 1A1
Toll-free
Phone250-480-4887

This is the largest screen in all of BC with this IMAX, you won't just see it - you'll experience it! The immense size screen & powerful, chair shaking surround sound take you to places you can only imagine! Visit with exotic animals, travel to far-flung locations, dive deep below or soar above the earth's surface. It's IMAX - come along for the adventure.

Shows play hourly throughout the day & into the evening. Hollywood feature length films are often added to the evening schedule.

Full concession & National Geographic Store gift store on site.

5

Maritime Museum of British Columbia - Victoria

28 Bastion Square
Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 1H9
Toll-free
Phone250-385-4222

Explore British Columbia's rich maritime history through themed galleries where you will learn about explorers, fur traders and pirates. Discover the adventure of whaling and seal hunting and relive an era of graceful travel aboard Canadian Pacific ocean liners. A family friendly Museum, children can pick up their scavenger hunt and discover hidden treasures through this 20,000 square foot museum.

Visitors can also feel the history of the building in the restored Vice-Admiralty Courtroom where Judge Matthew Baillie Begbie once presided as Chief Justice of BC and take a ride in the ornate birdcage elevator.

Want a more personalized visit? Check out our tour schedule for public tours available on a variety of topics or host your event at the Maritime.

6

Miniature World - Victoria

649 Humboldt St
Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 1A7
Toll-free
Phone250-385-9731

Visit with us & see the world's smallest operational sawmill & two of the world's largest doll houses, experience one of the world's largest model railroads, visit the wonderful world of the circus, take a spaceship to the stars, travel through the Enchanted Valley of Castles, witness the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace & further adventures. Tiny treasures & little pleasures await all who continue into Frontierland, Fantasyland, the Fields of Glory, the World of Dickens & much more. Special effects in lighting, sound & animation. Car park, bus parking, special family rate, air-conditioned. We've expanded for our latest, greatest exhibit - King Arthur's "Camelot"! This expansion includes eleven new exhibits depicting this timeless legend

7

Museum at Campbell River - Campbell River

470 Island Hwy
Campbell River, British Columbia
V9W 4Z9
Toll-free
Phone250-287-3103

Visitors call the Museum at Campbell River on Vancouver Island "a gem of a place". Located conveniently on the Island Hwy, the Museum houses a fine collection of permanent exhibits that represent the unique culture & history of Northern Vancouver Island. Highlights include First Nations carvings & artifacts, the history of the logging & salmon fishing industries & interactive exhibits like a touch screen kiosk that especially intrigue young visitors. While you are here, be sure to watch our film about the famous Ripple Rock explosion & explore the Museum Gift Shop for local books & unique Northwest Coast art.

8

Nanaimo Museum - Nanaimo

Commercial Street & 100 Museum Way
Nanaimo, British Columbia
V9R 5J8
Toll-free
Phone250-753-1821

Discover our fascinating history & modern day contributions to Canada's West Coast in our 1,486 sq m (16,000 sq ft) museum located in the Vancouver Island Conference Centre. Stroll through time in our main gallery to get a sense of what life was like for Nanaimo's earliest settlers & hear stories of the Snuneymuxw First Nation. Feel what it was like below the surface in our new replica Coal Mine exhibit. The museum also manages the Bastion, an original Hudson's Bay Company outpost built in 1853. Don't miss the cannon firing at noon daily in the summer.

9

Nuyumbalees Cultural Centre - Quathiaski Cove

34 Weway Rd
Quathiaski Cove, British Columbia
V0P 1N0
Toll-free
Phone250-285-3733

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.

10

Royal British Columbia Museum - Victoria

675 Belleville St
Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 9W2
Toll-free888-447-7977
Phone250-356-7226

See all of BC at the Royal BC Museum. Experience galleries & immerse yourself in the tales of where we've been & where we are going. Discover things & people you never knew before. Experience authentic artifacts in highly realistic immersive settings - from Woolly Mammoth in his rocky, icy world, to a trip on the tar-scented HMS Discovery. Stroll through Old Town's wood-cobbled street, enjoy its shops, cinema & railway station. May 16, 2014-Nov 11, 2014 the Viking Invasion begins. With more than 500 artifacts - jewellery, swords, axes & clothing -some rare & many which have never before been shown outside Scandinavia. Providing insights on domestic life, death rituals, the significance of craft, the power of mythology & the symbolism of ships, some of which challenge our commonly held beliefs about Vikings.

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