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Vancouver Island Culture

Vancouver Island embraces the unique cultures and communities that have come together to call this region home; different histories and societies that have transformed the region into a world-famous, multi-cultural destination.

Visit a castle or two in Victoria. Ride a steam train and learn about the Island’s forest industry in Duncan. Explore maritime history in Port Alberni. Watch the canoe races and enjoy a salmon barbeque in Alert Bay, then visit the world’s largest totem pole. Learn about the Finnish history of Sointula. Enjoy a seafood brunch in Parksville, afternoon tea in downtown Victoria, a smoked salmon treat from Port Hardy, or a bowl of borscht in Nanaimo. Culture adds flavour to every community.

And food is only part of the culture of the Island. You’ll find live theatre, music, and performances in many of the local communities, honouring their history and showcasing local talent.

The hearts and souls of Vancouver Island are waiting to meet you.

The Robert Bateman Centre, showcases over 80 works of Robert Bateman spanning his seven decades as one of Canada’s premier wildlife artists. Located in Victoria's inner harbour within the historic Steamship Terminal, the Centre houses a gallery and gift shop, and hosts a rotation of exhibits and a full schedule of educational…

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Sunrise Ridge Waterfront Resort is the perfect place to start your Vancouver Island vacation. Located just 37 km north of Nanaimo, our Resort is situated on 10.2 beautiful acres of property with peaceful surroundings and incredible landscapes. A short walk will take you to the endless beaches that Parksville is…

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City of Duncan

200 Craig Street, Duncan, BC V9L 1W3 • Cowichan
250-746-6126

Duncan is small, in a Big way. Just a few hundred metres off the Highway (about 60 kilometres north of Victoria) you'll find 300 shops and services in a few beautiful walkable blocks - although Visitors seem to remember the 40 world renowned totem poles. Within minutes of downtown are…

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Built by coal baron Robert Dunsmuir during the reign of Queen Victoria and now a National Historic Site, Craigdarroch Castle has been meticulously restored, giving visitors a glimpse of privileged life in the 1890s. The Castle weaves a fascinating tale of an intriguing family – their achievements, their relationships and…

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The Beach Club Resort

181 Beachside Drive, Parksville, BC V9P 2H5 • Central Island
1-888-760-2008

The Beach Club Resort hotel is located on the site of the historic Island Hall Resort and features the most luxurious hotel rooms in Parksville, on Vancouver Island’s east coast. Guest suites offer private balconies, spectacular ocean and mountain views, thoughtful amenities, and feature beautifully appointed West Coast décor. The hotel’s…

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Sea Wolf Adventures

24 Boardwalk, Telegraph Cove, BC V0N 3J0 • North Island Region
250-902-9653

Departing from Telegraph Cove, combine cultural discoveries with world-class wildlife viewing on a zodiac adventure into the heart of First Nations’ territory of the Kwakwaka’wakw: Vancouver Island North. Share our love of the local landscape and learn more about our 13000+ year old history! Our adventure begins in Alert Bay…

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Harbour Air Seaplanes

950 Wharf Street, Victoria, BC V8W 1T3 • Central Island, Cowichan, Gulf Islands, North Central Island, South Island
1-800-665-0212

Harbour Air Seaplanes offers fast, frequent flights between BC’s most popular coastal destinations 364 days a year. Fly between downtown Vancouver, South Vancouver (YVR), Pitt Meadows and Victoria, Nanaimo, Maple Bay, Comox, Salt Spring Island, the Sunshine Coast, and Whistler. Scenic tours show off our waterfront cities, majestic mountain ranges…

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Milner Gardens and Woodland

2179 Island Highway West, Qualicum Beach BC, V9K 1G1 • Central Island
250-752-6153

Vancouver Island University’s Milner Gardens and Woodland is a magical seaside retreat once reserved for royalty. Sheltered by an old-growth forest and the Strait of Georgia, this one-of-a kind woodland estate rejuvenates the soul with its gardens and magnificent coastal views.Enjoy a leisurely pot of tea while taking in the…

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IMAX® Victoria

675 Belleville Street, Victoria, BC, V8W 1A1 • South Island
(250) 480-4887

IMAX® Victoria features state-of-the-art IMAX 4K Laser projection technology to fill the Biggest Screen in BC coupled with an immersive 12-channel sound system – Bigger is really just the beginning! Through the power of IMAX®: Explore remote locations around the world. Experience the weightlessness of space. Dive into the undersea world…

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I-Hos Gallery

3310 Comox Road Courtenay, BC V9N3P8 • North Central Island
250-339-7702

I-Hos Gallery presents a collection of traditional and contemporary Northwest Coast artwork, including masks, prints, gold and silver jewelry, wood carvings and more produced by First Nations artists.Our culture is expressed through our art. We are located between Courtenay and Comox on Vancouver Island, on the site of the original…

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Monk Art Gallery

151A Morison Avenue, Parksville BC V9P 1K9 • Central Island
250-248-8189

Monk is a West Coast Canadian artist. The subject matter for the art comes primarily from beautiful Vancouver Island coastlines, and spectacular old growth forests of Cathedral Grove. MONK invites the public to join in painting on a new original painting. They add brush strokes, and sign the back as…

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In the heart of Comox Valley, 40 Knots Vineyard and Estate Winery crafts wines distinctly shaped by wind and sea on a sun soaked glacier till vineyard. Established 2005, Brenda and Layne Craig steward environmentally ethical farming practices and traditional wine making methods under direction of a Master Wine…

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Victoria Distillers

9891 Seaport Place, Sidney, BC, V8L 4X3 • South Island
250-544-8217

Tour, Taste and Lounge in BC’s only waterfront distillery in charming Sidney-by-the-Sea. Take in all aspects of production during tour and tastings. Visitors are guided through the entire distillation process and around two gleaming copper pot stills for an intimate look into one of BC’s finest artisan distilleries.…

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Filberg Festival

61 Filberg Road, Comox, BC V9M 2S7 • North Central Island
250-941-0727

Set among the stately trees and gardens of the Filberg Heritage Lodge and Park in Comox, the Filberg Festival is truly a unique event. Wander through the grounds surrounded by beautiful gardens, rustic out-buildings and magnificent views of Comox Harbour and the Beaufort Mountain Range.The Festival has established a world-wide…

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Howard Johnson Harbourside Hotel Nanaimo

1 Terminal Ave, Nanaimo, BC V9R 5R4 • Central Island
250-753-2241

Welcome to our eco-friendly Howard Johnson Hotel Nanaimo Harbourside centrally located in downtown Nanaimo and across the street from the inner harbour and Seawall. We provide clean and accommodating guest rooms and easy access to the area’s top attractions and close proximity to ferry terminals. Free parking, Free Wi-Fi…

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Imagine a getaway with miles of beach, boutique shops, art galleries, tasty food and wine, bakeries and coffee shops to linger in, a charming hotel and an inn all within a few kilometres. Lots of cool, relaxed things to do with family and friends within easy walking distance. Beautiful, Oak…

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Sidney Booktown

2436 Beacon Ave. Sidney BC • South Island
250-656-2345

Explore the unique bookshops of Sidney Booktown, all within easy walking distance, and discover literary treasures new and old. Enjoy a great selection of new and second-hand titles while visiting our beautiful seaside town. Sidney also offers a wide variety of boutique shops, restaurants, and beautiful scenery, making…

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Shelter Point Distillery

4650 Regent Road Campbell River, BC V9H 1E3 • North Central Island
778.420.2200

Paradise isn"t necessarily a geographical requirement for making great spirits, but we managed to find it — at Shelter Point, on the eastern shores of Vancouver Island. Come savour our hand crafted Whisky and Vodka.

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Comox Valley Arts

202 - 580 Duncan Street, Courtenay, BC, V9N 2M7 • North Central Island

The Comox Valley Community Arts Council works to: * facilitate, support and promote arts and culture in our community * actively engage and educate about the value of arts and culture in our daily lives, and for creating the world in which we want to live * promote the Comox Valley…

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Parksville Beach Festival

PO Box 28, Parksville, BC V9P 2G3 • Central Island

The Quality Foods Canadian Open Sand Sculpting Competition and Exhibition is a world class event for Master Sand Sculptors and is an official qualifying event for the World Championship of Sand Sculpting! Master Sand Sculptors travel from all corners of the globe to participate in our remarkable competition and exhibition…

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Royal BC Museum

675 Belleville Street Victoria BC V8W 9W2 • South Island
1-888-447-7977

See all of British Columbia at the Royal BC Museum, a world-class museum of natural and human history. Explore our permanent galleries and immerse yourself in tales of where we've been and where we are going. Discover things and people you never knew before at what TripAdvisor users have twice…

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Spirits of the West Coast Native Art Gallery

2926 Back Road Comox, BC V9N 9G9 • North Central Island
1 (877) 338-2120

Explore the largest variety of authentic Native Art and Jewelry in this area. Enjoy beautiful Totem Poles, Silver and Gold Jewelry, Masks, Prints, Paddles, Argillite and other Carvings. Find beautiful and affordable gifts or one-of-a-kind Masterpieces. Open Monday to Saturday 10 am - 5 pm.

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Nanaimo Museum

100 Museum Way, Nanaimo, BC V9R 5J8 • Central Island
250-753-1821

Discover fresh interpretive exhibits reflecting the lifestyles of Nanaimo, the Harbour City. We offer family programs & various tours, seasonal feature exhibits and a unique gift shop. The museum also manages the Bastion, an original HBC post built in 1853. Cannon firings daily at noon each summer!

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