Take the Traveller Quiz Super, Natural British Columbia

Vancouver Island and the abundant life-giving waters of the surrounding Pacific Ocean are the Traditional Territory of the Coast Salish, Nuu-chah-nulth, and Kwakwakaw’akw People.

Embark on a transformative trip and seek Indigenous experiences from urban Victoria to the wilderness of the Pacific Rim. Let Indigenous wildlife viewing and dining opportunities, accommodations and cultural experiences guide your Vancouver Island itinerary.

Part 1

South Island & Cowichan

Arrive in Victoria from mainland Vancouver and find yourself in the shared territory of the Esquimalt, Songhees, and Saanich People. At Kitchens of Distinction, Chef Shirley Lang, of Cree descent, crafts culinary experiences and excursions that depart from Victoria and reward travellers with tours that honour Indigenous and multicultural cuisine and deliver the vitality of Vancouver Island to your plate.

Park your RV on a private peninsula right in Victoria harbour at Salish Sea RV Haven, owned and operated by the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations. The Lekwungen speaking peoples invite you to The Gallery Cafe at the Songhees Wellness Center for a introduction to South Island Indigenous cultures.

Leave the beautiful colonial architecture and gardens behind and travel north to coastal Sidney and guaranteed whale sightings. Sidney Whale Watching operates on the Traditional Territory of the W̱SÁNEĆ (Saanich) People and in the Salish Sea, the waters of the Pacific Ocean between the mainland and Vancouver Island. Between March and October, witness resident Orca whales in their feeding grounds; transient Grey, Humpback, and Minke whales; as well as dolphins, porpoises, sea lions, seals, river otters, and a diverse array of marine birds.


Must Stop Spots

Where to Stay

Part 2

Central/North Central Island

Nanaimo is home to Snuneymuxw First Nation and your March through December departure point for short ferry ride to Saysutshun Newcastle Island, a place of physical and spiritual healing for the Snuneymuxw. Now a protected marine park, and home to the rare albino raccoon, you can book an any-level cultural walking tour with an experienced Snuneymuxw guide or stop by Q’uluc’tun Bistro for a snack, bike, or kayak.

The K’ómoks First Nation greet: “Gila’kasla!”, which can mean ‘Everyone Welcome!’ Visit I-Hos Gallery for masks and carvings, jewellery and paintings by contemporary Indigenous artists in the Pacific Northwest. The gallery overlooks Queneesh (Comox Glacier) and the Gulf Islands and sits in the original K’ómoks Village, the main community of the living K’ómoks Peoples.

Also on traditional K’ómoks lands are the Puntledge RV Campground and Nim Nim Interpretive Centre in Courtenay, BC.  This Central Island location is a perfect departure point for travel to north and west Vancouver Island.

Travel to Campbell River in the North Central Island region and luxuriate in birdwatching, beachcombing, and Indigenous oceanfront camping at Wei Wai Kum Nation’s award-winning Thunderbird RV Park on the Tyee Spit, located between the mouth of the Campbell River and Discovery Passage. View whales and grizzlies, with enriching cultural interpretation by experienced Indigenous guides at Aboriginal Journeys Wildlife Viewing and Adventure Tours,  departing from the traditional territory of the Laichwiltach People.


Must Stop Spots

Where to Stay

Part 3

North Island

The north grows wild and sparse, which makes for rich and amazing Indigenous cultural tourism offerings in pristine coastal surroundings. Small-ship adventure and wildlife tour operation Sea Wolf Adventures in Port McNeill gives tourists the chance to learn directly from the Kwakwaka’wakw People and their stories, songs, and experience. Broughton Strait sunsets and loon calls soothe and heal at a traditional Kwakiutl place of refuge, now the oceanside location of family-friendly Cluxewe Resort and seasonal Cluxewe Waterfront Bistro.

Enter the rainforest and stroll remote Pacific beaches as a guest of the Gwa’sala- Nakwaxda’xw First Nations at k’awat’si Tours. Learn about salmon stewardship, hear elders’ stories, and rest your weary head at Kwa’lilas Hotel in Port Hardy.

Walters Cove Resort, owned by the Ka:’yu:’k’t’h’/Che:k:tles7et’h'(pronounced Kie-YOU-cut and TSHEH-kleh-szet) First Nation, offers the best salmon and halibut fishing on northwest Vancouver Island. A welcoming lodge, gourmet meals, pristine saltwater, old-growth forest, and experienced Indigenous guides await you, just minutes from Kyuquot Sound.


Must Stop Spots

Where to Stay

Part 4

Pacific Rim

Ditidaht Comfort Camping offers respite in Pacific Rim National Park near the impressive and rigorous 75-kilometer West Coast Trail. Set foot on ancient travel and trade routes made by the Ditidaht, Pacheedaht, and Huu-ay-aht.

Huu-ay-aht First Nations invites guests to Kiix̣in Village and Fortress National Historic Site. Inhabited by the Huu-ay-aht for more than 5,000 years, this is a sacred site. Seasonal tours of Kiix̣in Village’s standing architecture and archaeological wonders depart from Bamfield.

Wya Point Resort features luxury accommodations and oceanfront yurts and camping on an exclusive beach amid 600 acres of old-growth forest on the Traditional Territory of Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ (Ucluelet) First Nation–perfect for stormwatching. Also owned by Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ First Nation, Thorton Motel offers a great starting point for your all-season adventures on Ucluelet’s Wild Pacific Trail.

Owned by Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation, Best Western Tin Wis Resort is located directly on Mackenzie Beach, just a short drive to downtown Tofino. Stroll through the many shops and indulge at artisan eateries. Visit the Roy Henry Vickers Gallery, featuring the vibrant work of celebrated artist Roy Henry Vickers, and the House of Himwitsa, specializing in local Indigenous art. Before you go, venture into Clayoquot Sound with Indigenous skippers at Clayoquot Wild. Ask Indigenous interpreters all of your questions as you journey to local hot springs and past ancient villages on wildlife and custom tours.


Must Stop Spots

Where to Stay

Sidney Whale Watching

JJX4+G4 Sidney, British Columbia

Salish Sea RV Haven

CJG2+FQ Victoria, British Columbia

Songhees Wellness Centre

CHRC+JG View Royal, British Columbia

Kitchens of Distinction

FF4R+JR Victoria, British Columbia

Duncan

Q7HR+CP Duncan, British Columbia

Maple Mountain

R9W4+R5 Crofton, North Cowichan, BC

Nanaimo

Nanaimo, BC, Canada

Saysutshun

53Q7+WF Nanaimo, British Columbia

I-Hos Gallery

M2HR+C7 Courtenay, Comox-Strathcona B, BC

Puntledge RV Campground

MXWW+RM Courtenay, Comox-Strathcona B, BC

Thunderbird RV Park & Cottage Resort

2QV2+32 Campbell River, BC

Homalco Wildlife & Cultural Tours

XQ24+JH Campbell River, BC

Campbell River

Campbell River, BC, Canada

Campbell River

Campbell River, BC, Canada

Sea Wolf Adventures

HWQ6+M4 Port McNeill, Mount Waddington C, BC

Cluxewe Resort

JR7H+42 Port McNeill, Mount Waddington C, BC

Kwa'lilas Hotel

PFCX+PQ Port Hardy, BC

Wya Point Resort

X9CV+2V Ucluelet, BC

Thorton Motel

WCVX+JJ Ucluelet, BC

Best Western Tin Wis Resort

1119 Pacific Rim Hwy Box 389, Tofino, BC V0R 2Z0

Roy Henry Vickers Gallery

533V+6F Tofino, BC

House of Himwitsa

533R+G8 Tofino, BC

Clayoquot Wild

533R+JM Tofino, BC