British Columbia has a unique and colorful history - one that goes far beyond the 200 plus years that Anglo settlers have called this area home. And while much of the province's recent and ancient heritage is apparent in the art, architecture and peoples of each region, nothing provides a trip back in time quite like the museum experience. From preserved sites to heritage buildings to formal exhibits, BC's story comes in all shapes and sizes and can be found in every corner of the province. In fact, there are over 100 museums to choose from, covering everything from industrial and cultural history to military heritage and exploration. Here are a few of our favourites…
Royal British Columbia Museum in Victoria has received global acclaim for its amazing periodic exhibits as well as its 3 unique galleries that celebrate the human and natural history of the province. Of particular note are the amazing walk-through Coastal Rainforest, the Old Towne and the Aboriginal Longhouse. Treat the kids to a show at the onsite National Geographic IMAX Theatre, too! Also in Victoria, the CFB Esquimalt Naval and Military Museum and the Maritime Museum of British Columbia bring BC's exploratory, merchant and military oceanic history to life.
Further up Vancouver Island in the West Coast town of Tofino, The Whale Centre Maritime Museum is home to an elaborate display of local artifacts that have been donated by the locals over the last quarter-century. Included are a colourful assortment of native cedar baskets and jewelry as well as traditional whaling equipment and original navigation charts of the region. The tour-de-force, however, is the massive gray whale skeleton!
Located at Gate A under the trademark white dome of Vancouver's BC Place Stadium is BC Sports Hall of Fame & Museum. Touted as Canada's most dynamic sports museum, it features interactive displays that highlight the province's athletic elite as well as including Canada's first Aboriginal Sports Gallery - an exhibit that pays homage to the unique contributions made by BC's First Nations peoples.
From here, it's only a short ride on the Skytrain to the Burnaby Village Museum. This authentic, outdoor 1920's experience is a period-perfect representation of early British Columbia, complete with costumed townsfolk (who run the businesses and shops in character) as well as the highlight, the ride-able 1912 CW Parker Carousel.
Contact us for a complete list of BC's amazing museums. Our past is as rich as our present. You're welcome to explore it!