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2017 Cowichan Visitor Guide

CaNaDa Has a new prOvence


There’s more to explore in North Cowichan!

A Community of Communities: We have it all! Parks and Hiking – Boasting over 50 parks and 5,000 hectares of municipal forest, North Cowichan is an active-living paradise. Our trails weave amidst magnificent forests, mountains, lakes, rivers, and ocean inlets, with options for hikers and bikers alike. Villages, History, and Art – Learn about Vancouver Island’s logging history at the BC Forest Discovery Centre. Enjoy our world-famous Chemainus murals. Visit the studios of our artisans and finish your day with a top-notch performance at the Cowichan Performing Arts Theatre, the Chemainus Theatre or the Crofton Hotel. Waterfront Access – Dive in to our warm waters or kayak along 40 kilometres of our breathtaking coastline, stretching from Genoa Bay to Maple Bay to Crofton, and finally Chemainus. Stroll along oceanfront boardwalks, then stop at a local marina for cuisine with a view. Farming and Agriculture – Twenty-five percent of North Cowichan land is agricultural. Drive or cycle through the countryside and stop for a fresh-from-the-field lunch or savour our award-winning wines at a picturesque vineyard.

Photos: Kurt Knock, Colette Bradette

www.northcowichan.ca


a cowichan

sUnrise Or sunSet? or dOes iT MaTTer?

Visitor Services: Cowichan Regional Visitor Centre 2896 Drinkwater Rd 1-888-303-3337/250-746-4636 visitorinfo@duncancc.bc.ca Chemainus Visitor Centre Waterwheel Park  |  250- 246-3944 visitorcentre@chemainus.bc.ca Cowichan Lake District Visitor Centre 125 South Shore Rd  | 250-749-3244 lcchamber@shaw.ca Ladysmith Visitor Centre 33 Roberts St  | 250-245-2112 info@ladysmithcofc.com

Inside 03 Welcome 04 Cowichan’s 10 Unmissable Things 09 Sip + Savour 11 Boating + Marinas 13 Farmers Markets

South Cowichan Tourist Info Booth 2720 Mill Bay Rd (Mill Bay Shopping Centre) 250-743-5500 mfuller@boultbee.ca The official © 2017 Cowichan Visitor Guide is published by the Tourism Cowichan Society in partnership with Taiji Brand Group. No part of this publication may be reproduced without consent from the publisher. Printed in British Columbia.

15 Water Sports

25 Saying “I Do”

17 Golf Courses

27 Museums + Galleries

19 Third Places

29 Fishing Spots

21 Campsites + Picnics 23 Arts + Culture

31

Tracks + Trails

32 Communities 38 Calendar of Events 40 Sip, Savour & Stay


today in cowichan?

Oh, we just Went out fOr GRocerieS.


Welcome to Cowichan. The Cowichan Region takes its name from Quw’utsun’, an aboriginal word that means “the warm land.” The First People knew what they were talking about: Cowichan is located in Canada’s only maritime Mediterranean climatic zone and is home to the warmest year-round temperature anywhere in the country. It’s no wonder this place is so well suited to growing things, including an incredible array of food and an unmatched quality of life. For decades, Cowichan has been producing amazing artisanal food and drink from the region’s burgeoning farms, wineries, cideries, distilleries, fishers and artists. Today Cowichan is so replete with its own artisanal culinary offerings that it features its own annual festival — Savour Cowichan Festival — and the world is definitely taking note. With regard to Cowichan’s growing number of wineries, comparisons are regularly made to the Napa and Barossa Valleys. Referring to the entire culinary package, legendary foodie James Barber once referred to Cowichan as “Canada’s Provence.” So rest assured, the table is definitely set here in Cowichan. And yet, when it comes to things to experience here, food and drink are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg! From our concerts and festivals to our many outdoor activities like mountain biking, hiking, fishing, kayaking and more, Cowichan features a myriad of other attractions that can be enjoyed year-round. And when you consider that everything that happens here – from the eclectic to the extreme – is packaged with some of the most breathtaking scenery anywhere, Cowichan becomes a destination that competes with the best that the world has to offer.

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“This fabulous living history artifact is part of the Cowichan Valley Trail and the most spectacular and impressive of the eight “That devotion to one of the most delicate balancing acts in existence – of timing, taste,

trestles along the trail.” — BROADER HORIZONS, NANAIMO, TRIPADVISOR

weather and skill – is paying off, as we discovered during a recent day trip that took us to several award-winning wineries and the equally successful sole cider producer in the valley.” — SHIRLEY CULPIN, BLOGGER, HELLO BC

cOwichan’s

1O

1

UNMissable

2

THinGs.

Walking the Kinsol Trestle Tasting wine, spirits, ciders and beers There’s no exact date when Cowichan realized its renaissance from outpost fruit and grain producer to becoming “Napa of the North,” but it’s safe to say that in the last two decades the region has given rise to dozens of upstart operations that have capitalized on the region’s favourable climate and soil to create world-class potent potables. Among these are wines of every description, cider, craft beer and, more recently, spirits. Most are relatively small operations (relative to world producers), but just about all of them either grow what they need or source it locally. In every case, each operation welcomes you to swing by, explore their technique and sample the fruits of their labour. If wine, spirit and beer tasting are your cup of tea, you’ll find Cowichan Valley eminently accommodating, with a “wine route” that extends from Mill Bay right the way through to Ladysmith. (See map on page 40.)

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Although Cowichan has always been ideally suited for growing timber, its rugged topography has made hauling logs particularly difficult. In order to transport timber by rail, wooden trestles were built to span the area’s massive chasms. By far the largest of those found on Vancouver Island is the 144-foot high Kinsol Trestle that spans the Koksilah River just north of Shawnigan Lake. Completed in 1920 and named for the short-lived “King Solomon Mine,” it is an impressive engineering feat even by today’s standards and remains one of the loftiest wooden railway trestles in the world. The Kinsol Trestle is part of the Trans Canada Trail network that skirts Shawnigan Lake and winds its way to Cowichan Lake, North Cowichan and Ladysmith.


“The trails in the Cowichan Valley are among my favourite to ride – you have the sweet

“The Duncan Farmers Market is a small window into the delicious soul of the Cowichan Valley…

gravity-fuelled adventures of Prevost or the established network of Mount Tzouhalem

the market was recently named the best in B.C. Association of Farmers’ Markets, a sign of the area’s plenty.” — MIA STAINSBY, THE VANCOUVER SUN

4

if you’re looking for something with a little more flow. Maple Mountain, however, has always been a bit of a mystery — until now...” — MIKE D’ANTONI, SMB.COM

3 Shopping at the Duncan Farmers Market If you find yourself in Duncan on any given Saturday, you simply can’t miss the Duncan Farmers Market. One of the largest markets of its kind in B.C., it is spread out over several city blocks in downtown Duncan and subscribes to a “you make it, you bake it, you grow it, you sell it” philosophy. Here, you’ll find the freshest local fruits, vegetables, baking, jams and jellies, honey, crafts, clothing, pet treats and more! The market is open year-round with a short two-week closure over the winter holiday season, reopening the middle of January.

Tubing on the Cowichan River

The Cowichan River extends 47 km from its source at Lake Cowichan to its mouth at Cowichan Bay. Designated as a Canadian Heritage River in 2003, it serves as a home to many animal species and a viaduct for several species of fish. In the summer, the river is a spectacular venue for what is commonly known as “tubing.” The jury is out on whether “tubing” is a sport, pastime or simply a leisure activity, but in essence, tubing on the Cowichan River involves a one-way, downriver trip in emerald green and (mostly) quiet waters aboard a large, inflatable inner tube. There are many variations on where to start or end the trip, and there are even businesses that will outfit and shuttle you.

5 Riding or hiking “Maple Syrup”

Even before mountain bikers referred to rides as “sweet” there was “Maple Syrup,” a breathtaking 9 km mountain bike trail that’s part of a network of hiking and biking trails on Maple Mountain, located on the northern side of Maple Bay in North Cowichan. Access to all of Maple Mountain’s trails is by way of a well-marked trailhead on the east side of Osborne Bay Road, midway between Herd Road and the town of Crofton. Whether you hike or bike to the summit, you’ll be afforded stunning views of the Salish Sea, Salt Spring Island and the Saanich Peninsula.

“The Cowichan River is tame and fun for the whole family.” — M ICHAELA LUDWIG, CANADIAN TRAVELLER

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“Best day of our holiday. Beautiful calm day, scenery was breathtaking and we soon got to see a family of killer whales…to cap things off, we saw two humpback whales on the way back to Cowichan Bay.” “We slipped silently through the water and soaked in the blue glow of the moon as it rose over Salt Spring Island and the Saanich Peninsula.”

— PHILDENNIS76, TRIPADVISOR

7

— K.L. HOLDEN, ST. ALBANS, UK, TRIPADVISOR

cOwichan’s

1O

6

UNMissable

THinGs.

Whale Watching Paddling by moonlight on Cowichan Bay

It’s a little known fact that Bing Crosby adored the Cowichan Region and, as a keen angler, was a frequent visitor to the waters around Cowichan Bay. With this in mind, there is a local legend that suggests that a little bit of him still remains. Legend has it that those who paddle the waters of Cowichan Bay when the moon is high and the waters are calm hear Bing Crosby quietly singing in his distinctive warm bass-baritone voice. Other magical sounds you may hear when kayaking or canoeing include those of otters, seals and even whales. Rentals are available in town. Be sure to bring a recording device!

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Almost half of the Cowichan region borders different parts of the Pacific Ocean. On the western side of Vancouver Island, it’s the rugged stretch of open ocean between Port Renfrew and Nitinat Lake. On the eastern side, it’s the idyllic archipelago known as the Salish Sea. Both of these areas are teeming with marine wildlife, which can be experienced up close by way of various tour companies. Some of the stars of the show include orcas, humpback, minke and gray whales, seals, porpoises, sea lions, plus a wide variety of marine birds such as bald eagles, ospreys and cormorants. What’s it like seeing a 40-ton whale up close in its natural environment? Some will tell you it’s a life-changing, spiritual experience.


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“An easy and very interesting excursion that sheds light on First Nations culture and the innate talent within. It is an

“There he was with his talons holding tightly onto my glove, eyeball to eyeball we were. A real live hawk just landed on my hand!

hour well spent.” — S HIRLEY CULPIN, VANCOUVERISLANDBEYONDVICTORIA.COM

Now, that doesn’t happen every day.” — JAY KENNEDY, TRAVELLINGISLANDERS.COM

10

8

Viewing the Chemainus murals

Experiencing birds of prey up close Cowichan is home to many species of birds, large and small. Arguably, the most regal of these are the raptors. You can see them in their natural setting here, but nowhere will you get to see them as close up as you will at Pacific Northwest Raptors in Duncan. Here you can meet eagles, hawks, owls, falcons and vultures (among other birds) and watch them fly above and around you, free of all constraints. At the same time, you’ll learn about their personalities, ecology, habitat and hunting techniques. Flying demonstrations are offered daily from March through December. » www.pnwraptors.com

At one time, the village of Chemainus was fortunate enough to benefit from three of Vancouver Island’s biggest resources: fishing, mining and forestry. As resource revenues steadily declined, the town hatched an optimistic plan that would prove Chemainus to be more resourceful than it ever was in the past. The idea was to capture Chemainus’ history in a series of large, striking murals painted on the walls of the town. With that decision, a new industry was born, inspiring the town’s well-earned description of “The Little Town That Could.” Today, there are 44 amazing murals, plus various sculptures, which can all be viewed by following the footprints along the walking tour through town. » www.muraltown.com

“Viewing the painted murals provides an opportunity to explore the village and to see one of B.C.’s biggest outdoor art gallery exhibits.”

Touring the Duncan totems

First Nations culture has always been and will always remain a big part of Cowichan’s fabric. Traditional lore has been preserved by word of mouth and by way of hand-carved totem poles too. Each totem pole tells a story that can be retold if you know what to look for. In Duncan, “The City of Totems”, you can tour a collection of 38 colourful totem poles created by First Nations master carvers in a free, self-guided tour. Along the way, you’ll encounter the world’s widest totem pole and “Quench,” a brass totem pole that serves as a public water fountain. » www.duncan.ca/visitors/totems-tour/ totem-tour-walk

— E H CANADA, TRAVEL AND ADVENTURE GUIDE

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funny how

a pair of Glasses puts everYtHing iNto PerSpeCtiVe.

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sip+ Savour

What originally made Cowichan a prolific agricultural region now defines the terroir of an increasingly acclaimed culinary destination. Since the first vineyard was planted here in the late 1970s, Cowichan has exploded with a plethora of vintners who craft their wines with traditional vinifera grapes such as Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Gewürztraminer, along with other grape varieties. Other potables you may discover here include berry, port style and sparkling wines and balsamic vinegar. The region is also home to a number of excellent craft breweries and distilleries, one of which is also Canada’s first estate cidery. Dubbed “Canada’s Provence” by legendary foodie James Barber, Cowichan is now home to a flourishing artisanal food culture. Underpinning this movement is one of B.C.’s finest farmers markets and the annual fall Savour Cowichan Festival that features 60 culinary events over a period of 10 days.

Orchard, cidery, distillery, bistro, guided tastings, shopping and yurt stays. Open 7 days a week.

REST A

AN NC

ANT IN DU UR

bridgemans.ca 778.356.3568 tourismCowichan.com | 9


captain’s log:

went Exploring, saw orcAs, tied up for iCe CReam.

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Boating +marinas

The magnificent Cowichan coastline, with its many harbours and secluded bays, is dotted with dozens of places to tie up and refuel both you and your craft. You’ll find more than 20 marinas, small boat harbours and government docks along the region’s calm and protected east coast. Once safely tied up, let the “explore ashore” excursions begin! Most of the marinas here offer all the services and amenities you’re likely to need during your visit: marine supply stores, gas docks, shower and laundry facilities, shopping, bistros, restaurants and pubs. Live music and special events are also standard fare at many marinas. Most of Cowichan’s marinas are located only a short distance from town or village centre and can be easily reached by foot, bicycle or transit bus. Some marinas offer a shuttle service as well.

Hospitality and History • Scheduled and custom hiking, kayaking and canoe tours. • Children’s camps and instructional kayak programs.

Yours to discover at the Ladysmith Community Marina

- Oyster Bay Café now open 7 days/week 8am - 3pm - Events: Heritage Boat Festival, Kids Pirate Day, Dine On The Dock - Harbour Tours - Wine, Craft Beer, Forest Tours - Heritage Vessels & Museum - Harbour Heritage Centre - Full Marina Services Clean Marine BC - Paddling Centre NEW!

4865 Bench Road, Cowichan Bay

1.800.896.9525

www.coastalbliss.ca

Certified!

T: 250 245 1146 info@lmsmarina.ca www.lmsmarina.ca

LADYSMITH COMMUNITY MARINA

OPERATED BY THE LADYSMITH MARITIME SOCIETY tourismCowichan.com | 11


in cowichan

the MaRket just OpeneD and TraDinG is bRisk.

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Farmers markets

In a region known for its outstanding produce and artisanal creations, it’s not surprising that we have more than a few farmers markets. In fact, there are more than half a dozen markets found in every community around the region! The biggest of these is the Duncan Farmers Market. Spread out over several city blocks in downtown Duncan, it subscribes to a “you make it, you bake it, you grow it, you sell it” philosophy. Here, you’ll find the freshest local fruits, vegetables, baking, jams and jellies, honey, crafts, clothing and more. Other equally robust farmers markets can be found in Lake Cowichan, Chemainus and Ladysmith. The 100 mile diet is more than just a fad here; in many cases, the fresh consumables offered at these markets are the same as the ones served at Cowichan’s countless restaurants and bistros.

Cowichan Green Community Cultivating food, community, and resilience

chan i w o C Map m r a F

FREE LOCAL FOOD MAP

2016

Your year-round guide to locally produced food and drink in the Cowichan Region.

Over 50 farms, vineyards and Cowichan food processors listed!

TO VIEW ONLINE VISIT OUR WEBSITE

WWW.COWICHANGREENCOMMUNITY.ORG/FOODMAP

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clOud niNe: also knOwn as the Cowichan RivER.

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water sports

Here in Cowichan, we’re bordered by the ocean and we get up to 3 feet of rain a year. So yes, we have lots of water to play in. The Cowichan Valley borders the Salish Sea, a pristine marine environment that offers the opportunity for swimming, kayaking, paddleboarding, scuba diving, sailing and whale watching. Emptying into the ocean are three major rivers in which you can fish, whitewater kayak and, in the summer months, swim and go tubing in refreshing, crystal-clear water. The Cowichan River flows from Cowichan Lake, home to the towns of Lake Cowichan, Youbou (pronounced “yoo-bow”), Mesachie Lake and Honeymoon Bay. Once a focus of lumber operations, Cowichan Lake is now a freshwater playground famous for its houseboating, kayaking, fishing and camping. Shawnigan Lake, just west of Mill Bay, is also well worth a visit. It is home to a village of the same name and is a popular place for canoeing, rowing, swimming and fishing. Much farther west lies Nitinaht Lake, an internationally acclaimed windsurfing and kiteboarding destination.

Whale Watching Vancouver Island

Tours Departing Daily From Cowichan Bay

Local - 250.748.3800 Toll Free - 1.866.748.5333 www.OceanEcoVentures.com

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Yes, I had A Fabulous Round. No, I don't know what I shot.

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Arbutus Ridge Golf Club. Photo ©John and Jeannine Henebry


Golf courses

The sprawling green countryside, so well suited for agriculture in these parts, is also naturally suited for year-round golf. If you’re a golfer, be sure to bring your clubs when you visit the Cowichan Valley, for there are a number of challenging golf courses situated in all corners. Some 18-hole courses to consider include Arbutus Ridge Golf Club, just north of Mill Bay, Duncan Meadows Golf Course, on Highway 18, Cowichan Golf & Country Club, just south of Duncan and Mount Brenton Golf Course in Chemainus. Not that you need an excuse to visit Lake Cowichan (just 25 minutes west of Duncan), but if you like golf, you must make the drive to March Meadows, the charming home course of the late LPGA star Dawn Coe-Jones, who played on the women’s tour from 1984 to 2008.

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We're FiRst In third Places.

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Third places

The “third place”: any public venue, like a local cafe, where you can unwind and feel as cozy as you would in your own living room. If you’ve come a long way to get to Cowichan, you’ve likely left both your home and your workplace far behind (yay!). Assuming your home is your “first place” and your workplace is your “second place,” then, according to current pop culture, there’s a “third place” that you can always turn to. Needless to say, there are more than a few “third places” in Cowichan. Here you will find a myriad of independent coffee shops; some even roast their own beans. There are also many bakeries, including one that mills its own grains, another that’s nestled in the middle of a vineyard and a bakery where the cinnamon buns are so popular they have become trending topics all their own. Of course, there are the pubs and bistros too, where you can enjoy locally made (and increasingly internationally acclaimed) beer, wine, cider and spirits. In every case, the first thing you need to know about Cowichan is that there’s an abundance of “third places” full of friendly locals who are, well, second to none.

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bY a campfire’s gloW, YOu wilL fiND YourseLves.

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campsites +picnics

The region’s many parks and forests are known for their spectacular natural beauty and peaceful, affordable campgrounds. Cowichan is a camper’s paradise. Whether you drive a motor home, pack a tent or prefer a more rugged, hike-in experience with your gear on your back, you’ll find a wide range of public and private camping options. The region’s many parks and forests are known for their spectacular natural beauty and peaceful, affordable campgrounds. Finding a great place for a picnic is as easy as choosing a suitably bucolic spot (like beside a river, lake or on the oceanfront) and spreading out a blanket. You have countless choices!

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you have it

Made iN CoWichan.

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Cowichan Style traditional First Nations knitted items. Facebook.com/CowichanStyle


arts+ culture

Given that Cowichan’s history goes back more than 5,000 years, it’s safe to say there is a lot of history and culture in this neck of the woods. The legacy of the Cowichan or Quw’utsun First Nations makes up a significant amount of the cultural tapestry here, as evidenced in local totem poles, carvings and in the designs of the world-famous Cowichan sweaters. A place as eclectic and beautiful as Cowichan can’t help but attract an equally diverse group of artisans. The region is home to many of these whose works can be seen in home studios and galleries all along the Cowichan Valley corridor. For paintings on a very big scale, be sure to spend some time in Chemainus, where you can see its famous assortment of large-scale murals. With no pun intended, theatre plays a big part here, as does music, particularly in the summer, with the annual “Islands Folk Festival” and the free “39 Days of July.” You don’t have to be a country music fan to enjoy “Sunfest,” an electrifying four-day event that takes place in late July and is the largest country music festival in Western Canada.

Mary Fox Pottery

MUSIC DANCE THEATRE COMEDY FILM FAMILY Original art work to inspire. Functional wares to enhance your eating experience. 321 Third Avenue, Ladysmith 250.245.3778 maryfoxpottery.ca

@maryfoxpottery Mary Fox Pottery

cowichanpac.ca

2687 James St., Duncan

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we are gathered here today

in the pResence of hayfields & sonGbiRDs.

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SaywardSaying “I do”

Beautiful scenery, superb venues, accessibility Campbell and every amenity you might require. River Weddings in Cowichan make for total bliss. Black Creek

We are gathered here together in Cowichan in the presence of Mother Nature to witness and bless the joining together of ____ and ____ (fill in the blanks). The truth is, for any couple seeking to tie the knot, a beautiful wedding held in a slightly out-of-the-way, rustic setting is increasingly de rigueur. Provence in southern France is nice in the summer. So is Ireland in the spring. But if you and your love happen to live anywhere in the Pacific Northwest, a wedding in Cowichan is truly matchless. Here, couples are known to say “I do” in sun-drenched vineyards, apple orchards, wilderness lodges and even rolling hay fields overseen by bemused dairy cows. Accommodation and transportation are available, as is every other service you require. Above all, the experience creates beautiful memories that last forever.

Courtenay/Comox

Port Alberni

Coombs

Qualicum Beach Parksville

A Better Way to Stay Cowichan Bed & Breakfasts Enjoy over 70 rooms and suites for all tastes and styles

VANCOUVER ISLAND MAPLE BAY DUNCAN

COWICHAN BAY COBBLE HILL

SHAWNIGAN LAKE

Stay with us tonight!

staycowichan.com

MILL BAY

MALAHAT

VICTORIA

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what goes fOrward but takes YOu Back?.

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BC Forest Discovery Centre (see p. 44)


museums +Galleries

Early industry in Cowichan was all about mining, logging and agriculture, so you’ll find many museums that reflect this aspect of our wild-west history. Right next to the new Visitor Centre in Duncan is the world-famous BC Forest Discovery Centre, where you can actually ride a real steam train. Not far away, in downtown Duncan, you’ll find the Cowichan Valley Museum, located in the old train station. This museum maintains a wonderful collection of artifacts from pioneer families and businesses. In Crofton, near the newly upgraded Community Seawalk, is the Olde School House Museum, which documents mining and forestry in the area. The Chemainus Valley Museum is located in the centre of Chemainus and welcomes as many as 30,000 people every year. Near Transfer Beach in Ladysmith, you’ll find the Ladysmith Maritime Society Museum, which also happens to be B.C.’s only floating museum. If you’re in Shawnigan Lake, be sure to visit the Shawnigan Lake Museum, where you’ll learn about the internationally acclaimed landscape artist, E.J. Hughes. And at Lake Cowichan’s Kaatza Station Museum, you can check out their impressive collection of logging artifacts, then stroll along a floating boardwalk near the beach.

Cowichan Bay Maritime Centre • • • • • • •

Artifacts and archival photographs Classic wooden boats and dugout canoes Model ships Outboard motor collection Active boat restoration Children’s boat building booth Home of the Cowichan Wooden Boat Society

Open 7 days a week | Admission by donation 250.746.4955 | classicboats.org

Ladysmith Maritime Museum

Heartwood Studio

Functional Woodturning by Ken Broadland

Crofton Old School Museum

www.heartwoodstudio.ca 5846 Curry Road, Duncan 250-746-5480 (please call ahead)

Salad bowls, utensils, live-edge vessels & more • Local, salvaged woods

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were tHe fish jumping in beaver lake? You knOw, I Can’t reCalL.

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fishing spots

The Cowichan Valley is internationally renowned for its flyfishing, but the saltwater and lake fishing are outstanding too. The best flyfishing can be found in the Cowichan River, which is home to rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, brown trout and steelhead. Trout are best from March through to June, and there’s a healthy steelhead run from December to March. The river is also famous for its trophy-sized browns that average in size from 16 to 18 inches. The best flies for most trout are caddis, mayfly and stonefly patterns. Brown trout are particularly fond of streamers and, if you’re going for steelhead, stick with marabou streamers. The Cowichan is a heavily regulated river, so be sure to check for in-season closures. Cowichan Bay was once a thriving sports fishing hub and the preferred destination of many celebrities. Today, and with the right advice, it’s still possible to catch Chinook salmon (a.k.a. spring or king salmon), coho salmon, rock cod, lingcod, prawns and crabs. The best months for saltwater fishing are May through to October, although there is winter Chinook fishing. The best spots on the inside waters (Salish Sea) include Porlier Pass, Samson Narrows and Pender Bluffs. Again, be sure to check for in-season closures.

Get Closer

the-raptors.com

Duncan, BC

250-746-0372 tourismCowichan.com | 29


Yes, we have bike Lanes here too.

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tracks +trails

Hiking and biking in Cowichan: we have half a dozen provincial parks with a huge variety of routes that range from extreme terrain to gentle jaunts. If mountains pique your interest, there’s the triumvirate consisting of Mount Tzouhalem, Mount Prevost and Maple Mountain, home to the challenging Maple Syrup and Solar Coaster trails. There are also extensive trail networks on Heather, Bald and Cobble Hill Mountains. Other notable trails include the 20km Cowichan River Footpath, which winds west from Duncan to spectacular Skutz Falls. The Trans Canada Trail, which follows an old rail route, skirts Shawnigan Lake and crosses over the 144-foot-high Kinsol Trestle. If quiet country roads are more your speed, you might consider a bike ride along any of the roads around Glenora, Cobble Hill, Yellow Point or even across the water to idyllic Thetis Island. On the eastern edges of the Cowichan Valley is Carmanah Walbran Provincial Park. It’s a hop, skip and a jump from the Cowichan Valley proper, but if you’d like to see some of the world’s biggest spruce trees, be sure to set aside a day or two for a chance to hike this amazing part of the Island.

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communities

Chemainus Once a thriving fishing, mining and forestry hub, the town of Chemainus reinvented itself in the 1980s by capturing its history in a series of large, striking murals painted on the walls of the town. That shrewd decision inspired the town’s well-earned description, “The Little Town That Did.” Today, there are 44 amazing murals that can all be viewed on foot. While the murals are still a big draw, what has come to define Chemainus is its focus on the arts. Located in the centre of town is Waterwheel Park, venue for Chemainus Accordion Days, the annual Jazz and Bluegrass festivals and the weekly Music in the Park summer concerts. The 274-seat Chemainus Theatre welcomes more than 70,000 visitors annually to its many top-notch dramas, musicals and concerts. Food and drink is also at a high level here with a growing number of emerging and well-reviewed establishments. Outdoor pursuits here are many, including golfing, swimming, kayaking and paddleboarding at Fuller Lake or Kin Beach.

Cobble Hill North of Shawnigan Lake is the rolling farmland and craggy hillsides that comprise the community of Cobble Hill. To get there, divert west from the Trans Canada Highway and get yourself on the winding country roads that will take you past working farms, vineyards and orchards. All the while you’ll be transported back a century or two when local farms fed the entire region. Midway along Cameron Taggart Road is Merridale Road, which will lead you to Canada’s first estate cidery. Once you drive through Cobble Hill, don’t blink, or you’ll miss the small community that’s home to a number of shops and the site of the 108-year-old Cobble Hill Fair. Near the fairgrounds is a trailhead, from which you can hike or bike to the summit of Cobble Hill Mountain and enjoy sweeping views of the Gulf Islands and beyond.

Cowichan Bay

For business or leisure, there’s always a little something extra. This award-winning Suite Style Hotel is Ideally situated in the heart of the Cowichan valley, close to the many wineries, the Chemainus Murals, exciting biking and hiking trails, beautiful golf courses, gourmet restaurants and the Chemainus Festival Theatre – and so much more!

When you visit the picturesque village of Cowichan Bay, just south of Duncan, you may feel like the clock’s been turned back. For millennia, this area was home to First Nations people who subsisted on the salmon and shellfish that are still part of the local ecosystem and economy. Many of the buildings are still on stilts, but where there were once ship chandlers and taverns there is now a mosaic of restaurants, cafes and various ecotourism operators. After you’ve strolled the waterfront amongst the wharves, galleries and boutiques, you might feel like visiting the Cowichan Bay Maritime Centre, which juts out onto the water and features an impressive collection of hand-built wooden boats. To get in touch with nature, you can visit an interpretive centre, go kayaking or take a whale watching tour in search of the many orcas, sea lions, grey whales and porpoises that ply these waters.

Contact us directly for the best rate available. Let us arrange a personalized Theatre Getaway package!

Chemainus Inn Reservations: 1-877-246-4181 chemainushotel.com Each Best Western® branded hotel is independently owned and operated

Duncan


Duncan If you travel to Duncan, make sure to visit the original city centre, just west of the highway. Here you’ll discover bustling streets that are home to an entire economy of proudly independent businesses such as art galleries, bistros, clothing stores, a brew pub, an artisanal chocolate shop and an assortment of other quaint shops. The centre of Duncan’s downtown is the red-bricked City Hall that overlooks the venue for the Duncan Farmer’s Market (that takes place every Saturday). All around town you’ll find the namesakes of the “City of Totems,” a collection of 38 colourful totem poles created by First Nations master carvers. Take a free tour and you’ll encounter the world’s widest totem pole and “Quench,” a cast bronze drinking fountain. Other things you can’t miss in Duncan are the world’s largest hockey stick, the Somenos Marsh Conservation Area (home to more than 200 species of birds) and the BC Forest Discovery Centre, where you can ride on a working steam train. Located next door is the Cowichan Regional Visitor Centre, open year-round to help you with any questions you might have.

Crofton Situated north of Duncan is Crofton, yet another of Cowichan’s quaint seaside towns. Crofton not only looks directly across to Salt Spring Island but provides you with the means to get there too. The regular ferry service to Vesuvius Bay crosses Stuart Channel, which is home to a boisterous population of sea lions and the occasional pod of migrating orcas. Crofton’s pièce de résistance has to be its Community Seawalk that begins near the Olde School House Museum and gracefully wends its way along the shoreline. If you happen to travel via Osborne Bay Road (between Crofton and Herd Road), take note of the trailhead about halfway along — those who are adventurous can follow the trail to the top of Maple Mountain, which affords sweeping views of the surrounding topography. Nearby is Pacific Northwest Raptors, a popular attraction where you can get up close and personal with eagles, hawks, owls, falcons and more.

Ladysmith Situated at the northern edge of Cowichan Valley is the enchanting town of Ladysmith. Founded at the turn of the century, the downtown core is now home to a variety of shops, boutiques, bookstores, antique dealers and more eateries than you can shake a stick at. A walking tour of Ladysmith’s heritage route will take you past the artifacts lining First Avenue and then ultimately to the Waterfront Art Gallery and B.C.’s only floating museum. Ladysmith’s popular “Dine On The Dock” event happens every other Friday in the summer and, as the term implies, it means exquisite al fresco waterfront dining. A stone’s throw away is Transfer Beach, a scenic park that features swimming beaches, a giant playground, picnic tables and a place to rent paddleboards and kayaks. In late November, Ladysmith becomes ablaze in a sea of Christmas lights during the town’s Festival of Lights, kicked off by St. Nick himself.

Home of the GBC Academy & Satellite Bar & Grille 3515 Telegraph Road, Cobble Hill | 250.743.5100 Rated four stars by Golf Digest, surrounded by nine wineries, stunning restaurant views and more! Environmental Planning Certificate, Audubon International

Genoa Bay tourismCowichan.com | 33


Lake Cowichan

Maple Bay and Genoa Bay

Located 42 km west of Duncan, past the sensational new “Vancouver Island Motorsport Circuit,” is a 34-kilometre-long body of water called Cowichan Lake. Hugging the lake is the town of Lake Cowichan, a paradise all its own, where you can enjoy swimming, boating, kayaking, tubing or take a leisurely houseboat cruise. If you’re on the water, keep your eyes peeled, because legend has it that the lake is home to “Stin Qua,” Canada’s shy “Nessie of the North” and the “Mesachie Man,” a friendly sasquatch that occasionally ventures to the lakeshore. For some local history, you might like to check out the Kaatza Station Museum and then stroll the floating boardwalk. The town of Lake Cowichan also happens to be one of the points along the “Pacific Marine Circle Route,” a 240 km loop that includes Mesachie Lake, Port Renfrew, Sooke, Victoria, Mill Bay, Cobble Hill and Duncan.

Located in a sheltered spot east of Duncan, Maple Bay was a popular destination for genteel homesteaders in the late 1800s. Today, Maple Bay is a wonderful spot for beachcombing, swimming, sailing, fishing, rowing and scuba diving. There are great dining options here, and if you need a place to moor your yacht (and who doesn’t?), you’ll find yourself in very good hands at the Maple Bay Marina, which also serves as a seaplane depot. Located just 15 minutes south along Genoa Bay Road is the hamlet of Genoa Bay. Once a sawmill town, Genoa Bay is now home to a marina and an outstanding cafe. Genoa Bay also provides access to a challenging hike to the top of Mount Tzouhalem from its southern end. If you can make it to the top of this mystical mountain, you’ll enjoy a breathtaking view of Cowichan Bay and be high enough to watch eagles soar far beneath you.

Malahat and Bamberton

Shawnigan Lake

From B.C.’s capital city of Victoria, the gateway to Cowichan Valley is the majestic Malahat Highway, along which there are a number of observation points where you can pull over and take in the vista. Just beyond the summit is a chalet that serves up divine views and cuisine. Farther still is the “Split Rock” rest area, where you can see much of the Saanich Peninsula and, on clear days, Mount Baker in Washington State. On your descent you can turn off to Bamberton Provincial Park, a splendid spot for camping, beachcombing and swimming. At the base of the Malahat is Mill Bay, a quiet seaside community that has grown in leaps and bounds of late. Nowhere is that more apparent than at the Mill Bay Marina, home to a top-notch waterfront bistro and yacht moorage.

West of Mill Bay is the village of Shawnigan Lake, a popular place to live and vacation, largely due to its rugged beauty and the glorious lake that provides the opportunity for fishing, swimming water sports and sunbathing in the summer. The village is home to a coffee shop and several eateries, including seafood, sushi and more. At the Shawnigan Lake Museum you’ll learn about the famous landscape artist, E.J. Hughes, who lived in these parts and defined the region with oil paintings that now regularly sell for six figures. Shawnigan is also known for two independent boarding schools and “O.U.R. Ecovillage,” a sustainable learning community and demonstration site which hosts a Zero Mile Eatery. Nearby is the recently restored Kinsol Trestle. Restored in 2011, it is an engineering feat even by today’s standards and remains one of the loftiest wooden railway trestles in the world.

Good things come in small packages. Who’d have thought you could pack this much fun into a small town? Our beaches, marinas, trails and recreational facilities are jam-packed with fun things to do on sunny days, rainy days and all the days in between. Seriously. There’s big fun to be had in this small town. TOURISMLADYSMITH.CA 250-245-2112

VISITOR CENTRE 33 ROBERTS STREET

Casual Fine Dining in the Heart of Chemainus

250.324.3303 | www.odikacafe.com

A family owned and operated winery situated in the heart of Cowichan Valley just off of the Trans-Canada Highway. We have been growing vines since 1984 and you can taste our passion for grapes in every sip of our 100% estate grown wines. 6645 Somenos Road, Duncan

www.deolestatewinery.com

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Enjoy a premium lodging experience with the beauty, culture and cuisine of the Cowichan.

savour the experience!

1750 Maple Bay Road 250.746.4838 islandskye1@gmail.com IslandSkye Bed & Breakfast

www.islandskyebedandbreakfast.ca

Hawley Place Bed and Breakfast www.hawleyplacebandb.com | 302 Hawley Place, Ladysmith

Come and enjoy the magic of this gorgeous Victorian replica home. Be pampered in one of our newly updated, spacious, well-appointed guest rooms with private en-suites. Take a walk through historic Ladysmith, hike the Holland Creek trails or simply enjoy our porch rockers and gardens. Hawley place has something for everyone!

E m a i l : Haw l e y p l a c e b n b @ g m a i l . c o m | P h o n e : 2 5 0 . 2 4 5 . 4 4 3 1

tourismCowichan.com | 35


Cowichan Lake 201 Lake Cowichan Road Tel: 250.749.6717 | Reservations: 1.800.887.1288 www.lclodge.com

a larger-than-life experience.

250.932.2222 www.orkaadventures.com

Traditional BARBER SHOP 87 Darnell Road Lake Cowichan

250.932.5553 rayzorstraditional@gmail.com

Many people have come for a visit and stayed— if you see for yourself, you will understand why. TOWN OF LAKE COWICHAN MAYOR ROS S FOR R EST

RAYZORS

J&V’s Burgers & Pizza 162 South Shore Road 250-749-7411

Chinese Food Take-Out and Store

154 South Shore Road 250-749-6424

Book Your Tee Time: 250-749-6241

marchmeadowsgolf.com

Begin your journey at the Town of Lake Cowichan, a vibrant and friendly community about an hour and a half ’s drive from Victoria and an hour from Nanaimo. We are situated at the foot of pristine Cowichan Lake where the heritage Cowichan River exits and flows its course through the heart of town. Lake Cowichan offers outstanding recreation and cultural opportunities as well as unique shops, aritsans and restaurants. Here you can visit the Kaatza Station Museum at Saywell Park featuring a 50-tonne Shay locomotive and the last wooden caboose used in CN’s Western Canada rail service. Cowichan Lake is the second largest lake on Vancouver Island. Its south arm boasts the

highest average summertime temperatures in Canada. Enjoy swimming, boating, kayaking, tubing, or a leisurely houseboat cruise. Legend has it that Cowichan Lake is home to the “Stin Qua”— a giant snake-like creature that roams in the depths of the lake, and the “Mesachie Man”—a half-man, half-gorilla that lives in the caves of Mesachie Lake Mountain. After your exploring and camping experiences in Lakeview Park Campground and Beaver Lake Resort visit Mesachie Lake, then continue along the Pacific Marine Circle Route to Port Renfrew, an oceanfront town popular for kite sailing and beachcombing. Stop and marvel at the old growth forest of Avatar Grove. The tidal pools of Botanical Beach are natural aquariums that teem with marine life. For more information, contact

LAKE COWICHAN FIRST NATION 313B Deer Road, Phone: 250-749-3301 | Fax: 250-749-4286

lakecowichanfn.ca

36 | tourismCowichan.com

Gourmet Strudel “We make it... u bake it”

250.932.9332

Cowichan Lake District Chamber of Commerce Visitor/Business Centre 250.749.3244 www.cowichanlake.ca


Some area businesses:

Lake Cowichan First Nation at the Ts’uubaa-asatx Town Square.

Butler Books and Locksmithing 122A South Shore Road 250-932-8422 Carmanah Pizza 39 King George Street 250-932-7776 Cassy’s Coffee House 10375 Youbou Rd 1-778-429-9009 Deep Fried Ice Cream Impossible 122B South Shore Road 250-710-6923

The pristine Cowichan River

Dot’s Shoe Store 42 South Shore Road 250-749-3721 Lakeside Sushi #2- 78 Cowichan Lake Road 250-932-9012 Loonie Bin Emporium 98 South Shore Road 250-932-5000 Lucky Ducky’s Ice Cream 65 Cowichan Lake Road 250-815-7110

Cowichan Lake has exactly what you need to rejuvenate your body and soul. AREA F DI R E CTO R IA N M O RRI SON

Tipton’s Gas Bar 14 North Shore Road 250-749-6133

Popular Arbutus Park

Greendale Riverside Cabins 250-749-6570 www.greendalecabins.ca South Shore Cabinetry 250-932-2004 www.southshorecabinetry.com

Drop by the Visitor Centre for directions, maps, WIFI connection, and event schedules. By the secluded waterfront of Honeymoon Bay, play a round of golf at March Meadows or sip coffee with locals and peruse the murals at Honeymoon Bay Heritage Hall. Enjoy the warm water, sandy beaches, flora and fauna of Gordon Bay Provincial Park, one of the Island’s most popular campsites. Then head northwest to Caycuse and Heather Campsites at the top of the lake. Meades Creek and surrounding streams hold semi-precious stones and perhaps gold for lucky rockhounds. On the north shore of the lake sits Youbou, a picturesque community, nestled amongst the tall timbers and ferns, and boasting the only sanctioned 10-pin hand-set bowling alley in North America.

Cowichan Lake is your gateway to adventure, scenery, and wild life viewing in the Carmanah, Nitinat, Bamfield and Port Renfrew. Home to LakeTown Ranch, Western Canada’s Premier Outdoor Concert Event Facility. Come play in our backyard!” A RE A I D IR ECTOR KLAUS KUHN

Jakes at the Lake 250-932-2221 www.jakesatthelake.com Country Grocer 250-749-6335 www.countrygrocer.com/ locations/ lake-cowichan/ Tim Hortons 250-749-0225 www.timhortons.com Island Pharmacy South Shore & Village 250-749-3141/250-749-0149 www.islandpharmacy.ca RainFlower Enterprises 250-749-3650 karolas@telus.net The Studio By Us 250-749-3298 the-studio-by-us@shaw.ca Cowichan Lake Sports Arena www.cvrd.ca 250-749-6742 Scarlett’s Second Hand Boutique 250-510-7742 www.facebook.com/ ScarlettsSecondHandBoutique tourismCowichan.com | 37


Tourism Cowichan Society Post Office Box 482 Duncan, BC Canada V9L 3X8 250-746-1099 info@tourismcowichan.com www.tourismcowichan.com

JUNE Summer Fest – Chemainus Chemainus Theatre 25th Anniversary – Community Celebration – Chemainus Wooden Boat Festival – Cowichan Bay Fathers Day Tractor Show – Duncan

calendar

Of events 2017

MARCH Easter Eggstravaganza – Fuller Lake Park / Chemainus Cowichan Music Festival – Duncan

APRIL

Kid’s Pirate Days – Ladysmith Be a Home Town Tourist – Ladysmith Lake Days – Lake Cowichan

JULY Canada Day Celebrations – Various locations

Brentwood International Rowing Regatta

Chemainus Blues Festival – Chemainus

Bluegrass in the Spring Festival – Chemainus

Chemainus Bluegrass Festival – Chemainus

Spring Art Tour – Ladysmith

Chemainus Accordion Festival – Chemainus

Easter Egg Hunt – Lake Cowichan

Downtown Duncan Day – Downtown Duncan

MAY Cowichan Valley Fine Arts Show – Duncan Maritime Festival – Heritage Boat Festival – Ladysmith

Antique Truck Show – Duncan Islands Folk Festival – Duncan 39 Days of July – Downtown Duncan Honeymoon Bay Days – Honeymoon Bay Concerts in the Park, Sundays evenings – Ladysmith

Heritage Days – Lake Cowichan

Music on the Docks, Tuesday evenings – Ladysmith

Laketown Rock Music Festival – Lake Cowichan

Harbour Tours – Ladysmith

Wooden Boat Festival – Maple Bay

Brits on the Beach Car Show – Ladysmith Summer nights Music in the Park Saturdays (July- Sept) – Lake Cowichan Visions Art Studio Tour Cowichan Valley Grape Escape MS Bike Tour Chemainus Music in the Park – every Tuesday, Chemainus

For more events and details, please visit: tourismCowichan.com/events 38 | tourismCowichan.com


WELCOME TO

NATURE’S PLAYGROUND.

OCTOBER AUGUST Cobble Hill Fall Fair – Cobble Hill Cowichan Bay Regatta – Cowichan Bay Cowichan Craft Beer and Food Festival – Chemainus Chemainus Jazz Festival – Chemainus Chemainus Music in the Park – every Tuesday, Chemainus Concerts in the Park Sundays evenings – Ladysmith Music on the Docks, Tuesday evenings – Ladysmith Ladysmith Days – Ladysmith Harbour Tours – Ladysmith Arts on the Avenue August 27th – Ladysmith Light up the Night August 26th – Ladysmith Show & Shine (14th Annual) August 19th – Ladysmith Sunfest – Lake Cowichan Chilli Barn Dance – Lake Cowichan

Halloween Harvest Festival – Chemainus Halloween Spooktacular – Downtown Duncan Halloween Train – Duncan Savour Cowichan Festival Youbou Halloween Haunted House – Youbou

NOVEMBER Remembrance Day Ceremonies – Various locations Christmas Kick Off – Downtown Duncan Christmas Express Steam Train – Duncan Christmas Chaos Craft Fair – Duncan 30th Annual Festival of Lights – Ladysmith Christmas Parade – Lake Cowichan Cowichan Artisans Studio Tour

DECEMBER

A&W / Royal Bank Show and Shine – Lake Cowichan

Moonlight Madness – Chemainus

Youbou Regatta – Youbou

Little Town Christmas – Chemainus

Cowichan Valley Car Picnic

Christmas Express Steam Train – Duncan

SEPTEMBER Long Table Dinner – Chemainus Local Heroes Concert – Chemainus Cowichan Exhibition – Duncan Logger Sports Day – Ladysmith Valley Legends – Lake Cowichan Salmon and Mushroom Festival – Lake Cowichan Savour Cowichan Festival

Christmas Carnival – Lake Cowichan

Our marinas will get you closer to inspiring sailing, fishing, wildlife adventures and hospitality. Plus, our Reciprocal Moorage Program gives our customers free access to all four of our Vancouver Island marinas. Oak Bay • North Saanich • Ladysmith • Pedder Bay RV Resort & Marina

1-800-663-7090 | obmg.com


sip, Savour & stay

thetis Island

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“Premium quality, estate-grown wines, a relaxing garden patio and spectacular views make Averill Creek Vineyard an essential stop on every wine tour.”

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Family-owned and sustainably-farmed, the winery and surrounding vineyards are sought after for the award-winning portfolio of wines, and also for events, weddings, picnics, and family adventures. New in 2017 is the Grouse House accommodation. Visit the tasting room daily from 11am – 5pm between May 1 to October 31.

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2182 Lakeside Rd, Duncan | www.bluegrouse.ca

Daily public and private tours of Wineries, Craft Breweries & Distilleries leaving from Victoria, Nanaimo and Mill Bay. Hotel pick up and dropoff included. Visit some of the Cowichan Valley’s most scenic vistas and wineries. See the difference your all inclusive tour makes – why drive when you can join an energetic group!

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Let Cheers do the driving! Cowichan’s only resident tour company providing guided tours to wineries, breweries and attractions as well as private transportation for weddings, events, and festivals.

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Award-winning estate wines crafted along classic European traditions. Grape varietals are selected to match soil types and extract the best flavours from the diversity of our land. Visit us to experience the depth of our wines.

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DAYLI N ER CLU B CA R CA FE A Delightful Little Bistro featuring local and seasonal plus artisan food products. A must stop for brunch, lunch, baking, local wines and beer. Find us in Sunny Saltair, 3 minutes north of Chemainus. 10445 Chemainus Road, Chemainus (Saltair) | 250.324.3777 daylinercafe.com

E M A N D A R E V I N E YA R D & W I N E R Y

Simply put, Emandare Vineyard is our home and we are privileged to work along side nature to capture a glimpse of this place in every bottle through sustainable farming and old world, low intervention, natural wine making methods with 100% estate grown grapes. 6798 Norcross Rd. | Duncan | 250.597.4075 | emandarevineyard.com

Oceanfront Suites at Cowichan Bay Situated in a tranquil seaside village at the mouth of the Koksilah River,

E N R I CO W I N E RY

Lieutenant Governer’s Award winner for Excellence in BC Wines. Only 20 minutes drive from Victoria. Tasting room open 7 days/week, from 10am to 5pm. 3280 Telegraph Road, Mill Bay | 250.733.2356 | enricowinery.com

surrounded by nature, wineries, golf courses and culinary gems, it is ideal for your next Vancouver Island adventure.

F A R M TA B L E I N N

Come “savour the experience” of this farm-to-table Restaurant and country style Inn. We partner with many local farms, wineries and breweries to create our unique menu. Open Thursday to Saturday for dinner and on Sundays for a Brunch Buffet. Reservations are required.

6755 Cowichan Lake Road, Lake Cowichan | 1.250.932.3205 www.farmtableinn.ca

GENOA BAY CAFE

Come and enjoy Casual Fine Dining nestled amongst the towering forested bluffs of Mt. Tzouhalem and calm ocean waters of Genoa Bay. 5000 Genoa Bay Road, Duncan | 250.746.7621 | genoabaycafe.com

The Oceanfront Suites at Cowichan Bay … setting a new standard

G L E N T E R R A V I N E YA R DS

Sustainable Farming, no pesticides, herbicides or chemicals for 18 years. Natural Winemaking, wild fermentation, minimal sulphites & vegan friendly. For catering & private functions, visit Thistles Café: thistlescatering.com 3897 Cobble Hill Road, Cobble Hill | 250-743-2330 | glenterravineyards.com

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Daily departures from Victoria & Cowichan hotels, B&B’s, Marina’s etc. Small groups of 14 or less; single and multi-day trips. Wine day trip includes a local guide, 20+ wine tastings, vineyard picnic and scenic backroads. Let’s go! We are the local experts!

250.477.3322 — or text: 250.516.6077 | www.IslandTimeTours.com

for Vancouver Island. Book your suite at www.OceanfrontCowichanBay.com or call us direct at 250-715-1000


MERRIDALE

C I D E R Y, D I S T I L L E R Y & B I S T R O

A delicious destination—nestled in an apple orchard; explore our cidery, distillery, bistro, and store. Open for daily tours, food & drink experiences, shopping & yurt stays. Family & pet friendly. Seasonal events, pizza nights, mystery cask series, music & paint nights.

1230 Merridale Road, Cobble Hill | 1-800-998-9908 | 250-743-4293 www.merridale.ca

ROCK Y CREEK WINERY “From Corporate Suits to Gumboots.” Discover our story: visit our new tasting room and learn how wine and food can “wow” you. Taste our wines that have won over 80 medals. Enjoy your experience outside with a flight, glass or bottle.

1854 Myhrest Road, Cowichan Bay | 250-748-5622 www.rockycreekwinery.ca

S A W M I L L TA P H O U S E & G R I L L

Vancouver Island & Cowichan Valley’s destination Taphouse & Grill + Weddings & Events. 26 Pacific Northwest craft beers on tap, local ciders and wine. House made menu items, wood fired pizza & kid’s menu for all to enjoy. Open 7 days, year-round. Brunch Saturday & Sunday. Check our website and facebook for menu and info.

#201 B – 3055 Oak Street, Chemainus | 250 324 0222 www.sawmilltaphouse.com

WESTHOLME TEA FARM

At Westholme Tea Company, we curate experiences. We take pride in cultivating our farm-grown leaves, blending the finest organic teas, and hand-crafting ceramics to accompany the flavours. Our tearoom, gallery and teashop are yours to enjoy at Canada’s only tea farm. Open Wednesday - Sunday 10am - 5pm.

8350 Richards Trail, Westholme | 1 855.748.3811 www.westholmetea.com

U NSW O RTH

V I N E YA R D S A N D R E S TA U R A N T

Join us for award-winning wines and dining experiences overlooking our vineyard just 30 minutes north of downtown Victoria. 2915 Cameron-Taggart Rd, Mill Bay | 250-929-2292 www.unsworthvineyards.com

VA N CO U V E R I S L A N D E X P E D I T I O N S A visit to Vancouver Island isn’t complete without going on a craft beverage & estate winery tour that will excite your senses and leave you longing to return! Let us help you discover the places that will inspire stories to last a lifetime! 250-739-9659 | www.vancouverislandexpeditions.com

VILLAGE CHIPPERY

At the Village Chippery you can relax on the unique chairs featuring the work of local artists while enjoying great food and drink. With delicious fish and chips, over 20 burgers, wraps and more we are sure to please every appetite. Just save room for dessert! 2740 Dundas Road, Shawnigan Lake | 250.929.8886 | www.villagechippery.com


Sample Pacific Northwest

Craft Beers We call it tap dancing

Vancouver Island’s

Newest Destination Restaurant and Craft Beer TapHouse Gourmet Wood-Fired, Brick Oven Pizzas

|

Huge Selection of Pacific Northwest Craft Beers

|

In-House Hickory & Mesquite Smoked Ribs

Chemainus Village #201B 3055 Oak st., Chemainus, BC •

250 324-0222 www.sawmilltaphouse.com


SLOTS • BINGO • LOT TERY • FOOD

COMMUNITY GAMING CENTRE • Daily Food Specials • Meeting Room Booking • Monthly Slot Promotions • Party Room Booking • Bingo Specials 436 436 Cowichan Cowichan Way, Way, Duncan Duncan BC BC || ChancesCowichan.ca ChancesCowichan.ca || 250.746.6300 250.746.6300 Proceeds from Chances Cowichan go back into the community to 61 local charities. To see who those charities are, go to www.chancescowichan.ca — click “where the money goes”.

Play House, Chemainus, BC

See The Exhibits In A 100 Acre Living Museum An Adventure For The Entire Family Special Events Year Round

BC FOREST DISCOVERY CENTRE 2892 DRINKWATER ROAD, DUNCAN, BC. V9L-6C2 (ON THE TRANS CANADA HWY.)

INFORMATION – 1.866.715.1113

BCFORESTDISCOVERYCENTRE.COM 44 | tourismCowichan.com


Hot shopping, delicious dining, awesome culture, and Vancouver Island’s biggest farmers’ market. They’re all waiting to surprise you in wonderfully walkable Downtown Duncan.

downtownduncan.ca

Carver: Harold Alfred

Tourism Cowichan Visitor Guide 2017-2018  

Welcome to Cowichan--Canada's new Provence! The table is set here in Cowichan, and when it comes to things to experience here, food and dri...

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