The Town
Vancouver Island, BC, Canada.

Chemainus, British Columbia, Canada is located just east of Hwy 1,
78km (46.5mi) north of Victoria on Vancouver Island.

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Population: 4,500 people
Location: Latitude / Longitude - 48:54:51 N. / 123:44:49 W.
3 feet [0.75 m] above sea level
Native Bands: Tsiminnis (Chemainus) First Nation
Name Place and History:
•The name "Chemainus" comes from the native shaman and prophet "Tsa-meeun-is" (Broken Chest). Legend says that the man survived a massive wound in his chest to become a powerful chief. His people took his name to identify their community, Chemainus First Nation.
•The port of Chemainus was one of the first ports to have been developed in the Pacific Northwest.
•Chemainus (once called Horse Shoe), is tucked in the heartland of the Cowichan Valley. It was founded as a logging town in 1858 (the same year of the gold rush to the Fraser River area), and was the site of one of BC's oldest lumber mills.
•The railroad arrived in the 1880s, and by the early 1920s the town's population had ballooned to 600 persons.
•After over 100 years of being a mill town, the mill was closed in the early 1980s. To provide jobs and to attract tourists, the town invited artists to create murals on every paintable building. The town is now famous for its 39 outdoor murals. This outdoor gallery has given birth to 300 businesses. The tourist industry stemming from the murals saved the town after its mill closed, and became known as "The Little Town That Did".

Self-guided tour of the murals
Follow the yellow footprints in a journey of Chemainus' colourful past.
Town tour
By steam train or horse drawn carriage.
Chemainus Theatre
Live theatre with restaurant, and gallery featuring BC artists & artisans.
Chemainus Valley Museum
Featuring the 'maquettes' of the original murals, and artifacts of the areas history.
Weyerhaeuser Mill Tours
State of the art, environmentally friendly mill- tours in summer only.
Performing in various downtown locations throughout the summer.
Askew Wilderness Park
A Rainforest hike, right in town!
McMillan Waterwheel Park
Located in the middle of town with a themed children's play area. There's a bandshell that houses many performances, and a preservation project of native plant life is apparent throughout the park. There are historical plaques to read, and locally carved animals can be seen in the trees.
Mt. Brenton Golf Course
Exceptional year round 18 hold golf course.
Water activities
Boating, kayaking, fishing charters.
Heritage Lanes
2831 Mill Street
Chemainus BC V0R1K0
(250) 246-3541
Unique gift shops, galleries housing works by local artisans, artists, goldsmiths, as well as native work, antiques & collectible shops.
Open air cappuccino bars, ice cream parlours, fine and casual dining, pubs.
On January 13, 2006, a Boeing 737 aircraft was sunk off the coast in order to build an artificial reef. The sinking was documented in "Sinking Wings", an episode of the Discovery Channel Series, Mega Builders. It is the world's only intentionally created aircraft artificial reef.
Walking Trails
Chemainus also has a number of nice walking trails in the near vicinity. A favourite is the Hermit's Trail, a trail developed by Charlie Abbot, a long-time Chemainus character. Hermit's Trail winds through a beautiful forest garden trail along a meandering pathway. Other walks include Askew Creek, Chemainus Lake and Stocking Creek.
Other places worth exploring close by to Chemainus in North Cowichan include; Maple Bay and the hike up Maple Mountain, beachcombing at Crofton's Osborne Bay, discovering private swimming holes on the Chemainus River Provincial Park.
Kuper and Thetis Islands
Chemainus is also where you catch the passenger only ferry to Kuper Island and Thetis Island. These islands are located in Stuart Channel between Vancouver Island and Valdes-Galiano Islands. Situated within view of Chemainus you have access to some great walks, wildlife viewing and plenty of sunshine along the ocean shoreline.
•There are a number of B&B's and RV resorts in the area. Country Maples features a pool and Chemainus River Campground on Hwy 1 has walks along the Chemainus River. Chemainus Garden RV Park on River Road and Bald Eagle Campground 5 km (3 miles) south of on the Chemainus River are little closer to Chemainus.

Chemainus Chamber of Commerce/Visitor Information Centre
9796 Willow Street (PO Box 575)
Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0
(250) 246-3944
Chemainus's Schools are located in the town, and also serve as secondary schools for students living in Crofton and Saltair.

Parks and Trails:
Trans Canada Trail: The Trans Canada Trail can be accessed from 2 locations near Chemainus.
Chemainus River Provincial Park: The mature second growth in this park acts as a corridor for some of the Island's protected Roosevelt Elk. There are many activities to be enjoyed here, but no facilities other than picnic.

Transportation: A BC Ferry terminal provides service to Thetis and Kuper Islands.
BC Ferries Routes and Schedules
VIA Rail Train Station
Island Coach Lines
Nanaimo Airport, Cassidy

Hospitals: Serving Chemainus BC
Chemainus Hospital:
(250) 246-3291
RR 1 9909 Esplanade St
Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0

Communities near Chemainus:
Cassidy, BC
Cedar, BC
•Crofton, BC
•Duncan, BC
•Gabriola, BC
•Ganges, BC
•Ladysmith, BC
•Maple Bay, BC
•Nanaimo, BC
•Thetis Island, BC
•Westholme, BC
•Vesuvius, BC
•Yellow Point, BC

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