Halloween Events in The Cowichan Valley | 2017

Halloween Events in The Cowichan Valley | 2017

We have compiled a list of Halloween Events and Activities happening around the Cowichan Valley.  There are some really amazing events happening this year within our community. Happy Halloween Everyone!

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The Kinsol Trestle

The Kinsol Trestle

Kinsol Trestle is a must see spot on Vancouver Island, Shawnigan BC, it is absolutely STUNNING.   It is a great walk for people of all ages and even dogs too.  If you walk to the far side of the trestle, there a an accessible path for swimming too.

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Best Hotels In The Cowichan Valley

The Cowichan Valley is a very popular destination especially during the summer months. There is not a wide variety of hotels in the Cowichan Valley, however below is a compiled list of the best/well known hotel's in the community.  Additionally there are many other accommodation options other than hotel such as Air B&B, Lodges and B&B.  

*In No Particular Order:

1) Ladysmith - Kiwi Cove Lodge - Websitewww.kiwicovelodge.com Address: 5130 Brenton Page Rd Ladysmith, BC  Phone: 1-866-303-5494 Cost: High Season $150.00 to $210.00 Low Season $95.00 to $185.00  

Description:  Stunning Views, Popular Wedding Venue Location, Vineyard, Romantic Gazebo,  Ample Parking, Quite, Dining Room,WIFI, Games room and large outdoor area for all activities. 

2) Chemainus -  Chemainus Best Western - Website: www.bestwestern.com   Address: 9573 Chemainus Rd, Chemainus, BC Phone: (250) 246-4181 Cost: $150.00 to $175.00 per night, may be higher prices in high season. 

Description: Central location, Indoor Saltwater Pool, Hot Tub, Gym, 24 hour Concierge, WIFI, Truck/RV parking, Free Parking, Hot Breakfast, kitchenette, Near Golf Course, smoke free hotel and much much more. 


3) Duncan - Best Western Cowichan Valley Inn -  Website: www.bestwestern.com  Address: 457 Norcross Rd, Duncan, BC Phone: (250) 748-2722 Cost: $150.00 to $175.00per night, may be higher prices in high season. 

Description: Central location, Bar,Pool 24 hour Concierge, WIFI, Free Parking, Hot Breakfast, near lots of restaurants, fitness Room, RV Parking and much much more.

4) Cowichan Bay -Oceanfront Suites -  Website: oceanfrontcowichanbay.com   Address: 1681 Cowichan Bay Rd, Cowichan Bay, BCPhone: (250) 715-7000 Cost: $200.00 to $300.00 per night, may be higher prices in high season

Description: Ocean views, Bar, Pool 24 hour Concierge, WIFI, Free Parking, Business Centre, Pet friendly rooms, morrage, near lots of restaurants, fitness Room,  and much much more.

Oceanfront Suites

Facts About The Johnson Street Bridge - Victoria BC

The Johnson Street Bridge designed by  Strauss Bascule Company  is Located in Victoria BC  and is a iconic feature of the city. The iconic bridge is easily noticeable for its bright blue colour and the uniqueness on how  the bridge draws upwards to allow passage of boats mainly VIA Rail Dayliner. 

When the bridge was first constructed in 1924 half of the bridge was dedicated for railway and the other half was dedicated for public use.  The railway portion of the bridge were removed in 2012 due to unsafe conditions to the public.  When first constructed the bridge cost and estimated One million dollars, but over the years it has underwent multiply renovations and seismic upgrades. The original surface of the deck was wood which was replaced with steel 40 years later. The bridge as of 2017 is undergoing major reconstruction and is to be completed in 2018.

If you are a resident of Vancouver Island or tourist enjoying the city you MUST watch this bridge open it is amazing to watch.

Johnson Street Bridge

Best Lakes For Swimming In The Cowichan Valley

We are lucky to live in a community with beautiful lakes to enjoy in the summer months.  See List Below for a list of lakes in the Cowichan Valley. If there is one you would like to add to the list please email brittanypickardbrown@outlook.com.

1) Fuller Lake: Poplar Rd, Chemainus, BC (Map)

Fuller Lake is one of the most popular swimming locations in the Chemainus Area.  With lots of parking, Sand Valleyball area, Tennis Courts, Concession, Playground and even a dock to jump off of.  It is one of our favouirte places to go in the summer. There is also a lifeguard on duty during the summer months which give parents a piece of mind.  Bring a picnic and blanket and enjoy the laughter of kids.  

Photo Credits -  @eviecharles and @kepsicle

Photo Credits -  @eviecharles and @kepsicle

2) Gordon Bay Provincial Park - Honeymoon Bay/Cowichan Lake (Map)

Gordon Bay is a wonderful place to swimming in the summer. It has a sandy beach, picnic tables, lots of trees for shade, and a marked off area for swimming. Gordon bay has over 122 camp sites so if you want to stay you can make a reservation on BC Parks Website.  This is a prime location in summer so book early. Great place to bring  a picnic!  Side Note * There is NO LIFEGAURD on duty. 

Photo Credit:   @ _._kearra_._   and  @  elderberryboyz

Photo Credit:   @_._kearra_._  and @elderberryboyz

3) Arbutus Park- Youbou/Cowichan Lake (Map)

Arbutus Park is an amazing spot on Cowichan Lake to take the family swimming. The park offers shady spots, tied off area, sandy beaches,  lifeguard on duty during summer months, picnic area and a playground. Arrive early to the park as it does get very busy during the weekends and sunny days.  Kids will LOVE this beach. 

Photo Credit: @ eurekakuroki

Photo Credit: @eurekakuroki

4) Kingzett lake  "The Quarry" - Near Shawnigan  (Map)

Kingzett Lake "The Quarry"  is small lake near Shawnigan that is more suitable for adults. With very little shading, no play ground and not the easiest access.  But this place is absolutely beautiful, and an enjoyable place for adults. Great place to relax, tan and jump off rocks.  It can be very busy on weekends or sunny days. 

Photo Credit: @ tarynloutit

Photo Credit: @tarynloutit

5) West Shawnigan Lake Provincial Park - Shawnigan (Map)

Shawnigan Lake is one of the greatest lakes in the Cowichan Valley.  West Shawnigan Park is a great place for people of all ages to enjoy swimming, kayaking, canoeing etc...  Bring a picnic, water floaty and enjoy this beautiful spot.  Side Note: * Very busy location during weekends and sunny days. 

Photo Credit: @ volenessa

Photo Credit: @volenessa

FREE Tennis Courts In The Cowichan Valley

If you are someone within the community who loves to play tennis, Here is a compiled list of free tennis courts in the Cowichan Valley, See Below. 

1) Chemanius Elementary -  3172 Garner St, Chemainus,


2) Crofton Community Centre (at Back) -  8104 Musgrave, Crofton


3) Ladysmith Secondary School - 710 6 Ave, Ladysmith, BC V9G 1N8


4) Saltair Centennial Park -  S Oyster School Rd, Ladysmith, 


5) Duncan Maplewood Park - 5197 Hykawy Rd Duncan


6) Chemainus Fuller Lake -  Poplar Rd, Chemainus


7) Duncan Cowichan Secondary School - 2652 James St, Duncan


Secret Beaches of Vancouver Island

Sombrio Beach - Juan de Fuca Marine Trail (Map)

Photo Credits: @griffisem

Photo Credits: @griffisem

Botanical Beach - Botanical Beach Loop Trail - Near Port Renfrew (Map

Photo Credits: IG  @Sidoniabaird

Photo Credits: IG  @Sidoniabaird

Elliot's Beach Park - Ladysmith (Map)

photo credit: IG @tammyberier

photo credit: IG @tammyberier

Blue Heron Park - Yellow Point (Map)

Photo Credit: IG @tonitx2

Photo Credit: IG @tonitx2

Boulder Beach - Saltair (Map)

Photo Credits : IG @andimiddle

Photo Credits : IG @andimiddle

Blueback Beach - Nanaimo (Map)

Photo Credits: @K_bizzl

Photo Credits: @K_bizzl

Jack Point and Biggs Park - Nanaimo (Map)

Photo Credits: @K_bizzl

Photo Credits: @K_bizzl

Mystic Beach - Near Langford (Map)

Photo Credit : @ annikacosby

Photo Credit : @annikacosby

Easy Hikes For Children - Vancouver Island

Vancouver Island is known to have some of the most magnificent and beautiful hikes from around the world. Below is a list of easy hikes that a family of all ages can enjoy with ease.  When starting off on a hiking adventure please also consider the following.

Camping Equipment
  • Water
  • Proper Foot Wear
  • Food 
  • Hat/Rain Coat/ Backpack
  • Sunscreen
  • Emergency Kit
  • Map/Compass
  • Camera - To Capture beauitful  Pictures

1)  Goldstream Provincial Park - Prospectors Trail  Difficulty: Medium Length: 2-3 hours and Between 2km-3km

A very easy hike for children and even our furry little friends are welcome too. Entrance is right before entering/exiting Victoria after/before the Malahat.  There is very little elevation change however there are some narrow areas in which toddlers may need assistance. Most of this hike is in the shade. If you go to the park in the Fall you can watch the iconic Salmon run, which is amazing to watch and a great learning experience for kids.  Make sure you bring cash for the parking meters.


2)  Ruckle Provincial Park - Saltspring Island  Difficulty: Easy Lenght: 1 hour and Between .5km-1km

This is an amazing day adventure hike with your entire family.  Getting There:  You can either arrive by your own personal boat or a BC Ferry that leaves either from Crofton or Swatz Bay Victoria (Schedule here).  The view of the ocean if absolutely outstanding and a must see.  If you go on the BC parks website you can also camp there during the summer months.   Once completing the hike it is a great place for kids to play on the beach and look for sea treasures.  Key Points - Beaver Point, Historic Orchard and the Lighthouse.

Ruckle Park

3)  Cathedral Grove: MacMillan Provincial Park - Port Alberni  Difficulty: Easy Lenght: 1 hour and Between .5km-1km

This hike is absolutely stunning with some of the largest Douglas firs on the planet.  Kids will LOVE it and so will dogs (Must be on Leases). If you are heading to Tofino or Port Alberni and need a place to stretch your legs and get the kids out for some fresh air,  this is your stop. Parking is quite limited especially during the summer months, so arrive early or go hiking during off season.  The walking path is clear and easy for children of all ages.  

Catherdral Grove

4) Englishman River Falls: North Nanaimo  Difficulty: Easy Length: 1 - 2 hour and Between 2km-3km

This is one of the most beautiful hikes in the Nanaimo Area. The two waterfalls are absolutely stunning and breathtaking. Englishman River Falls is best suited for older kids 8+ as there is some steep inclines and a fast flowing river. Key points: Slower moving portion of river that is great place for swimming, Camping which can be booked through BC Parks and the amazing water falls. Pay parking meters and lots of parking spaces.  Bring a Picnic! -  Camping Fee: $23.00 per party / night

englishman rivers.jpg

4) Holland Creek Trail: Ladysmith  Difficulty: Easy Length: 1 - 2 hour and Between 2km-3km

There are over 30km + of trails near the Holland Creek Trail. You could explore these trails for days and always see something new.  Dogs are welcome and there is also wheechair/Stroller access.  Park Highlights include Crystal Falls, Colliery Dam and the Salmon run in the fall. 

Holland Creek Trail

Best Golf Courses South Vancouver Island

We are so lucky to be blessed with some of the most amazing and beautiful gold courses on Vancouver Island.  Here is a list of the Golf courses from Ladysmith to the Mill Bay Area. 

1) Mount Brenton Gold Course -  2816 Henry Rd, Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0

Par 72 Championship Golf Course, a beautiful course for all level of golfers. The course offers lessons and a great program for youth.  As of 2017 they offer a intermediate membership for  ages 19-39 for only $75.00 a monthFor a course that is not only challenging but a place to enjoy the beauiful scenery, you  must check out this ocurse.  Website - www.mountbrentongolf.com

Mount Brenton Gold Course

2) Arbutus Ridge Golf Course -  3515 Telegraph Rd, Cobble Hill, BC V0R 1L4

Par 71 - 18 Hole Championship Gold Course. Arbutus Ridge has been recognized by multiple golf magazines and athletes.  Enjoy the magnificent views of the ocean and the beautiful scenery, which I guarantee  will take your breath away. After playing a game of golf enjoy the outstanding ocean views from the club house.  Website - www.arbutusridge.ca

Arbutus Ridge Golf Course

3) Cowichan Golf and Country Club - 4955 Trans Canada Hwy Duncan BC

18 Hole Championship Gold Course - A beautiful golf course, with challenging holes and affordable prices.  A place for all ages offering training programs and fun tournaments for all.  A course that your must check out, you wont be disappointed.  Website - www.cowichangolfclub.ca/

Cowichan Country and Golf

Top 5 Places to Eat In Chemainus

There are some amazing places to Eat in the little ole town of Chemainus.  We are so lucky to have a community with a wide variety of all cuisines from Italian to Chinese in which ever restaurant is Amazing.  Here are my top favorites:

 Saw Mill Tap House and Grill: Price $14.00 to $22.00

 A newer restaurant to the community, but wow this restaurant doe snot fall short of AMAZING.  Not only is the food superb but the selection of craft beer is outstanding.  MUST TRY - Diovala Pizza 12", 50/50 burger Taphouse Burger and Smoked Brisket Beef.  It's even a great place to meet with clients. 

Address: #201B, 3055 Oak St.,Chemainus, BC, V0R 1K1

Owl's Nest Bakery: Price $7.00 to $12.00

The Owl's Nest is a a great place to a enjoy a coffee or to have a light snack.  You must try the Eggs Benedict it is amazing.  Its a great place to meet locals within the community and enjoy the ambiance.  Gluten Free options available. 

Address: 9752 Willow St, Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0

Wing Cafe: Price $10.00 to $15.00

The Longest standing restaurant in Chemainus. If you are looking for the BEST fries and Gravy in the world, this is yours place.  Wings Cafe is a family style restaurants with a wide variety of food from Chinese to Indian to Canada. Must try - Curry Chicken, The crispy wings and Chinese Buffet. Wear your stretchy pants. 

 Address: 9765 Chemainus Rd, Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0

Bonnie Martin Eats: $10.00 to $15.00

This is another great Family style restaurants with large portions and an affordable price tag. Must try the Bonnie Martin Combo and has the BEST  Won Ton Soup.   Bonnie Martins offers weekly specials  and every two weeks there is Chinese food Special.  Love this Family run Business. 

Address: 2877 Mill Street, Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0


Odika Cafe $15.00 - $20.00


What a great restaurant with a mixture of all different types of cuisines. It's is place that everyone will find something they will love. With very fresh and locally bought food and a great ambiance for a cherry on the top.  Must try Bacon Cheddar Burger, Turkey Smoked Bacon Sandwich and mushroom stuffed ravioli. 

Address: 2976 Mill Street, Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0



Other amazing Restaurants - Saltair Pub, Willow Street Cafe, Dayliner Cafe, Pho Triple 7, Utopia Bakery!