Duncan, British Columbia: A Hidden Gem in Canada

Duncan, British Columbia, is a small city located in the Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island. Known as the "City of Totems," Duncan is home to over 80 totem poles, making it the largest collection in the world. With its rich history, stunning natural beauty, and vibrant arts scene, Duncan is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Vancouver Island.


  • The Duncan Farmers Market: This market is open every Saturday from 9 am to 2 pm and offers a wide variety of local produce, crafts, and artisanal goods.
  • The Cowichan Valley Museum: This museum showcases the history of the Cowichan Valley, including the First Nations people, early settlers, and the logging industry.
  • The BC Forest Discovery Centre: This museum features exhibits on the history of forestry in British Columbia, including a working steam train and a logging camp.
  • The Cowichan Valley Trail: This 122-kilometer trail runs from Victoria to Duncan and is perfect for hiking, cycling, and horseback riding.
  • The Cowichan River: This river is a popular spot for fishing, kayaking, and swimming.
  • The Cowichan Valley Wine Region: This region is home to over 20 wineries and is known for its award-winning wines.

Natural Wonders

  • Mount Tzouhalem: This mountain offers stunning views of the Cowichan Valley and is a popular spot for hiking and mountain biking.
  • Maple Bay: This bay is a picturesque spot for boating, kayaking, and swimming.
  • Cowichan Bay: This bay is home to a variety of marine life, including seals, otters, and eagles.
  • Somenos Marsh Wildlife Refuge: This marsh is a protected area for a variety of bird species, including bald eagles, great blue herons, and trumpeter swans.


  • The Cowichan Exhibition: This annual fair features agricultural exhibits, live music, and carnival rides.
  • The Islands Folk Festival: This three-day festival showcases folk music from around the world and features workshops, concerts, and a craft market.
  • The Cowichan Wine and Culinary Festival: This festival celebrates the region's wine and food culture and features tastings, tours, and cooking classes.


Duncan was established in 1886 by William Chalmers Duncan, a Scottish immigrant who purchased land in the area and began farming. The community was incorporated as a city in 1912. The totem poles that now line the streets of Duncan were originally carved by First Nations artists in the early 1900s as a way to preserve their culture and traditions.


Duncan, British Columbia, is a hidden gem on Vancouver Island that offers something for everyone. Whether you're interested in history, nature, or the arts, Duncan has it all. With its friendly locals, stunning scenery, and vibrant culture, Duncan is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to British Columbia.


  • "Duncan, British Columbia." Wikipedia.
  • "Duncan Farmers Market." Tourism Cowichan.
  • "Cowichan Valley Museum." Tourism Cowichan.
  • "BC Forest Discovery Centre." Tourism Cowichan.
  • "Cowichan Valley Trail." Tourism Cowichan.
  • "Cowichan Valley Wine Region." Tourism Cowichan.