Welcome to the Shawnigan Lake Museum


Click here for construction details

As we expect to break ground early in 2023, this will be a very different year for the museum. The museum will likely be closed for much of the year as we work behind the scenes to organize and prepare the collection for the new space.

For January, we are planning to be open for public access Wed - Fri, 10:30-3:30.

We will continue to offer a limited number of events this year, including Shawnigan history talks; guided Kinsol Trestle walks as requested; some group visits to the museum and we will continue to collaborate with other community groups to stay involved.

The Museum is looking for an experienced bookkeeper for approximately 15 hours a week, preferably on site.
If you want more information about this opportunity, please email museum@shawniganlakemuseum.com for more information,
or leave a phone message (250-743-8675) and your call will be returned.

The Rich History of Shawnigan Lake

  • E.J. Hughes Gallery

    E.J. Hughes Gallery

    E.J. Hughes lived at Shawnigan Lake for over twenty years until he found it too busy and noisy (circa 1970) and moved to Cobble Hill. Hughes' last studio, in a modest house in Duncan, was a spare bedroom, with a table and easel set close to a single north window. He painted there, in the afternoon, six days a week. Sunday was his day off.

    Learn more

  • The Last Spike

    The Last Spike

    The Last Spike was  ceremoniously placed by Sir John A. Macdonald in 1886, at Cliffside. He used a silver hammer and pounded a gold spike. In 1883, the British Columbia Government appealed to Robert Dunsmuir to build a railway. The 72 miles of track, which was laid starting from the south at Esquimalt and from the north at Nanaimo, met at Mile 25 (Cliffside, Shawnigan Lake).

    Learn more

  • Kinsol Trestle

    Kinsol Trestle

    Your GO TO SOURCE for information about the Kinsol Trestle at Shawnigan Lake.  Stop by the Museum on your way to/from the Kinsol Trestle to learn it's history. We have two scale models: one 3 foot and one 10 foot!  There are also historical and a time lapse restoration video of the Trestle for your enjoyment.

    Learn more

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  • Our Mission

    Sharing the passion for Shawnigan Lake — past, present and future.

  • Our Vision

    To connect community and visitors with the Shawnigan Lake Experience.

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  • The Shawnigan Lake Museum is the "go to" place for information about Shawnigan, past and present.
    Visit this 'big' museum in the small village of Shawnigan Lake - it's guaranteed to surprise you.

    For almost 40 years, the museum has celebrated the history and the people of Shawnigan Lake (and surrounding area).

    Drop in for extensive information on the spectacular Kinsol Trestle; renowned Canadian artist EJ Hughes; the true Canadian Last Spike, and many other significant history bites.

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  • ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

    Shawnigan Lake Museum is an unqualified 5/5 visitor experience. I’ve visited many museums large and small throughout my career in heritage preservation, so I have perspective and understanding of the challenges that museums face.
    These days we are constantly told that things are being “curated” for us, often
    without merit, but this place actually is curated in keeping with the original
    and correct meaning of the word.
    Quality artifacts are beautifully displayed and the personalized guidance is exceptional. Welcoming and responsive, it is obvious that curator Lori Treloar
    and her partner Grant delight in bringing history alive for a diverse audience.
    It was also gratifying to visit at an exciting time for this museum as they
    embark on a major expansion while retaining and honouring the historic firehall the museum is currently housed in.

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