Local Attractions

Local Attractions

Port Alberni is a unique and friendly enclave where you can experience an engaging blend of outdoor and indoor activities and attractions.  Only 193-km (120-mi) from the provincial capital, the city boasts a magnificent, deep-sea port at the head of the Alberni Inlet opening into Barkley Sound and the Pacific Ocean.

The city, and surrounding valley, enjoys a moderate climate and is well-known for it's breathtaking scenery. Surrounded by mountains, freshwater lakes and streams, the area is wildly popular for its salmon sport-fishing, scuba diving, kayaking, windsurfing, boating, waterskiing/wakeboarding, hiking, mountain biking, ATV'ing, golfing and wildlife viewing.

Just a few of the many sites and attractions around Port Alberni are listed below. For information or to plan your next trip to Port Alberni please contact the Visitor Centre or Alberni Valley Tourism.

Victoria Quay
Location: Map 

Victoria Quay is a popular waterfront park, picnic area, walkway and retail district on the Somass River at the foot of Johnston Road (Hwy #4).  Two towering Welcome Figures, carved by local Hupacasath First Nations carvers, greet you and the park is home to a weekly Sunset Craft Market during the summer months.    The Welcome Centre features a First Nations Whaling Monument and is a perfect place to absorb some of the rich history of the First Nations peoples in this region. Victoria Quay is also the prime location to view black bears across the river in the Somass Estuary.  Back to Top

Children playing at waterfront park

Harbour Quay
Location: Map and Web Link

The Alberni Harbour Quay features a colourful collection of waterfront shops, galleries, and eateries, and is also where you'll find the clock tower, which grants panoramic views of the Alberni Inlet.  The Spirit Square Farmer's Market on Saturday mornings is always busy.  You will also find the boarding area for the MV Frances Barkley, a passenger and freight vessel that offers scenic journeys to Bamfield and Ucluelet on the west coast. Take a stroll to view the commercial fishing fleet, large shipping vessels and pleasure craft marinas. There's also a children's park for families to spend the afternoons. Back to Top

Alberni Harbour Quay

McLean Mill Historic Site
Location: Map and Web Link

The McLean "Steam" Sawmill is the only commercial steam-operated sawmill in Canada. You can experience the excitement of steam, as the sawmill cuts wood for demonstration and sale. The resident Tin Pants Troupe make history come alive as they entertain with stories of days gone by, and guided tours of the site.  You'll see the old original buildings and lots of restored logging equipment around the site including a steam donkey, logging trucks, graders, and lumber carriers. Back to Top

McLean Mill

Maritime Discovery Centre
Location: Map and Web Link

Experience the rich maritime history of the Alberni Valley, Alberni Inlet, Barkley Sound and Vancouver Island's rugged west coast.  Port Alberni's Maritime Discovery Centre, constructed from an actual coastal lighthouse, is a unique maritime museum, situated on the waterfront adjacent to the city's deep-sea harbour.  With its companion Hutcheson Gallery this museum is dedicated to exhibiting and interpreting our fascinating cultural, environmental and industrial maritime history.  Back to Top

Maritime Discovery Centre

Alberni Valley Museum
Location: Map and Web Link

Explore our heritage and discover what makes Port Alberni tick. Discover collections that tell the story of community history, Nuu Chah Nulth art and culture and our industrial roots from logging to fishing and farming - and see our unique folk art. The Alberni Valley Museum presents the cultural heritage of this unique Island community through its collections of artifacts and historic photographs. It is considered one of the finest community museums in British Columbia with a unique and experimental visible storage system to make almost the entire collection available to the visitor all the time. Back to Top

Museum artwork
  

Alberni Pacific Steam Train
Location: Map and Web Link

Come Ride the Rails on the Alberni Pacific Railway.

You can board the train pulled by our completely restored 1929 Baldwin ex-logging locomotive at the 1912 CPR Station and ride out to the McLean Mill National Historic Site. The track winds through the City of Port Alberni and then the surrounding forests for 35 minutes each way.  Back to Top

Alberni Pacific Railway

Canal Beach
Location: Map

Canal Beach lies at the south end of Port Alberni and offers residents and visitors a waterfront park with a panoramic backdrop of the bustling Alberni Harbour. Take a stroll along the water, play some frisbee, paddle a kayak or stand-up paddle board, or catch the consistent summer thermals windsurfing or kite boarding. A former industrial mill site, Canal Beach is being actively redeveloped by the City with amenities and other features.    Back to Top

Canal Beach
  

Bear Watching
Location: Map 

Port Alberni’s Victoria Quay offers popular Black Bear watching experience from a safe distance across the river from the Somass Estuary.  While it’s possible to see Black Bears at this location from spring through to late fall, the opportunity is best during the months of August, September and October when they are taking advantage of the returning Chinook.

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Bear at Victoria Quay

Festivals / Fairs / Markets

Year round festivals and events take place in the Alberni Valley including the Salmon Festival and Thunder in the Valley drag races, but we have more!  Many of the local festivals, fairs and markets are free, or low-cost, and are packed with activities for all age groups. Check out this listing of upcoming events and mark your calendars. Festivals / Fairs / Markets

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Event at Alberni Harbour Quay

Hiking
Web2

The Alberni Valley is a hikers paradise with a broad range of trails to suit almost every interest and physical capability. Alpine meadows, mountain top views, peaceful lakes, rain forests, waterfalls, and so much more fill every corner of the Alberni Valley. Just remember to always be prepared and take all necessary precautions when venturing outdoors.   Back to Top

Hiking in Port Alberni

Rollin Art Centre
Location: Map and Web Link

Surrounded by beautiful gardens, the Rollin Art Centre features work by local & regional artists. Tea is served on the Terrace during the summer months. Open year-round, visitors will enjoy its ever-changing displays, unique gift shop, and beautiful grounds.  Back to Top

Rollin Art Centre
  

Kitsuksis Dyke Walkway
Location: Map

The Kitsuksis Creek dyke system was constructed following the 1964 Alaska earthquake and the subsequent tsunami that hit Port Alberni.  The dyke serves to protect the nearby residential homes and businesses.  The paved pathway along the creek is flat and very gentle for walkers and cyclists offering both open vistas and forested sections. The total distance is about 3 km with numerous entrance and exit points from both sides of the creek.  Back to Top

Kitsuksis Dyke Walkway

Sproat Lake & Taylor Arm Provincial Parks
Map: Sproat Lake  Taylor Arm

If you love the water, Sproat Lake is one of BC's finest freshwater lakes for water sports such as water-skiing, tubing, canoeing, kayaking, swimming and windsurfing. Two separate parks with campgrounds and large day-use areas make this lake a popular destination for campers and picnickers alike. A variety of short access trails lead visitors around the Sproat Lake Provincial Park, including a trail to the eastern end of Sproat Lake, which is home to one of the finest panels of prehistoric petroglyphs in British Columbia. Sproat Lake is located 15 minutes west of Port Alberni. Links: Sproat Lake   Taylor Arm     Back to Top

Sproat Lake

Theatre / Arts

Port Alberni has both a live theatre venue and also a movie theatre as part of the wide array of entertainment options. Click on the link below to view links and other information on these facilities.    

Theatre / Arts

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Capitol Theatre

Stamp Falls Provincial Park
Location: Map and Web Link

In late summer or early fall, head to the park's Stamp Falls. Watch as thousands of Pacific salmon circle in the pool below the falls before ascending fish ladders on their way to spawning beds. Just 20 minutes from Port Alberni, this provincial park is also a great place for family day trips or summer camp-outs. Take time to hike through the lush forest and river rapids of this wonderful park.  Back to Top

Stamp Falls Provincial Park