Cowichan Lake is a beautiful 30km long lake located in the Cowichan Valley, popular for swimming, boating and fishing. It is also where the Cowichan River starts, providing another fun activity – tubing down the river!
The area is sparsely populated, in large part because only a small section of the lake has paved road access.
Rarely do visitors ask: “What can we do in Cowichan?” More often, the question is: “What can’t we leave out?” Of course, it’s possible to do everything on our list, it’s just a matter of how much time you spend here. Explore, and you may want to book a longer stay.
A place as eclectic and beautiful as Cowichan can’t help but attract an equally diverse mélange of artisans. The region is home to many highly talented painters, potters, sculptors, weavers, jewellers, glass blowers, knitters and carvers whose works can be seen in home studios and galleries all along the Cowichan corridor.
Fond memories and an album full of photos are a given, but if you’d like something more tactile, your options are limitless. Everywhere you turn, you’ll find something to catch your eye, from antiques and fine art to First Nations creations, fashions, arts & crafts, jewellery and more. So diverse is the selection in Cowichan, many shopkeepers will tell you they have customers who make an annual pilgrimage here for the shopping alone.
Cowichan is a hiking and biking destination with a huge variety of routes that range from extreme terrain to gentle jaunts. If mountains pique your interest, there are four which are all hikeable and bikeable: Mount Tzouhalem, Maple Mountain, Mount Prevost and Cobble Hill Mountain. Other trails include the 20 km Cowichan River Footpath, which winds west from Duncan to Skutz Falls, and the Trans Canada Great Trail, which skirts Shawnigan Lake and traverses the 144–foot high Kinsol Trestle.
Many of our finest assets are liquid One of the things you can’t help but notice while standing atop Mount Tzouhalem or driving the Malahat Drive is the fact that the Cowichan Valley is bordered by the ocean. Cowichan offers a myriad of aquatic pursuits such as kayaking, canoeing, paddle boarding, scuba diving, rowing and sailing.
Legendary Canadian foodie James Barber once referred to Cowichan as “Canada’s Provence,” and if you come here with an appetite, you’ll discover why.
Indeed, Cowichan is home to an extraordinary number of wineries, cideries, lavender farms, cheese makers, bakeries, fishmongers, organic growers and other artisanal producers of food and drink. Cowichan is also home to several excellent craft breweries and distilleries, one of which is also B.C.’s first estate cidery.