The Quw’utsun’ Cultural and Conference Centre in Duncan on Vancouver Island is a must-see for admirers of native arts and crafts. The world-class attraction is owned and operated by the Cowichan Tribe, the largest Aboriginal band in British Columbia.
Located on 6 acres of beautiful landscaped grounds along the banks of the Cowichan River, a designated BC heritage river, the native heritage centre offers a truly unique experience, sharing the stories and traditions of the Cowichan people from hundreds of years ago.
It is a world of colour and pageantry, where First Nations talent and pride are abundant. The centre is committed to the culture of warmth and sharing, aspiring to bridge the gaps that exist between cultures and to promote native culture in a positive way.
The Quw’utsun’ Cultural and Conference Centre offers an authentic First Nations experience, including interpretive tours, traditional art work, salmon barbeques, displays and live demonstrations, and the Khowutzun Tzinquaw Dancers.
In summer you can watch the creation of the famous Cowichan sweaters as they are hand-knitted in one piece, their unique patterns reflecting the knitter’s family designs (some even spin their own wool). The Centre also features an open-air carving shed, where native carvers with handmade tools craft traditional 12- to 20-foot totem poles, each pole representing the carver’s interpretation of a tribal design. Visitors may view work in progress as the totem poles take shape.
The excellent art gallery and gift shop offers shopping for genuine Cowichan Sweaters in a variety of styles and patterns, knitted apparel, and hand crafted Coast Salish works and art, including carvings, prints, plaques, blankets, clothing, and jewellery handmade with gold, silver and copper. Visitors can custom order from their selection of totem poles. Shopping items are also available for online purchase through the centre’s website.
Authentic native cuisine is offered at the centre’s restaurant, the Riverwalk Café, which offers a delicious menu of native food using traditional ingredients such as rabbit, venison, buffalo, and halibut. Each dish is prepared individually and served with a complimentary basket of freshly baked native breads. Enjoy your meal while relaxed on the restaurant’s patio along the beautiful Cowichan River.
Conference facilities at the Conference Centre blend the latest in high-tech facilities with the Coast Salish uniqueness that is distinctly Cowichan.
The magnificent hand carved entrance poles and the spectacular riverfront view greet the visitor and create an environment that will make the business at hand a pleasure. Seven rooms are available to meet all needs.
The Quw’utsun’ Cultural and Conference Centre and Riverwalk Café are located in Duncan in the Cowichan Valley, a 45-minute drive from both Nanaimo and Victoria. The centre is 5 minutes from the Duncan city centre, just off the Trans-Canada Highway 1.
The Quw’utsun’ Cultural and Conference Centre is open year-round. Summer hours are 10:30am to 3:00pm from early June to mid September. From mid September through May the centre accepts group bookings of 15 people or more only, and is available for conferences and catering events. Please contact the booking coordinator for more information.
Quw’utsun’ Cultural & Conference Centre
200 Cowichan Way