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Take a look at the unique history of logging in British Columbia at the BC Forest Discovery Centre in Duncan.

Stretching across 100 acres, this museum showcases over 5000 forestry related artifacts, as well as trains.  There are heritage buildings to explore, huge logging machines to view, and outdoor and indoor exhibits.

The Train

A favourite exhibit among kids and adults alike is the historic train ride that travels over the Somenos Lake trestle. Certain trains run on certain days and times. For instance, the very popular steam locomotive only runs on the weekends, from June 2 – September 5 (as well as during a few special events).

So please check their schedule if you are hoping for a particular train.

The BC Forest Discovery Centre steam train.

 

The Grounds

The grounds are beautiful, so make sure to take the time to really explore! Walk the trails and let the kids burn off some energy at the playground. Bring a picnic to enjoy on the vast green lawn or in the designated picnic area. Or utilize the on-site concession which provides hot dogs, smokies, hot and cold drinks, popcorn, chips and ice cream confections.

Please note: the concession is seasonal, and only fully operational during the Spring and Summer months, as well as during a few of the special events held throughout the year.

For those who like to take home a souvenir, there is also a gift shop. Make sure to browse through the wide variety of gifts, books and toys. All proceeds go directly to maintaining the trains and exhibits on site.

 

No matter how you decide to spend your time at the BC Forest Discovery Centre, don’t forget to bring your camera!

 

BC Forest Discovery Centre Special Events

 

There are plenty of events that happen throughout the year at the BC Forest Discover Centre. Here are a few of the more popular ones:

  • The annual Bigleaf Maple Syrup Festival is held in February and has live entertainment, presentations, demonstrations, vendors and tastings
  • Easter long weekend: Say hi to the Easter bunny, enjoy a scavenger hunt, Easter crafts and treats, and ride the steam train
  • Mother’s Day: Mom’s get free admission on their special day
  • Father’s Day: This special event includes sawmill demonstrations, and a Father’s Day tractor show and parade
  • Canada Day: celebrate Canada day all weekend long
  • The Antique Truck Show is on display mid-July
  • Kid’s Days: In early August celebrate being a kid by enjoying musical entertainment, train rides, games, and concession
  • Halloween Train: Ride the Green Hornet through ghostly scenes. There is also trick-or-treating, crafts, and a haunted house
  • The Christmas Express: Ride the steam train through a world of twinkling lights, visit Santa, and enjoy crafts and hot chocolate (this is very popular event)

Make sure to check the events page on their website to keep up-to-date on upcoming special events.

 

Getting There:

The BC Forest Discovery Centre is right off Highway 1 in Duncan. For your GPS, the official address is  2892 Drinkwater Road, Duncan, BC.

 

Hours of Operation:

During the summer and late spring (June 2 – Sept 5) the hours are 7 days a week from 10:00 AM to 4:30 PM.

For any other time of year, please check the current schedule on their website.

 

Admission Rates:

Summer Admission Rates 
June 1 through Labour Day
Adults $16.00
Seniors (65 & older) $14.00
Youth (13 to 18 years old ) $14.00
Children (3 to 12 years old) $11.00
Children under 3 are FREE

Shoulder Season Admission  Rates 
Includes April, May, and September (after Labour Day) to October
Adults $12.00
Seniors (65 & older) $10
Youth (13 to 18 years old) $10
Children (3 to 12 years old) $8
Children under 3 are FREE

There is a Family Day Pass rate of $55.00, which includes 2 adults (or seniors) plus 3 children or youth.

A few of the Special Events, including the Christmas Express, Bigleaf Maple Syrup Festival and Easter have a special rate:
$10 per Adult/Senior//Youth
$8 per Child (3-12 years)
Children under 3 are FREE

 

If you plan on visiting the museum several times throughout the year, a Family Membership is the way to go. The special 2016 rate for a family membership is $100. This gets your family (up to 5 people) into the museum for $10 per visit (based on 10 visits). The membership can be used for all the special events (except the Santa Express), and includes unlimited train rides.

*All prices mentioned are as of June 2016, and could be subject to change. If in doubt, please check the website for the most current rates.

 

The BC Forest Discovery Centre is definitely a wonderful place to spend a day whether you are 1 or 101. So get yourself down there and enjoy a little piece of BC’s history!

 

Tell me in the comments below what exhibit, event, or part of the BC Forst Discovery Centre is your favourite.

If you have never been, please tell me why you would like to go!