Victoria : Vancouver Island – Royal BC Museum

The second destination of the day was the Royal BC Museum.  (Part one is here) I have only been here once in my life and that was a social studies field trip I was force to go when I was 15.   I hated it… I thought it was boring and I couldn’t wait to go on free time.

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Royal BC Museum

The second time around, I find it to be quite fascinating!

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Front entrance greeted by an old car

The museum hasn’t changed that much since I last came here, maybe it was more expensive than before but was quite reasonable!  The price of admission is $16 but including IMAX, came to $25.95.  The admission ticket also includes a temporary exhibition : Wildlife Photography of the Year 2015, which is located on the first floor.

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photography exhibition

The photography exhibition was quite interesting and I almost spent an hour there.  No photography is allowed.  (site)

FYI:you can check in your bags and coats and enjoy the museum with light shoulders.

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Hello Woolly Mammoth

The official exhibition starts next door in the Natural History Galleries.  This gallery first brings you back in time in the ice ages, where you are greeted by the woolly mammoth, an animal related to the Asian Elephant but has since extinct due to residing ice fields and hunting by humans.

Then came an abundance of information about climate as well as the coastal forest.

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Animals found in coastal forest

The museum is a little dim but the animals look realistic and overall, you can tell they took great care of the exhibition.  There are even audio over certain exhibitions to save you from reading long explanations on the wall.

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realistic depictions~

If your kid accidentally sticks their hand into the show case, the alarm would go off and a security guard would come over (I decline to say how I know this .. *tight lipped*).

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Onto the seashore

After the forest came the sea, featuring large sea mammals on the shores and marine life under the seas.

The third floor consists of the history of the native people, who were the first to settle in this land.  It goes through the history of the native people, their tradition, and their daily lives.  There is also a ceremonial house located right inside these halls, recreated by the former Kwakwaka‘wakw chief, Jonathan Hunt.

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Johnathan Hunt House

There is also the famous Totem Hall, which consists of totem poles from various tribes on the coast.  Totem poles are almost exclusive to the Pacific Northwest

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Totem Hall

The final exhibition is Modern History, which goes from Captain Cook’s discovery of the Pacific Northwest to the World Wars.  We didn’t have much time in his exhibition as the museum closes at 5 P.M. and we didn’t start our tour until 3 P.M.

It started with the Discovery – the name of Captain Cook’s boat.

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Discovery – the boat that Captain Cook boarded

What it might have looked inside …

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Replica of the inside of Discovery

.. then came Hudson’s Bay Company and the fur traders.

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Hudson’s Bay Company

… then the gold rush and the booming industries from mining and lumber.

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My favorite part of Modern History Exhibition – the old town!  We walked back in time to life in the early 20th century with replications of train stations, tailor shops, Chinatown, a cinema and even someone’s home.

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Port Moody’s Train Station
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view from a second floor balcony
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Rich person’s house …
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5 cent cinema playing Charlie Chaplin

Afterwards, we went to have dinner before returning to the complex to watch the IMAX version of Galapagos.  The screen was 6 story high with surround sound and short of it being 3D, it was an awesome experience.

Day of Visit : March 25, 2016

How to get here (From Vancouver) – Bus 620 is the express bus and it comes about once every hour (bus schedule).  At the Swartz Bay terminal, take Bus 70 or 72 to downtown Victoria.  The bus comes about once every 30 minutes and the bus ride is almost 1 hour long.

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