The Hermit, Chemainus BC, Canada

Chemainus – The Little Town That Did

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A few weeks ago, we went on a road trip to Vancouver Island. There we stopped at Chemainus to take a break from the road. This small community is located between Victoria and Comox, on the island’s east shore. The small town has become a popular spot thanks to the murals that adorn many of the its buildings.

Detail from World in Motion by Alan Wylie, Chemainus BC, Canada
Chemainus was founded in the 1800s as a logging town. Its name honours chief “Tsa-meeun-is” (Broken Chest), a brave man who survived a deep chest wound. The Chemainus First Nation people inhabited this beautiful valley for centuries, and their heritage is very much present in many of the murals around town.

Native Heritage by Paul Ygartua, Chemainus BC, Canada
Back in its early days, Chemainus received many Chinese immigrants. They came to work in the lumber operations and, later, on the Trans Canada railroad. There are also murals reflecting some of their history on this part of the land.

Memories of a Chinese Boy by Chen Shu Ren, Chemainus BC, Canada
When the mill finally closed down in the 1980’s, the people of Chemainus came up with the idea to decorate the town with artists’ murals that would celebrate their heritage to attract visitors.

Detail from The Thirty-Three Metre Collage, Chemainus BC, Canada
There are about 40 murals spread out about the town. They are easily accessible by following the footprints painted on the sidewalks which guide you from one piece to the next.

Post Office in Chemainus BC, Canada
We enjoyed our walk around town discovering these art pieces. Below you can see my favourite. Unfortunately, it was too late in the day, and the ice cream place was already closed.

Arrival of the "Reindeer" in Horseshoe Bay, Chemainus BC, Canada

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640 480 Bianca Bauza

Bianca Bauza

Bianca Bauza is a world citizen who spent almost four years traveling around South America and Europe. Her passions include photography, street art, outdoor sports, and cooking exotic dishes. She's now based in the Netherlands where she lives with her partner and young daughter. She still enjoys traveling, on her own or with her family, and is always looking for an opportunity to see new places.

All stories by : Bianca Bauza

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