Thunderbird Park, Victoria

(140+ reviews on the web)
Nature / Park
Thunderbird Park is a park in Victoria, British Columbia next to the Royal British Columbia Museum. The park is home to many totem poles (mostly Gitxsan, Haida, and Kwakwaka'wakw) and other First Nation monuments. The park takes its name from the mythological Thunderbird of Indigenous North American cultures which is depicted on many totem poles.Also in the park are St. Anne's Schoolhouse (built 1844), Helmcken House (built in 1852 by Dr. John Helmcken), and Mungo Martin House (Wawadit'la), a traditional Kwakwaka'wakw "big house" built in 1953 by Kwakwaka'wakw Chief Mungo Martin. The park is part of the Royal BC Museum Cultural Precinct, an area around the museum that contains a number of historical sites and monuments.HistoryTotem poles were first erected on the site in 1940 as part of a conservation effort to preserve some of the region's rapidly deteriorating Aboriginal art. The site was opened as Thunderbird Park in 1941. By 1951, many of the poles had greatly decayed, and in 1952 the Royal BC Museum began a restoration program with Chief Martin as its head carver. Martin died in 1962 and was succeeded by renowned carver Henry Hunt. Other artists who have worked as part of the program include Henry Hunt's sons Richard Hunt and Tony Hunt, Tim Paul, Lawrence Bell, David Gladstone, David Martin, and Bill Reid. All of the original poles were replaced with new versions by 1992, and some of the originals are now preserved within the museum.
Put Thunderbird Park and other Victoria attractions into our Victoria itinerary planner, and watch your holiday take shape.
Source
Create a full Victoria itinerary
map

Plan your trip to Victoria

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Plans in Victoria by other users

14 days in Canada BY A USER FROM CHINA September, outdoors, relaxing, fast-paced, popular PREFERENCES: September, outdoors, relaxing ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Fast-paced 24 days in British Columbia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 13 days in British Columbia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in Canada BY A USER FROM SAINT LUCIA July, popular PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in Canada BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 43 days in Canada BY A USER FROM INDIA May, relaxing, romantic, popular PREFERENCES: May, relaxing, romantic ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Victoria BY A USER FROM CANADA August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 3 days in Victoria BY A USER FROM CANADA July, popular PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in Canada BY A USER FROM CANADA July, popular PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in Vancouver Island BY A USER FROM THAILAND May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, popular PREFERENCES: May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in British Columbia, Oregon & Washington State BY A USER FROM FRANCE December, culture, outdoors, popular PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 60 days in Canada BY A USER FROM SINGAPORE March, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: March, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium
View more plans
Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Victoria's Thunderbird Park, part of the Royal BC Museum, is tucked into a quiet, tree-filled street corner in downtown Victoria, but oh so worth the hunt. Up close and personal to beautiful works of ...  more »
  • Very close to the Royal BC museum. Excellent Totem poles. Being outside you really get a sense of how large they are.  more »
  • Small park with some examples of native totem poles and a longhouse. Longhouse is brightly painted with native art so good for photos . Has ramps so accessible to wheelchairs . Give a small look at na...  more »
Google
  • Beautiful 1st Nation Totem Pole exhibit close to Victoria's inner harbor. Unfortunately visited too late in the day to do or see more than the Totem Poles, but glad we did.
  • Take a trip back to old Victoria with these inspiring native masterpieces.
  • Great history, and a fun geocaching challenge if you know where to look!
  • Very interesting park.
  • An impressive collection of totem poles. No description of what they mean but it make a great photo stop an the way to the museum.