The Sooke Museum houses wonderful indoor and outdoor exhibits with historic information and items from across Vancouver Island. You will see large steam equipment used in the area from the lumber trade and original buildings from some of the first settlers. Along with the known history of the first nations people and the rich maritime history of the Juan de Fuca Strait.
As you are driving into Sooke from Victoria, you can’t miss the massive top half of a lighthouse brought to Sooke from one of the most northern points on Vancouver Island.
Sooke Museum highlights the history and culture of the region, with deep logging routes, gold mining stories and maritime lore. Exhibits include First Nations artifacts, logging equipment, miniatures, and regularly updated displays. A beautiful gift store with local crafts, books, and clothing within the museum.
During your visit to the Sooke Museum, it doesn’t take long to discover the area’s deep history spanning back thousands of years, starting with the Coastal Salish First Nations living off the plentiful salmon and wild game around the Sooke Basin. The inlet protected them from the harsh weather of the Juan de Fuca Strait. Living off of the abundant wildlife, it’s apparent why the T’sou-ke chose the area.
Then on June 15th, 1790, the T’Sou-ke would have their first encounter with Europeans. As the Spanish ship Princesa Real, led by Manuel Quimper, and forty-one crew sailed into the Sooke Basin while on a quest to explore Juan de Fuca Strait. The Spanish stay was short and uneventful, but we still use some of the names given to the area from this exploration today, including Jordan River, Whiffin Spit and Mount Manuel Quimper.
It wasn’t until 1949, when a few families began to settle in the area, building homes, farms and bringing in labour to help with construction soon after, Sooke would become known for lumber, fishing and even gold mining.
The indoor exhibits include miniatures of the T’sou-ke lodging, industrial railway construction and the sophisticated large net systems used to catch salmon.
Visitor Information: The museum doubles as a tourist information center.
Night Markets: Thursday nights, the museum hosts a great night market with local food, crafts and entertainment.
Parking: Parking is available in front of the museum at Sea Park and a dirt parking lot across the street. Room for RV’s except during events.
Bus: There is a bus stop along Sooke Road for bus numbers 61, 64 and 65. Check out BC Transit for more info.
The cost to enter the Sooke museum is by donation. The knowledgeable staff are always happy to answer any questions about the history of the area and Visitor Information about what is currently happening in Sooke.
Sooke Museum is a great place to stop for a deep dive into the area’s history. Meet knowledgeable staff with current information in the area and walk around enjoying the outdoor and indoor exhibits. There is so much to see and enjoy at this stop.
2070 Phillips Rd, Sooke, BC
OPEN Tues to Sat 9:30 am – 5 pm CLOSED Sun & Mon
(More detailed holiday hours here.)
Museum Entrance By Donation
Museum grounds are OPEN DURING DAYLIGHT HOURS ONLY. No trespassing after dark.
What are the hours?
Open Tuesday to Saturday – Check the website for hours. sookeregionmuseum.ca
What does it cost to visit?
Museum Entrance by donation
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We would like to acknowledge the land we appreciate daily within the 50 First Nations that make up the traditional territories of the Coast Salish, Nuu chah nulth, and Kwakiutl–the first peoples of Vancouver Island .
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