Chemainus was first populated with quiet bays in the area inhabited by First Nations people. In 1958, it became an unincorporated logging town and grew as the railroad reached the area in the 1880s. It eventually was designed as a census populated area. The name Chemainus comes from native shaman and prophet Tsa-meenun-is, whose name means broken chest. According to legend, Tsa-meenun-is survived a massive chest wound and became a powerful tribal chief.
What season provies the best time to visit Chemainus, BC?
The best times to visit Chemainus would be in the warm season, from mid-June to mid-September, when you can expect average highs from the high 60s to mid-70s. With many outdoor activities taking place, the popularity of these months will drive up hotel prices, so book early for a chance to save.
You can benefit from slightly cheaper rates if you travel closer to the beginning of June or the end of September when highs will be in the mid-60s. Rates will be at their lowest during the cool season, from mid-November to early March, when you can expect highs in the 40s. This is not a popular time for warm-weather tourists.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Chemainus, BC:
Chemainus, BC: Prices by Star Rating Class
Below are 3 charts illustrating avg. price trends by star rating class in Chemainus, BC. Browse these charts to determine the cheapest time period to book a room in Chemainus for any future trips.
What are some luxury hotels near Chemainus, BC?
At Coastal Lavender BnB in Chemainus, you have your choice of three luxurious rooms: the standard queen, the deluxe queen with ocean views, and the deluxe double queen with two beds in separate alcoves. The deluxe rooms have private patios with private entrances. All rooms feature queen beds with Sertapedic mattresses, deluxe hotel linens, extra pillows, private upscale bathrooms with heated tiles and glass showers, desks, fireplaces, Roku smart TVs, and complimentary Wi-Fi.
The rooms share access to a coffee lounge with a table and chairs, television, refrigerator, microwave, kettle, and ice maker. Breakfast selections are available for a fee. The bed-and-breakfast is in Saltair, a small unincorporated community between Chemainus and Ladysmith.
The Coast Bastion Hotel, about 20 miles from Chemainus in the heart of Nanaimo, is an upscale hotel with a full-service spa, a hair salon, and spectacular ocean views. You'll be near the ferry terminal and within walking distance of the sea wall walkway, restaurants, and shops. Rooms have private balconies, LED televisions, and free Wi-Fi. The Minnoz Restaurant Lounge specializes in seafood and offers 24-hour room service. You can get a drink at the on-site bar/lounge. Cooked-to-order breakfasts are served for a fee. The hotel offers a computer station and a business center.
Are there affordable hotels near Chemainus, BC?
Super 8 by Wyndham Duncan is 8 miles from Chemainus and near the Quw'utsun' Cultural Centre. Some rooms have refrigerators, and a shared microwave is available in a common area. Your room will have a flat-screen TV, work desk, coffee/tea maker, and free Wi-Fi. Upgraded rooms and suites may have kitchenettes, furnished living areas, and hot tubs. Free breakfast is served each morning. The hotel has a restaurant, bar, and business center.
Best Western Cowichan Valley Inn, also in Duncan, is minutes from the BC Forest Discovery Centre and the World's Largest Hockey Stick. You'll also be near Duncan Meadows Golf Course and the Cowichan Valley Museum. Your room will feature a refrigerator, plasma television, desk, coffee/tea maker, and free Wi-Fi. You can upgrade to a suite for amenities such as a jetted tub and a sofa bed. The hotel offers an on-site restaurant, picnic area, business center, and free newspapers. Breakfast is available for a fee.
Is there a way to get the best discounts near Chemainus, BC?
Best Western Plus Chemainus Inn offers government/military, senior, and AAA discounts. In the heart of Chemainus, this golf hotel is next to Mount Brenton Golf Course and a short walk from the Chemainus Theatre. Your room will have a refrigerator, flat-screen television, coffee/tea maker, free Wi-Fi, and a deep soaking bathtub. Suites have large windows with sweeping views and provide amenities such as hot tubs. The hotel offers an indoor pool, spa tub, and fitness center. Free breakfast is served each morning. Business travelers will appreciate the 24-hour business center, meeting room, and coffee and tea in common areas.
Ramada by Wyndham Duncan Cowichan Valley in Duncan offers discounts to seniors, AAA members, government employees, and members of the military. Your room will have a refrigerator, microwave, LCD television, desk, and free Wi-Fi. Dine at The Old Fork or River Rock Bar & Grill, or get room service during limited hours. You can also get a drink at the hotel bar/lounge. Cooked-to-order breakfasts are available for a fee. The hotel offers a computer station, a 24-hour business center, and fitness facilities.
How can I find the best hotels near Chemainus, BC?
Ramada by Wyndham Nanaimo is a four-minute drive from Departure Bay Ferry Terminal and just a few blocks from Newcastle Island Marine Provincial Park. Rooms feature microwaves, refrigerators, flat-screen televisions, desks, and free wired and wireless internet access. Upgrade to a suite for extra space and amenities such as a hot tub. The hotel offers a complimentary continental breakfast, business center, and dry cleaning/laundry services.
The Best Western Dorchester Hotel in downtown Nanaimo is near the Nanaimo Harbour and the Nanaimo Museum. The boutique hotel offers spectacular views. Rooms have flat-screen televisions, desks, free Wi-Fi, and Keurig coffee makers with free coffee and tea. You can dine at Roman's European Cuisine or get a drink at the Oasis Lounge & Bar. The hotel provides a business center, meeting facilities, and free newspapers.
What is the art and culture like in Chemainus, British Columbia?
Many visitors to Chemainus come for the arts, particularly the Chemainus Murals, but in 1982, the community had just five murals — and enough determination to earn the nickname The Little Town That Did. The next year, it won the New York Downtown Revitalization Award for redevelopment that included a huge expansion of the murals. Today, Chemainus has more than 40 murals in the famed Historical Series, as well as newer murals in the Emily Carr Series and Community Mural Series, accompanied by more than 10 sculptures.
The most famous mural, "Native Heritage" by Paul Ygartua, is where many visitors stop first. It features compelling images of First Nations faces. Ygartua restored the painting in 2014. "The Lone Scout" features Edward Shige Yoshida, who was raised in Chemainus and started the 2nd Chemainus Boy Scouts, an all-Japanese Canadian scout troop. The mural was painted by Stanley Hiromichi Taniwa, a Japanese Canadian who was a baby when he was taken from Chemainus to an internment camp during World War II.
Cin MacDonald painted seven of the murals — three each in the Historical Series and the Emily Carr series, and one in the Community Mural Series. She was born in Scotland but moved to Victoria as a child and later moved to Crofton. Dan Sawatzky painted five of the historical murals, the first in 1983, after which he lived in Chemainus for 18 years.
You can view these and other murals by following footprints on a self-guided tour, going on a trolley for a heritage tour, or taking a ride in a horse-drawn carriage. The Chemainus Visitors Center will give you a map and background on the murals. You might even like to try all three methods. You'll find shops, restaurants, galleries, and more along the way.
Chemainus has many painters, sculptors, fiber artists, photographers, jewelry makers, and writers. A number of galleries featuring local and regional art are in the community and the surrounding area. You can see professional theater at theChemainusTheatre, which offers the Playbill Dining Room and the Gallery Gift Shop featuring artists from British Columbia. Check out a play or a musical, or make a night of it with a dinner theater production.
First Nations culture and heritage is an important focus in Chemainus and the surrounding area. Three tribes are in the Chemainus area: the Stz'uminus, the Penelakut, and the Halalt. The Quw'utsun' Cultural and Conference Centre in Duncan celebrates the area's First Nations people and their history. You can view wood carvers and painters working on canoes and totem poles, as well as smaller works. Traditional Cowichan sweater displays are on hand, and you can see women knitting the renowned sweaters. The facility has a gift shop.
The Chemainus Valley Museum in Waterwheel Park has many local and area artifacts on display. For a unique twist, drive to Cowichan Bay to see the Cowichan Bay Maritime Centre, a marine museum on a pier that extends into the bay. The exhibits are housed in buildings along their pier to foster a sense of connection to the sea.
Opportunities to experience art, culture, history, water activities, sightseeing, and more abound in Chemainus, The Little City That Did. You'll develop fond memories of visiting this charming little town. Be sure to interact with friendly villagers in the shops and on the sidewalks as you take in Chemainus' famous murals. You may hear some great stories.
FAQs about hotels in Chemainus