Discover the Flavour of Shawnigan Lake
You don't want to miss these:
- Summer swimming, boating and waterskiing on the lake
- Great fishing - lake is stocked regularly with trout
- Hike Cowichan Valley TC Trail to histor Kinsol Trestle
- Shawnigan Lake Provincial Park
- Shawnigan Lake Museum
Shawnigan Lake is a community centered around an 8km long fresh-water lake. A popular spot for summer cottagers and recreation, Shawnigan is a year-round community for approximately 7500 year-round residents - a bedroom community for many commuters who travel to work in the city of Victoria 45 minutes to the south.
Summer cottages and year round dwellings occupy most of the lakeshore. There are several beautiful waterfront day-use parks around the lake for public access and one park on an island, accessible by water. Birds and wildlife are plentiful and great cycling and mountain biking opportunities abound on the trails in the area.
Shawnigan Lake is a clean, healthy lake that provides water for many of the residents as well as in adjacent areas. Residents and visitors are encouraged to enjoy the lake responsibly and respectfully so that it will provide recreational opportunities for generations to come.
There are many great places to eat in Shawnigan Lake including Black Swan Pub, Gallery Restaurant & Marina, Steeples Restaurant, Amuse Bistro.
Cutting across part of Vancouver Island north of Shawnigan Lake, the Koksilah River runs through some of the island's rugged wildnerness and is popular with swimmers and anglers. The river is part of a provincial park by the same name which brings hikers and campers to the area as well as visitors wishing to see the historic Kinsol Trestle. Built in 1920 to span the river, the trestle is one of the highest wooden bridges in the world and is under restoration. To get to the Kinsol Trestle from Shawnigan Lake, access is off Glen Eagles Road, on the right of Renfrew Road.
Another way to access the trestle, by the north end, is via Cobble Hill on Cowichan Station's Riverside Road. From this point it is a ten-minute walk.
A little history...
Shawnigan Lake has been a popular recreation destination for over a century. In the early days visitors arrived by train. Today, most people arrive by car but floatplane traffic has increased as well.
Thanks to the Shawnigan Lake Historical Society, a wealth of local photos, documents and artifacts have been preserved and are available to the public through the Shawnigan Lake Museum.