Welcome to Barkerville
Welcome to the official blog of Barkerville Historic Town. This blog will offer up interesting tidbits, regular updates, and amazing facts about British Columbia’s Gold Rush Town – as well as provide all of the information you will need to plan a visit to the largest historic site in western North America!
Each year, thousands of visitors from all over the world travel to the foothills of the Cariboo mountains to take in this one of a kind heritage attraction, much like miners and prospectors did during the original gold rushes.
In 1861, a miner named Billy Barker arrived in the region, along with a wave of prospectors from all over North America and the world. While here, Barker struck a fabulously rich pay streak. As a result, in 1862, Barkerville was born, helping set the stage for the settlement of British Columbia and its eventual confederation with Canada.
Today, Barkerville is a historic site like no other. Many gold rush towns from this era have long since disappeared – but Barkerville remains a thriving place, rich in history and full of life. You can tour the town with one of the colourful characters from Barkerville’s past, watch the notorious Judge Begbie strike fear into the hearts of history’s criminals, witness authentic gold rush theatre, and see a real Cornish Waterwheel in action. Pan for gold with your family and friends, visit Barkerville’s well preserved Chinatown, and go back to school in the 1800s. Or, learn about the town at your own pace by visiting our historic buildings and beautiful displays. Our town’s merchants, restaurants and accommodations will provide you with everything you need for a genuinely comfortable trip into the province’s past.
In fact, there is so much to see and do at Barkerville that most people stay at least two days. For a truly unique experience, stay overnight in Barkerville at one of our Places to Stay.
Barkerville is situated 80 km east of Quesnel, British Columbia in the foothills of the Cariboo Mountains, close to Troll Mountain Ski Resort and Bowron Lake Provincial Park. The nearby community of Wells (only 8 km from Barkerville) is the service and housing centre for the area and is itself a dynamic cultural community, home of Island Mountain Arts, the acclaimed Toni Onley Artists’ Project, the International Celtic Harp School, the dynamic indie music festival ArtsWells, and the Sunset Theatre. Wells is also situated close to a wide variety of winter and summer outdoor activities.
Come visit Barkerville Historic Town. You’ll treasure the experience!