Port Alberni Tourist Attractions
Port Alberni (16 km / 10 mi) is the largest town on the west coast of Vancouver Island as well as a major port; despite its length Alberni Inlet, which penetrates 50 km / 31 mi inland, is deep enough for ocean-going ships. Fishing vessels operating out of Port Alberni account for about 20 per cent of all the salmon caught in British Columbian waters. Huge cellulose factories, paper mills and sawmills (the earliest of which was built in 1864), process the region's wealth of timber. From Port Alberni an unsurfaced road goes to Bamfield at the northern end of the West Coast Trail (a six to eight day hike).
Until recently the little M.V. "Lady Rose", built in Scotland in 1937, made her way along the Barkley Sound to Bamfield or north through Broken Group Islands (part of the Pacific Rim National Park) to Ucluelet, delivering passengers, post and freight to outlying communities along its route.With the retirement of the Lady Rose, the M.V. Frances Barkley now takes visitors takes visitors through Alberni Inlet and Barkley Sound in a style reminiscent of the past.
Harbour Quay in Port Alberni is a popular area with shops, galleries, restaurants and more. Ships dock here and the Harbour Quay host a number of regular events. The quay has undergone a a restoration and revitalization to attract more visitors to the area.Visitors will find the old railway station and the weekly Farmers Market at Harbour Quay.
McLean Mill National Historic Site
The McLean Mill National Historic Site contains Canada's only steam-operated sawmill in Canada. The site contains original buildings as well as restored equipment from the logging industry.The past is brought to life through costumed interpreters who recount stories. This is particularly entertaining for young people.
Alberni Valley Museum
The Alberni Valley Museum in the Echo Recreation Center has among other things displays of pioneer artifacts and baskets and tools made by west coast Indians. It is also a mine of information about fishing.