Skip to content

Victoria’s Royal BC Museum celebrates Indigenous heritage with re-opening of two exhibits

The reopening of the Jonathan Hunt House and Our Living Languages exhibits involved collaborations with Indigenous communities across the province. Photo courtesy of the Royal BC Museum

Visitors to Victoria have two favourite opportunities to explore Indigenous culture with the re-opening of two Royal BC Museum exhibits.

Located within its First Peoples Gallery, the Jonathan Hunt House and Our Living Languages installations offer visitors a closer look at Indigenous culture, history and language.

The museum’s CEO, Tracey Drake, expressed the institution’s honour in reopening these spaces, the culmination of efforts that began in January 2022, aimed at updating and expanding cultural narratives first established in the 1960s and ’70s.

Jonathan Hunt House and Our Living Languages invites visitors to understand the interconnectedness of British Columbia’s Indigenous communities with concepts of land, language and traditions.

READ MORE: Refurbished totem joins those of the masters at Victoria’s Thunderbird Park

Lana Popham, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture, and Sport, spoke about the importance of these exhibits in B.C.’s shared history, emphasizing the excitement surrounding the opportunity for people to reconnect with Indigenous languages and the ceremonial house of the late Jonathan Hunt.

More than 50 per cent of Canada’s Indigenous languages are located in B.C. Photo courtesy of the Royal BC Museum

Reopening these two exhibits involved collaborations with Indigenous communities across the province, ensuring that the First Peoples Gallery’s future is shaped by those whose stories it seeks to tell.

This includes representatives from six of the seven major First Nations language families in B.C., working together to bring these narratives to life in a respectful and authentic manner.

What will I see?

  1. The Jonathan Hunt House: This exhibit invites visitors to step into a recreation of the house of Chief Kwakwabalasami, from the Kwakwaka’wakw nation. The museum repainted the house posts, the chief seats, and other integral elements for the first time since its opening.
  2. Our Living Languages: Developed in partnership with the First Peoples’ Cultural Council, this exhibit shows the beauty, complexity and resilience of First Nations languages in B.C. The updated exhibit shares the history of these languages and celebrates the ongoing work to document and revitalize them. More than half of Canada’s Indigenous languages are located in B.C.

READ MORE: Your dream getaway begins with Greater Victoria’s 2024 vacation guide

Why visit Victoria and the Royal B.C. Museum?

Visiting the Royal BC Museum is a cultural excursion and an immersion experience that connects individuals to the narratives that have shaped the land and its people.

Whether it’s exploring the intricate details of the Jonathan Hunt House or delving into the linguistic diversity celebrated in Our Living Languages, visitors are guaranteed an immersive experience that deepens their understanding of B.C.’s heritage.

For tickets and information on how to plan your visit, visit The museum is open from 10 a.m to 5p.m. from Monday to Wednesday and until 6p.m. from Thursday to Sunday.

Tickets are accessible at reduced prices for youth under 18, seniors and students, and free for children under 5.

And don’t miss IMAX Victoria, also on-site and presenting a variety of IMAX documentaries and feature-length Hollywood films.

READ MORE: West Coast Cultural Gems: Exploring Victoria’s Greek Heritage Museum

Plan your adventures throughout the West Coast at and follow us on Facebook and Instagram @thewestcoasttraveller. And for the top West Coast Travel stories of the week delivered right to your inbox, sign up for our weekly Armchair Traveller newsletter!