Haida Gwaii - Turning Your Visit into a Cultural Experience
Planning a visit to Haida Gwaii? Do you want to experience the Haida culture as fully as possible?
Haida Gwaii offers an inspiring selection of accommodation sure to stir up emotions of stepping into another world. Accommodations range from the traditional and rustic Hiellen Longhouse Village cabins on North Beach to luxurious lodgings at the Haida Gwaii Lodge and Eagle’s Feast House in Greater Masset and the award-winning Haida House at Tllaal.
Speaking of otherworldly, a trip to Gwaii Haanas is a long held dream for many. The Haida cultural sites, like the UNESCO World Heritage Site of SGang Gwaay, are world renowned and the Haida Gwaii Watchmen who live in the area each summer, enjoy sharing their insights with visitors.
Gwaii Haanas zodiac tours are very popular and vary from one to 4 days. Experienced and knowledgeable Gwaii Haanas zodiac tour providers include Moresby Explorers in Sandspit and Haida Style Expeditions in Skidegate. Kayaking (ie: Love Haida Gwaii's Green Coast Kayaking), sail boat trips, mother-ship kayaking and flight-seeing are other options for this trip-of-a-lifetime. Check out the Gwaii Haanas Trip Planner on the for more information on how you can visit.
Of course you will want to book a few hours at the Haida Heritage Centre and Museum and participate in their tours of the 13 on-site totem poles, carving and canoe shed and traditional Haida weaving demonstrations. The tours are included in the $15 museum day pass.
The Heritage Centre also offers a traditional Haida Canoe Tour in Skidegate Inlet for $25 per person with a group size of 20 people. The centre keeps a list of names of those interested.
Other not-to-be-missed cultural attractions include the ancient Haida canoe tours with Haida Gwaii Discovery Tours and Alan Lore/Kayak Haida Gwaii and the Old Massett Totem Pole Tour (either self-guided or with Haida Gwaii Discovery Tours).
Spirit Lake Trail, in Skidegate, is a popular walking trail through the rainforest with Culturally Modified Trees (CMTs) identified by markings such as bark strips which were removed for basket weaving or by holes which were bored into a trunk to determine the quality of the cedar for making a canoe or carving a pole.
Guy Kimola / Haida Gwaii Photos
Remember to check our Artist Directory for listings of Haida art in the local galleries and studios. You won’t want to miss the Longhouse Gift Shop in Skidegate and Sarah’s Haida Arts and Jewellery in Old Masset.
What cultural experience would be complete without an authentic Haida feast at Keenawii’s Kitchen in Skidegate? You’ll need to make reservations though, as Keenawii’s is a very popular dining destination.
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