Almost Spring Open Hours 

Sat/Sun & Statutory Holidays 1-3pm

As a volunteer-run Nature Centre we take the health and well being of our volunteers and guests to heart. We offer a safe place for our volunteers and visitors, including those at greater health risk, by continuing to require the use of masks in our indoor setting and run a HEPA filter in the Centre. There is also a limit of 20 people in the Nature Centre at one time. Read our evidence-based Covid19 protocols here. Thank you for continuing to be kind, patient and caring as we navigate this pandemic together. You’re also welcome to explore the beach, our nature interpretive trail along the estuary’s shoreline, and our wildlife viewing platform outdoors.

About the Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre

Located overlooking the Cowichan Estuary in beautiful Hecate Park at the west end of Cowichan Bay Village, the Nature Centre offers opportunities for visitors of all ages to learn about the estuary, the bay, and the watershed through informative interactive exhibits and fun hands-on activities. Find out more about the Nature Centre and the Cowichan estuary, its watersheds and the creatures who call it home here.

School programs at the Centre, as well as interpretive programs for other groups can be booked at any available time.  We also offer weekly summer nature and science camps in July and August and throughout the year host films, special events, and offer facility rentals.

We’re hiringWe’re looking for part-time contract Nature and Marine Educators – more info here, and a Summer Camp Coordinator and two Summer Camp Leaders – more info here.                                                                                                                                                           ***

Are you interested in volunteering with us?  If you love nature and the intertidal area of the estuary, the Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre offers meaningful volunteer opportunities for adults and youth as nature interpreters during Nature Centre open hours for the public, or as education program assistants. Volunteers also can participate in citizen science projects like monthly bird counts, or hands-on ecosystem restoration projects, and support maintaining displays and equipment, building maintenance, fundraising and many other activties. Volunteers are key to the Centre’s ability to make a positive impact locally, and have fun together. More info here.

 Get in touch! We’re looking to expand our weekend shifts and our team of friendly volunteers welcoming Centre visitors as soon as the weather warms up this Spring!
You don’t have to be an expert – mentoring and support is provided by experienced volunteer naturalists and educators.
Call 250-597-2288 or email info@cowichanestuary.ca
More about Spring School Programs & Summer Science and Nature Camps – Book now!

We had a wonderful 2022 Nature and Science Summer Camp Season with an amazing group of five to nine-year-old participants who came to explore the wonders of the Cowichan estuary with us! Registrations are now open for our July and August 2023 Summer Camps!

If you are a teacher or home-schooler, you can also get in touch about our hands-on science and nature-inspired school programs for all grades and ages – kindergarten through high school – at the Nature Centre, on the beach and exploring and learning at natural sites throughout the lower Cowichan and Koksilah watersheds. Contact alison@cowichanestuary.ca to book a program for your class.


The Herons are Back and the Heron Cam is Live!

The herons juveniles fledged in late summer 2022 and, along with the 200+ Herons from our local Wessex Ravine Pacific Great Blue Heron Colony,  dispersed to their favorite fishing sites throughout our local watersheds and along the coast of the Salish Sea.  Now they’re back for another noisey nesting season, and you can visit our Live Heron Cam, and zoom around the heronry and have a look.


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