Barkerville Town, Photo Geoff Moore

Barkerville-Wells

There is a lot of history in the Barkerville-Wells area and during the summer months the historic, world-class town of Barkerville comes alive and is fun for all the family. At this National Historic Site you can take a stage coach ride, try panning for gold, see demonstrations, and enjoy some of the numerous street performances or live theatre. Wells also has a rich heritage which can be seen at the Wells Museum. Situated in the Old Island Mine Office, the museum houses a diverse collection of artifacts from the second Cariboo Gold Rush from 1930 – 1967. The area surrounding Wells has a network of old mining trails, historic ditchlines and mining and forestry roads that are very popular for outdoor enthusiasts. Many trails lead to alpine meadows with stunning scenery. Some can be hiked in a day, others require three or four. The nearby Jack O’ Clubs Lake is an excellent spot to canoe, swim, sail or fish. This scenic lake is within walking distance from the town of Wells and is popular among locals and visitors alike. Access to Bowron Lake Provincial Park is close by and has over 116 km (72 mi) of waterways which are frequented by paddlers during the summer months.

Stage Coach in Barkerville

Location

The small community of Wells is located 660 km (396 mi) north of Vancouver off Hwy 97 to Hwy 26. From Quesnel on Hwy 97, turn east on Hwy 26 and travel 74 km (46 mi) to Wells. Barkerville is located approximately 88 km (55 mi) east of Quesnel at the end of Hwy 26, only 8 km (5 mi) from Wells.

A Step Back in Time

In 1862, Billy Barker discovered gold on Williams Creek, causing an influx of gold seekers to swarm to the area, which became known as Barkerville. Many say that it was this discovery of gold that ‘opened up’ the province of British Columbia and gave way for a future full of hope. During its heyday, Barkerville was the largest city north of Chicago and west of San Francisco. Today, Barkerville is western Canada’s largest heritage attraction and visitors flock here to learn about the rich history of this region. Barkerville is situated only 8 km (5 mi) from the town of Wells.

During the 1920s Fred Wells discovered gold while constructing a hard rock mine deep inside Cow Mountain, just west of Barkerville, in the Cariboo Region of British Columbia. These discoveries lead to a new gold rush in the area which provided new hope and opportunity for the region during the depression of the 1930s. Fred Wells founded the company town of Wells at the head of the Willow River. His mine, the Gold Quartz Mine, is one of the first discoveries of hard rock gold in BC. The community emerged and grew during this period, as people came from across the country in search of a new fortune and life.

Today the town is still known as a friendly mining town. Take a stroll through ‘uptown’ and view many original heritage buildings, be sure to spot the only wooden-framed flatiron building standing in BC, this is one of the most photographed buildings in the province!

Contact Information

Barkerville Historic Town

Barkerville-Wells & Nearby Accommodations

31 Listings

Airport Inn Motel & RV Park

Airport Inn Motel & RV Park

Quesnel

Full hook-up, pull-thru and tenting sites available.. WiFi, laundry, playground, firepits, horseshoe pits and walking trails nearby. ... Read more
Alamo Motel & RV Park

Alamo Motel & RV Park

Quesnel

21 sites with electrical hook-ups, pull thru sites. Flush toilets, showers, sewer and restaurant onsite. RV Park open seasonally. Water shut-off in October, weather dependent. ... Read more
Bowron Lake Lodge & Resorts

Bowron Lake Lodge & Resorts

Quesnel

Located on the best recreational property on Bowron Lake, Bowron Lake Lodge & Resorts is the ideal vacation destination for families, retreats or groups. Situated on 254 acres on the shores of Bowron Lake, our resort is surrounded by pristine beauty. We offer a private beach that stretches over 650 ... Read more
Canim Lake Resort

Canim Lake Resort

Canim Lake

Nestled between the Rocky Mountains and the Coast Mounains, Canim Lake Resort rests on the shores of a 24 mile long lake with mountains and rolling hills circling around. The whole family will love the endless activities offered at our resort. Choose from the several trails for a fun day of hiking, ... Read more
Canyon Creek Campground

Canyon Creek Campground

Hixon

Beautiful scenery, eco trails, full hookups, pull thrus, secluded mossy tenting sites, shower house, laundry, store, barbeque, covered pavilion, fire pits, creekside settings, fishing, swimming, playground, volleyball, horseshoes, internet. Close to Hixon Falls, local attractions. All welcome. 10% S ... Read more
Cariboo Bonanza Resort

Cariboo Bonanza Resort

Lone Butte

Situated on beautiful Horse Lake in the centre of the Cariboo region, Cariboo Bonanza Resort is the ideal vacation destination for guests wanting a tranquil getaway. Unwind in the pristine wilderness and catch sight of majestic wildlife. Offering a range of accommodation, guests can choose from rust ... Read more
Cariboo Joy RV Park & Gold Panning

Cariboo Joy RV Park & Gold Panning

Wells

Cariboo Joy RV Park is the closest hosted full-service RV park to historic Barkerville. Located 5 mins. before Barkerville in enchanting 1930's gold rush town, Wells. Attractive campsites, 30 and 20 amp power, water, sewer hookups, a central sani-station, flush toilets, hot showers, firepits, lawn g ... Read more
Cottonwood Bay Resort

Cottonwood Bay Resort

Bridge Lake

The resort offers motor boat, canoe, kayak and bicycle rentals. Bridge Lake is one of the nicest lakes in the Cariboo. It has over 20 islands, which you can explore. Bring your fishing gear and catch a lake trout, kokanee or rainbow. Enjoy the wildlife and maybe a fire in the evening. ... Read more
Crooked Lake Resort

Crooked Lake Resort

Horsefly

A beautiful, picturesque spot in the Cariboo Mountains of British Columbia, private and secluded. An off the grid, remote wilderness resort where our guests can escape the pace and encumbrances of modern day life, to enjoy seclusion, solitude and back-country recreation. We invite you to be our gues ... Read more
Drummond Lodge & Motel

Drummond Lodge & Motel

Williams Lake

If you want to be surrounded by nature while having easy access to downtown Williams Lake, then Drummond Lodge & Motel is the ideal accommodation. Walking distance to the stampede grounds, restaurants, shops, Scout Island beach and scenic trails, our motel is the perfect base for your fun filled tri ... Read more
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