Quesnel, Xatsull Heritage Village, Photo Destination BC Blake Jorgenson

Quesnel

Quesnel is an outdoor playground with access to an abundance of adventures. Here you can go whitewater rafting, gold panning, hiking, golfing, fishing and cross-country skiing. The Riverfront Trail system in Quesnel provides a scenic, peaceful circle tour through the community. Nearby world class Bowron Lake Provincial Park is a true jewel in the Quesnel area. People from all over the world come to canoe or kayak the 116-kilometre chain of lakes and rivers. The park boasts lofty mountain peaks, sensitive marshlands, and abundant wildlife. The scenery is incredible. Pinnacles Provincial Park is best known for its very intriguing twelve-million-year-old geological rock formations, locally known as “hoodoos”. This location also affords excellent views of the scenic Baker Creek Canyon and the City of Quesnel as a backdrop. The Cariboo region has thousands of lakes, ponds, and rivers that are great for fishing. Dragon Lake is a fly fisher’s dream and features plenty of trophy-sized rainbow trout. The Quesnel River has Rainbow Trout, Bull Trout, and Spring Salmon – all of which can reach up to 30 lbs during the summer.

Location

Quesnel is located between Prince George and Williams Lake, at the junction of Hwy 97 and Hwy 26 in the Cariboo region of the BC Interior.

A Step Back in Time

Prior to the discovery of gold in the Cariboo region in 1859, tribes of Carrier First Nations inhabited the site of the City of Quesnel, at the junction of the Fraser and Quesnel rivers. It was just a jungle of trees and brush-covered hills.

William Dietz, Ned Stout and several other companions had discovered gold on Williams Creek in the early spring of 1861. When Billy Barker staked a claim below the canyon on Williams Creek, other miners made fun of him, but in 1862, Barker & Company made their richest strike on the creek. It triggered the Cariboo gold rush and the boomtown of Barkerville, which, in its heyday, boasted it was the largest city west of Chicago and north of San Francisco.

Quesnel, overshadowed by the glamour and frolics of Barkerville, gained importance during the 1860s as a stopover and supply depot for the miners in the gold fields.

Quesnel was, at first, reached by land over First Nations trails and later by the Cariboo Waggon Road. The appearance of steamships made it possible to carry more supplies and gold seekers up the Fraser River. As more and more people recognized the profit to be made in the supply town of Quesnel, many settlers chose to stay. Thus, Quesnel sustained continued growth in the years following the gold rush, while many other towns in the area were abandoned and left to crumble.

Although there were many farms and ranches in the area, gold mining was the major industry in the area until the 1940s. Forestry and ranching were important to the region and remain so today along with the growing tourism industry

Contact Information

Tourism Quesnel

Quesnel & Nearby Accommodations

31 Listings

Fraser Bridge Inn & RV Park

Fraser Bridge Inn & RV Park

Quesnel

10 RV campground with full hookups. Clean, easy in and out, and friendly service, minutes away from all the City's amenities. We are in the centre of it all. ... Read more
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
Lazy Daze Resort

Lazy Daze Resort

Quesnel

Offering Rainbow Trout and Kokanee year round in Ten Mile Lake, Lazy Daze Resort is the ideal destination for fishing enthusiasts and families. Resting on 14 acres, our resort provides landscaped grounds, boat dock, swim grid, playground and nature trails for guests to enjoy. Lazy Daze Resort offers ... 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
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 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
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
Williams Lake Stampede Campground

Williams Lake Stampede Campground

Williams Lake

The Stampede Campground is owned and operated by the Williams Lake Stampede Association, which is a non-profit organization operated by volunteers. Seasonal onsite campground hosts occupy site #50. The campground is open (weather permitting) from mid-Apr to mid-Oct. ... Read more
Whispering Willows Campsite

Whispering Willows Campsite

Williams Lake

Whether you are looking for an overnight rest area, or a longer term home-away-from-home, we offer both tenting and fully serviced sites. Our fully serviced pull-thru sites include water, power and sewer, with level and easy access for large RVs. We also offer sites with water and power only, and un ... Read more
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Travel Spotlight
Camping Lodging

The Super Camping / Select Lodging Guide

First Published in 1989