Love exploring our beautiful province? Ladysmith is a small town in BC that’s steeped in intriguing history, local events, and recreational opportunities. Situated in the scenic Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island, the town offers all the small-town charm and community spirit you could ask for. And it just so happens to be the birthplace of the one and only Pamela Anderson.
Known for her extensive modelling career and roles in movies like Baywatch and Scary Movie 3, Anderson recently returned to her roots to film Pamela’s Garden of Eden – an interior design show that follows the process of Anderson redesigning her family’s legacy home.
Festival of Lights
Now, we get into the town’s celebrated events. For one, Ladysmith is known for its annual Festival of Lights, which happens to be Vancouver Island’s largest winter family celebration, according to Ladysmith Tourism.
From the last Thursday in November until the second Sunday in January, the town of Ladysmith will be alight with thousands of twinkling Christmas lights. Visitors can walk or drive down First Avenue to take it all in, and even participate in this year’s Light Up Parade on November 30th, which kicks the festival off.
The parade will include a craft and artisan fair at Aggie Hall, street entertainment and concessions, and of course, the arrival of Santa at 6:30 pm.
History of Ladysmith
As the traditional territory of the Stz’uminus First Nation, the Stz’uminus peoples used what is now known as Ladysmith Harbour as a source of fish and shellfish for thousands of years, according to the Town of Ladysmith.
By the early 20th century, the town had become a strong mining community, with Canadian industrialist James Dunsmuir founding a company town at Oyster Harbour for miners, which he named Ladysmith after the siege of Ladysmith in South Africa.
So there you have it, BC. If you’re looking for another small town to add to your fall or winter itinerary, look no further than Ladysmith.
Where: Eastern Vancouver Island, BC