This 59 hectare park along the spectacular Strait of Juan de Fuca offers beautiful trails, whale watching, secluded campsites and waterfront picnic areas.
Imagine loving to travel so much, you would walk across Canada! Imagine falling through the ice in the Northwest Territories, losing to frostbite all the toes off one foot and the heel of your other, thanking aboriginal knowledge that you did not lose more! Imagine not stopping there, travelling by boat and canoe down the Bulkley Valley to Vancouver, and then paddling around Vancouver Island to find your future home!
It took pioneer James French two adventurous years to travel from New Brunswick to Victoria. He pre-empted the land west of Sooke in 1885. French was an early naturalist, travelling the world to bring exotic animals to zoos for public enjoyment and education. After an expedition to Africa, French once brought home a small elephant shortly before selling it to the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle.
French died in 1952, survived by his family who continued to live on the property and play an active part in local logging. French had hoped that a much larger section of the west coast of Vancouver Island would be made into a provincial park. His home and favorite beach would become French Beach Provincial Park in 1974... twenty years later, Juan de Fuca Provincial Park would further his dream.
French Beach lies within the traditional territory of the T'Sou-ke First Nation. Their economy was based on hunting, fishing and gathering, and extended families amoung the Straits people owned the lands and resources which could not be sold but only inherited.