The History of Craigdarroch Castle

Last time you visit Victoria, did you check out Craigdarroch Castle?

Craigdarroch Castle is actually an example of a “bonanza castle” — a massive house built for entrepreneurs who earned their wealth during the industrial period. The castle was owned by Robert Dunsmuir, a Scottish immigrant made rich from Vancouver Island coal. Built between 1887 and 1890, Craigdarroch Castle is built on a hill overlooking the city. Unfortunately, Robert died during the building process, leaving the entire estate to his wife, who lived there until she died in 1908.

Though technically a mansion, the castle — with four floors, stained glass windows, turrets, intricate woodwork, and more — has been left as an example of classic Victorian era architecture, though it had many other uses in the past. Once Mrs. Dunsmuir passed away, it was actually used as a military hospital, then as a college and a music conservatory.

Craigdarroch Castle has been restored to what it would have been like in the late 19th century. Visitors may come to explore the castle on a tour, which must be booked in advance. Travel back in time as you look into every nook and cranny of one of Victoria’s most well-preserved historic jewels.

We look forward to hearing about your adventure!