city in British Columbia
North America > Canada > British Columbia > Kootenays > West Kootenays > Grand Forks (British Columbia)

Grand Forks is a town of about 4,000 people (2016) in the West Kootenays, near the Washington, USA border. It is a useful food and fuel stop when travelling the Crowsnest Highway.


The town is in the traditional territory of the Sinixt people, who lived here for at least 10,000 years. Bounded by tall mountains, they interacted with nearby First Nations, but settlers did not arrive until the early 19th century. Smallpox epidemics in the late 18th and early 20th centuries killed some 80% of the population. The 49th parallel border imposed by US and Britain divided the Sinixt territory in two. Most people ended up living south of the border, in the Colville Indian Reservation. The completion of the Grand Coulee Dam blocked salmon migrations up the Columbia River, ending centuries of salmon culture and removing a food source. In 1956 the Canadian government declared the "Arrow Lakes Band" as extinct. However, Sinixt descendants continue to leave in Vallican.

Small numbers of settlers visited the region early in the 19th century, but in the 1890s the development of copper mining brought about permanent settlement. The present town of Grand Forks was established in 1897. Between 1900-1910, pacifist Russian settlers known as "Doukhobors" settled in the area. The population reached 1500 by 1911.

Today the town of Grand Forks has a population of some 4,000 people, and 10,000 or so live in the Grand Forks area.

  • 1 Grand Forks Visitor Information Centre, 524 Central Avenue (at 5 St), +1 250-442-5835, fax: +1 250-442-0099, . M–Sa 9AM–5PM. Supplies tourist information. free.

Get inEdit

Highway 3, the Crowsnest Highway, brings you to Grand Forks from the east and the west.

Highway 41, the Danville Highway, approaches from the south, from the Carson port of entry (Canadian side) and Danville port of entry (US side). This crossing is served by Washington Highway 21.

By busEdit

Get aroundEdit

The core of Grand Forks is walkable and compact. However, there is no public transportation within Grand Forks. A car will be most convenient.


  • 1 Boundary Museum and Interpretive Centre, 6145 Reservoir Road, +1-250-442-3737, . winters Tu–F 10AM–4PM. Housed in the "Fructova Heritage Site", which was built as a school by Doukhobors. Has exhibits on Doukhobor life, and on pioneer life in the Boundary in general. Suggested donation $5 per adult, $3 per youth, and $2 per child.
  • Alpine Taxidermy & Wildlife Museum, 460 Starchuk Rd, +1 250-442-2993. Daily 9AM-9PM. Life-like preserved species of many big and small game found throughout BC. There is no charge to walk through the museum and several items are for sale for the right price. Outside, there is a cedar tree maze for the kids, and many rock & flower gardens to walk through.


  • Big Rock Candy Mountain, 524 Central Avenue, +1 250-442-2211. Rock Candy Mountain is a mine that lets you dig for treasure, real Quartz, barite and fluorite crystals that formed there. The lead guide is John Burch, a geologist. The roof has been blasted off, so you'll be digging in the sunshine. The crystals come in green, purple, yellow & white and sparkle in the sun.
  • Gallery 2, 524 Central Avenue, +1 250-442-2211. =Sep-Jun: Tu-Sa 10AM-4PM, Sa 10AM-3PM, Jul Aug: M-Sa 9AM-5PM. Permanent collection representing regional, national, and international artists documenting and preserving art history and cultural heritage.



  • 1 Tastie Treat, 1629 Central Ave, +1-250-442-3015. Th–Su 11:30AM–7PM, Su noon–7PM. An old-style burger and ice cream stand, in business since the 1960s. Their milkshakes are just the treat for a hot summer day.
  • The Wooden Spoon Bistro, 221B Market Avenue, +1 250-442-5005. M-Sa 8AM-3PM, Su 8AM-1PM. Breakfasts and lunches, healthy choices and vegan options.
  • [dead link] Lisa's Lakeside Bistro, 1675 Highway 3, Christina Lake Welcome Centre, +1 250-447-2554. M-F 7AM-8PM, Sa Su 7AM-3PM. Locally-grown produce and homemade items: everything from soups to salad dressings, is made from scratch. Bread from the local bakery- From the Hearth, and a lot of stuff from Huckleberry Market in Christina Lake. Gluten-free, dairy free, grain-free options.



  • Ramada Limited Grand Forks, 2729 Central Ave, toll-free: +1-800-870-3911. Free continental breakfast and WiFi. Air-conditioned rooms with a view of the mountains, outdoor courtyard pool, pet-friendly hotel. From $100.
  • Western Traveller Motel, 1591 Central Ave, +1 250-442-5566. Fitness room, coin laundromat, business centre, 34 non-smoking rooms (plus 1 smoking room), wheelchair accessible room, in-room jacuzzi suite available, free Wi-Fi, coffee maker, microwave, refrigerator, air conditioning, pet free rooms are available. From $105.
  • Luna Grand Forks Bed and Breakfast, 558 Central Avenue, +1 250-444-0581, . In downtown Grand Forks, next to the Heritage Courthouse and Kettle River, Luna B&B is an elegant home that dates back to 1913. Tastefully decorated rooms with private bathroom and toiletries, TV/DVD, alarm clock, fan, fireplace and wireless Internet access. From $110.


Go nextEdit

Routes through Grand Forks
OsoyoosGreenwood  W   E  Christina LakeCastlegar / Nelson via  
END  N   S    → becomes  Republic

This city travel guide to Grand Forks is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.