Abbotsford, British Columbia travbel information on TransCanadaHighway.com



The City of Abbotsford expands between Chilliwack and Langley, sandwiched by the Fraser River on the north and the U.S. border to the south. Abbotsford includes the areas of Abbotsford, Bradner, Clayburn, Clearbrook, Huntingdon, Matsqui, Mount Lehman and Sumas.

university College of the Fraser Valley's Abbotsford campus Abbotsford is one of the major agricultural areas in Canada, perfectly placed with flat land surrounded by rain-bearing mountain ranges. Its climate is ideal for producing berries, beef cattle, dairy, greenhouses and nurseries, swine, and vegetables, as well as speciality crops like field-grown flowers and bulbs such as daffodils, gladiolus and tulips. Abbotsford is renowned as the "Raspberry Capital of Canada", and a major producer of strawberries and blueberries; with an estimated berry production of 34.5 million pounds

Abbotsford History

Centennial Park The Sumas First Nation utilized the Sumas Lake and prairie area as source of wild hay, fish, water fowl, trade and travel for thousands of years. The first European activity was exploration by the Hudson's Bay Company. The Whatcom Trail, connecting Whatcom at Bellingham Bay in the US to the Sumas Prairie area as a quick route to the Fraser River Gold Rush in the interior of British Columbia. In 1874, this was connected with the Telegraph Trail, which became the New Westminster - Yale Road.

The Vedder, Miller and Chadsey families were early settlers in the 1860s. The area was originally a bountiful land of thick forests, spacious pastures, a clear river, and an expansive lake in the Sumas Prairie, with view of the surrounding mountains. By 1867, one farm was producing tobacco, milk and butter. When the Canadian Pacific Railway built a line from Mission to Sumas, Washington in 1891, to intersect the only roadway through the valley, the Old Yale Road, the Village of Abbotsford was born. Laid out in 1889, Abbotsford takes its name from Harry Abbott, the general superintendent of the Canadian Pacific Railway. The Districts of Sumas and Matsqui were incorporated in 1892. The railways brought in settlers and shipped out fresh produce. Later on, the Canadian National Railway passed through Matsqui, closer to the Fraser River, and the BC Electric Railway was built through Abbotsford by 1910. Abbotsford was finally incorporated until 1924

Vedder River Each spring, Sumas Lake would flood from 10,000 acres to 30,000 acres from the Chilliwack and Vedder rivers flowing into it. In 1919, Sumas Lake was drained to expand farm land and for flood control in the Sumas Prairie. In 1923, the Barrowtown Pump Station drained the reclaimed land reclaimed in the Sumas Drainage Project. By 1924, dykes were built to prevent flooding and the Vedder Canal diverted the Vedder River and provided irrigation and drainage for Sumas Prairie. Early crops in the new land were timothy, clover, tobacco, and later hops. Many consider this project the earliest destruction of Fraser Valley wetlands and the lost of fish and waterfowl habitat.

Abbotsford's federal penitentiary

Abbotsford Attractions

Abbotsford International Airshow
Abbotsford Airport (Second weekend of August)
(604) 852-8511
Abbotsford International Airshow is one of the leading Airshows in North America. It attracts the world's top aeronautical performers with spectacular air demonstrations of squadrons performing dramatic aerobatic feats, daring skydivers, and soloists.

abbotsford's Rec CentreAbbotsford Exhibition Park
32470 Haida Drive
(604) 859-3134
Ag-Rec Building, Air Cadets Building, Agrifair, Arena, Playing Fields, Rotary Stadium, Ball Diamonds, Show Barn, Twisters Gymnastics Club.

Aldergrove Lake Park
West on Hwy 1, off at 264 Street Exit, follow Hwy 13 south, left on 8th Avenue (at Park directional signs), across Jackman Road, then shortly right into the park.
Open forest with varied wildflowers and a view to the International Boundary. Hiking trail offers a round trip of 4 km - allow 1.5 hours walking/hiking, also ideal for horseback riding.

Barrowtown Pump Station
10 miles East of Abbotsford (off Highway #1)
(604) 823-4678
Originally built in 1920 (then the "Old Sumas" station), and used since 1923 to drain 21,000 acres land. The new Barrowtown Pump Station opened in 1985. Picnic area & tours.

Clayburn Village
Off Mission Highway north, turn right on Clayburn Road
Situated on the west side of Sumas Mountain, Clayburn Village is a sheltered little village with several historical brick buildings: a heritage church, school, and the old brick plant.

Fraser Valley Trout Hatchery Visitor Centre
34345 Vye Road, Abbotsford.
Journey through large exhibit space featuring fish, fishing and fisheries displays, live stream display.

Matsqui Dike Trail
South side of the Fraser River, off Abbotsford-Mission Hwy 11, left on Harris Road and right on Gladwin Road. for a few hundred metres. Also accessible by Riverside Street through Matsqui Village.
Parking at the end of the river dyke. A picturesque trail on a flat dike along the Fraser River offers a beautiful view of Matsqui Island, Westminster Abbey and coastal mountains. The tail has a round trip distance of 12.8 km, and is ideal for horseback riding.

Mill Lake & Centennial Park
Mill Lake Road & Emerson Street
Picnic area, nature trails, outdoor swimming pool, playground equipment, fitness track, open to canoes, small rowboats, trout fishing, wildfowl refuge. Within walking distance of major shopping centers, MSA Museum & Trethewey House

MSA Museum, Trethewey House, Heritage Gallery & Archives
2313 Ware Street, Abbotsford
(Located on Mill Lake, next to John Mahoney Park and near the boardwalk. Parking is available in the Museum lot, just off Alta Avenue)
(604) 853-0313, Email: mail@MSA.Museum.bc.ca.
Heritage Gallery features exhibits on local and surrounding areas. Trethewey House is a designated heritage site, restored to 1925 era with period rooms. The Abbotsford Lumber Company Collection records the mill's impact, the Clayburn Company Collection includes artifacts of one of B.C.'s first company towns, and the Sumas Collection records agricultural development that followed the reclamation of Sumas Lake in 1924. Gift Shop. School/Group Tours, slide shows and demonstrations by appointment. Handicapped accessible. Open: September to June: Tuesday through Friday, 1pm to 5pm; July and August: Monday through Wednesday, 1pm to 5pm, Thursday through Sunday, 11am to 5pm.

Sumas Mountain Park
East of Abbotsford 5.6 km., left on Sumas Mountain Road, past Kilgard and uphill for 8 km. Right at Batt Road with switchback for another 8 km.
Wilderness park around Chadsey Lake, with spectacular 5 km forest hiking trails (good for horseback riding) with viewpoint of Sumas Prairie & Vedder Mountain. Climbs to high point 900 m (2,950 ft); allow three hours. Open July to October. Shorter trail descends from parking lot through stately forest to Chadsey Lake.

Monkey Mountain
#3, 34100 South Fraser Way, Abbotsford
(604) 886-2917
Indoor rock climbing gym - 9000 sq ft of Western Canada's newest climbing surface.

Fraser Valley Trout Hatchery Visitor Centre
34345 Vye Road
(604) 852-5444
Large exhibits featuring fish, fishing and fisheries, with a live stream display, walk-in beaver lodge and 12 minute multi-projector slide show. Self-guided tours, minutes from downtown. Summer hours: 10 am to 5pm. Winter hours: 10 am - 3pm.

Xa:Ytem
Highway #11 north from Abbotsford, to Scenic 7 to Mission's eastern border.
Longhouse Interpretive Centre for first nations culture.

Farms with Tours

Birchwood Dairy's Inc.
1154 Fadden Road
RR# 2 Abbotsford, BC
(604) 857-1315
Picnic tables, pet the cows, self-guided tours, enjoy farm-fresh milk, old-fashioned ice-cream and frozen yogurt, feta cheese

Lavender Farms:
240 McKenzie Road,
RR#2 Abbotsford, BC
(604) 864-9064
Holstein dairy farm. Call for tours.

Northblu Fruit co. Inc.
34488 Bateman Road, Clayburn
(604): 850-0994
Blueberries, enjoy picnic, cranberry farm production. Call in advance for U-pick. Open daily July and August

Thorncrest Apple Barn
33 Gladwin Road
Abbotsford
Phone: 853-3108
Gooseberries (U-pick or they pick), red & black currants, jams and variety of apples, petting barn, hay rides, pumpkins, and a nursery are available. School tours and Appplefest. By appointment daily, July through September.

Willowview Farms:
288 McCallum Road
Abbotsford
Phone 854-8710
Blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, saskatoons, and red rhubarb. Country store from September for applies, October (Saturday's) Pumpkin Daze. Petting zoo, hayride. Group and school tours available in fall only. Open July, September through April, Monday to Saturday 9:00 - 5:30.

Abbotsford Parks

Here are the more popular parks in Abbotsford, from north to south (see other area parks):

Aldergrove Lake Park
West on Hwy 1, off at 264 Street Exit, follow Hwy 13 south, left on 8th Avenue (at Park directional signs), across Jackman Road, then shortly right into the park.
Open forest with varied wildflowers and a view to the International Boundary. Hiking trail offers a round trip of 4 km - allow 1.5 hours walking/hiking, also ideal for horseback riding.

Matsqui Dike Trail
South side of the Fraser River, off Abbotsford-Mission Hwy 11, left on Harris Road and right on Gladwin Road. for a few hundred metres. Also accessible by Riverside Street through Matsqui Village.
Parking at the end of the river dyke. A picturesque trail on a flat dike along the Fraser River offers a beautiful view of Matsqui Island, Westminster Abbey and coastal mountains. The tail has a round trip disatnce of 12.8 km, and is ideal for horseback riding.

Mill Lake & Centennial Park
Centennial Park Mill Lake Road & Emerson Street
Picnic area, nature trails, outdoor swimming pool, playground equipment, fitness track, open to canoes and small rowboats, trout fishing, wildfowl refuge. Within walking distance of major shopping centers, MSA Museum & Trethewey House

Sumas Mountain Park
East of Abbotsford 5.6 km., left on Sumas Mountain Road, past Kilgard and uphill for 8 km. Right at Batt Road with switchback for another 8 km.
Wilderness park around Chadsey Lake, with spectacular 5 km forest hiking trails (good for horseback riding) with viewpoint of Sumas Prairie & Vedder Mountain. Climbs to high point 900 m (2,950 ft); allow three hours. Open July to October. Shorter trail descends from parking lot through stately forest to Chadsey Lake.

Trout Hatchery
34345 Vye Road, Abbotsford
(604) 852-5444
Self guided tour minutes from downtown. Featuring fish, fishing and fisheries displays, live stream display, walk-in beaver lodge and 12 min multi-projector slide show. Summer hours 10 am - 5 pm. Winter 10 am - 3pm

Map of Hotels and Attractions


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