4 ways to learn more about Indigenous cultures

by | Jun 17, 2024 | Travel and Leisure

For many thousands of years, Indigenous Peoples have lived here on what some call Turtle Island. Here are four ways you can learn more about Indigenous cultures in Canada.

Attend Indigenous events

Every year, on June 21 we recognize National Indigenous Peoples Day. To celebrate, communities across the country host events and activities. But, there are countless opportunities to appreciate Indigenous cultures throughout the year. Depending on where you live – or travel – you can attend a public powwow, an Indigenous film or arts festival, or visit a cultural centre or heritage park.

Support Indigenous businesses

Shopping at local, independent businesses is always a great way to support your community. Seek out Indigenous-owned operations in your area to sample traditional foods, broaden your wardrobe and decorate your home with unique works of art.

Learn about local Indigenous communities

Across the country, there are numerous non-profit organizations that you can volunteer your time with. Activities can range from helping out at a community kitchen to helping remove invasive plant species from Indigenous lands, working hand-in-hand with locals.

Visit a historic site

Many provincial and national historic sites focus on Indigenous heritage. There, you might see ancient petroglyphs (rock carvings), pictographs (rock paintings), longhouses and historic villages.

At SGang Gwaay World Heritage Site, part of Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, for example, you can see intricately carved poles, still standing after more than a century in an area that’s been home to the Haida Nation since time immemorial. Or, you can visit the site from afar by listening to an episode of Parks Canada’s ReCollections podcast that shares the story of an archaeology partnership that’s helping the Haida people connect with their ancestors.

You can find the Gwaii Haanas episode at parks.canada.ca/recollections, or wherever you get your podcasts.

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