Permanent Exhibitions at Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

The Pier 21 Story - Newly Renovated Exhibition

Step into the past and experience what it was like to immigrate through Pier 21 between 1928 and 1971. Discover the family history of one in five Canadians.

  • Explore first-person stories, of newcomers and the people who welcomed them, archival photos as well as artifacts, like trunks, luggage and personal treasures.
  • Be immersed in history. Imagine yourself tossing at sea in the tight quarters of a replica ship’s cabin and dining room as well as settling Canada’s west aboard a colonist railcar.
  • Get into character by playing dress-up in period costumes.
  • Open up a large wooden crate, called a kist in Dutch, to see some of the eccentric (and large-scale!) items brought to Canada in the 1940s and 50s.
  • Pack your trunk and voyage across the Atlantic. Take our multimedia Customs Challenge to see which of your items will be allowed or confiscated.
  • Children’s trunks, scattered throughout, tell unique perspectives of those who immigrated as little ones.

Canadian Immigration Story - New Exhibition

Showcasing the vast contributions of newcomers to Canada’s culture, economy and way of life, from past to present day, see how Canada is shaped by the world in experiential ways.

  • Listen, see, smell and touch to experience how different waves of immigration have influenced everything around us from our global palate to our favourite pastimes.
  • Trace dynamically changing migration trends throughout our history on our massive multimedia Immigration Map.
  • Digitally browse a compelling collection of authentic immigrant oral histories.
  • Snap your photo and insert yourself into our Canadian mosaic in the form of iconic cross-country landscapes.
  • Share how you feel about Canadian Identity in our growing digital Belonging Quilt.
  • Test your knowledge and see your results at the Citizenship Test Table.

Watch a trailer of our original film, in Canada