Cumberland is located west of Courtenay and is the only town on the inland highway north of Nanaimo. Highways 19 and 19A link Cumberland with southern Vancouver Island. Approaching from the north, Highway 19 links Cumberland, the Comox Valley and Campbell River with the northern half of Vancouver Island. Cumberland is a two-and-a-half hour drive north from Victoria, or a 75-minute drive from the ferry terminals of Departure Bay and Duke Point near Nanaimo.
One of the older towns in the area, Cumberland was incorporated in 1898. It covers a total area of 3,000 hectares and the population is growing rapidly. It has seen the highest growth (by percentage) this past year out of the three main communities. Most residents work at small businesses within the town or at jobs outside the community.
Cumberland, BC, is a town on the edge of a greater past. Anyone who drives to this small village, located six kilometres west of Courtenay/Comox, BC, is transported into another era, metaphorically speaking. Along the main street, Dunsmuir Avenue, the buildings have maintained the same look they had during the 1890s. It is a town that has maintained its link to its past and has a very cultural feel to it.