Comox is a town of 12,000 people located on a small peninsula in the Georgia Strait on the eastern coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The warm dry summers, mild winters, fertile soil and abundant sea life attracted First Nations thousands of years ago, who called the area kw’umuxws (Coast Salish for plentiful). When the area was opened for settlement in the mid-19th century, it quickly attracted farmers, a lumber industry and a fishing industry. For over fifty years, the village remained isolated from the outside world other than by ship until roads and a railway were built into the area during the First World War. The installation of an air force base near the village during the Second World War brought new prosperity to the area, and in recent years, Comox has become a popular tourist attraction due to its good fishing, local wildlife, year-round golf and proximity to the Mount Washington ski area, the Forbidden Plateau, and Strathcona Provincial Park. The town is also home to Canadian air force base CFB Comox, an international airport and the HMCS Quadra Sea Cadet training facility. The mild climate has attracted many retirees to the area in the 21st century, resulting in a high rate of growth and a sharp increase in the median age of residents.Comox town is located in the Comox Valley, along with several other communities, including Courtenay, Cumberland, and the unincorporated hamlets of Royston, Union Bay, Fanny Bay, Black Creek and Merville. The nearby Comox Glacier is visible from many parts of the town and is the area's signature landmark.