Victoria is a located a few hours south of Vancouver so it is in the perfect location for a quick day visit if you are staying in Vancouver for a few days. As Valentines day is fast approaching this will be a great romantic excursion for your loved ones and late February into March you will notice the plant life waking up as Spring is approaching – the colours are truly incredible in this part of the world.
Victoria rated as the #1 Romantic city in Canada https://vancouverisland.ctvnews.ca/you-re-still-the-one-victoria-named-most-romantic-city-in-canada-again-1.3267046
We recommend that you take a day tour to check out this gorgeous capital of BC and the tours that are on offer include the very best areas of interest so you do not miss out on the very best the city has to offer.
Tours are typically around a 12 hour long trip and you will be picked up directly at the hotel where you can pay for your trip with the tour guide at the wheel. The tour starts right away – the trip to the ferry terminal at Tsawwassen takes roughly an hour and the ferry ride itself is an hour and half, this is the perfect start as you can relax on the bus and enjoy the stunning scenery as you make your way to the destination – while you are on the ferry you will alight the bus and enjoy the journey inside or out on the boat. We highly recommend that you have an eagle eye while crossing the Georgia Strait as there is a chance you may be lucky enough to spot Whales and Dolphins along the way – that will be pretty cool if they say hello!
The world famous Butchart Gardens. Covering 55 acres that is built around an old disused quarry that is home to the iconic sunken garden the Butchart gardens is a must see attraction, and as mentioned earlier, visiting the gardens during February through to March and April you will be amazed in awe at the incredible array of floral displays that truly come alive during the Spring season.
Victoria Chinatown. There is a large Chinese population in Canada and especially the western half for many historical reasons and it really is a huge part of the fabric that makes this area what it is today. In the Gold Rush days this area was cemented as many Chinese people were involved in the large Gold Rush wave of the late 1800s where flocks of people prospected to the Fraser valley. Also economic problems in the far east that created problems involving war and famine led to a rush of refugees – and of course without the many Chinese immigrants that moved to Canada who were employed to build the famous Canadian Railways, Canadian Pacific railways would not be who they are today – these amazing railway systems now transcends across the whole country from the West coast to the East.
This Chinatown is the oldest in Canada and is the second oldest in North America with San Francisco claiming the oldest – it was from here that many headed north in search for Gold. This is a great way to swot up on local history and see the wild west in real time as both Victoria & Vancouver are forever evolving today in dramatic fashion.
Victoria inner Harbour
If you like to go for a long gentle stroll then the Harbour you should check out with plenty of activity and stunning views to explore, here the Seaplanes come and go throughout the day and in the high season this is where the huge Cruise-ships dock – a great oppurtunity to get up, close and personal to these massive floating cities.
The Harbour is also located in a prime spot for migrating Bird life – in fact it was recognised as a protected migratory stop for the traveling birds way back in 1923 – this is no surprise as the pacific northwest is spoiled in abundance of a massive array of species of birds that you can spot in the area.
High Tea at the Empress Hotel
This is a tradition among many that come to visit Victoria, the Empress Hotel in Victoria is a truly magnificent and majestic building that sits in the heart of the downtown core and is famous for its afternoon High Tea experience. This tradition has been followed for over 100 years now and was a very popular get together in the afternoons with Royals and dignitaries of times gone by!
Which tour to take?
There are quite a few tour operators to choose from so for us we feel there are 2 companies that offer a similar tour set up, so if one maybe full try the other – they are both reputable companies and we have had a long relationship with both over the years as their service and operations will make your trip memorable. All tours can be booked directly at the front desk of the hotel.
Landsea Tours & Adventures Helping tourists see the very best of Vancouver, Victoria and more- these guys have been operating since 1985 and have themselves established as one of the leaders in guided tours around the area. https://vancouvertours.com/
WestCoast Sighteeing Very much like Landsea these guys offer similar excursions to Victoria and beyond – these guys also run the local Hop on Hop off city tours around Vancouver too – with packages and add ons included with the hop on hop off tours. https://westcoastsightseeing.com/