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Victoria British Columbia Canada Travel Guide

VICTORIA, British Columbia, Canada Travel Guide - the Gem of the Pacific North-West, the Garden City of Canada, is the preferred destination of millions of international visitors each year. Many British Columbians also call Victoria home. One little known fact is that Victoria receives 65% more sunshine than Vancouver. Said another way, Vancouver receives 65% more rain than Victoria.

Passing history Against the magnificent backdrop of the Olympic Mountains, Canadian submarine HMCS Victoria slows to let a sailing vessel pass. The submarine returned to Esquimalt Harbour Friday, after several days of tests and exercises around Vancouver Island
Photo Credit: Vern Faulkner/Esquimalt News
Passing history Against the magnificent backdrop of the Olympic Mountains, Canadian submarine HMCS Victoria slows to let a sailing vessel pass. The submarine returned to Esquimalt Harbour Friday, after several days of tests and exercises around Vancouver Island.

Victoria offers a unique blend of old-world British charm and 21st Century comfort. In 1862 Victoria was described as: "The largest town north of San Francisco; population 4,000 to 5,000, or about four-fifths of the entire population of the colony. Four years ago it was a trading post of the Hudson Bay Company, and contained about 250 people."

Whether you wander the vibrant gardens and parks, stroll the lively Harbour or break-water, visit the museums and stately homes, go to a spa or rest in the sun as you watch the world go by, Victoria has something for everyone.

For exciting shopping, visit the quaint shops on Government Street, the open-air craft market in Bastion Square, Antique Row, Murchies the Tea merchant, the many art galleries or the excellent specialty stores in the downtown.

Discover fine dining at one of the many local restaurants offering everything from North West Cuisine to exotic ethnic fare. And consider doing Victoria in Victorian style by staying at one of Victoria's fine Bed and Breakfast Inns where your hosts can point you in all the right directions.

Victoria is the place to visit and rest body and soul year-round. With its mild weather and temperate climate there is always a flower in bloom from the cherry blossoms in January, through daffodils and tulips in March, lilacs in May, to the abundance of roses and rhododendrons in the Summer and Fall. The air reflects the aroma from the blossoms, especially during the long summer nights.

The sun shines on Victoria year round and, when it rains, the rose petals glisten, the rich greens deepen and the fragrance in the air sweetens - encouraging the abundant bird life to sing out.

This is the city that breaths in an abundance of fresh sea air and soaks up more hours of sunshine than anywhere else in Canada. It’s the perfect place to hold hands with nature and witness marine wildlife in its natural habitat; and to feel safe, free, and refreshed.

In Victoria no one is in a rush to get to the side of the street. Put away the watch, you are on west coast time. Welcome to a city with a lifestyle that many dream of.

So explore this Travel Guide and Plan your next vacation. We're here to welcome you!

map Victoria British Columbia

Forget sky scrapers; ancient church steeples, heritage brick buildings splashed in bright colours and architectural integrity, totem poles and flag poles dot this city's skyline. Victoria's architecture has attracted film makers from around the world and has been masqueraded as Paris, England, Boston and even New York City in the 18th century.

Known as a haven for both the active and the leisure visitor, Victoria sparkles day and night with its vibrant arts and cultural scene. Art is everywhere in Victoria. Public places have been graced with sculptures and murals by local artists.

Victoria is affectionately referred to by some locals as the recreational capital of BC. Year round golf, whale watching, cycling and mountain biking, mountain climbing, surfing, running, beachcombing, ocean fishing, fly fishing, hiking, scuba diving, sailing, kayaking, canoeing, walking, kite flying, roller-blading, skateboarding, windsurfing, horseback riding and even beach volleyball - fill the vast array of adventures to choose from.

It is no wonder Victoria has been declared the Cycling Capital of Canada. Many residents are able to cycle to work year round. It is also true Victoria is a gardener's paradise and the annual flower count which boasts our blossoms to the rest of the year in February.

Who said Victoria was for the newlywed and the nearly dead? The colour in the faces of the locals are likely made up of authors, poets, civil servants, film makers, researchers, painters, illustrators, sculpturers, woodworkers, boat builders, designers, musicians, young entrepreneurs and scientists- just to name a few.

Victoria has a lot to brag about. Situated on the largest Island in North America and the Capital City of British Columbia, find out for yourself why so many people who come for a visit and never leave. Stay a while, there is a lot more than high tea to be had. The coffee culture is alive and strong, as are British style pubs which foster many of their own brews.

The only way to explore all of Victoria's senses is to go outside. Old growth forests still exist on this island, as do magnificent Garry Oak ecosystems and ocean ecological reserves. Green spaces are plenty and in close proximity, and yes you can see shooting stars at night.

Vast farmlands grow and raise a cornucopia of organic produce and meats as well as grapes for a flourishing local wine industry. Seafood dominates. Sushi bars and oyster burgers are common. A young and skilled labour force fills the smiling faces who serve in the diverse mix of restaurants, shops and hotels.

The West Coast Trail, the Galloping Goose Trail and the Southern Gulf Islands neatly package Victoria's gateway as a world-class recreational paradise. Victoria is shaped for families, with museums, parks, beaches, playgrounds and many unusual attractions. Pamper yourself while you are here. There is something for everyone and don't be afraid to open the door and go outside.

Quick Links

Victoria in the News
Archive of News Stories about Greater Victoria.

Parks, Trails & Beaches
Victoria is renowned for nature and outdoor fun.

Recommended Accommodations
Our selection of accommodations in Victoria - downtown to rural.

Recommended Restaurants

West coast cuisine including of course Salmon, Dungeness Crab, Halibut and so much more.
Fishing, hiking, kayaking, birding, cycling, whale-watching, Victoria has it all.

Other Businesses
Arts and crafts, marinas, real estate, shops, services and other conveniences.


Chamber of Commerce, schools, real estate, churches, arts ...

Oak Bay
Victoria's "British Village" ... from high tea to neighbour pubs ...

Victoria's cottage country ... fishing, hiking, west coast.

East Sooke
Nature lover's paradise on the extreme south-western tip of Vancouver Island near Victoria.
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Private Marine Eco-tours and Boat Charters in Sooke and Victoria
Private Marine Eco-tours and Boat Charters all points Vancouver Island



the Butchart Gardens Victoria, British Columbia
the Butchart Gardens, Victoria, BC

Victoria horse carriage tours
Natalie DeCaro of Victoria Carriage Tours gives Frankie the Clydesdale an affectionate pat


Victoria Provincial Legislature Building by the Inner Harbour
Victoria Provincial Legislature Building by the Inner Harbour


Helmcken House
Helmcken House


Whale Watching Tours in Victoria, BC


Your complete vacation, accommodation, business and community information guide to Victoria, British Columbia in series of Travel Guides including, Sooke, and East Sooke,  and Oak Bay on southern Vancouver Island, British Columbia.
dedicated to Victoria, British Columbia, City of Gardens

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