Victoria Travel Guide

  • Fisgard St.,China Town,Victoria,B.c.Canada.
    Fisgard St.,China...
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  • Daffodils on Victoria seaside show spring is near
    Daffodils on Victoria seaside show...
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  • Victoria Harbor
    Victoria Harbor
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Victoria Highlights

  • Pro
    Carmanah profile photo

    Carmanah says…

     Downtown is small so you can walk everywhere, lots of quaint neighbourhoods, the architecture is beautiful, the pace is relaxed, the close proximity to the ocean/beaches/outdoor activities, excellent... 

  • Con
    Jefie profile photo

    Jefie says…

     Very touristy, but is that really a bad thing?! 

  • In a nutshell
    Dabs profile photo

    Dabs says…

     A taste of Britain in British Columbia 

Victoria Things to Do

  • Chinatown

    I am a local person who wanted to spend the day getting to know Victoria better. I drove 1 hour from my home to go explore china town. What a horrible experience that was. The first store I went into i was treated so bad. The lady behind the counter was rude and did not want to help me with a question i had about buying something from their...

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  • Butchart Gardens

    Robert and Jennie Butchart arrived here 100 years ago. Until 1912 this property was mining limestone until the Butcharts began planting trees, shrubs and plants that they collected from around the world on their travels. Now, as autumn unfolds and the days get cooler, you can wander under a canopy of red Japanese maples toward two graceful silver...

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  • Inner Harbour

    Ask for someone named Darren Beasley. He will take you on a fishing trip out in the harbour. We had a great fishing experience here. He was great at taking us to spots where there was plenty of fish for us to catch. Darren is fantastic. he was very easygoing and patient with tangled lines and many of the other common nuisances that happen during...

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Victoria Hotels

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Victoria Restaurants

  • Santiago's

    Santiago's Cafe is a popular cafe and restaurant with a mainly Mexican kitchen, although you can enjoy a range of other foreign food as well. Service is very friendly and informal. It's a great place to have an afternoon meeting or to enjoy your evening main course. Be aware that it can be crowded at times and that there is limited seating (and...

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  • Pagliacci's

    I've lived in Victoria (on and off) for about sixteen years, and I had never been to Pagliacci's until this week! Locals don't believe me when I tell them that, but it's true. Finally, after hearing non-stop hype (mainly about the bread) for the last sixteen years I finally made it into Pagliacci's. The restaurant isn't small, but the tables are...

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  • Rebar Modern Food

    A friend from Royal Roads University brought me to this vegitarian place in Baston Square. I am never sure what to think of Vegan but I did manage to get a great Salmon Burger and Yam Fries. I felt healthy when I was done and then has some apple desert which was good as well. The restaurant is funky and it looks like they have their own...

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Victoria Nightlife

  • Inner Harbour

    Victoria has its share of pubs and if you are looking for a great beer, you came to the right place. With two world class brewpubs in Spinnakers and The Swan, you cannot go wrong. A bit newer is the Canoe Brewpub which we did not make it to. There are countless other pubs, many with great names like The Sticky Wicket and real English charm. But...

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  • Strathcona Hotel

    Big Bad John's is a unique bar and a place that I really loved. It's hard to describe a place when you've only been there once and felt like, if you lived in that city, it would probably be your regular haunt, but I'll try. BBJ's is located in the Strathcona Hotel, and is the first place in BC to have a liquor license. When you walk in, it's like...

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  • Sticky Wicket Pub

    This is a British style pub and it is certainly the one that is most favored by locals. It offers great food and drinks with ocassional live music on the rooftop patio area. Don't go away from Victoria without visiting it!! No sneakers, ID required at the entrance.

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Victoria Transportation

  • Bus/Transit

    The local Victoria Regional Transit System (part of BCTransit) runs the local buses in Victoria. The entire Victoria Regional Transit System, from Sooke to Sidney, is one fare zone and requires a single fare of CAD 2.50. Map with Victoria bus routes. The following routes are available: -1 RICHARDSON / DOWNTOWN -2/2A OAK BAY / WILLOWS /...

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  • BC Ferries

    The ferry ride from Vancouver (Tsawwassen) to Swartz Bay is a fantastic ride. Make sure to get above deck as soon as you can if you want to grab something to eat. Most of the time we enjoy grabbing a coffee and then heading out to the deck to enjoy the beautiful scenery. We save eating for once we arrive in Victoria! If you're driving yourself...

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  • Airplane

    I never had been to a place that was served so frequently by seaplanes. The Inner harbour is just ideal for these crafts. I must say, you have to get used by the planes coming over that low at times, but soon you don't know any better. BTW it's all depending of the direction of the wind.

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Victoria Shopping

  • Shopping Centres

    The Bay Company left its traces everywhere in Canada, but in Victoria there are many historical roots of the company. The nowadays Shopping Mall does not resemble the trading company that once started here. A list of the shops in the year 2012 in the Mall: A&B Tailor A&W Aerosoles Aldo Ann-Louise Jewellers Athletes World The Bay Bayshore Dental BC...

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  • Markets

    The Root Cellar in Victoria is a great place to visit for a sunny weekend outing. Their recent expansion makes this 'green grocer' a market all on its own! It reminded me somewhat of a mini version of the Granville Island Market in Vancouver, and definitely has the potential for a theme like the Pikes Place Market in Seattle. The decor and ambiance...

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  • Food/Beverages

    The cutest store ever on the very fashionable Johnson Street. Three floors of outstanding goodies from all over the world. My partner is German and found perhaps too many items to take home. There was an entire rack of haribo products which are completely my weakness. This is a small store and we still managed to stay for about half an hour there...

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Victoria Local Customs

  • Cultural/Historical

    One thing this Navy town has in common with its East Coast counterpart Halifax are the downtown street names. You can find those in the walkway concrete at the intersections of the streets.

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  • Currency/Tipping

    Please excuse me if you think this is a silly tip but I just wanted to point out that American coins (quarters, dimes, nickels etc) are NOT considered eligible for preferential exchange in stores or banks. So if you are shopping somewhere and see something listed for $1 Canadian if you pay for it with an American dollar bill you'll receive some...

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  • Festivals/Holidays

    British Columbia Day, the first Monday in August, is a Provicial Holiday. (We didn't know that.) It's a bank holiday, so most "public facilities" (like banks and post offices) will be closed. Also, a lot of restaurants and shops are on reduced "holiday" hours. The night before B.C. Day there are festivities in Victoria Harbor, including a concert...

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Victoria Warnings and Dangers

  • Street Smarts

    Many of Victoria's street intersections are at strange angles, rather than being 90 degrees intersections between strict east-west and north-south streets. Instead, most of the streets fit with the shape of the peninsulas on which Victoria is built. I found that this makes it very easy to make wrong turns in almost all locations. Free maps of...

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  • Health/Safety

    I was just in Victoria, went to Robbins Parking Lot, nice looking and seemed like they would have security.....they don't and when I came back for my car the window was smashed and mine lap top computer that was well hidden from site was now missing. The parking lot attendant reported to us after the fact that they are having lots of car break ins....

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  • Financial/Money

    As in many other countries, Canada returns the TAX you pay in purchases above 50 CND in the same ticket and before tax. Just watch out you exceed it because I had two tickets for 49.50 each and I couldn't get a refund in those two... what a shame! All tickets within a year you letft Canada can apply. Also be aware that all prices are listed before...

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Victoria Tourist Traps

  • Attractions

    While investigating my first trip to Victoria, I decided to take the Victoria Clipper out of Seattle. It is the middle of winter, and therefore the ticket price is $70 round trip, so $35 one way really isn't that bad a price (it is much higher during the tourist season!). Victoria Clipper offers package deals, as well as transport only between...

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  • Empress Hotel

    Tourists will here amazing reviews about tea at the Fairmont Empress. Truthfully, what you are paying for is the novelty of dining in an elegant setting with fine service over looking Victoria's Inner Harbour. Dress up! The Fairmont Empress does have dress codes and you won't want to be disappointed upon arrival. Be sure to ask for a seat near the...

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  • Whale Watching

    If you insist on going out whale watching (or whale harassing as the locals call it) don't tell any locals that you have done this. People who go whale watching are considered ignorant "ugly tourists" who don't care about the environment.

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Victoria What to Pack

  • Rain or Sun or Fog or Hot or Cold or...

    Victoria sits north of the Olympic Mountains, which provide a certain amount of rain shadow to the city. However, that also means that weather is quite unpredictable. Whatever weather gets thrown onto the mountains may bounce around for a while, get torn up, or redirected by its trip over or near the mountains. The straight of Juan de Fuca has...

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  • dress in layers?

    It's best to dress in layers. Being on the water, Victoria is a temperate place. It doesn't generally get frigid but it can be wet and cool. The weather is changeable on the island and it's best to be prepared for all seasons in one day. That said, when we were there, it was unusually warm. It was actually quite hot and we're from Florida! A...

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  • Bring a rain coat and your walking...

    It's quite possible to spend a few days in Victoria without having a car. If you're staying in the downtown area, you'll soon realize that it's very easy to walk up to pretty much all the attractions, so pack up a good pair of walking shoes and forget about the car!Also, even though Victoria gets less rain than Vancouver does, I still think...

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Victoria Off The Beaten Path

  • Parks

    Come at the right time of year (late April to late May) and see spectacular, huge rhododendrons in bloom in this known-mostly-to-locals park. To get here take the number 6 bus (catch it across from the Dutch Bakery on Fort Street) and ask the bus driver to let you off near the intersection of Rock and Quadra. To get back to town walk back down to...

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  • Outlying Communities

    There are mzny great hiking trails in Victoria and all over Vancouver Island. You can go for an Easy stroll, a Day Hike or an Overnight Hike. Easy Stroll If you park anywhere along the inner harbour from James bay, Ogden point to Esqimalt (Head Street) You can enjoy a nice stroll next to the ocean that is easy to access and easy to leave so you can...

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  • Water/Ocean

    The Ogden Point Breakwater is a great place to go for a walk whether it's a sunny, calm day or a windy one. Use your common sense however - if the waves are too big don't venture out on to the Breakwater as we don't rescue people that are that foolish (just kidding). The Breakwater is a popular place for strolling, jogging and diving takes place...

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Victoria Sports & Outdoors

  • enjoy cricket and other sports.

    When visiting Victoria, I enjoyed watching the sport cricket, at a cricket club. I do not know if cricket is specifically Victoria only or prolific throughout B.C. I do know this is one city where the game is played! Whatever sport you enjoy, I discovered a website listing sports clubs (cricket and other) in Victoria. The website is given below.

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  • VICTORIA SALMON KINGS

    Victoria had a Stanley Cup winner in 1925 and enjoyed a long run in the top junior hockey bracket - today’s Western Hockey League. But that team left in 1994 leaving hockey fans frustrated. Finally funding to build a new arena was passed by voters with the stipulation that a new WHL franchise could be brought in. The company responsible for...

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  • Get in shape

    I honestly didn't excercise too much while in here but once in a while I went to Dallas Road to run or walk. Don't feel like walking? then do horseback riding which takes one hour You can rent a bike or a boat too but honestly I preffer to walk.Go to the Visitor Information Centre to know more about these activities and the places to do/rent them.

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Victoria Favorites

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  • Parks/Nature/Gardens

    A lot of people come to Victoria for the flower gardens, especially the Butchart Gardens (which are actually not in Victoria, but are in nearby Brentwood Bay). While it's true that there are certain seasons for certain flowers, Victoria experiences such mild winters, and since most trees in Victoria are evergreens, it actually stays green year...

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  • Inner Harbour

    One of the most emotional statues at Victoria is the Homecoming statue at the Inner Harbour next to the Victoria Visitor Centre at Ship's Point. The sculpture is made by Nathan Scott. It was made for the100th Birthday of Canada's Navy. The commemorative bricks around the statue are the result of the fundraising for the Militairy Family Resource...

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  • Siteseeing

    City Hall was one of the most challenging buildings to take a picture of. There always were cars and buses in front of the building as it faces a busy intersection. The red bricks are very unique and the buildings is very noticebla from a distance. Also the center tower with the flagpole were part of the challenge. At the rear of the red building...

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Explore Deeper into Victoria
Empress Hotel
Things to Do
Fisherman's Wharf
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Walking
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Craigdarroch Castle
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Royal British Columbia Museum
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Legislature Buildings
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Ship/Boat
Transportation
Downtown
Off The Beaten Path
Swans Brewpub and Wild Saffron Bistro
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Books
Shopping
Empress Hotel
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University of Victoria
Off The Beaten Path
Arts/Crafts
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Butchart Gardens
Off The Beaten Path
Murchie's
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Clothing
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Ferris' Oyster Bar & Grill
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The Noodle Box
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Maps/
Favorites
Car/Motor Home
Transportation
Historical
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Legends
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Boom Boom Room
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Parliament Buildings
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Darcy's
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Touring/Walking/Bicycle
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Empress Hotel
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Evolution
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Suze Lounge & Restaurant
Nightlife
Chinatown
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Cultural
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Street Smarts
Tourist Traps
Hugo's
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Weather
Warnings and Dangers
corner of fizgard and goverment
Things to Do
Victoria Clipper
Transportation
Seafood at a price
Restaurants
City Hall
Favorites
Local Public Bus Transport
Transportation
Map of Victoria

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