Top 5 Reasons to Love Victoria


Wednesday, March 5th, 2014 — 11:44am PST
Comments 7

The Most Romantic City in Canada just happens to be our Province’s capital, with harbour views, history, and classic British charm mixed with the latest art and culinary trends. John and I visit Victoria at least once a year and our most recent trip across the Salish Sea on the ferry was in honour of our anniversary. I originally wanted to call this piece the “5 Most Romantic Places” in Victoria but then I realized that my idea of romance (like an afternoon at a museum) might not be the same as everyone else’s. And so, I have simply come up with my Top 5 Reasons to Love Victoria:

Victoria Parliament Building
Photo credit: BCBusinessHub on Flickr

Feeding Your Brain

I absolutely love history and Victoria is the perfect place for me to feed any craving I might have for old-timey knowledge. The Royal BC Museum is hands down my favourite museum in BC (with the exception of the Museum of Anthropology, and the Museum of Vancouver… ok I have a lot of favourite museums). Its permanent collections are always great to explore, especially since we don’t get to town very often, and I enjoy the refresher when the revisit the galleries. The temporary exhibits, like the current wildlife photography exhibition (on until April 6, 2014) are always fascinating as well.

Royal BC Museum Victoria Girls Weekend

WordCamp Victoria 2010
Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

St Ann's Academy National Historic Site St Ann's Academy National Historic Site

On our most recent trip we took a stroll through St. Ann’s Academy and Walking Tours of Victoria are always fun as well. I’m a sucker for the Ghostly Walks which not only provide great local history but can be rather spine-tingling.

Scenic Viewpoints

Our friend Steff is the master of the gloriously stunning sunset photography in Victoria — and she does most of it with her iPhone. Her photos are so great that she’s this week’s “guestgrammer” on Tourism BC’s Instagram account.

Ogden Point Breakwater
Photo credit: Greg.b. on Flickr

Steff shared some of her favourite lookout points with us on our recent trip that include the Beacon Hill Park lookout, Ogden Point Breakwater, Clover Point, Kitty Islet, and a few more hidden gems.

Sightseeing in Victoria, BC Sightseeing in Victoria, BC
Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

Kitty Islet

We also discovered the amazingly crispy views of Mount Baker from Uplands Park and Cattle Point on our last trip.

Uplands Park, Cattle Point

Dining Options

Breakfast at Jam Cafe, Afternoon Tea at The Empress, tacos at Fisherman’s Wharf, dinner with beer pairing at Spinnakers. This is just one of many combinations as you choose from Neapolitan-style pizza joints, oyster bars, brewpubs, and speakeasy-style bars with wickedly creative cocktail creations.

Spinnakers Red Fish Blue Fish, Victoria Grand Pacific Hotel - Victoria

Afternoon Tea at the Fairmont Empress Afternoon Tea at the Fairmont Empress

There is a lovely variety of dining options in Victoria that ranges from red velvet pancakes to local lamb, steamed mussels, and everything in between served with local craft beer or Vancouver Island wine.

Accommodation Options

As with the dining options, there is a wide array of accommodations available in the city as well. We’ve stayed at big hotels, boutique hotels, historic hotels, and delightful heritage B&Bs.

Victoria Girls Weekend

Humboldt House B&B Victoria Humboldt House B&B Victoria

Each offers their own charm, features, and amenities, but the best part is that almost all of them are within walking distance of Victoria’s best attractions.

Tourism Promotions

Tourism Victoria is on the ball, with seasonal promotions like Dine Around and Stay in Town and Be a Tourist in Your Own Hometown. The latter was always something we did during my family’s annual girls’ weekend in Victoria.

Craigdarroch Castle - Victoria

Even though we were from Vancouver the kind visitor centre staff would let us purchase some booklets to enjoy a selection of Victoria’s sights. A hop-on/hop-off bus tour around town that let us off at Craigdarroch Castle, a trip to Miniature World, and even discounted admission to the Royal BC Museum.

Victoria Girls Weekend

I could go on. I could mention the scenic coastal cruise that you take to get to Vancouver Island (aka BC Ferries) as it winds you through the Gulf Islands. I could also mention the people of Victoria who are eclectic, caring, curious, creative, and also pretty fun. I’ll leave the rest for you to explore on your own and I highly recommend checking out specific events, which give you yet another excuse to get over to Victoria.

Upcoming highlights include the Victoria Beer Festival, the 20th Annual Victoria Ska Festival, the annual Kite Festival, the Highland Games and Celtic Festival, and much more. Follow Tourism Victoria on Twitter to learn more about the latest promotions, campaigns, and to gather ideas for your next visit.

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7 comments

  1. Alan says:

    Looking at the Be a Tourist in Your Own Hometown. A lot of the offers are over by March 2nd.

  2. … And then there’s all the maritime influence here. The Swiftsure sailing race, the inner harbour and it’s work/life balance, the less expensive liveaboard marinas, proximity to fantastic locally sourced seafood, etc. etc.

  3. jake says:

    All Excellent Reasons plus the early spring!I always take March or April getaway to Victoria just to see green grass and flowers. Two months ahead of the prairies.

  4. Ryan Clark says:

    I’ve been here three years after getting tired of downtown Vancouver and have found my true home. This city is amazing and you’re only a 20 minute drive away from lush forests, trails and endless hidden beaches.

  5. Kris says:

    Would love to visit! Looks beautiful.

  6. Bill Lewis says:

    Lovely article Rebecca, thanks for the kind coverage on our romantic capital city!

  7. Christina says:

    Really enjoyed this article. You touched on so many of my favorite spots in the city. Even after 15 years of living here I’m still in awe and feel like a newcomer just discovering new things.

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