How to Spend a Weekend in Victoria, Canada

No trip to the West Coast of Canada would be complete without a visit to Victoria. This hipster, seaside town is full of lush gardens, cute shops and hidden alleys. Beyond the city of Victoria, Vancouver Island is a wild escape into some of the most picturesque landscape I’ve ever seen. With so much to see and do, here’s how to spend a weekend in Victoria, Canada.

Friday

Arrival into Victoria : Make the journey part of the experience by taking the ferry from Vancouver into Swartz Bay. The ride is only an hour and a half but feels much shorter when you’re busy watching for whales and other sea life.

From here the best option into town is by city bus, which will pick you up right outside of the ferry terminal. This gives you a glimpse of Vancouver island life on your 50-minute ride as you pass through one cute seaside town after the next.

Don’t plan too much today after your big travel day. Stroll the Victoria Harbour, wander across the street to take some photos of the British Colombia Parliament buildings and grab a bite in one of the many cute cafe’s.

Saturday

Morning: Victoria’s coffee scene is unlike any other in Canada. Take advantage of your weekend in Victoria by checking out one of the many locally owned coffee shops for breakfast. Some of my favourites included Rise and Grind ( Amazing breakfast sandwiches!) and Shatterbox ( Great Coffee!).

After breakfast head towards Fan Tan Alley; the narrowest street in Canada and nestled in the oldest China town in the country. Not only is it great for a few photos, but its also lined with several shops and restaurants.

Fun Fact: Fan Tan Alley was once a gambling district complete with opium dens. Can you feel this part of its history walking through?

Afternoon: Wander down government street stopping in as many cute shops as you want until you reach the waterfront. From here follow signs to Fisherman’s wharf. Spend your afternoon strolling amongst the colourful floating houses, sampling fresh seafood and listening to local performers. You might even be able to spot the resident harbour seal that frequents the docks!

Evening: Spend your evening in Trounce Alley, sipping cocktails and sampling delicious foods at one of the many restaurants.

Sunday

Get out of the city today! The best of Victoria is in the rugged nature its surrounded by.

Option 1 ( rental car): Nanaimo and Cathedral Grove

This was one of the most beautiful drives I’ve taken, especially once through Nanaimo. If you’ve never heard of a Nanaimo bar, you are in for a treat! Stopping in the town of this delicious treat’s origin is a necessity. Head down to the harbour for a stroll and a bar ( or two…or three).

Once out of the city enormous pines and redwoods will tower beside the road when jagged cliffs aren’t tumbling down into turquoise water.

Cathedral Grove is the closest place to Victoria to walk through a Redwood Grove. It is extremelly busy because of this, so go early in the morning or later in the evening to avoid large crowds.

Option 2 ( No rental car): Butchart Gardens

With over 900 varieties of flowers and plants, these impressive gardens attract over a million visitors every year. You can spent the day exploring every nook and cranny of this oasis and even stop for Afternoon tea.

Take bus 75 to the gardens from Victoria.

Would you add anything else to your weekend in Victoria? Comment below!

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