by Danielle Ditzian of Like Riding a Bicycle
An absolutely idyllic little city, Victoria is a must visit when you find yourself in the lovely British Columbia. I personally moved from the hell that is Edmonton to Victoria at 20 – I had enough of the cold weather in Edmonton. Located on Vancouver Island (no, Vancouver is not on Vancouver Island, but yes, this is allowed to confuse you), there is a ton to see and do both in the city and in the surrounding areas. Read on for the ultimate guide to Victoria – one of the best things to do on Vancouver Island!
The Inner Harbour
Victoria’s Inner Harbour is not only stunning of its own accord, but hosts festivals year round making it that much better. Fancy checking out some pirate ships? Say no more, they’ll be there for you in the fall! From concerts on the water to gorgeous views, this place is perfect to take a wander rain or shine. Plus, in the summer it’s filled with buskers and people selling handicrafts. A must visit in Victoria! And don’t forget to look behind you – the beautiful Empress Hotel, visiting which is one of my favourite things to do on Vancouver Island, with its vines climbing up the entire building is worth a photo!
Beacon Hill Park
This gigantic park stretches on forever, it seems! It has everything from grassy areas to sit and have a picnic, rocky lands that resemble what I’d imagine Africa to look like, and leads straight to the ocean. You can also find world’s tallest totem pole here! This is one of those things to do on Vancouver Island that I can’t miss, no matter how many times I return!
Also known as the breakwater, this is a giant concrete walkway out to a lighthouse, providing beautiful views of the ocean, with the Olympic Peninsula in the States as a beautiful backdrop. Definitely worth inclusion in the ultimate guide to Victoria!
Fancy checking out floating homes right on the docks, or feeding a nearby seal? Fisherman’s wharf is its own little mini city of houses that live on the docks, the owners contentedly allowing tourists to flock to their “streets” to check out the cool little homes. Seals love it here too, as the place serves all kinds of food – notably fish. You can even buy fish to feed them so that you don’t need to spare any of your own!
No trip to Victoria would be complete without a wander downtown – day or night! Shops with all sorts of different clothing and trinkets line the streets, while at night the bars come alive. As downtown is small and easy to walk around, bar hopping has never been easier. Check out the popular hostel bar Ocean Island, or head on down to Big Bad John’s for some free peanuts (and the diviest bar you’ve ever seen) – visiting these bars are some of the best things to do on Vancouver Island!
…and while you wander home from the bar, don’t forget to check out the Parliament building, which is lit up year round! And thus concludes our ultimate guide to Victoria! Comment below with places you think can’t be missed on a visit to Victoria, and other top things to do on Vancouver Island!
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