With a range of fun and fascinating activities and events set for summer, there's no better place to explore than the WestShore. From fabulous heritage attractions and outdoor adventure opportunities, to sandy beaches and some of the Capital Region's finest parks, now's the perfect time to make the WestShore your summer playground.
May to September brings numerous interpretive programs and special events at Fort Rodd Hill & Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Sites. Step back in time to explore coastal gun batteries built over 100 years ago. See original guns, intriguing underground magazines, and camouflaged searchlight emplacements at this century-old coast artillery fort. Visit Canada's oldest lighthouse on the West Coast and play with its interactive exhibits. Then enjoy the acres of meadows and stunning ocean views, and the opportunity to encounter wildlife in their natural environment.
Extend your visit and stay overnight in oTENTik. The oTENTik tents, exclusive to Parks Canada, offer a unique blend of homey comfort and a taste of outdoor adventure. It's a unique opportunity for visitors to enjoy camping with the comfort of a bed, inside the fort, already set up and ready to go.
In addition to Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse, the castle and grounds at Hatley Park National Historic Site, at Royal Roads University, is another highlight for history buffs. Hatley Park offers a world of discovery for visitors of all ages. The 565 acre Edwardian estate contains a grand castle, formal period gardens, an old growth forest with walking trails, plus a seaside lagoon with bird watching opportunities.
Caleb Pike Heritage Park in the Highlands includes three heritage designated buildings: the squared log "Caleb Pike House" dating from 1883, the newly restored "Little Red Schoolhouse", an original dairy building, the reconstructed pioneer home "The Gregory House" (now used as a caretaker residence), and a heritage orchard. Other local museums include the Metchosin Pioneer and Schoolhouse museums and for car buffs, the Victoria Auto Racing Hall of Fame and Museum, open race nights at Western Speedway. Catch the racing action while you're there, or the go-karts, batting cages and mini-golf at the adjacent All Fun Recreation.
For outdoor adventure to get your adrenaline pumping, thrill-seekers young and old will enjoy WildPlay Adventure Park behind Bear Mountain Arena. Next, head to City Centre Park at Eagleridge to cool off at Splash Park waterpark, enjoy a little friendly competition at the mini-golf course or try your hand at bowling at Langford Lanes.
If you prefer to keep your feet firmly on the ground - or paddling in the water - Thetis, Matheson and Langford Lakes are all regional favourites located in the WestShore. Check the tides, pack a picnic and head out to Witty's Lagoon, perfect for making sandcastles and skim-boarding. While you're there, stop by the nature house to learn about the region's flora and fauna. Or head to Esquimalt Lagoon which features miles of ocean beachfront with a view across to Victoria at one end and the amazing snow capped peaks of the Olympic Mountains at the other. The Lagoon is one of seven Migratory Bird Sanctuaries in B.C. and an important stopover for birds journeying between North and South America. Watch for Blue Herons perched high in the evergreens and Bald Eagles soaring overhead!
Regardless of which adventure speaks to you, it's certain there's plenty to do in WestShore, the summer playground in your own backyard.