A city surrounded by water, Victoria's coastline features many beautiful beaches, all of which are arguably worth a visit. This summer, why not explore the magic of Victoria's most secluded beaches?
1. Mystic Beach
Slightly out of the way and totally worth the drive, Mystic Beach is located on the West Coast of Vancouver Island about an hour north of Victoria. Getting out there includes a scenic drive along a beautiful, windy coastal road.
The adventure continues as you park your car and continue on foot through tangled, mossy boreal rainforest, across a suspension bridge and down a staircase made of a gigantic fallen log on the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail. After this easy but interesting 30 minute hike, you will find yourself at wild, wonderful Mystic Beach. Keep an eye out for the many natural waterfalls and take a ride on the rope swing!
Tip: Bring a beach blanket and some snacks. You'll want to hang out here for a while.
2. Gonzales Beach
Gonzo is a favourite hangout for locals, for a whole bunch of reasons. It's located in Fairfield, which is walking distance from both downtown and Cook Street Village. It gets the most sun of any beach in Victoria, as it's located right on the southern tip of the island. It's also a fantastic place for skim boarding when the tide is out.
While this beach is secluded, it can also get quite busy in the summer and especially on weekends. Keep that in mind - it may not be the place to go if you're looking for peace and quiet, but you can pretty much guarantee good people watching.
3. Island View Beach
Located on the Saanich Peninsula, Island View Beach occupies a beautiful stretch of coastline on the east side of the island. It's a great place to go for a long walk, and is dog-friendly. On a clear day, keep your eyes peeled for unobstructed views of Mount Baker!
4. Sandcut Beach
Sandcut Beach is located in Jordan River National Park (between Sooke and Port Renfrew) and offers spectacular views of the Olympic Peninsula. The best part? This super unique beach boasts an impressive undercut waterfall at its south end. While it photographs beautifully, it's even better in person.
5. Botanical Beach
Botanical Beach is one of those places that everyone talks about, so you'd think it would be busy, but then you get out there and you are delighted to see that it's not. This place is a bit out of the way, but by no means inaccessible - located just minutes north of Port Renfrew - and is always worth the trip out.
Go on a windy day and you'll experience some of the island's best storm watching as huge waves break out on the sandbar, or go on a calm day when the tide is out and explore the intertidal life in Botanical Beach's many tidepools.
6. Iron Mine Bay & Aylard Farm Beach
Experiencing the magic of Sooke would not be complete without a trip to East Sooke Park. Iron Mine Bay is located along the Coast Trail, which is an easy 1.5 hour hike that loops along the coast and back through a gorgeous forest trail.
Park at the main lot and take the short path to Aylard Farm Beach where you'll find unobstructed south-east facing views over Washington State and the Olympic Mountain range. Continue along the Coast Trail toward Beechy Head and you will soon come across Iron Mine Bay. Keep an eye out for coastal and intertidal creatures like starfish and anemones.
There you have it - the locals' guide to some of the best secluded beaches in Victoria. Now go, get out there.