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Fall for Fall in Victoria, B.C.

Posted on August 31, 2019

The days are slowly but surely shortening, and the crisp morning air signals that fall is on its way. Autumn in Victoria hints at a noticeable change in atmosphere after the bustling summer months. If you’re decidedly undecided whether to spend your days curled up in indoors or wandering through fall foliage on a forest trail, embrace the impending changing of seasons and experience the best of both with a visit to Victoria this fall.

 

DAY 1 

 

Morning | Brunch above the clouds

Take a short, scenic drive up the Island Highway to savour breakfast and morning coffee above the clouds in Villa Eyrie’s Alpina Restaurant. Enjoy 180-degree views of the Saanich Inlet and take in the changing colours from above at this hidden gem. We highly recommend indulging in the lemon ricotta pancakes. When you’ve had your fill of incredible cuisine, indulge in a blissful treatment at the Tuscan Spa to rejuvenate your soul.

 

Afternoon | Cowichan Valley

Continue over the Malahat to the Cowichan Valley and enjoy fall foliage at Merridale Cidery & Distillery’s beautiful orchard. Sip on the rewards of a fall harvest with a wood-fired pizza, and then make your way down the road to Blue Grouse Winery to marvel at their gorgeous vineyard.

Insider Tip: Visit Merridale for the annual Cider Harvest Festival on September 29 for an all-out celebration of BC farm craft.

 

Wild West Coast

On your return to Victoria, stop at Goldstream Provincial Park, which transforms from a lush green forest to a paradise bursting with colour in the fall. Discover the “West Coast’s Niagara Falls” and marvel at mother nature during the salmon run and subsequent eagle extravaganza.

Goldstream Provincial Park
Image by @ianterrisphotography

 

Evening | Cozy Places & Spaces

Finish off day one in the heart of Victoria at Bard & Banker on Government Street. Enjoy a cozy space with great cuisine, lively service and inventive cocktails.

 

DAY 2 

 

Morning | The Village

Work up an appetite with a brisk walk to The Village in Cook Street Village, one of the coziest breakfast spots in the city. Using fresh and locally sourced ingredients, indulge guilt-free at this all-day breakfast joint. 

Image by @thevillagecookst

 

Rejuvenating Forest Bathing

Take a warm beverage to-go from The Village’s coffee bar and make your way to Elk and Beaver Lake on the Saanich Peninsula. Let your breakfast digest as you enjoy a beautiful walk in a sea of fall colours reflecting off the still lakes. Don’t forget your camera for this one! 

Insider Tip: Take a forest bathing tour with Elemental Magick or The Natural Connection to really immerse yourself in nature.

Image by @freshairphotographybyjanism

 

Afternoon | The Butchart Gardens

Make your way to The Butchart Gardens to see their fall blooms and foliage. Fall is one of the best times to visit the gardens, offering fantastic mild weather and autumn blooms. Set aside extra time to wander through the Japanese garden. When you’re ready for lunch, opt for their famous afternoon tea overlooking the Italian Garden.

Image by Adam Frederick

 

The Roost Farm Bakery & Vineyard Bistro

Head across the Saanich Peninsula to The Roost and enjoy a tour of their dynamic property before relaxing over a glass of local wine. After you’ve sipped the flavours of the Island, get comfy in the secret garden or take a seat on the porch with a decadent pastry from the bakery.

@theroostfarm
Image by @theroostfarm

 

Evening | Dinner and a Sunset in Sidney

Continue to downtown Sidney, B.C. and learn why they’re known as Canada’s Booktown. When you’ve had your fill of books, take a tour of Victoria Distillers and discover where they distill the famous Empress 1908 Gin and Craigdarroch Whisky. Follow your visit to the distillery with a sunset stroll along the boardwalk because Sidney’s sunsets are known to be sensational. Enjoy your dinner with an ocean view while you sample the sea at Haro’s Restaurant + Bar.

Image by @vicdistillers

 

Explore the Inner Harbour after Dark

Head back to downtown Victoria and end your evening with a nightcap at Veneto Bar Ristorante in the Rialto Hotel downtown. Stroll past the Parliament Buildings and see it lit up after dark with over 4,200 high-efficiency bulbs. 

Image by @sergei.turner

 

Day 3 

 

Morning | West Coast Soul Food

Start your day off at Boom + Batten, Victoria’s newest waterfront eatery. From delectable breakfast pizzas to morning gnocchi to the best avocado toast in the city, this the ideal way to start your day on the west coast. 

Insider tip: Rent a kayak after brunch from Ocean River Adventures and paddle underneath the restaurant…yes, underneath! 

Image via @boombatten

 

Shop LoJo

When you’ve filled your stomach at Boom + Batten (what is sweater weather for anyway), stroll along Lower Johnson Street – referred to as LoJo by locals – and check out the unique local boutiques that help make up Victoria’s downtown shopping scene.

Image by @sarahseizetheworld

 

Afternoon | Be Transported

Stop by the Royal BC Museum and see what all the buzz is about at their newest exhibit, Maya: The Great Jaguar Rises. While you’re there, set aside some time to peruse the Living Languages exhibit, a project to preserve the culture of Indigenous people of the island.

 

West Coast Inspired Bites

You’ll probably work up a bit of an appetite absorbing all the history and culture at the Royal BC Museum, so refuel down the street at Hotel Grand Pacific on their beautiful veranda. Sample west coast flavours in their reimagined afternoon tea and indulge in one of their delicious cocktails while overlooking the Inner Harbour.

Image by @hotelgrandpacific

 

Bike Tour

About ready to get your heart pumping? Take a bike tour with The Pedaler or Bike Tours Victoria and discover Victoria’s quaint neighbourhoods by bike! Pedal past Parliament, discover the wishing tree in Fernwood and uncover the herald history of Craigdarroch Castle. Continue to Beacon Hill Park and Government House to take in the fall foliage, then cruise along Dallas Road and embrace the fresh sea breeze. 

Bike Tours Victoria
Image of @biketoursvictoria by @lyndsey_eden

 

Evening | Zambri's

Toast to your adventures at Zambri’s and indulge in traditional Italian soul food like perfectly crafted pizze with a sophisticated twist.

Image by @zambrisrestaurant

 

Fall in love with B.C.’s capital city during this magical time of year. Whether you cozy up in bookstores and coffee shops, or take a walk or pedal through incredible foliage, there’s a freshness in the air and an excitement at the stirring of change waiting for you this autumn in Victoria. 

 

Packing List:

•    Camera 
•    Cozy sweater
•    Rain Jacket and/or umbrella (weather dependent)
•    Comfortable and versatile shoes