National Shop for Travel Day

After a whirlwind visit the holiday season finds itself in our rearview mirror. With the new year now soundly beneath our feet is time to start looking ahead. After hunkering down for another Canadian winter, many are feeling the travel bug nipping at their heels. There’s no better day to begin organizing your next holiday than National Shop for Travel Day on January 11th. Plan your next trip to Victoria with these incredible local activities.

I Get Around

Greater Victoria is connected. Connected to land, to sea, to life. Where an unmatched balance of nature meets modern refinement, exploring the Garden City’s bustling streets, sprawling greenspaces, and wild waterways is easy. Greater Victoria is an adventure, and there are so many great ways to live it.

Did you know Victoria is home to Canada’s oldest Chinatown? This National Historic Site of Canada has a history as storied as the province itself. Now a popular tourist hub, Victoria’s Chinatown is the must visit beating heart of the city that blends captivating history, exceptional food, and an irresistible shopping scene. Uncover the fascinating past of this iconic Canadian neighbourhood with Chinatown Walks. Explore the streets, learn the stories, and visit a temple, herbalist shop, and bakery on your guided tour.

Insider Tip: No trip to Chinatown is complete without a visit to Fan Tan Alley, the narrowest street in the country! Explore locally owned shops and grab that perfect capture in one of Canada’s most Instagramable locations.

No trip to the West Coast is complete without a journey on the high seas. Greater Victoria offers so many unique ways to connect with our one-of-a-kind coastal environment and marine life. Hop aboard 3Hoursail.com’s historic Tall Ship, the “Duen”, for a truly distinctive maritime experience. Take in the beautiful scenery, learn Victoria’s famed maritime history, help haul sails, and take the helm of this magnificent vessel. Ready about!

Enjoy the Pacific Northwest how it was meant to be enjoyed. In the back of 74’ Ford Bronco! Bronco Tours is a fun twist on conventional sightseeing tours. Cruise Victoria in a beautiful vintage Bronco and take in our breathtaking ocean and mountain views. Every tour includes pick-up and drop off at the location of your choice, bottled water, Canadian snacks, and best yet, listening to your favourite tunes! Local owner and guide, Deanna, can’t wait to share her enthusiasm for our local history with you as you wind through Greater Victoria’s beautiful landscapes.

 

Staying Power

From campsites to B&Bs, hostels to boutique hotels, Greater Victoria boasts a wide range of accommodation providers to suit every lifestyle and every budget. Whether you came to rough it or pamper yourself, our amazing providers will make you feel at home away from home as you explore the local charm of our magnificent city.

Are you looking to experience Greater Victoria in your own style, on your own time? Then there’s no better place than The Peddar Bay RV Resort. This gorgeous waterfront resort set in the rugged wilderness of Victoria’s backyard offers full-service marina facilities, three lane boat ramp, tackle shop, guided charters and more! Looking to get into the bush? The resort is just a stone’s throw from Matheson Lake Regional Park, as well as some of the area’s best hiking and biking trails. Whether staying for a day or for a month, Peddar Bay is an outdoor enthusiast’s dream.

Step into history at the Ocean Island Suites. Each suite was individually designed, brightly decorated, and situated in a heritage house from 1907. Located in Victoria’s historic James Bay Neighborhood, you are conveniently situated near some of the cities best draws, mere blocks from the beaches and Victoria’s downtown core. The suites are equipped with all the amenities you will need for your stay including fully equipped kitchens, queen size beds, free parking, and more. Whether you’re booking for your next family vacation or a quick and easy romantic getaway, Ocean Island Suites are the perfect option for your next holiday.

Greater Victoria is a creative and quirky bohemia, we seamlessly blend our strong heritage with forward thinking. Experience our city’s exceptional style at the Hotel Rialto. This heritage boutique hotel located in the heart of down impeccably balances British Columbian elegance with Italian flare. Nestled within Victoria’s eclectic shopping and dining scene, Hotel Rialto is the ideal launchpad for your exploration in Victoria. Find your style at this alluring hotel.

 

Top of the Food Chain

When you dine in Victoria, you dine Victoria. Urban farms line our city from Sidney to Saanich and beyond. Seafood line caught freshly from the Salish Sea comes into port every morning. Greater Victoria is home to a culinary scene that goes beyond farm-to-table and does local on a scale of metres not miles.

Take a bite out of Victoria at Niche Grocerant. Specializing in local delicacies, Niche showcases the finest fare from Victoria and Vancouver Island. With both a retail store and fully licensed restaurant, Niche is serving up Victoria’s favourite foods for you to enjoy (or take if home with you if you can resist the temptation!). Experience the best the region has to offer at this uniquely Victorian Grocerant and savour the bounty of our local world-class producers.

Dining should be a treat for the senses, and Marina Restaurant aims to please all your senses. Magnificent waterfront views of the Strait of Juan De Fuca and the ever-mighty Mount Baker welcome guests as warmly as the friendly and knowledgeable staff. The spectacular sweeping views are topped only by the aromas and flavours of some of the West Coasts finest dining. This award-winning restaurant plates only the freshest seafood and local ingredients for an unforgettable dining experience. Drop-in and discover what dining in the Pacific Northwest is all about.

Let’s face it, craft brewing has taken off. No city is without its fair share of “craft” breweries, offering a selection of trendy beers brewed by beer “enthusiasts”. Category 12 Brewing aims to be more than just your local brewpub. They study the science of brewing. They understand the fundamental biology and chemistry of great beer. This isn’t a brewery run by some bartender turned brewer. Founder and master brewer Michael Kuzyk has a doctorate in microbiology and biochemistry that he has applied to the brewing sciences for more than 25 years. Always experimenting and expanding, Category 12 pours up some of the nation’s best pints.

Insider Tip: There are a lot of great beers to try at Category 12, but if we had to recommend just one, it’s the Juicy Data Hazy IPA. 

 

Learn Something New Everyday

Greater Victoria infuses its colourful heritage with fresh, modern thinking. Victorians are connected to their culture in a meaningful way, celebrating our diverse local wildlife, rich legacy, and vibrant artistic flair. Greater Victoria is unlike anywhere you’ve been before, we blaze trails in our own unique style, and we think a story that’s a little further out is worth telling.

A small city with big impact, Greater Victoria is no stranger to showcasing the tiny titans of Canada’s West Coast. Why not start your journey with the Greatest Little Show on Earth? Miniature World has stolen the hearts of tourists and locals alike for over 50 years. Featuring 85 miniature dioramas and displays ranging from the Great Canadian Railway through 2201 AD, and two of the world’s largest doll houses, you can explore worlds of fact or fantasy on a teeny tiny seen scale. Relive your childhood dreams and come see the attraction that millions of visitors have come to love.

Where eagles dare. When you’re disconnected from the mainland, getting here becomes part of the adventure. The BC Aviation Museum explores the fabled legacy of the province’s deep aviation history. Get up close and personal with over 30 aircraft (Including a WW2 Lancaster Bomber) that have helped define our region and our nation. Engage with artefacts, models, photographs, and crash relics, on either a guided or self-guided tour. 

Located on the Sidney waterfront and the traditional lands of the Coast Salish peoples, the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea is Canada’s only aquarium dedicated exclusively to the learning, exploration, and conservation of the Salish Sea Bioregion. Home to 28 aquarium habitats, 160 live species, and over 3,500 animals including a Giant Pacific Octopus, the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea highlights the natural beauty and ecological diversity of our gorgeous region. This one-of-a-kind aquarium is sure to be unlike any aquarium you’ve visited before and boasts a fully intact killer whale skeleton, a collection of Coast Salish Indigenous art, and ‘hands-on’ touch pool experience that allows you to engage with West Coast marine life in an unforgettable way.

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Destination Greater Victoria is honoured to be based on the traditional territory of the Lekwungen-speaking peoples of the Songhees Nation and the Esquimalt Nation, whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.