GARDENS, BEACHES AND BIRDWATCHING

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Victoria, BC is a place that’s perfect for being outside and enjoying the beauty and diversity in nature.  Here are some amazing places to explore, relax and soak it all in!

GARDENS

Large and small … entrance fee or free … these gardens are always beautiful any time of year!

  • Butterfly Gardens, Victoria, BC

VICTORIA BUTTERFLY GARDENS

A Visit to Victoria Butterfly Gardens Victoria Butterfly Gardens isn’t just about butterflies; in fact, it is a complete tropical rain forest experience from the beautiful tropical gardens with over 200 species of tropical plants

  • Dominion Brook Park Sign, Victoria, BC Visitor in Victoria

DOMINION BROOK PARK

Dominion Brook Park is located in North Saanich, close to the airport on East Saanich Road, across the street from the Panorama Rec. Centre.  (See map below for address and location) It's not a

  • Finnerty Garden Sign, University of Victoria, BC, Visitor in Victoria

FINNERTY GARDENS AT UVIC

One of Canada's best collections of rhododendrons is on display at Finnerty Gardens on the University of Victoria Grounds. Yet it's probably one of the least known - at least to the casual tourist. 

  • Spring flowers Victoria, BC, Visitor in Victoria

SPRINGTIME IN VICTORIA

March 30, 2017 It's finally starting to look like spring in Victoria!  It might be a bit late this year but Mother Nature is making up for that! Take a deep breath ... can

  • Flowers in Victoria, BC

MAP OF GARDEN LOCATIONS

Check out this handy map for locations of the various gardens in and around Victoria.  Some are within walking distance of downtown, some require transportation.  All are worth a look!   Click on the garden

  • butchart gardens

BUTCHART GARDENS

No visit to Victoria would be complete without a visit to the world renowned Butchart Gardens! No matter if you're not ga-ga for gardens, Butchart is an amazing place nonetheless! Butchart Gardens Robert

  • Horticulture Centre of the Pacific

THE GARDENS AT HPC

There's a reason that Victoria is called "The City of Gardens" .... we've got a lot of them! Victoria is known for it's variety and abundance of flowers and plants of all kinds.  If gardening

  • TLC Logo

ABKHAZI GARDEN

The Abkhazi Garden is an exquisite heritage home and garden located in Victoria, British Columbia, a city known for its wonderful gardens.   Prince and Princess Abkhazi began creating their garden in 1946.  This was

  • Hatley Castle

HATLEY CASTLE

HATLEY PARK NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE AND ... A MOVIE STAR! Hatley Castle James Dunsmuir commissioned Samuel Maclure, a Victorian architect, to design the “Castle”.   Local stone, trimmed by Valdez and Saturna

  • Government House in Victoria, BC, Visitor in Victoria

GOVERNMENT HOUSE AND CARY MEWS

One of Victoria's 'hidden gems' ... Government House is the seat of the Lieutenant Governer of British Columbia, The Honorable Judith Guichon, OBC. Government House is located in the heart of the Rockland neighbourhood in

  • Point Ellice House

POINT ELLICE HOUSE

Point Ellice House - Come for Food, Stay for the Charm Point Ellice House - A slice of history in Victoria preserved! Point Ellice House is a unique treasure located on the Gorge Waterway very

  • beacon hill park

BEACON HILL PARK

Victoria is a city of parks.  We have literally dozens of them!  One of the most popular parks is right downtown and has something for everyone - Beacon Hill Park. February in Beacon Hill

  • esquimalt gorge park sign, Victoria, BC, YYJ, Vancouver Island, Visitor in Victoria

ESQUIMALT GORGE PARK

Not far from downtown Victoria is the community of Esquimalt where you'll find the lovely and tranquil Esquimalt Gorge Park. Shady Spot for a Picnic! Esquimalt Gorge Park was first established as BC

  • St. Ann's Academy Logo

ST. ANN’S ACADEMY

St. Ann's Academy National Historic Site St. Ann's Academy Walk through the wrought-iron gate, along the drive, up the grand staircase and in the former school’s formal entrance. View the 1920’s era

BEACHES

We have beaches on the ocean … beaches on lakes … from rocky to sandy … quiet and secluded to busy and pulsing with life!  Find what you’re looking for here!

  • Coles Bay Regional Park, Victoria, BC, Visitor in Victoria, Parks in Victoria

COLES BAY REGIONAL PARK

A small park in a quiet neighborhood leading down to the Saanich Inlet - that's Coles Bay Regional Park! At just under 9 acres, this park is the perfect place for a short stroll, or

  • Pebble Beach at Devonian Regional Park Victoria, BC Visitor in Victoria

DEVONIAN REGIONAL PARK

Devonian Park Entrance and parking lot This great - tho small - park is about a 40-minute drive from Victoria and well worth it! Features include a gentle walking trail through mixed woodland

SIDNEY SPIT NATIONAL PARK RESERVE

Sidney Spit National Park Reserve is located on Sidney Island, just east of the town of Sidney, BC Sidney Spit is accessible by kayak, canoe or boat. There are 21 mooring buoys, and dock space

  • Arbutus Cove Beach in Victoria, BC

POCKET BEACHES IN VICTORIA, BC

POCKET BEACHES There are a number of small beaches I like to call 'pocket beaches' scattered around Victoria.  They are really tiny but this usually means they are fairly quiet - usually only known to

  • Matheson Lake

MATHESON LAKE REGIONAL PARK

Matheson Lake On a hot summer day, Matheson Lake is a perfect place to enjoy a refreshing dip and a picnic at the sandy beach area.  It's quite small, but nice. In any season, hikers

ESQUIMALT LAGOON

  Esquimalt Lagoon Esquimalt (pronounced 'Ess-KWI-malt') Lagoon features miles of breathtaking ocean Lagoon Side of the Road beachfront perfect for walks, beachcombing, sand castles and water play.   Across the road from the

  • Islandview Beach

ISLAND VIEW BEACH REGIONAL PARK

Island View Beach This park offers an expansive beach along the eastern shore of the Saanich Peninsula. There's a long, sandy beach for exploring, picnicking and swimming, dune, wetland, and shrub ecosystems, home to numerous

  • beach at Beaver Lake

ELK LAKE/BEAVER LAKE BEACHES

Elk Lake/Beaver Lake Trail Beaver Lake & Elk Lake are often spoken of together ... they're actually 2 lakes joined together with beaches on both ends. There is a great trail that circles

  • willows beach

WILLOWS BEACH

Willows Beach A developed waterfront park (1.17 hectare) with large grassed area, change rooms and washrooms, concession and tea room, picnic tables, benches, children’s play area, sandy beach, esplanade and walkway. This scenic developed waterfront

  • gyro park

GYRO PARK

Cadboro-Gyro Park Cadboro-Gyro Park is designated a Community Park with a unique and substantial waterfront that appeals to residents throughout the region. The park is within easy walking distance of Cadboro Bay Village and the University

  • Thetis Lake

THETIS LAKE REGIONAL PARK

This regional conservation area was established as Canada's first nature sanctuary in 1958. The park offers outdoor activities in a natural setting. Thetis overview  Features Swamp and lake ecosystems for nature study Delicate

  • witty's lagoon parking

WITTY’S LAGOON REGIONAL PARK

Just a bit out of town ... located in the community of Metchosin ... is a beautiful gem of a park called Witty's Lagoon. Explore and Discover Beach at Witty's Lagoon Begin your

  • East Sooke Park

EAST SOOKE REGIONAL PARK, SOOKE, BC

East Sooke Park If you want to have a true 'west coast' experience - without going too far away from civilization, nothing beats East Sooke Park! East Sooke is the largest CRD Park, encompassing 1422

BAMBERTON PROVINCIAL PARK

Outside of Victoria - about 45 km N - off Hwy #1 Overview of Bamberton For years the warm waters surrounding Vancouver Island’s Mill Bay have been a popular destination for local salmon

  • French Beach Sign

FRENCH BEACH PROVINCIAL PARK

Situated on the scenic Strait of Juan de Fuca on the west coast of southern Vancouver Island, French Beach Provincial Park offers much more than just beautiful hiking trails through lush forests. A wide swatch

  • long beach

LONG BEACH IN TOFINO, VANCOUVER ISLAND

SIGHTSEEING/PADDLING/WHALE WATCHING/SURFING Vancouver Island Because Vancouver Island is fairly small (about 460 km - or 290 mi x 80 km - or 50 mi) it's easy to get anywhere in a day. But

BIRD WATCHING

Victoria is in a unique position on a migratory bird corridor.  You can see birds that stay in our moderate climate all year long or perhaps are just passing through.  Bring your binoculars!

  • Albert Head Lagoon Regional Park looking towards the Olympic Peninsula Visitor in Victoria, YYJ

ALBERT HEAD LAGOON REGIONAL PARK

This small lagoon serves as a wildlife sanctuary and refuge for a variety of birds. Features A protected lagoon that attracts local ducks, geese and swans, as well as many varieties of migrating birds A

  • outerbridge park victoria visitor in victoria

OUTERBRIDGE PARK

Outerbridge park, Victoria BC - small in area but big on beauty! This park is new to me ... what a find!  These photos were taken in early spring (well ... winter for us in

  • Swan Lake Logo

SWAN LAKE CHRISTMAS HILL NATURE SANCTUARY

Swan Lake/Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary This park consists of two distinct areas:  marshy lowlands surrounding Swan Lake; and the rocky, oak-forested highlands of Christmas Hill. The 12,000 year-old-lake is a rich habitat for a variety

MIGRATORY BIRD SANCTUARIES IN VICTORIA, BC

Victoria is home to a number of Migratory Bird Sanctuaries.  Be sure to check them out - especially during the spring and fall migration! 1.  Shoal Harbour Migratory Bird Sanctuary Shoal Harbour Migratory Bird Sanctuary

  • Island View Beach

ISLAND VIEW BEACH REGIONAL PARK

Island View Beach Regional Park/RV Park & Campground This park offers an expansive beach along the eastern shore of the Saanich Peninsula, and excellent bird watching. Features long, sandy beach for exploring, picnicking and swimming

  • witty's lagoon parking

WITTY’S LAGOON REGIONAL PARK

Just a bit out of town ... located in the community of Metchosin ... is a beautiful gem of a park called Witty's Lagoon. Explore and Discover Beach at Witty's Lagoon Begin your

  • French Beach Sign

FRENCH BEACH PROVINCIAL PARK

Situated on the scenic Strait of Juan de Fuca on the west coast of southern Vancouver Island, French Beach Provincial Park offers much more than just beautiful hiking trails through lush forests. A wide swatch

  • Tod Inlet-gowland tod park Visitor in Victoria

TOD INLET – A HIDDEN GEM

Tod Inlet in Gowlland Tod Provincial Park One of our favourite spots in Victoria is tucked in behind Butchart Gardens where thousands of people visit every year but have no idea that this hidden gem

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