When you visit Victoria, you can explore grand Edwardian architecture or kayak past floating homes and meandering coastline. You can pop into a museum to discover British Columbia history, watch wild orcas plunging beneath your boat, or tuck into dim sum in Canada's oldest Chinatown. Love nature? There's a huge choice of gardens, beaches, and parks.
Victoria is brimming with places to stay, whatever your taste and budget. You can go for a waterfront hotel overlooking the Inner Harbour or pick from a string of budget family options a few minutes' drive north toward Saanich. Both Rockland and Fairfield offer handsome heritage homes converted into bed-and-breakfasts, while Sidney is handy for Swartz Bay ferries.
Shopping in Victoria can mean popping in and out of indie boutiques or visiting a market and stocking up on juicy blueberries, sweet peaches, and crusty bread for a beach picnic. You can browse big-name clothing stores in the malls, or head beyond downtown to discover favorite neighborhood shops and choose books for your vacation reading.
Whether you're into working your way through a flight of microbrews, tasting the latest handcrafted cocktail, or hitting the dance floor in a raucous club, Victoria's nightlife has you covered. If drinking and dancing aren't your scene, you can take in an outdoor movie, check out an up-and-coming band, or chill to live jazz. Most of the action happens in and around downtown.
From spotting cool critters to splashing in the sea and roaming in parks, kids can have a ball in Victoria. Family-friendly attractions and an enormous natural playground of beaches and open spaces keep youngsters active and entertained. If your little ones tire of walking, how about jumping aboard a harbor ferry?
Victoria is home to a buzzing cultural scene, with a packed calendar of concerts, exhibitions, and theatrical performances. The city has its own professional symphony orchestra and opera company, plus a wealth of artistic talent. Exploring Victoria's earliest homes gives you an insight into its architectural heritage. You can check the local newspaper, the Times Colonist, for listings.
Victoria has a huge variety of eateries, from corner cafés creating artisan sandwiches and waterside pubs serving belly warming fare to upscale restaurants for a dressy meal out. You can go for juicy steaks and burgers, Asian sushi and noodles, or vegan-friendly organic food. Fresh-from-the-ocean seafood and locally grown, seasonal produce from Saanich Peninsula farmland are frequently found on Victoria's menus.
Victoria combines a rich heritage with contemporary cool. You can stroll past colorfully painted, century-old homes and pause for traditional afternoon tea, then browse cutting-edge design in independent boutiques and finish off the day with a pint of craft ale. Victoria's temperate climate brings blooming flowers nearly year-round, while the city's coastal location makes it a hub for whale watching and kayaking.
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