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Fairmont Empress Hotel

The grand lady of Victoria, the Fairmont Empress Hotel was built in over-the-top French chateau style by the Canadian Pacific Railway company, opening in 1908. Victoria’s first hotel is still the grandest, and one of the most highly awarded ... 

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5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2015

Thanks to Erin for helping set up the afternoon tea and then taking the time to text me to let me know all was on schedule made for a great start... The City Sightseeing Tour with the Castle was the best tour I've ever taken in Victoria, thanks especially to our guide, Peter Miller. He was knowledgeable, kept us all on schedule, showed us places of interest near and outside the usual tours within the city. We saw the city from a viewpoint at Mount Tolmie, it included a wonderful time at the castle, we traveled through beautiful residential areas and visited a marina near Oak Bay. Then we added afternoon tea at the Empress with an incredible savings. I'm looking forward to taking this same tour again in two years.

Doing what: Victoria City Sightseeing Tour with Craigdarroch Castle

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2015

Excellent tour. The castle, while not as big as some in Europe, has some great furnishing detail in it and is generally well restored some areas are still in progress. The city tour was thorough and our tour guide was both witty and knowledgeable. Our particular tour included the High Tea option at the Empress Hotel which was a great value as the tour with High Tea was only 5-10 more than the cost of High Tea on its own.

Doing what: Victoria City Sightseeing Tour with Craigdarroch Castle

4 star rating: Recommended
September 2012

4 stars because of the site set up--site doesn't make it very clear whether p/u from the hotel is an option or not (I've sent an email and then later made a call to the company trying to clarify, but it did not help either). Anyway, the website allows you to put the name of your hotel in for the p/u when in fact you have to wait for the bus in front of the Empress. Other than that everything was fine. We took the tour twice, once for the tour itself and the other time we've used hop-off/hop-on option. The best guide was Adrian, he loves his city and we just loved his sense of humor!

Doing what: Victoria City Sightseeing Tour with Craigdarroch Castle

4 star rating: Recommended
July 2012

Delightful tour. It gave us a view of inside Victoria beyond the Empress Hotel, its different sorts of residents and the neighborhoods where they live. Well worth the time.

Doing what: Victoria City Sightseeing Tour with Craigdarroch Castle

Anonymous

Anonymous

4 star rating: Recommended
December 2009

Great idea to see Victoria on a tour before going on our own to shop. Only problem was that our pickup wasn't at the Empress Hotel as we were instructed, and getting to the location was a problem with a walking disability.

Doing what: Victoria City Sightseeing Tour with Craigdarroch Castle

3 star rating: Worth doing
August 2015

Well the tour didn't start well. Bus driver new. First she locked herself out of the bus with all of us on it. Then she could get the bus started. After a 45 minute wait someone from CVS came and got it started. Tour was fun because of our fellow passengers. Couldn't hear the drivers commentary, she didn't have the volume set right . Castle tour was fine but because we were late starting we got the speed tour of the city. No time for pictures. Tea was great at the Empress. At least we set our tea time Talk to you later so we didn't miss it. Hopey this was just an off day for the you company. But I'd be ensuring you don't have a new driver

Doing what: Victoria City Sightseeing Tour with Craigdarroch Castle

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
June 2012

The bus was late but the tour coordinator in front of the Empress Hotel did not inform the crowd that was waiting and wondering what was going on. The tour was called Sunset Tour for a reason - after the first 20 minutes, you can barely see anything that the driver was pointing out. VC is clean and beautiful but next time, I'll probably make different arrangements.

Doing what: Victoria City Sightseeing Tour with Craigdarroch Castle

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