With a dramatic setting at the edge of the Salish Sea, the historic city of Victoria combines culture and nature. Make the most of two days in Victoria by strolling the waterfront, wandering Butchart Gardens, sipping Vancouver Island wine, and taking a whale-watching adventure. Here are some ideas for the perfect Victoria escape.
Day 1: Old World Explorer
Morning: Old Town Victoria’s cobblestone streets and alleys are best explored car-free, so walk or ride a bike when in the historic center. Since the area is packed with history, opt for a guided introduction to Old Town, ensuring you don’t miss out on Victoria's colorful characters and backstories.
Afternoon: After a morning of Victoria landmarks, head to Butchart Gardens to see acres of blooms in the changing weather of British Columbia—your walk might be in afternoon sunlight or under a brooding layer of clouds.
Night: Make your way back to the waterfront, where a leisurely crowd gathers to catch sunset over the harbor. This is the perfect time to schedule a romantic horse-drawn carriage ride before you duck into a waterside bar for a glass of Vancouver Island wine.
Day 2: Wildlife, Wine, and Food
Morning: Bundle up in a windbreaker for a whale-watching tour along the coast of Vancouver Island to spot orcas, humpback whales, seals, and other marine wildlife among the white caps. Whale-watching excursions range from spray-soaked adventures in nimble speedboats to cozy cruises in enclosed vessels, so choose accordingly.
Afternoon: As Vancouver Island wineries are located less than an hour from downtown Victoria, you can experience the award-winning wines of the Cowichan Valley in one delicious afternoon. Guided wine tours visit a curated list of wineries and include transportation, which leaves you free to enjoy included tastings worry-free.
Night: With just one more night in Victoria, don’t commit to a meal at a single restaurant; food tours of the city are the chance to try a little bit of everything, from the Victoria Public Market to fresh craft breweries and beloved local restaurants.