Visiting Victoria, British Columbia | PNW Adventures

Visiting Victoria, British Columbia | PNW Adventures

Last spring was my first time in Canada. We took a road trip to Vancouver with our friends visiting from New Mexico and completely fell in love with the city. Like seriously, I’d have to put Vancouver up on my top ten favorite cities in the world.

Ever since that trip, we’ve been trying to make it back out to British Columbia, and in particular I’ve been itching to visit Victoria. When my cousins told us that they were visiting the Vancouver area from London, it made the perfect excuse. We packed up the car, drove up to Vancouver for a day on the town with them, and then caught a ferry ride into Victoria for the next two days. I know most people tend to take the Victoria Clipper from Seattle, but I wanted to do things differently. Plus, this way, we could easily bring Kirby. WIN.

cute dog on the beach in British Columbia

Our first day in Victoria, we experienced some true Pacific Northwest spring weather. It rained on us all morning, showing no signs of stopping, so we trudged through it. I was determined to make the most of our two days walking around the little city. It actually reminded me so much of Dublin—another adventure walking through temperamental weather in a city filled with greenery. Luckily, though, by the afternoon the rain let up, and we were able to go back out and actually have dinner outside in some sunshine. We joked that only in the northwest would you see restaurants opening up their patios in 60 degree weather, because we who live up here will take what sun and warmth we can get.

Basically, we walked everywhere. It’s our favorite way to see a city. These are the highlights:

Taking the BC Ferries between Vancouver and Victoria. I can’t really compare what it’s like to ride the Victoria Clipper to riding the BC ferries, but I can tell you that the amenities on the BC ferries are way beyond what I’d expected, and the ride from Vancouver to Victoria was beautiful. We caught it at the exact right time to see the sunset, and it was perfect.

looking out the window of the BC ferries BC ferry ride from Vancouver to Victoria sunset over the water between Vancouver and Victoria BC sunset from the window of the BC ferries between Vancouver and Victoria car deck view from BC ferry BC ferries crossing at sunset between Vancouver and Victoria

Walking through the neighborhoods and looking at all the old Victorian-style homes. I have to admit, I had heard that Victoria feels a lot like a small European city, as it’s maintained a lot of the British culture and architecture. I was so looking forward to feeling transported back to another time, and it did not disappoint me.

Breakfast at Cup of Joe Café. Our first stop on our first day in Victoria was for a rejuvenating breakfast. This place was close to our AirBnB, had amazing food, and a super friendly waitress who loved on Kirby. It felt like a warm Canadian welcome to Victoria.

Walking the Dallas Road waterfront path. The views over the cliffs are gorgeous, and you can walk down to the beach at certain parts, and let certain furry children run their zoomies out.

Victorian house in Victoria, British Columbiaman walking his dog at the Dallas Road waterfront path in Victoria, BC seagull on the cliffs over the water by Dallas Road in Victoria, BCAussie mix chewing a stick on the beach in Victoria, British Columbia view of the water from near Dallas Road in Victoria, BC walking the Dallas Road waterfront path in Victoria, BC views from the Dallas Road waterfront path in Victoria, BC dog standing on the beach in British Columbia

Wandering Beacon Hill Park. While we did this wandering in nonstop rainfall, I didn’t mind too much. The park is beautiful, lots of the flowers were blooming, and it made me feel like I was back at St. Stephen’s Green in Dublin.

Fisherman’s Wharf. Again, we stopped here in the rain, so admittedly it seemed pretty dead. I’m sure it’s a hopping area when the sun is out, with people walking the little piers and buying ice cream and carnival food. The highlight for us was simply staring at the seals and sea otters that trolled for guests breaking the rules on not feeding wildlife. I never thought I’d see those two animals in such close proximity together, but I have the pictures to prove it. Kirby didn’t know what the heck he was looking at, either.

pond at Beacon Hill Park wet road and bridge over the pond at Beacon Hill Park in Victoria, BC rain on the pond at Beacon Hill Park in Victoria, BC tulips blooming at Beacon Hill Park in Victoria, BCrainy day at Fisherman's Wharf in Victoria, BC seals at Fisherman's Wharf in Victoria, BC

Viewing the old British Columbia Parliament building, both during the day and at night. This is truly a spectacular sight, especially at night, when the building lights up with thousands of lights. Horse-drawn carriages walk the streets around the area, and it is oh, so touristy. But in the very best way.

Walking around Victoria’s Inner Harbor. There are so many cute bars, restaurants, and shops around the inner harbor. We grabbed dinner at Darcy’s Pub and hung around to watch the sun set over the harbor.

monuments of Victoria, British ColumbiaCanadian flag flying over Victoria, BCPacific Northwest totem poles and old Victorian buildings in Victoria, BCspring in Victoria, British Columbiadog posed in front of British Columbia Parliament buildingview of the inner harbor of Victoria, BC grabbing dinner at Darcy's Pub in Victoria's inner harbor sunset over the inner harbor of Victoria, BC British Columbia Parliament lit up at night British Columbia Parliament lit up at night

Grabbing tea and scones from Murchie’s, and taking a peek into Munro’s Books. I really wanted to make it to high tea at the Gatsby Mansion or the Fairmont Empress hotel, but the timing didn’t work out. So I looked up the best place to at least get some good British tea and pastries in a more casual atmosphere, and found Murchie’s in the inner harbor area. It was absolutely bustling, and the best replacement I could have found.

Taking a look at the Craigdarroch Castle on our way back out of town. The last item on our agenda was to get a glimpse of this castle. We didn’t opt to take the tour because we had Kirby with us, but I’m sure it would have been cool.

Munro's books and Murchie's in Victoria's inner harborgrabbing tea to go from Murchie's in Victoria's inner harborview the Craigdarroch Castle in Victoria, BCferry ride views from Victoria to Vancouver, BC taking the BC ferries in the Puget Sound

If you’re looking for a place that will remind you of Europe but lies a little closer to home in the US, definitely check out Victoria. It is the perfect place for a quaint weekend getaway!

Last spring was my first time in Canada. We took a road trip to Vancouver with our friends visiting from New Mexico and completely fell in love with the city. Like seriously, I’d have to put Vancouver up on my top ten favorite cities in the world.

Ever since that trip, we’ve been trying to make it back out to British Columbia, and in particular I’ve been itching to visit Victoria. When my cousins told us that they were visiting the Vancouver area from London, it made the perfect excuse. We packed up the car, drove up to Vancouver for a day on the town with them, and then caught a ferry ride into Victoria for the next two days. I know most people tend to take the Victoria Clipper from Seattle, but I wanted to do things differently. Plus, this way, we could easily bring Kirby. WIN.

cute dog on the beach in British Columbia

Our first day in Victoria, we experienced some true Pacific Northwest spring weather. It rained on us all morning, showing no signs of stopping, so we trudged through it. I was determined to make the most of our two days walking around the little city. It actually reminded me so much of Dublin—another adventure walking through temperamental weather in a city filled with greenery. Luckily, though, by the afternoon the rain let up, and we were able to go back out and actually have dinner outside in some sunshine. We joked that only in the northwest would you see restaurants opening up their patios in 60 degree weather, because we who live up here will take what sun and warmth we can get.

Basically, we walked everywhere. It’s our favorite way to see a city. These are the highlights:

Taking the BC Ferries between Vancouver and Victoria. I can’t really compare what it’s like to ride the Victoria Clipper to riding the BC ferries, but I can tell you that the amenities on the BC ferries are way beyond what I’d expected, and the ride from Vancouver to Victoria was beautiful. We caught it at the exact right time to see the sunset, and it was perfect.

looking out the window of the BC ferries BC ferry ride from Vancouver to Victoria sunset over the water between Vancouver and Victoria BC sunset from the window of the BC ferries between Vancouver and Victoria car deck view from BC ferry BC ferries crossing at sunset between Vancouver and Victoria

Walking through the neighborhoods and looking at all the old Victorian-style homes. I have to admit, I had heard that Victoria feels a lot like a small European city, as it’s maintained a lot of the British culture and architecture. I was so looking forward to feeling transported back to another time, and it did not disappoint me.

Breakfast at Cup of Joe Café. Our first stop on our first day in Victoria was for a rejuvenating breakfast. This place was close to our AirBnB, had amazing food, and a super friendly waitress who loved on Kirby. It felt like a warm Canadian welcome to Victoria.

Walking the Dallas Road waterfront path. The views over the cliffs are gorgeous, and you can walk down to the beach at certain parts, and let certain furry children run their zoomies out.

Victorian house in Victoria, British Columbiaman walking his dog at the Dallas Road waterfront path in Victoria, BC seagull on the cliffs over the water by Dallas Road in Victoria, BCAussie mix chewing a stick on the beach in Victoria, British Columbia view of the water from near Dallas Road in Victoria, BC walking the Dallas Road waterfront path in Victoria, BC views from the Dallas Road waterfront path in Victoria, BC dog standing on the beach in British Columbia

Wandering Beacon Hill Park. While we did this wandering in nonstop rainfall, I didn’t mind too much. The park is beautiful, lots of the flowers were blooming, and it made me feel like I was back at St. Stephen’s Green in Dublin.

Fisherman’s Wharf. Again, we stopped here in the rain, so admittedly it seemed pretty dead. I’m sure it’s a hopping area when the sun is out, with people walking the little piers and buying ice cream and carnival food. The highlight for us was simply staring at the seals and sea otters that trolled for guests breaking the rules on not feeding wildlife. I never thought I’d see those two animals in such close proximity together, but I have the pictures to prove it. Kirby didn’t know what the heck he was looking at, either.

pond at Beacon Hill Park wet road and bridge over the pond at Beacon Hill Park in Victoria, BC rain on the pond at Beacon Hill Park in Victoria, BC tulips blooming at Beacon Hill Park in Victoria, BCrainy day at Fisherman's Wharf in Victoria, BC seals at Fisherman's Wharf in Victoria, BC

Viewing the old British Columbia Parliament building, both during the day and at night. This is truly a spectacular sight, especially at night, when the building lights up with thousands of lights. Horse-drawn carriages walk the streets around the area, and it is oh, so touristy. But in the very best way.

Walking around Victoria’s Inner Harbor. There are so many cute bars, restaurants, and shops around the inner harbor. We grabbed dinner at Darcy’s Pub and hung around to watch the sun set over the harbor.

monuments of Victoria, British ColumbiaCanadian flag flying over Victoria, BCPacific Northwest totem poles and old Victorian buildings in Victoria, BCspring in Victoria, British Columbiadog posed in front of British Columbia Parliament buildingview of the inner harbor of Victoria, BC grabbing dinner at Darcy's Pub in Victoria's inner harbor sunset over the inner harbor of Victoria, BC British Columbia Parliament lit up at night British Columbia Parliament lit up at night

Grabbing tea and scones from Murchie’s, and taking a peek into Munro’s Books. I really wanted to make it to high tea at the Gatsby Mansion or the Fairmont Empress hotel, but the timing didn’t work out. So I looked up the best place to at least get some good British tea and pastries in a more casual atmosphere, and found Murchie’s in the inner harbor area. It was absolutely bustling, and the best replacement I could have found.

Taking a look at the Craigdarroch Castle on our way back out of town. The last item on our agenda was to get a glimpse of this castle. We didn’t opt to take the tour because we had Kirby with us, but I’m sure it would have been cool.

Munro's books and Murchie's in Victoria's inner harborgrabbing tea to go from Murchie's in Victoria's inner harborview the Craigdarroch Castle in Victoria, BCferry ride views from Victoria to Vancouver, BC taking the BC ferries in the Puget Sound

If you’re looking for a place that will remind you of Europe but lies a little closer to home in the US, definitely check out Victoria. It is the perfect place for a quaint weekend getaway!

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