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There is so much to do in our fair city that it is hard to pinpoint 1 specific thing. You don't say how much time you have or what month so I'll give you some general stuff within the downtown core. Butchart Gardens is approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour away from the cruise ship depending on traffic and time of day. If you make the journey to Butchart, allow additional time for Butterfly World (although the butterfly activity isn't as frantic in the Fall).
If you want to walk (highly recommended), when you leave the pier, turn right and walk the waterfront to Mile 0. Turn left to Beacon Hill Park. The entrance is a block away (just past the field). If it's a warm day, be sure to stop for ice cream at the Beacon Drive In -- it's touted as the best ice cream in the world .... imho Enjoy the flowers and animals in the park (try to grab a roll or bun from the ship to break up for the ducks as they are always entertaining). When you first enter the park, watch for the big hill to your right. Walk up the hill (it's not a long walk) and enjoy the magnificent view at the top ... hmmm, I think I'll walk over at lunch
After the park, there is some major points of interest as you walk into town (heading away from the water). Thunderbird Park (beside the museum) is always a favourite for taking pictures of totems, the provincial museum is amazing and worth the admission fee (you'll need to allow at least 4 hours to complete this), the Empress Hotel, the waterfront, Miniature World. All this within 5 blocks of the park.
The walk to Beacon Hill park from your cruise ship is approximately 10 - 15 minutes so don't waste $s on a cab. Although, the horse drawn carriage is always a hit and they can give you the history of the area.
Enjoy our beautiful city. I know you'll want to come again.
Winesfine: Beacon Hill Park is just what we were looking for. Thanks for the tip on the ice cream - we'll stop there even if its not a warm day - we love ice cream !! The walk around town after the park will be perfect. We'll be there mid September for the day. Thanks again for planning our day.
One thing to keep in mind too is that it's easy to get around Victoria by bus and it's quite inexpensive. The city bus goes directly from downtown to Butchart gardens and back on a regular schedule. Butchard gardens by bus is about an hour drive each way and by taxi it's about 30-45 minutes.
One thing people don't realise is that you can walk quite a ways around the harbour front here in Victoria. You can start at the Parliament buildings and end up at my favourite lunch place... Spinnakers brew Pub. It's quite nice to see the entire main part of the harbourfront as you walk along the pathway to Spinnakers.
Hi my name is Janie
We will be cruisning i May from Seattle on the RCCL Vision. So we won't be gong to Victoria. We have two days at the end of the cruise to travel to Vancouver and Victoria. Is this advisable or should we just do one. What is the best way o get to Vancuver or Victoria and vice verse?
Thak you fir you help
Mardi Gras April, 1986
Southward May, 1987
Fascination May 2000
Granduer of the Seas May 2001
Adventure of the Seas May 2002
Destiny November 2003
Marnier of the Seas March 2004
Jewel of the Seas November 2005
Glory August 2006
Freedom of the Seas November 2006
Vision of the Seas (Alaska) May 2007
Freedom (Carnival) March 2008
Granduer of the Seas August,2008
Disney Wonder January 2009
Jewel of the Seas March 2010
Carnival Glory 9-2012
I'm assuming that you are ending in Seattle and would like to travel from there to Victoria and/or Vancouver.
There is a Seattle Clipper that offers some travel packages (Google search Seattle Clipper for lots of info).
Victoria and Vancouver are separated by a 1 1/2 hour ferry ride. I would strongly recommend that you visit them on separate days so you are not rushed trying to meet a ferry. It can be done, but the ferry eats up your day, especially if there is a sailing wait (can be 1 or 2 ferry wait). You can make reservations on the BC ferries tho (just google search bc ferry).
I have been to Victoria, but it was before DH used a WC for excursions. We plan to taxi to the Empress for tea. Afterwards we want to stroll around the area. What about hills? Are there curb cuts for WCs?
I love the city and want to share it with DH.
Thanks for the information
The Empress is located across from the Inner Harbour (waterfront stroll). There are lots of curbs cut for WCs and no hills. The other immediate things around the Empress are the museum, thunderbird park, parliament buildings, wax museum, undersea gardens, miniature world .... lots to do. The Empress is located at the bottom of Government Street. If you head up the road (slight incline), there a tons of touristy shops.
Thanks for the info. When I went to Victoria as a kid I remember the park and the totem poles. There was a gentleman carving at the park so my brother and I stayed and watched while my parents strolled through the shops. I remember the small eating places and stores with English china. I fell in love with a Wedgwood pattern of china that we use for special occasions today.
I look forward to returning.