Posted by: cherylyoung | February 15, 2012

Conde’ Neste …

Conde’ Neste rated Victoria one of the top 10 cities in the world to visit.

Established in 1843 by James Douglas as a Hudson’s Bay Company Fort, the City of Victoria has a proud history of British Columbia


The Greater Victoria region covers the extreme southern end of

 Vancouver Island, including the Saanich Peninsula, Victoria,

Esquimalt, Colwood, Metchosin, and Sooke, with almost half

of Vancouver Island’s population of 750,000 people living

within the Capital Regional District (CRD) around Victoria.

Victoria has a temperate climate with mild, damp winters

and relatively dry and mild summers.


It is sometimes classified as a cool-summer Mediterranean

climate due to its usually dry summers.


 There is a rich diversity of landscapes within the region, ranging

 from the Douglas fir forests along the coast to the drier,

 exposed conditions of the higher, rockier elevations that

support arbutus (madrona) and Garry oak forests.


 Victorians display their love for the natural world by

cultivating flower gardens at every turn.


 As you’d imagine in a region where a large urban population

 interacts with such a delightful natural tableau, a vast

 network of walking, hiking, and biking routes leads through

 the many parks with which the city is blessed.

It’s easy to imagine how sweet life was for Native Canadians

who once had this all to themselves.


 Beacon Hill Park in downtown Victoria was the site of a village

 that had been inhabited for thousands of years prior to the

arrival of the colonial

 settlers in the 1840s.


A tangled web of events since then has displaced the original

dwellers, but their history is evident in the petroglyphs that

 adorn the shoreline and in the middens of seashells mounded

up beside the beaches on the Strait of Juan de Fuca.


 Totem poles new and old stand as proud reminders of this

 First Nation heritage.


To gain a fresh appreciation for the talents and skills of

First Nations peoples, combine a visit to the outdoors around

Victoria with a stop  at the Royal British Columbia Museum, a

world-class repository of  native artifacts.

 With the enriched perspective that such a visit will bring,

you’ll look  at the landscape with new interest and appreciation.


 The figures on the totems will no longer be static

representations from a mythological age.


Instead, combined with the presence of killer whales, seals,

eagles, ravens, salmon, and other species that are as vibrant

in the landscape today  as they were in the past, you’ll enter

 a timeless realm and, in the process, discover a new place

 in nature for yourself.

Conde’ Naste Traveler Magazine reader’s poll rated Victoria

one of the  top ten cities to visit in the world.

 The picture-perfect Inner Harbour is surrounded by many

of Victoria’s beautiful character buildings and premier

attractions: the stately Empress Hotel, the BC provincial

Legislative Buildings, museums and galleries.

As romantic as Victoria may be, with its delightful natural

harbour and the Olympic Mountains of Washington State

 on the horizon, the provincial capital of British Columbia is

less a museum piece nowadays than it is a tourist mecca.


Visitors pour in to view vast sculpted gardens and London-style

 double-decker buses, to shop for Irish linens and Harris tweeds,

 to sip afternoon tea, and to soak up what they believe is the

last vestige of British imperialism in the Western Hemisphere.

Population: 78,659

Location: Victoria is located on the southern tip of Vancouver

Island which is situated off the southwest coast of British Columbia.


 Visitors from the Lower Mainland of BC travel to Victoria by

 ferry from the BC Ferries’ Tsawwassen terminal in Delta.


Sailing time is 90 minutes for the 27-mile (44-km) distance across

the Strait of Georgia to the Swartz Bay terminal, 20 miles north o

f Victoria.

Visitors from the United States can journey to Victoria via ferry

 from Seattle, Anacortes in northwest Washington, or from

 Port Angeles on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula.


The Anacortes ferry arrives in Sidney, at the Washington

 State Ferries terminal, 3 miles (5 km) south of Swartz Bay.


 The MV Coho from Port Angeles arrives in Victoria’s Inner

Harbour,  as does the Victoria Clipper from Seattle’s Pier 69.


 The Olympic and Saanich Peninsulas are separated by the

Strait of  Juan de Fuca, a 17-mile (27-km) stretch of (almost)

open ocean.


By air, visitors arrive at either Victoria Harbour (by float plane)

 or Victoria International Airport on the Saanich Peninsula,

 about 17 miles (27 km) north of Victoria.

A coach service operates via BC Ferries between Vancouver

 and downtown  Victoria (43 miles/69 km by road, excluding

 ferry travel).


 Pick-up is available from various locations in Vancouver,

including Downtown Vancouver, Vancouver International

Airport, and major hotels. Visit our Transportation section

for further information.

View maps of the area:
Map of Greater Victoria
Map of Victoria
Map of Victoria Downtown
Map of South Vancouver Island

Victoria Weather: One of the glorious things about the Victoria

 region is that you can picnic, golf or hike here year round,

something that much of the rest of the province has always envied.


 Each season has its unique character, and life is always

 assuming new forms Spring and fall migrations of birds and

 fish animate the landscape

 Evergreen forests brighten a winter landscape that otherwise

lies unveiled once deciduous trees drop their summer foliage.


Even snow makes the occasional appearance, though it rarely

 remains for long.

 Summer droughts and winter rains determine the songs sung

by rivers and creeks.


Hanging Flower Baskets adorn the city’s lampposts in a celebration

 of scent and bright colours, symbolizing Victoria’s passion

for gardening.

Flowers bloom year round in Victoria, which makes exploring

 the outdoors here enjoyable in any season.


 Ferns and lichens colour the forest floor throughout the

winter; come spring, an explosion of trilliums and calypso

orchids heightens the effect before  giving way to bushes lush

with huckleberry, salmonberry, trailing blackberry, salal,

 and Oregon grape.

BC Legislature: If there’s a quintessential image of Victoria

etched in the memory of all who visit the city, it must surely

 be British Columbia’s Legislative Buildings at night.


Adorned with 3,333 light bulbs, it takes on a magical quality.

Take a free tour of the Legislative Buildings and learn about

history  and government of British Columbia,


The Royal British Columbia Museum is one of the finest of

its kind in the world, offering dramatic dioramas of natural

 landscapes and full-scale reconstructions of Victorian storefronts.


 The museum features outstanding displays on the province’s

artifacts,  documents, history and culture, as well as national

 and international feature exhibits.


 Permanent Galleries include the First Peoples, Modern History

and Natural History Galleries.


The Maritime Museum of British Columbia allows visitors to

 explore BC’s seafaring history through more than 5,000 artifacts.


 Exhibits include the fort and the city of Victoria, explorers

 and pirates,  whaling and fishing, shipbuilding and shipwrecks,

ship models and paintings, the Coast Guard and Navy, and

the courtroom once presided over by the notorious Judge Sir

Matthew Baillie Begbie in the late 19th century.


The museum is housed in an elegant heritage building in

Bastion Square.

Old Town Victoria is the oldest section of Victoria, built up

between  the 1860s and the 1890s. Explore Johnson Street and

Chinatown, the galleries and sidewalk restaurants in Bastion

Square, and historic Market Square, a restored 19th-century c

ourtyard surrounded by  three floors of charming heritage

shops, restaurants, and offices.


Chinatown: The splendid lion-bedecked Gate of Harmonious

Interest marks the entrance to Victoria’s small Chinatown, the

 second oldest in North America (after San Francisco).


 Once a ghetto for newcomers, Chinatown is now a heritage area,

a vibrant commercial community, and an intriguing part of

 Victoria’s past and present.


 Visit the tiny shops and studios on Fan Tan Alley, the narrowest

 street in Canada – only 90 centimetres wide at its narrowest.


Relax in a horse-drawn carriage and capture the romance of an era

when tall ships docked in the Inner Harbour.


 Private carriage tours include Old Town, Chinatown, Beacon

Hill Park heritage homes, and the Dallas Road waterfront.

Fabulous horsedrawn carriages have been delighting visitors

with rides through Victoria for over 100 years!


The National Geographic IMAX Theatre will delight you with

 crystal clear images and 12,000 watts of wraparound IMAX

Digital surround sound.

Six stories high and 81 feet wide, the IMAX screen pulls you in and

 brings images to life, letting you feel like you’re really there.


 Located inside the Royal BC Museum.

Click here for More Attractions in Victoria










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