We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

Atlanta, GA
Level Contributor
27 posts
Save Topic
Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

Hello,

We will be in Victoria from August 11-13. While there, we would like to see a little of Vancouver Island. While in Victoria we want to see Butchart Gardens and explore the city, but we're not into the real touristy attractions downtown. We are thinking of doing some hiking or seeing some of the smaller towns.; we also wouldn't mind seeing some of the beaches. We had originally planned to spend time in Tofino, but had to cut our trip short. We will be leaving Vancouver the morning of the 11th and we were thinking we could take the ferry to Nanaimo and then have a leisurely day driving to Victoria. Or, we could take the ferry straight to Victoria and venture out after we get settled in. We are open to any suggestions.

Thanks,

Audrey

Victoria, BC Canada
Destination Expert
for Victoria
Level Contributor
1,126 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

I think that would be a great plan to go to Nanaimo and drive down the Island. You're not here many days and that would be a nice way to see some of it. Stop in Chemainus and see the murals on your way down. The only problem you might have is trying to stop and any of the scenic viewpoints on the Malahat. They are geared towards people going up Island so you'd have to find a U-Turn area and go back a little way to stop, but it's well worth it. I wouldn't try to cross oncoming traffic to get into the entrance either. Very dangerous. Butchart Gardens will take you a half a day for sure, but you could check out Sidney afterwards. You could also drive out past Sooke and stop at French Beach or Botanical Beach. Or even just in Victoria, take a walk along the breakwater and Dallas road or go to Goldstream.

wix
Vancouver Island...
Level Contributor
761 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

Butchart is great, even for people who think they don't like gardens.

Taking the ferry to Nanaimo would make for a nice drive, but I think the Vancouver-Victoria ferry trip is more beautiful. The last third is through the Gulf Islands, and is really quite special.

Butchart is relatively near the Swartz Bay ferry terminal. You could cover that once off the boat (sorry, ship) and then head into town.

You can get a lot of the Tofino experience by heading west from Victoria to the area past Sooke.

Here are two options:

One) Drive west to China Beach Provincial Park - about 90 minutes and a nice drive along the coast and through the forest. The beach at the park is nice, but you can also do a two-kilometre walk along the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail through a beautiful forest. That takes you to Mystic Beach, a great crescent-shaped sandy beach with a small waterfall. (You can read more at http://kevingong.com/Hiking/200507MysticBeach.html)

Two) Drive farther - about 90 minutes more, on a twisty highway, but with some great views - to Port Renfrew and Botanical Beach. It's named for the flat sections of sandstone which is marked with holes, from a few feet to 20 feet across. At low ride the water is trapped in those spaces and you can get a great view of star fish, anemones and other sea life.

In either case, stop at Shakey's, a burger shack across from the beach at Jordan River, often a popular surfing spot. Great burgers, cookies and shakes.

Have a good time.

victoria
3 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

If your not into the touristy attractions, I wouldnt bother with the buchart gardens - very expensive and take a long time , not that special in my opinion -i do love the gardens at hatley castle (royal roads) and you can stop there on your way to Sooke, French beach, China beach, Jordan river- all nice places to stop on a day trip. have a snack at Shakeys in Jordon River (oyster burgers !!!)

or even venture to legendary Sombreo Beach and see the surfers

in Victown there is lots of nice squares and cobblestone alleyways to walk to from the inner harbour to canadas oldest china town (Market square , Bastion square, Government street, Trounce alley)

and the drive around Dallas rd to Cordova bay is great - stop at cattle point

In August there is alot of festivals, live music, markets-- no shortage of fun whatever you end up doing will be great

Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
58 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

I think doing either ferry has it good points. If you go over to Nanaimo, you might even consider going a little ways toward Tofino to Cathedral Grove, which is very lovely, and then backtracking. In addition to Chemainus, which I agree is a nice stop, you could stop in Duncan to see the totem poles.

I second the recommendation of Goldstream as a Victoria day trip also.

Atlanta, GA
Level Contributor
27 posts
Save Reply
5. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

Thank you all for your suggestions. We will be taking the ferry back to Vancouver when we leave Victoria so we will not miss out on the scenery if we take the ferry to Nanaimo on the way there. I am going to start doing research on all your great suggestions right now!

Green Valley...
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park, Seattle
Level Contributor
18,001 posts
62 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

You are coming a long way, so play tourist, that's what it's about. Victoria has much to see and to offer. See the Buchart Gardens, they reflect the NW gardening and much more. You might see them in the later afternoon, then eat and attend their show, after which you can walk a portion of the gardens alight. Quite well done. Do see the other things mentioned by everyone. Do walk along the inner harbor and see the government buildings and Empress. See them at night, alight. The very things mentioned by a previous poster are, in fact, tourist attractions - but, so what. It is fun. Have a great trip.

Green Valley...
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park, Seattle
Level Contributor
18,001 posts
62 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

Audrey, I forgot to mention and unsure if anyone did, but there is no ferry directly to Victoria from BC. Swartz Bay, yes. From WA state, however, you can go directly from Pt. Angeles on the Black Ball line.

Qualicum Beach...
Level Contributor
35 posts
Save Reply
8. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

There's some nice alpine hiking up Mount Arrowsmith near Qualicum or at Mount Washington, Strathcona Park. Botanical Beach and the Juan de Fuca trail offers some nice coastal hiking.

9. Re: Daytrips from Victoria - August 11-13

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 13 August 2009, 15:16