Welcome to Victoria

Here you will find all the necessary information to make the best of your time in Victoria. From arrival and departure information, daily tour pick-up times, and general information about the city.


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About Victoria, British Columbia

Victoria, the capital of British Columbia, is located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island and is a wanderer’s paradise. Walk along the colourful and charming Fisherman’s Wharf and indulge in fresh seafood, or take a trip to the world-famous Butchart Gardens. Whales frequent the waters surrounding this laid-back city, and you’ll find that there is no shortage of live street performers and delicious local eateries. This is a place you will want to get to know by walking around, whether it’s a short trip down to the gorgeous glowing harbour or walk-through downtown.

Population – 350,000

Arrival Information:

When arriving in Victoria by air, your best option for transportation is by taxi. Taxis are accessible at the arrivals section exit.

If we have arranged for a private transfer, you will find your driver holding a sign with your name right at the passenger exit.

If you are a visitor to Canada, and you are not a citizen of the USA, you may be required to purchase an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). This document can be purchased for CAD $7.00 and most applications are approved within minutes of applying. Please visit the following government site for information and to purchase this eTA: Electronic Travel Authorization.

If you are arriving in Victoria by BC Ferries, which has been provided by Canada Rail Vacations, a transfer to the Capital City Station (721 Douglas Street) will be provided after the ferry arrives at Swartz Bay Terminal. The drop-off location is directly behind the Fairmont Empress and a short walk away from the Fairmont Empress, Parkside Hotel, Chateau Victoria, and Hotel Grand Pacific.

If you are arriving aboard BC Ferries without a transfer included to downtown, taxi service is available at the Swartz Bay Terminal for approximately CAD $60 – $70 and takes approximately 50 minutes, depending on the time of service and traffic conditions. Taxis accept all major credit cards, CAD and USD.

Departure Information:

When departing from Victoria, your hotel front desk staff will be happy to request a taxi. As of 2022, downtown Victoria hotel-to-airport fares will range between CAD $60 – $70 per taxi and take approximately 40 minutes, depending on the time of service and traffic conditions. Taxis accept all major credit cards, CAD and USD.

If we have arranged your airport private transfer, you will find your driver waiting for you at the hotel entrance at the scheduled time.

If you are departing Victoria by BC Ferries with a pre-arranged transfer from downtown, you will need to meet at the Capital City Station (721 Douglas Street) for the motorcoach transfer to the ferry terminal and onwards to Vancouver. Please refer to your itinerary for timing.

If you are departing Victoria by BC Ferries without a transfer from downtown, please take a taxi to the Swartz Bay BC Ferries Terminal.

Restaurant Recommendations:

The city of Victoria is home to a variety of different and delicious dining options, and we’ve highlighted some of our favorites:

Pagliacci’s: Italian staples are served amongst kitschy décor and live music. Smart casual attire.
Address: 1011 Broad Street

10 Acres Bistro: A farm-to-fork concept menu in a romantic setting with cocktails and a garden patio. Casual attire.
Address: 611 Courtney Street

Bar 500: A Canadian bistro and café with locally sourced ingredients, small plates, and live jazz and piano music. Casual attire.
Address: 500 Oswego Street

Steamship Grill & Bar: Located in a celebrated Beaux Arts building, offering seafood, cocktails, and a refined menu with water views. Smart casual attire.
Address: 470 Belleville Street

The Mint Restaurant: Himalayan-inspired dishes in an intimate environment with live DJs and mint-focused cocktails. Casual attire.
Address: 1414 Douglas Street

Red Fish Blue Fish: An outdoor waterfront eatery in an up-cycled cargo container in the Inner Harbour. Fresh, sustainable fish ‘n chips. Casual attire.
Address:1006 Wharf Street

Sightseeing Recommendations:

Experience Victoria like no other: aboard one of our open-top double-decker buses! Victoria’s Hop-On, Hop-Off CitySights Tour allows guests great flexibility to explore the many popular attractions Victoria has to offer.

Your ticket grants unlimited access to the Hop-On Hop-Off double-decker bus service allowing you to discover Greater Victoria at your own pace. Truly the best way to discover Victoria’s must-see points of interest!

Located on Vancouver Island, Victoria’s ‘gem’ is the world-renowned Butchart Gardens, a National Historic Site of Canada. This privately-owned 55-acre display garden is located just 35 minutes north of downtown. Guests can visit the many themed Gardens including the Rose Garden, Sunken Garden with the dramatic Ross Fountain Waterworks, or the perfect precision of the Italian Gardens and more!

The Victoria Whale Watching tour is an exhilarating round trip in search of orcas, minke whales, grey whales, porpoises, harbour seals and other marine wildlife. You will ride aboard a luxurious semi-covered boat, that offers outdoor and indoor viewing, in a safe and intimate whale-watching experience.

At the Fairmont Empress Hotel, Miniature World is an impressive exhibit that has over 85 miniature dioramas and displays. If you want to experience life like a royal, the hotel also serves an afternoon tea in the traditional English style – cucumber finger sandwiches and all!

Across from the Empress Hotel, you will find the Victoria Harbour Ferry where you can choose between the Gorge Tour or the Harbour tour; both are guided boat tours that give you the option to explore historic neighbourhoods, working shipyards and/or sacred First Nations territories. If you prefer to stay on dry land, take a horse-drawn carriage ride with Tally Ho Carriage Tours, which you will find in front of Victoria’s operational legislative buildings at the intersection of Belleville Street and Government Street.

Just a few minutes walk away from the Fairmont Empress Hotel you will find the Royal BC Museum, one of Canada’s leading museums and research centres. It showcases 550 million years of natural history and 9,000 years of human history in B.C., and has been in operation since 1886.

A few blocks away, be on the look-out for seals and other marine life down at Fisherman’s Wharf.
Take a stroll along a floating pier that is home to small, local shops, a colourful array of privately-owned floating homes and some of the freshest fish ‘n chips. If you’re feeling up to it, you can continue your walk around James Bay and along the breakwater seawall at Ogden Point for a great view of the Breakwater Lighthouse.

Other Things to See Around the Inner Harbour:

Bateman Foundation Gallery of Nature: 470 Belleville Street

Emily Carr House: 207 Government Street

Victoria Bug Zoo: 631 Courtney Street

Maritime Museum of British Columbia: 634 Humboldt Street

Beacon Hill Park: 100 Cook Street

Craigdarroch Castle: 1050 Joan Crescent