There is nothing like taking a weekend getaway out to the West Coast in the middle of Calgary’s winter – especially when you’re lucky enough to not get rained on while you’re there. Victoria is a gorgeous city with plenty to eat, see and do even though it’s not a big place. Whether you’re a new tourist or a Victoria regular, there is always somewhere new to explore or you can hit up your fave spots and never get tired of them.
My mom and I flew out to Victoria for 4 days to visit my sister who goes to school out there. Between eating, the spa and heading out to a lighthouse we found plenty of things to do to fill the time. If you’re headed out there I highly recommend using the Tourism Victoria website for a list of the tourist things to do – trust me you don’t want to miss some of the classics.
DELTA MARRIOT OCEAN POINTE RESORT It’s across the harbour from The Empress and boasts a gorgeous view of Wharf Street and the ocean front buildings. The restaurant and the rooms are stunning, offering a comfort and luxurious stay for less than what you would pay across the water. The pool was under construction when we were there but when it’s done it will add to the Delta experience. Lure is the restaurant in the main lobby and the food, drinks and ambiance is worth experiencing. It’s always nice when you don’t have to leave your hotel and still get a quality restaurant experience.
If you’re looking for cafes, breakfast, dinner; the coolest places to be in Vic – I gotchu. Read my 5 Noteworthy Restaurants and 5 Instagrammable Coffee Shops. And then comment below with your faves so I can hit them up next time.
There are so many adorable boutiques that you need to check out. I didn’t make it to all of them and can’t list them all, but I’ve included my faves that I was able to pop into this trip.
PABOOM combines an eclectic variety of product categories and ideas in one beautiful and open space. If I could decorate my whole house with items from there I would. This is my go-to Vic store, I’m in it (and walking out with a bag) every time I go.
FAN TAN is a west coast style home decor and accessory store. They sell a variety of different things from decor to soap to jewelry. It’s a gorgeous collection of pieces that are perfect for gifts or to keep for yourself.
LITTLE GOLD is a woman-owned business that focuses on independent and emerging designers. They carry a curated selection of jewelry, home wares and accessories from designers both local and international.
VICTORIA PUBIC MARKET is a cool space with local vendors and restaurants. It gives you a good taste of what Victoria is all about – the people, the atmosphere and it’s culture. Shop around and stay for a bite to eat. Worth stopping at: the vegan butcher shop.
ROYAL BC MUSEUM explores the history and cultural heritage of British Columbia. They have exhibitions that come and go – we were there for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition which was a stunning collection of wildlife photos. We also explore the First Nations exhibit which delves into the culture and how the province was built from their traditions.
FISGARD LIGHTHOUSE Escape the city and head out to the coast to the Fisgard Lighthouse historical site. It’s the first lighthouse on Canada’s west coast and is a gorgeous backdrop for photos. While you’re there you can explore Fort Rodd Hill, a west coast artillery fortress on active duty from 1895 to 1956. It has secret bunkers, military command posts and original 19th century buildings.
WILLOW STREAM SPA at the Fairmont. As you would expect, the spa is gorgeous and you’ll experience a relaxing and luxiourious treatment. It includes a Finnish style sauna, steam inhalation room and mineral pool and is designed to open up inhalation, cleanse, detoxify and warm the muscles. Spend the afternoon or day there is complete relax mode, you’re on vacation after all.
What are your fave YYJ spots?