Hotels in Victoria BC, Canada
If Montreal is the most Francophone city outside of Paris, then Victoria in British Columbia is its English counterpart. Nicknamed as the City of Gardens due to its always-in-bloom and manicured open spaces, Victoria is postcard-worthy, casual and has a Mediterranean-like climate which makes it the favourite of the "newly-wed and nearly dead". Aside from retirees – Victoria attracts an unusual concentration of octogenarians – regular tourists also come flocking for the same reasons, and this makes finding hotels in Victoria Canada quite a challenge especially if you come during the cruise season which runs from April to September.
Where to Stay in Victoria BC
Named after Queen Victoria, the city of the same name is considered one of the oldest in the Pacific Northwest. Beyond immaculate gardens bursting with vivid colours and Union Jacks flapping in the poles, Victoria's very English heritage can be seen in its historic buildings. A stroll along the harbour front on a balmy afternoon will bring you right in front of one of its iconic landmarks and one of the best hotels in Victoria BC, the century-old Empress Hotel where you can also engage in a very English tradition – afternoon tea. Right across it is the Neo-baroque Parliament Buildings, the seat of British Columbia's Legislative Assembly. Together they provide an irresistible photo opportunity, especially when they are all lit up come Christmas.
Tourism is one of the city’s main economic drivers; there’s no shortage of Victoria BC hotel deals if you reserve rooms early, or if you come during off-peak seasons.
Cheap hotels in Victoria BC and other affordable options like motels, bed and breakfasts and hostels in Victoria BC are also in abundance. Save on accommodation and free up your cash for experiences you shouldn’t miss. Visitors staying for a few months may want to consider apartments for rent in Victoria BC as a cost-saving measure.
A multi-sensory experience in the City of Gardens
Victoria's once ho-hum dining and wining scene has been transformed into a funkier, bohemian affair. The city boasts of a modest wining culture courtesy of Saanich Peninsula’s Pinot Gris and Marechal Foch made from grapes grown in family owned vineyards an hour to the north. You would want to take this wine trail anyway since the famed and flamboyant Butchart Gardens are just along the way.
Satisfy your hankering for sea food on Vancouver Island 30 minutes to the north. To spice up your culinary experience, head out of your bed and breakfast in Victoria BC and follow the dimsum trail to Chinatown, the oldest in Canada and second oldest in North America after San Francisco's. There's also that occasional English pub if your taste is so inclined.
Victoria is a very walkable city. Most of the attractions you can easily get to on foot from your hotel in Victoria BC. But if you want to break free in wind-in-your-face fashion, hop on a bike. Despite other Canadian cities' claim to bike fame, nothing can beat Victoria when it comes to cycle routes – it has the most in all of Canada!
But why just bike when you can sign up for a harbour tour? Or dare to go all out and spend three hours with resident Orcas, humpbacks and grey whales which can be spotted year-round? Avid surfers even go the distance five hours west to Tofino, a once sleepy logging village starting to become famous for its untamed waves and raw nature. There's also the option to take the three-hour car-ferry-car route to Vancouver, the largest city in British Columbia.