Travel: Victoria, British Columbia Part Deux

I was planning on writing one post about our trip to British Columbia, but it was getting really long, so I decided to split it up between Vancouver and Victoria.  When we left off, we were taking the BC Ferry from Vancouver to Victoria.  This was one of my favorite parts of the trip!

While in Victoria, we stayed with my Aunt and Uncle who live in a condo down the street from The Empress Hotel.

Travel Victoria BC Canada

What We Did

Hike to Juan de Fuca Provincial Park – We did this hike with my cousin’s wife and kids, Otis the dog, and their super sweet Spanish exchange student who was on vacation and came back to visit them the same week we were there.  This was also one of our favorite days on the trip.

Travel Victoria BC Canada

It’s about a 4k hike in and out through the Canadian rainforest.  Once you get through the lush forest, you are deposited onto beautiful Mystic Beach.  There was a rope swing for the kids, who enjoyed launching themselves over the water.  The water was a bit chilly, but they’re kids, they didn’t seem to care.  We had a great day here and it was well worth the drive and the hike.

Victoria, BC Canada Travel
Mystic Beach, Vancouver Island

Royal British Columbia Museum – It was interesting to learn the history of British Columbia, and there was a great exhibit showcasing different families and their history with the Province, including photographs, documents and clothes.

Travel Victoria BC Canada

The Empress Hotel – After the museum, we took a jaunt through the hotel to gawk at the beautiful chandelier in the lobby and dream about staying there next time we visit.

The Empress Hotel
The Empress Hotel Lobby

Tour of the Parliament Building – We did lunch at the Parliament Building {see Where We Ate} and were able to walk around on a self guided tour afterwards.

Water Taxi to Chinatown – After our Parliament Building lunch and tour, we grabbed a water taxi in the harbour and headed to Chinatown where we bought cheesy souvenirs, and ate delicious treats in Fan Tan Alley.

Fan Tan Alley, Chinatown, Victoria, BC

Miniature World – A museum filled with tiny treasures, tiny cityscapes, tiny battle re-enactments, and a tiny Buckingham Palace.  Ella was in heaven.

Victoria British Columbia Canada

Where We Ate

Union Club of British Columbia – We had dinner here our first night in Victoria.  It’s a quick walk from the condo and right across the street from the Empress.  You have to be a member to enjoy the club, which my Aunt and Uncle are.  Membership has it’s privileges.

Shirley Delicious Cafe in Sheringham Point – My cousin’s wife, Jen, had wanted to try this charming café for a while.  It was on the way to our hike, so it was perfect timing.  Shirley Delicious was, well, surely delicious.  The kids had fun sitting outside, and the area reminded me of being in the mountains in Colorado.

Victoria British Columbia Canada

Salty’s Fish & Chips – Being Scottish and all, we wanted the real deal and this was it.

The Parliament Building – My Aunt arranged for us to have lunch at the Parliament Building.  It was really neat to eat in the dining room with all the B.C. movers and shakers.  Just kidding, we had three kids, they gave us our own private dining room.  To this day, Ella says the cheeseburger she ate there is the best thing she’s ever eaten.  Make reservations well in advance if you’re interested in going.Parliament Building Victoria

Murchie’s Tea & Coffee – Ella loved the chicken pot pie and I enjoyed the soup.  We also drank tea and ate fancy desserts.

Dutch Bakery and Coffee Shop – We ended up here after the museum jaunt through The Empress.  It was a comedy of errors after we tried having lunch at Hudson’s Bay {the café was closed that day.}  Next, we went to try Murchie’s again, but they were out of chicken pot pie and by the time we got there, everything was very picked over.  Finally, Dutch Bakery it was!  If you know me, you know how much I love an old diner and/or coffee shop, and this one was really good.

We flew back home from Victoria, where we had a layover in Seattle.  Our tiny little prop plane landed at the same time as an Emirates Airlines jumbo jet with 600 people on board.  You can imagine how fun Customs was.  Make sure you leave plenty of time to get through Customs on the U.S. side {we had no problems in Canada.  Oh, Canada!}

All hail Queen Victoria

That was our British Columbia vacation!  We can’t wait to go back, there’s still a lot more to explore!



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