Good things come is small packages! Vancouver Island reflects this statement beautifully.
The trip to Victoria begins by boarding the ferry. Park your car in the ferry and explore the different levels, beginning with the restaurant/cafe, the kids play area, and enjoy a cup of coffee or hot chocolate on the outer deck. Charge your phone or use your other devices. Oh and parents, the washrooms are squeaky clean.
Enjoy your 1 hour and 30 minutes ride, take tons of pictures and capture the views.
The ferry brought us to the terminal on Swartz-bay, Vancouver Island. The drive to Victoria is at least 30 minutes, but theres a lot to see on the way starting from the town of Sidney.
Things to see
1) Glass beach, Sidney – Not really a beach for swimming, but still loads of fun. There are old broken pieces of colourful glass all over the beach. I have heard different stories about where the glass came from. Some people say an old hotel on the beach caught on fire and the glass blew out. Some say that an old glass factory used to dump broken glass on the shore, which has been softened by the ocean water. Give your kids a bucket, let your kids collect colourful pieces of glass, clay and be creative. Sea glass crafts
2) Hatley Castle, Royal Roads University – This was the castle in the X-MEN movie!! Oh my God – I was super excited!!!
It is now the administrative centre for Royal Roads University, which closes by 4:00 pm. You can take guided or unguided tours. The gardens are beautiful, and the castle is charming. I loved it!! My son was just excited to know that Dr. Xavier (X-Men) lived in Hatley Castle. Here are a few pictures!
3) Miniature World – A fascinating museum for kids and adults. The effort put into these hand made miniatures of known places, scenes from the greatest stories, is impressive. Kids three and older will love it. Although I do find it a bit over priced.
4) Fishermans Wharf – Around the corner from Victoria’s inner harbor is this little gem. I loved the colourful houses all around the walk ways. Stomp your feet and the seals come up to get fed. Enjoy the local seafood. I had only one issue….there is no protective boundary around the walk way. As in, the kids could fall over or jump in the water. My sons a little jumpy, so with a pounding heart and a hard grip on my kids I quickly got out of there. Also, it was freezing, but I’m sure you can enjoy the place during warmer weather. Just keep your kids in a stroller or some sort of harness.
5) Beacon Hill Children’s Farm – Great place to go with kids. A nice farm with no admissions fee. There is a donation box at the entrance. Beautiful peacocks running All around. Kids can go in the pen to pet the goats, hold them and just enjoy nature. My kids loved it and all the adults did too. However, I was standing outside taking pictures. Mommy is a tad bit scared.
6) Drive along the shore!
7) Walk around town – you can see most of the places in Victoria on foot. Walk around and enjoy the old architecture, the nice people with a completely different accent from Torontonians.
Things I would do differently
1 ) go during warmer weather in mid may or after.
2) stay a night and enjoy two whole days in Victoria and go to Buchart Gardens.
Halal Food in Victoria – First of all, seafood is a must in Victoria, but as far as halal food goes, Efes Turkish Doner and Kebab was on top of my list.
We got delicious wraps at a great price. The owner and his daughter were very nice and helpful. Efes is definitely going to be my favourite place to eat, whenever I visit Victoria again!
Oh and do try some Serious Coffee, you won’t miss timmies or dunkin’s
Great Place to visit!
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