A Day in Victoria, British Columbia

One very early Seattle morning we drove down to the Clipper terminal.. went through immigration, grabbed some breakfast and found ourselves comfortably seated on the Clipper ferry ready for our two hour ride. Via Clipper we had booked a round trip plus a trip to the Butchart Gardens, We arrived in Victoria around 10 am.. disembarked, went through immigration again and got on our tour bus. We are not usually ones to take a tour.. but we found our tour guide funny and informative and it was the perfect way to get to see a bit of the city knowing we had to be back on the ferry in just a few hours. 

The Butchart Gardens are just outside of Victoria in Brentwood Bay. Robert Butchart had the dream of making the best cement.. (seriously) so he and his wife Jennie Butchart moved to the West coast of Canada because of its rich limestone deposits. They established their home in the Todd Inlet in 1904 and when Jennie heard of a Japanese Garden designer visiting Victoria she commissioned a Japanese Garden for their estate.. She very soon discovered her love for gardening.. when the limestone quarry was exhausted she turned it into a sunken garden.. then the tennis courts were replaced with an Italian garden. In the 1920's people started to visit the Butchart Gardens.. Jennie herself giving tours and serving the tea.. today over a million people visit each year.

They don't look too happy.. it turned out to be a very very hot day.. our smiles aren't exactly genuine either.. plus as beautiful as it was it wasn't amazing.. I heard people commenting that the gardens are a lot more beautiful in the spring.. so maybe it was the wrong season.. but we weren't so impressed.. We rushed through some of the last few areas so that we can make it back to the bus which left hourly.. and back to Victoria.

We got off the bus and started strolling through the streets.. Victoria is such a charming little city.. 

We found Chinatown.. did you know that the Victoria Chinatown is the second oldest Chinatown in North America after San Francisco? 

We found the Fan Tan Alley.. and after walking through it on the other side we found Fan Tan Cafe where we had the most delicious lunch.. 

We strolled through the Bastion Square where so many wonderful artists were selling their goods.. one particular booth attracted us the most.. 

These are what my nightmares are made of... I have a major entomophobia.. I don't even like butterflies getting too close. But the boys were extremely fascinated. 

We grabbed some coffee from BruBike.. its was a cute coffee cart attached to a bike.  It moves daily to a different location... 

We started to head back to the ferry terminal.. where we learned the ferry was delayed.. then more delayed.. we went through immigration.. and waited some more.. instead of arriving in Seattle around 9pm we got back closer to midnight.. forgot which floor we parked our car on and had to carry/drag half asleep children up and down the car park.. 

All in all we found Victoria lovely.. in hindsight we may have skipped the gardens and explored the area and the streets some more.. and after the long delays with the ferry we thought spending a night may have been nice too.. 
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  1. These flowers look amazing! I need to visit here someday. Thanks for sharing these beautiful photos.


  2. Those bugs! Eeeeek! I have major entomophobia too!

  3. I love Victoria too, although I haven't been there for a few years now. Fan Tan Alley is a favourite place of mine as well.

  4. This sounds like so much fun! The garden looks amazing.

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

  5. Absolutely love how lush everything is there! xo, Biana-BlovedBoston

  6. Hello, I found you over at R's blog... Beautiful photos.
    EEEW Those are big bugs LOL..

    Blessings new follower, Renee

  7. Victoria BC is the part of Canada I'd most like to visit. (I've not been anywhere in Canada!) Even if they weren't at their peak, the gardens still look lovely.

    I'm very selective on which bugs I do and don't like associating with. Most beetles don't make the cut, so eww!

  8. Wow...we just went to the Butchart Gardens on our Alaskan tour, and we thought it was beautiful. Needless to say we live in an arid state, so we don't get to see flower gardens like this often. Besides, we also had a picnic lunch on the Italian Gardens which made it wonderful!!

  9. love how green and lush this looks! I'm headed to Seattle this weekend - may need to pop on by!

    XO Sahra
    Que Sera Sahra

  10. Wow, simply beautiful ! Love the gardens it looks like a great place to visit !

  11. Oh it's so gorgeous up north, Hena! And that lunch looks spectacular!


  12. We're hoping to visit Victoria next year and I definitely want to hit up Butchart Gardens.

  13. Such an amazing place, lovely flowers!
    Kisses, Paola.


  14. Wow beautiful place awesome pictures

  15. My Goodness. I thought those gardens were fabulous.

  16. Yay thats so amazing you came to visit my city! That sounds like such a long day, I need to go to Fan Tan Cafe again that foods looks so good

  17. Wow, that garden looked really beautiful! :D

  18. Thanks a lot :D

    seems to be an amazing place to visit my friend :D loved it

    InstagramFacebook Official PageMiguel Gouveia / Blog Pieces Of Me :D

  19. I love Butchart Gardens, it's been years since I was there and I never made it to the Chinatown in Victoria but I have been to the one in San Francisco many times. I camped at Lake Cowichan on the island when I was there, it would have been this time of year, I remember I caught trout. I love butterflies but not those huge beetles, ugh.

  20. Oh wow! From the pics, the garden looks awesome. It must be breath-taking then when the season is right! And those food pics...nomnom:D

  21. Victoria is beautiful! The flowers are amazing. It’s been a few years since I’ve been there but I loved how clean and tidy the little town was. It’s so quaint.

  22. "our smiles aren't exactly genuine" cracked me up!!! i have 2 sons, they are 35 & 36 now, but boy do i remember!!! the gardens are beautiful but your boys are getting to the age where they don't enjoy the things we try to make them enjoy!!!

    i can see they enjoyed the bugs!!!

  23. Omg, those GARDENS- they're amazing!

    Le Stylo Rouge

  24. The gardens are breathtakingly beautiful and it is hard to imagine that it looks more amazing in the spring time. Thanks for sharing a bit about the history of the place too.
    Have a great week.

  25. The garden looks amazing
    and you pics are awesome.


  26. Looks like a fun day, the colours of the flowers are amazing - great pictures!
    Have a lovely day :)
    Rosanna x

  27. This looks like so fun!

    Lauren Elizabeth
    Petite in Pearls

  28. I'd love to go there ! one day, maybe when he retires :) Lovely family memories and photos!

  29. OMG, this is so beautiful, I'm amazed to see the beauty of this garden. I would love to visit this place someday.
    Have a nice day dear!

  30. BC looks soo beautiful. I love those gardens. I would have definitely been all over that coffee cart. So cute.

  31. Beautiful gardens. The bugs yikes.

    Enjoy your day.

    I found you when you put your Url up.

  32. These photos are so cute! Victoria looks stunning! Thanks for sharing!

  33. This place is amazing!! You have lovely family :) All pictures are wonderful.

  34. I feel the same about most bugs. There was a big one on the inside of my front door last week and I needed to go outside to get to work. Yikes!

  35. I like this post. It´s amazing place. Food looks delicious :)

  36. Anonymous10/11/2018

    Le bad buzz, c'est la hantise des marques.

  37. Unas fotos estupendas! Muchas gracias por tus visitas!🍁🍁🍁

  38. LOL on the bugs. I'll try to remember that and not put bugs on your card. I would love to explore Victoria. It's so cute and I understand about the gardens. You can only look at flowers and stuff so much.


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