22 Pictures That Will Make You Want To Take Your Kids To Victoria B.C.

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I’m back with part two of our month-long summer vacation to Victoria, B.C. as a family.

Halfway through our family vacation to Victoria, B.C., my parents came to visit!

They had been here 20+ years ago and were really excited to come back to visit. In true Reese fashion, we packed in a lot during the week they were here.

One of the favorite things we did was to go to The Butchart Gardens. I had been hearing about how gorgeous the gardens were, but let me tell you, I was blown away. We all were! They were even better than expected. They even have fireworks on certain nights!

The summer crowds are a real thing, so if you are visiting from a cruise ship, go as early as possible. If you are not on a cruise ship excursion schedule, go later in the afternoon or when there are no ships in port. We went when there were a lot of people there and still had a blast. If your schedule isn’t flexible, you will still have a great time unless you really don’t like crowds!

We also had a fantastic tea at Pendray Inn and Tea House.

There are quite a few options for tea, and we went with the Pendray Inn for a few reasons. First, they advertise a full vegan tea and they were even able to accommodate a gluten-free vegetarian tea for Ash. Second, it was right by where we were staying. I’m so happy we chose the Pendray Inn. It was delicious and perfect for children. Fancy, but still comfortable.

Other options are Butchard Gardens and of course the world-famous,  Hotel Fairmont Empress. Pete and I had breakfast at the Empress and it was simply gorgeous!

Speaking of beverages, we got lost in the coffee on the island. It was so good.

Our schedule each day (when family wasn’t visiting) was for Pete to go workout in the morning with Ash, and then when he would get back, we would get ready and go have breakfast. That was followed by a walk around downtown to get coffee or our beloved bubble tea. Next, we would try to get work done back home and then would take another late afternoon walk to get a drink and a family dinner. Evenings meant more time walking and exploring downtown Victoria all together.

And I can’t forget Emmy’s frequent stops for ice cream.

Her favorites were Victoria Ice Cream & Fudge Factory, Chocolats Favoris and the cart that was sometimes right across the street from the Parliament Building, which we called “Canada Ice Cream” because it always came with a little flag!

A favorite night time walk for us was along Dallas Road by Holland Point Park.

The sunsets were not until after 9-10 pm and we stretched out the days by taking in these views.

The only sad part of our time in Victoria, B.C. was when Maddie flew home a week early to go to Comic-Con. It was so hard saying goodbye to her and having her fly home, especially internationally with a connection. Then, I had to remind my silly mind that she is 19 and has traveled all over the world. 

She had a great time and we were distracted while we were separated because the other grandparents came to visit! We took them straight to The Bubble Tea Place (what it is actually called) and then to Fan Tan Alley, because #tourists. Ha!

And then the day came when it was time to go back home. 

We left from Victoria International Airport, flew over to Seattle and then down to San Diego. It is really easy to travel to Victoria and we could have even taken the ferry from Seattle or Vancouver on the mainland. 

Other notes: 

We rented a minivan for the month we were on Vancouver Island, and only filled up one time! It is so walkable. The food on the island is fresh and flavorful, albeit a bit different than in the US, but pretty similar.

The kids loved being able to explore and we found the area extremely safe. Even with 30 days in Victoria, we still didn’t see beyond the downtown area much. That just shows you how much there is to see and do!

Lastly, we had such an amazing time that we already booked the exact same house again for next summer! I hope this turns into a tradition that the kids carry on with their own kids!

Heather Reese
the authorHeather Reese
Heather Delaney Reese is the storyteller and photographer behind the lifestyle and family travel blog, It's a Lovely Life®! For the past decade, she has vacationed over 150 days a year with her family. She is a vegan, and loves being by the water, spending time with her children, husband, 2 Shih Tzus and Cat.