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How to have an insanely awesome trip to Victoria in 5 easy steps

Victoria is a travel destination with so much to offer, it can be hard to know where to begin. If you want to experience the best, look no further than The Butchart Gardens.

Consistently rated among the world’s most beautiful garden attractions, The Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island has been around for over 100 years. Designated as a National Historic Site of Canada in 2004, the gardens on the property continue to attract nearly a million annual visitors eager to enjoy their incredible beauty.

Here’s the simplest way to get from Seattle to this famous site and enjoy a little more of Victoria while you’re at it.

Step 1: Plan Your Timing

The Butchart Gardens is open year-round, but different events throughout the year mean you should plan your trip to coincide with your interests.

  • There’s an evening concert every night from July through August featuring styles ranging from bluegrass to classical to pop
  • After Saturday night concerts, there are special fireworks shows set to music
  • Enjoy Afternoon Tea in warm weather and High Tea when it cools down
  • You can have a summer picnic when it’s warm outside
  • There’s a historical display in winter as well as a special indoor garden
  • You can go ice skating around Christmas

The best time to visit will depend on what you want to see, as different days and seasons feature everything from Gnome Hunts to Greenhouse Tours.

Step 2: Buy Your Victoria Clipper Ticket

Once you know when you want to go, Clipper Vacations can help you get there. The Victoria Clipper offers high-speed passenger-only transportation from Seattle right to downtown Victoria. With comfy seats, plenty of leg room and local food onboard, this two-and-a-half-hour cruise passes through the lovely Puget Sound to drop you off right at Victoria’s Inner Harbour.

The Butchart Gardens is roughly 13 miles from Victoria, but if you go for a Clipper overnight package, you’ll have that leg of the journey taken care of too. The “Seattle to Victoria Overnight with The Butchart Gardens” package includes:

  • your ferry ticket from Seattle to Victoria
  • a narrated drive to the Gardens during which a guide points out key landmarks
  • admission to The Butchart Gardens (you can stay as long as you like)
  • a ride back to downtown Victoria
  • one night at Delta Hotels Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort

Does it get any easier?

Step 3: Enjoy The Butchart Gardens

Hopefully you can figure this step out yourself.

Step 4: Extend Your Stay

When you book online, you can add as many nights at the hotel as you want so you can do more in Victoria. Clipper has partnered with twenty different highly vetted hotels in the area to offer a best-price guarantee.

What should you do with your extra time in Victoria? That’s up to you! A few highlights you might want to consider investigating include:

The Victoria Butterfly Gardens

Less than two miles from The Butchart Gardens, Victoria Butterfly Gardens allows visitors to experience the beauty and curiosity of a tropical jungle. Encounter poison dart frogs, tortoises, flamingos, iguanas, free-flying tropical birds and thousands of tropical butterflies. Clipper has a package that includes admission and transport to both the Butterfly and The Butchart Gardens which is ideal if you know you want to visit both.

Parliament

The Parliament Buildings are located in the heart of downtown Victoria and are quite a sight to behold. Neo-baroque architecture and impressive domes are nice in the daytime, and they’re even prettier at night when the façade is illuminated.

The Royal British Columbia Museum

Founded in 1886, The Royal British Columbia Museum immerses visitors in the natural and human history of British Columbia. Whether you want to look at First Nations’ artifacts and learn about the cultural, social and economic history of the people of British Columbia or you’re more interested in investigating the area’s palenontology, botany and entomology, this museum is a must-see.

Chinatown

During the years of the Gold Rush, half of the population of Victoria was Chinese. Explore North America’s second-oldest Chinatown, checking out historical sites as well as trendy shops and exotic produce. For a really good time, visit during the 15-day Chinese New Year celebration in February.

Drink Up

Victoria is home to many different breweries, distilleries, cideries and wineries. If you’re looking to relax on vacation, why not embark on a mini-tour of the region’s beverages?

Step 5: Come Back

As you explore Victoria, you’ll find tons of other exciting places to visit like the Victoria Bug Zoo and the Craigdarroch Castle. There are also great hiking opportunities, wildlife adventures like bear and bird watching, great shopping, and world-class restaurants specializing in seafood and Chinese food.

Whether your interests lean cultural or culinary, natural or historical, Victoria is an ideal getaway for curious Washingtonians.

Ready to explore Victoria? Book your trip with Clipper Vacations and start planning your adventure.

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