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Harry and Judy's RV Trip
18th Jul 2016 - Summer 2016
Day 54-July 18, 2016-O Canada-Victoria, to be exact

Day 54-O Canada-Victoria, to be exact

65 again, sunny and beautiful

We took the 8:15 Coho Black Ball Ferry from Port Angeles, WA to Victoria, Vancouver,British Columbia, Canada. Parking was right across the street.  The ferry carries both cars and pedestrians and there were a lot of RVs and trucks on the ferry this morning.  The 90 minute trip across the Strait of Juan de Fuca was very enjoyable, not much to see because it was very foggy and they kept tooting the fog horns.  They say there is an abundance of whales in the Strait this year, humpback, grey whales and occasionally an orca but we didn’t see any.  They make the trip very easy on, easy off and it’s amazing how they line up the walkway to the dock within an inch of where it has to be. We bought tickets on the ferry to Butchart Gardens and the Hop On/Hop Off double decker bus.

The Gray Line shuttle bus picked us up right outside the ferry terminal and we went straight to the Gardens.  The 40 minute ride went through town and then the outskirts with the bus driver giving some info as we went.  Inside the gardens we first stopped for lunch.  There are 3 restaurants in the gardens, one just a café, the cafeteria style Blue Peony and another upscale dining option.  We opted for the Blue Peony and had a very nice lunch.  Then we toured the gardens. The gardens were planted by Jennie Butchart in the 1920s on 55 acres in a limestone quarry owned by her husband’s company.  There are different gardens, the Sunken Garden being the biggest.  There’s the Italian, the Rose, the Mediterranean, Japanese, and Bog Garden, all different flowers, trees and planting.  Beautiful fountains one, the Ross Fountain with dancing waters, a carousel and childrens area, moss animals throughout, a concert stage, a fireworks area (supposedly great fireworks on Sat. nights), boat tours from the cove, ponds, totem poles and green, grassy areas all around. We stopped for some gelato in the Italian Garden then got the bus back to town.  We were let off at the Empress Hotel, a huge hotel that has just been remodeled.  It was gorgeous but the tour guide said it looked better before they removed all the ivy from the bricks.  Supposedly the ivy was damaging the bricks.  We then got on the double decker hop on/hop off.  We didn’t get off anywhere, just enjoyed touring the city and an outer loop, listening to the history and the present and future of the city.  Drove through Fishermans Wharf, Beacon Hill Park with its peacocks and petting zoo, huge totem pole and 0 mile marker for the 5000 mile Trans-Canada Highway, Oak Bay Village (some really swanky homes) and a total of 14 stops.  The ride around the ocean was pretty chilly and windy. Even though they don’t get much rain the lawns and greenery was all very lush.  Some old churches and castles right in the middle of town.  There are over 1200 hanging baskets in town, one prettier than the next with different flowers.  Back in the center of town we saw the Government Building, the Royal BC Museum, Thunderbird Park with its many totem poles and the very busy port.  Sea planes, water taxis, whale watching boats and yachts going in and coming out.  Watched an adult and two baby sea otters playing in the water.  We had a couple of hours to kill so we went to the Belleville, sat outside right on the street and enjoyed some wine and dinner and watched the horse and buggies, bike taxis, street vendors, joggers, bikers and street entertainers, the Hippo Tour bus and all the people.  We took the last ferry back at 7:30.  It had less people on board, all of them tired, and the sunset was really pretty.  But cold and windy. 

Next: Day 55-July 19, 2016-To Olympia, WA
Previous: Day 53-July 17, 2016-Olympic National Park-Hurricane Ridge

Diary Photos

Ferry terminal inside



Water taxi

Hop on Hop Off bus

Horse and buggy


Ferry 1

Us at Butchart

Blue Peony Restaurant

Us at Sunken Gardens


Sunken Garden




Ross Fountain

Garden 4


Us at Fountain

Garden 2

Rose Garden

Rose Garden 1

Rose Garden 2




Japanese Garden

Japanese Garden 1

Me at Japanese Garden

Star Pond

Star Pond 1

Italian Garden 1

Italian Garden

Italian Garden 2

Empress Hotel

Government Building

Welcome to Victoria sign

Peacock on roof at park

Tall totem


Royal BC Museum


Govt. Bldg.

Busy harbor

Truck coming out of ferry

Sunset on ferry

Diary Movies

Arriving in Victoria video

Italian Gardens at Butchart Gardens

Otter video

Rose Garden at Butchart Gardens video

Ross Fountain at Butchart Gardens video

Sunken Gardens at Butchart video

Sunset on the ferry video

Downtown Victoria video

Victoria Port video

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