Things to do in Victoria include something for everyone in the group, and given the natural beauty of the British Columbian province, many activities are based outdoors. From hiking to amazing water activities, and from great restaurants to events, Victoria is a lovely waterside city with much to do.
Things to do in Victoria in May and June
May is a wonderful month to visit Victoria. The weather is most often warm and sunny, and this is also the month when the prime whale watching season begins. This season extends on through to October. As is true of most months out of the year, May is also good for fishing, hiking, biking and a number of other fun outdoor pursuits.
Events worth checking out include the Victoria Highland Games and Celtic Festival, as well as the Victoria Day Parade. For sailing enthusiasts, May is also the month in which the popular Swiftsure International Yacht Race takes place.
June is usually when the beaches are prime for a visit, even though the area waters are relatively chilly throughout the year. You can also visit an inland lake, such as Shawnigan Lake, which has warmer water temps. June is a prime month for boating, hiking, camping, and whatever else you can think of in terms of outdoor pursuits.
Things to do in Victoria in July
July is a fantastic time to visit the British Columbia capital, thanks to the great weather and fun events. Among the main events that are held during the month of July is the July 1 Canada Day celebration, and on Saturdays in both July and August, Butchart Gardens offers fireworks displays. July also plays host to the renowned arts festival that is Folkfest.
Things to do in Victoria in August
August, much like July, is a prime month for indulging in any number of outdoor pursuits in Victoria. Scuba diving, sailing, and camping are just a few options, and if you wish to tour the downtown streets, renting a bike might be the way to go. August is when the Victoria Symphony puts on its grand Symphony Splash performance in the Inner Harbour. It is also when more than 100 teams compete in the Victoria Dragon Boat Festival at Inner Harbour, and events relating to the summer Shakespeare Festival are often still going on around town.
Things to do in Victoria in September
Many Victoria insiders will tell you that September is the best month to visit. The weather is still excellent, there are events to choose from, and mostly gone are the summer crowds. Labour Day is among the British Columbia holidays that are held in September, and it essentially marks the end of the peak tourist season. Also worth highlighting on the events calendar is the Victoria Classic Boat Festival.
Things to do in Victoria in October
In Canada, Thanksgiving is celebrated on October 12, so you might treat yourself to a lavish meal on this day when spending time in Victoria. Also in October is the Royal Victoria Marathon. Every year around mid-October, the rainfall totals start to increase in Victoria and British Columbia in general. On particularly cloudy days, the Victoria museums can be great places to go, and for sports enthusiasts, October is when the Victoria Salmon Kings start their minor league hockey season.
Things to do in Victoria in November, December, and January
The winter in the Pacific Northwest is generally very rainy and chilly, but Victoria still offers much to do during this time of the year. You can attend a hockey game, see what's playing at the Victoria IMAX theater, or drop by Craigdarroch Castle. In November, check out the Great Canadian Beer Festival.
Mid-December is when the British Columbia ski season gets under way. Nearby ski resorts include Mount Washington Ski Resort on Vancouver Island, and Whistler is not too far away. The BC ski season often continues until June. One of the great things about visiting Victoria during the month of December is the fact that you can enjoy the Butchart Gardens Christmas displays. More than 3,000 lights are used to help set the holiday season stage. Other Christmas decorations can be enjoyed around town, and should you be in town at the end of the month, Christmas here is followed by the fun and relaxing Boxing Day.
Through the early part of January, the Butchart Gardens holiday decorations are still on display. In late January and early February the Victoria Film Festival is on. January is also a great month for skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling.
Things to do in Victoria in February
Believe it or not, in mid-February, the daffodils usually start to blossom in the Victoria area, and this is largely due to the fact that the stronger winter winds start to die down and the sun begins to come back out in force. In fact, by March, azaleas and most other flowers are also starting to bloom. They call this the City of Gardens for a reason.
As for annual events, the month of February plays host to more than just a film festival. There is also Victoria Tea Day, which reflects the British Columbian province's former role as a British holding. Hundreds of teas can be sampled and purchased at this festival, so chances are good that you will find a new favorite among the bunch.