Take in the sea air

Locations: Gulf Islands National Park Reserve, Fort Rodd Hill, Fisgard Lighthouse and Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Sites
Distance: 260 km round trip from Vancouver, BC

Treat yourself to a weekend by the coast in Victoria. Enjoy the beach, visit the harbour, explore secret bunkers and old military command posts. Stop by a historic cannery and spend the night in an artillery fort. It’s a perfect mix of West Coast nature and history!


A woman on a sandy beach at sunset at Sidney Spit 

Day 1

Location: Gulf Islands National Park Reserve, Victoria, Vancouver Island
Distance: 120 km from Vancouver

Leave the glittering skyscrapers of downtown Vancouver behind and head across the Salish Sea to Vancouver Island. Take it slow on the ferry, or zoom across with a 30-minute seaplane or Helijet trip above the vivid green islands and clear waters of the Gulf Islands archipelago.

If you love the outdoors, head out on a short adventure to Sidney Spit in Gulf Islands National Park Reserve. The warm sandy beach is the perfect place for a swim or leisurely stroll, and is just 30 minutes from Sidney by ferry.

More of an urban explorer? Wander through the narrow streets of old Victoria. The Victorian and Edwardian-era architecture beautifully compliments the pagodas and dragons of Canada's oldest Chinatown. Stop by the must-see Fisherman's Wharf for some mouth-watering fish and chips.

Two women on the seashore near the Fisgard Lighthouse 

Day 2

Location: Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Sites, Victoria
Distance: 15 km from downtown

Since you’re in the area, make sure you stop by the beautiful Victoria Harbour. Maybe even head out to sea for a better view of the city's landmarks, the Parliament buildings, the colourful boat houses and possibly a seal or two.

Learn more about the area’s fascinating history at the Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Sites, with its secret bunkers and original military buildings from the 19th century.

Prepare yourself for the loudest history lesson ever! Witness a thunderous demonstration of 20th century firepower featuring World War II weapons, or sound the alarm and get ready for an air raid drill.

To end the day, enjoy the seascape and breathe in the sea air while basking in the sunset on the area’s beaches and grassy hills.

Spend the night in a cozy oTENTik on the grounds of Canada’s best-preserved coastal artillery fort.

Recommended accommodation: oTENTik, Fort Rodd Hill

Visitors learn about fishing equipment at an exhibit 

Day 3

Location: Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site, Richmond
Distance: 20 km from downtown

Wake up to the sound of bird song. After breakfast, meet with a naturalist to explore the Garry Oak Learning Meadow, a vivid oasis of wildflowers.

On the way home, visit the Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site in the scenic village of Steveston. This former salmon cannery will take you back to the era when the fishing industry flourished along the West Coast. Take the time to walk around this pretty village and treat yourself to a fresh-made-to-order waffle cone on the waterfront.

Distance: Return to downtown Vancouver, 20 km

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