If you are spending time in a new city, guided tours and excursions are a great way familiarize yourself with the area, as well as see some of the great sights. Tours can vary from regular walking tours to helicopter or boat tours, depending on the location. If Victoria is where you will be heading, Tallyho Horse-Drawn Tours is among our top picks.
Victorian Garden Tours, Ltd.
Victoria is known as the "City of Gardens" and when you see the list of available tours, you'll understand why! Both public and private gardens are included on the guided tours, and some of the types of gardens visited include heritage rose gardens, Japanese gardens and turn-of-the-century gardens. Tours can be customized for your own interest. Dates, hours and rates vary, so be sure to call ahead. (250-380-2797)
Old Cemetery Society of Victoria
Looking for an unusual evening activity? Try a Lantern Tour of the Old Burying Ground (also known as the Quadra Street Cemetery or Pioneer Square), led by the Old Cemetery Society. Historians might prefer a tour of the Ross Bay Cemetery. It is one of the best examples of a Victorian era romantic burial ground, and Victoria notables Emily Carr and Robert Dunsmuir (the owner of Craigdarroch Castle) are buried here. Regular walking tours take place weekly, with many special theme tours offered throughout the year. (250-598-8870)
Tallyho Horse-Drawn Tours
What could be more fun than touring Victoria in a horse-drawn carriage? Tally-ho Tours has been leading excursions since 1903. Tours meet at the corner of Belleville and Menzies Streets. Public tours leave on the half-hour, and private tours are available. (250-514-9257, 866-383-5067)
Victoria Harbour Ferries
The Victoria Harbour Ferry is one of the best ways to navigate traffic-heavy Victoria. You may pay one fee for the 45-minute loop around the harbour, and enter and exit the boat at will. Or for a smaller fee, you can take a Harbour Hop trip — travel between any two points in the harbour loop. The ferry has 11 different stops, including the Fairmont Empress, Coast Harbourside Hotel, the Delta Ocean Pointe Resort Hotel, Fisherman's Wharf, Point Ellice House and Chinatown. (250-708-0201)