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Vancouver Island Holiday

Feel the reinvigorating power of the great outdoors on Vancouver Island, a vast swathe of nature on the doorstep of metropolitan cities.

Although only a short journey away from one of Canada's largest cities and home to the regional capital of British Columbia, Vancouver Island feels a world away from urban life. Deserted beaches, forested mountains and rare wildlife cover the sparsely populated island, beckoning Victoria's visitors with its dramatic wilderness. Succumb to its call and experience it on skis, on bike or on foot.

Visit Victoria, the lively capital of British Columbia in the south of the island. A modern city that prides itself on its great food, drink and culture sits alongside beautiful heritage landmarks. The Royal BC Museum gives a compelling overview of the region's history. Wander the halls of two castles with elegant gardens: the Victorian-era Craigdarroch and Hatley Park, completed in 1908.

You can also tour the other towns on the island. Parksville is a charming collection of sandy beaches, heritage attractions and stylish dining spots. Port Hardy is a pocket of civilization surrounded by rugged wilderness that offers museums and sites of cultural significance for the island's First Nations.

Tie up your walking boots for energetic treks through Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and Juan de Fuca Provincial Park. Waymarked trails run around the coastline, leading to spectacular views and quiet beaches. Experienced hikers can try the famous West Coast Trail, a 47-mile (75-kilometer) route along the southwest Pacific shores.

Scan the waters for a sighting of black dorsal fins. Families of orcas enjoy the waters around Johnstone Strait and the Broughton Archipelago between June and October. Inland, black bears can be seen around Clayoquot Sound on a bear-watching tour.

Hit the slopes in winter at the Mount Washington Alpine Resort. Boarding, skiing and tubing are all available for speedy ways to get down the mountain, on routes used by international athletes.

Victoria International Airport is reached by Air Canada, United and other airlines. Perhaps the best way to reach the island, however, is by ferry from Vancouver, which provides unbeatable views of the mountains, woods and lakes when arriving on the water.

Guide to Exploring Vancouver Island

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See all 562 Hotels in Vancouver Island
Hotel Grand Pacific

Hotel Grand Pacific

463 Belleville St, Victoria
of 5, from 1,512 reviews
4.0 out of 5.0

Facing the Inner Harbour and adjacent to the Parliament Buildings, Hotel Grand Pacific is 2 blocks from the shops along Government Street and 5 blocks from Fisherman's Wharf.

Ramada Victoria

Ramada Victoria

123 Gorge Rd E, Victoria
of 5, from 778 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in Burnside, this hotel is 0.9 mi (1.4 km) from MayFair Shopping Centre and 2.2 mi (3.6 km) from British Columbia Parliament Building. Topaz Park and Uptown Center are also within 1 mi (2 km).

Best Western Tin Wis Resort Lodge

Best Western Tin Wis Resort Lodge

1119 Pacific Rim Highway, Tofino
of 5, from 373 reviews
2.5 out of 5.0

Nestled on the beach, this Tofino hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Mackenzie Beach and Tofino Botanical Gardens. Chesterman Beach and Alternative Tofino's Indoor Climbing Gym are also within 2 mi (3 km).

The Oswego Hotel

The Oswego Hotel

500 Oswego Street, Victoria
of 5, from 1,010 reviews
4.0 out of 5.0

The Oswego Hotel is within 2 blocks of the Inner Harbour, Parliament Buildings, and the Royal BC Museum. Chinatown, the Maritime Museum, and the Victoria Royal Theatre are less than 2 km away.

Chateau Victoria Hotel and Suites

Chateau Victoria Hotel and Suites

740 Burdett Ave, Victoria
of 5, from 629 reviews
3.5 out of 5.0

Situated on a rise overlooking the city and harbor, this hotel is 3 blocks from Government Street, 3 blocks from the Royal BC Museum, and 4 blocks from Beacon Hill Park.

Capital CityCenter Hotel

Capital CityCenter Hotel

1961 Douglas St, Victoria
of 5, from 698 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in Downtown Victoria, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre and British Columbia Parliament Building. Chinatown and Market Square are also within 15 minutes.

Bedford Regency Hotel

Bedford Regency Hotel

1140 Government St, Victoria
of 5, from 669 reviews
2.5 out of 5.0

Located in downtown Victoria, this hotel is 2 blocks from the Inner Harbour, and right across from The Bay Centre. Guests can enjoy a whale watching tour nearby.

Howard Johnson Hotel - Victoria City Centre

Howard Johnson Hotel - Victoria City Centre

310 Gorge Rd E, Victoria
of 5, from 455 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in Burnside, this hotel is 0.6 mi (1 km) from MayFair Shopping Centre and 1.9 mi (3.1 km) from British Columbia Parliament Building. Topaz Park and Westside Village Shopping Centre are also within 1 mi (2 km).