Pacific Northwest Area Information
For those who have visited Victoria, B.C., it's no surprise the capital of British Columbia has been named as Best City in Americas twice since 2000.
Located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, Victoria (population 78,659 in 2006; metropolitan area population of 2.1 million) is separated from Vancouver, B.C. by the Strait of Georgia to the east and from Washington State by the Strait of Juan de Fuca to the south and southeast. Ferries connect the island with Vancouver and the rest of the province's Lower Mainland, as well as Seattle and other cities in Washington.
Victoria boasts Canada's mildest climate, contributing to its nickname of "The Garden City." While gardens, parks and even streets are adorned with flowers, Victoria's most famous spot for fauna is the 130-acre Butchart Gardens.
Victoria treasures its British heritage. Afternoon tea is a favorite pastime, many restaurants present English favorites and shops offer British imports.
Due to Canada's historic ties with Great Britain, residents refer to "centre" rather than "center" and "colour" as opposed to "color." They also call the $1 Canadian coin a "loonie" because it features a Canadian bird, the loon, on one side. The $2 coin, naturally, has been tabbed the "toonie."
But the city also pays homage to the heritage and legacies of the First Nations people. One of the finest collections of totem poles in the world can be found in Thunderbird Park at the Royal British Columbia Museum. Victoria's Beacon Hill Park is home to the world's tallest, free-standing totem pole carved from a single log.
A major university, the University of Victoria, also contributes to the city's energy and cultural choices.
Quick Links:City of Victoria
Victoria International Airport
British Columbia Ferry Services
Washington State Ferries
University of Victoria