Last night was not an early night for me. I attended a local couch surfing event here in Victoria, BC and got to know some locals. As a result, this morning was not an early start, but I still managed to be out of the hotel before 10 am.
Victoria Big Bus
Yesterday I did an awful lot of walking, and I was feeling a little sore. So today I wanted something a little easier on the legs, or at least for a part of the day. I decided to make use of the Hop-On Hop-Off bus operated by Big Bus here in Victoria. A two-day pass costs CAD $46 and currently includes 22 different stops taking roughly 1.5 hours. (Updated May 2017)
There were a couple of reasons I liked the idea of the Hop-On Hop-Off tour here. The first was for the commentary along the way. The second was the option to get on or off at any of the stops as I wanted. Finally, it was a much better value option than a one-off tour.
Oak Bay Marina
The first stop that interested me was Oak Bay Marina. While it was a beautiful spot, it was more so the view that caught my attention. You can see the snow capped mountain in the photo below. That is Mt Baker, located in Washington State and I am told that today it is a rather clear view, which is not all that common.
The next stop I decided to get off at was China Town. The area in Victoria, BC that is known as China Town is quite small but is the first China Town to be established in Canada. An interesting part of the area is the two stone lions that sit on either side of the entrance way to the area. The rumour is that if an honest politician walks in front of these lions, they will come to life. I don’t want to make any assumptions, but they were still stone when I was here.
Christ Church Cathedral
Christ Church Cathedral is located on Quadra St and Courtney St. The first part of the cathedral to be completed was the nave in 1929. However, there was still work being completed as late as 1991. By physical dimensions of the nave and towers, Christ Church Cathedral is one of the largest in Canada.
The interior of the cathedral is immense with high ceilings and large stained glass windows. As you enter the church, it is like you are transported to a different world. The silence envelopes you compared to the noise of the outside world.
One of the main things that caught my eye was the beautiful pipe organ above the entrance with the stained glass windows behind it.
Cruise Ship Spotting
To finish the afternoon, I made my way to the cruise ship terminal, or at least a good viewing position. Three ships were coming into port this evening, and all were scheduled for 6 – 7 pm. The three ships included Norwegian Pearl, Sapphire Princess and MS Oosterdam. Coincidently, this is also the order in which they docked.
Being here this evening and seeing the cruise ship coming into port does get me a little excited for my cruise. The date is coming up fast with only about ten days until I will be boarding the MS Volendam in Vancouver.
To finish off the evening, I joined with come of the Couch Surfers I met last night. We headed out to get a drink and to see some live music at a local venue here. I am not sure what I will get to tomorrow, but I have the second day of the Hop-On Hop-Off pass to help get me around if needed.