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Victoria, BC and Ottawa, ON -- similar?

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I live in Seattle, and my sister, who lives in upstate New York, is coming to visit me in September. She has been here before. We are discussing ideas for a weekend getaway. One of my suggestions was taking the Victoria Clipper to Victoria, where she has never been, and I haven't been for quite a while. She said it looks pretty similar to Ottawa, where she has been several times (but I have never been).

If you've been to both Ottawa and Victoria, can you share your impressions? Does Victoria have unique charms that distinguish it from Ottawa? Should I try to sell her on it?

If you have any other suggestions in southern BC, I'm open. I've considered Vancouver, but I've been there several times recently. Scenic beauty and hiking are every bit as appealing to us as visiting a city. I was also looking at places along the Fraser River, but I'm not familiar with this area. We are okay with rustic accommodations, but not camping.

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