Victoria Sightseeing

Jun 13th, 2007, 08:47 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 661
Victoria Sightseeing

Hi,

We are leaving soon on an Alaskan cruise, and have one afternoon/evening in Victoria. We have never been there before, and want to see Butchart Gardens and the Empress Hotel.

The ship's Garden excursion includes tea at the Gardens. We had been hoping to have tea at the Empress. Should we just do the ship excursion to the Gardens, and if we have time at the end of the day, just go to the Empress for a look?

Or, should we try to do it all on our own, with other transportation? Is it easy to get to the Gardens from the ship's dock?

Thanks for your help!
chicgeek is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 10:54 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 94
Hi,

It isn't very easy to get to Butchart Gardens from the pier because the gardens are about 30 minutes north of Victoria. However, Victoria is very visitor friendly and you can catch a taxi and even walk to the Inner Harbour, where you can catch a day tour to Butchart Gardens. You look for the Tourism British Columbia kiosk right on the harbour and they will help ou with your trip. Butchart is lovely!

The Empress is located on the Inner Harbour in Victoria. It would be a lovely experience to have Afternoon Tea, but I think that you should simply walk through the Empress and see it. Then, about 2 blocks up Government Street is a lovely little tea shop named Murchies with lovely British pastries and truly divine tea! You can choose a small sandwich, a pastry and a cup of tea - my favorite blends are Prince Charles and #10 Blend, but you should have the Empress Afternoon Blend. If you like to read, stop next door at Munro's Books - it was started by Canadian author, Alice Munro.

Best Regards,
Julia
Blog: spasandadventures.wordpress.com
Julia_E is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 01:03 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 13,024
chickgeek

Sorry but I think you would be out of luck for tea at the Empress because it is usually booked at least a month in advance.

Second of all it is very expensive ,if that is a factor to you.

The tea is served in the Lobby of the Empress and as has been mentioned , you should walk inside and through to the Lobby and just see the lovely old decor.

You could phone the Empress Hotel now and ask about a booking...there are several seatings during tea time.

If you do Buchart Gardens with the ship tour and have tea at Buchart , that is not bad either.

The only other transportation you could use to get to Buchart is a taxi , because driving is out of the question because as has been mentioned it is not and easy place to find !!! it is an easily missed left hand turn off the highway and then parking is the pits !!!

Back to the Empress:

When you come out of the front entrance of the Empress and you are facing the water ( harbour), then walk to the sidewalk...now turn RIGHT and walk up Governemnt Street and on the same side of the street,about 3 blocks down is Rogers Chocolate shop.

The place smells like heaven.... see the original woodwork inside.

Buy a piece of Chocolate here.
Every US President that ever came to Victoria , went to Rogers.
The last one was President Reagan.!!!

The Murchies Tea place that has been mentioned is almost across the street from Roger ( not quite).

Percy

Percy is online now  
Jun 13th, 2007, 04:58 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,865
Sorry to hijack this thread, but we also have one evening (4.5 hrs.) in Victoria. Trying to decided whether to hire a car to take our group to Butchart Gardens or just walk around downtown. Opinions?
crosscheck is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 05:54 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 13,024
Boy 4.5 hours, you better get a private tour guide/taxi.

I would do this:

1. Take a ride to Buchart Gardens.
it is nice to see if you have never seen it , especially now with everything in bloom.

2. Then have your guide/ Driver take you to the Empress Harbour area for whatever time you have left.

A good 30- 40 minutes walk around the harbour area will give you the flavour of the main downtown region.

If you still have time for a quick bite,then your guide/driver will know some nice little quaint spots, so I will not list any here.

That should do it, now off to the cruise ship.

Percy
Percy is online now  
Jun 14th, 2007, 10:34 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 661
Thank you for your responses. I am thinking that we should probably book the ship's excursion to Butchart Gardens, which includes tea there. That would be the easiest gt; Then if we have time to explore the Empress Hotel and surrounding area afterward, we can do that on our own. I appreciate your help.
chicgeek is offline  
Jun 14th, 2007, 11:26 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 13,024
chicgeek

Your plan sounds good to me.

Percy

Percy is online now  
Jun 15th, 2007, 11:35 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,865
Percy - Thanks for your help. Have booked private driver. Do you think teen boys will have any interest in Butchart?
crosscheck is offline  
Jun 15th, 2007, 07:11 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 13,024
Well I think the teen boys will be overwhelmed with all the flowers and the layout of the place especially the Sunken Gardens.

Then if they have a light lunch ( tea) at Buchart, I am sure it will be fine.

On the way back the tour guide can drive them by the Empress and the Parliament Building , which is the main spot on the harbour.

The Empress and the Parliament Building are kitty corner across from each other.

Get out of the vehicle and take a few picture with the Empress and then the Parilament building in the background.

If time allows ,don't forget Rogers is only 2-3 blocks down Government Street from the Empress.
Now who wouldn't like going to Rogers !!!!
Have a good time

Percy

Percy is online now  
Jun 25th, 2007, 08:42 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,865
Thanks, Percy.
crosscheck is offline  
Jun 26th, 2007, 04:47 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 603
Tea at Butchart's far surpasses tea at the Empress - go for the ship's tour.
Cruiseryyc is offline  
Jun 26th, 2007, 07:24 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 661
cruiserycc, you just made my day! We had to choose between the Empress tea and the Buchart Gardens one. We knew we wanted to tour the Gardens, so chose that. Thank you for confirming our choice! We leave Saturday, and are looking forward to the cruise.
chicgeek is offline  
Jun 26th, 2007, 10:21 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,865
Chicgeek - I think we're on your cruise!
crosscheck is offline  
Jun 27th, 2007, 09:32 AM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 661
crosscheck, we are leaving this Saturday out of SF on the Dawn Princess for 11 days. I am now in the midst of agonizing over what clothes to take (vs what to leave home). I hate the decision process of packing!

I have been checking weather.com, and the daytime temps are in the 60's, but with showers.

chicgeek is offline  
Jun 27th, 2007, 11:30 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,865
I guess we'll miss you - We're on the Golden Princess out of Seattle. 90th birthday trip w/13 members of my husband's family. Have never cruised before. What do we wear during day? Fancy sweats?
crosscheck is offline  
Jun 27th, 2007, 08:32 PM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 661
crosscheck, I'm sorry we will miss you on this cruise, but hope you and your family have a great time. We sailed with our children and grandchildren a couple of years ago, and it is a great multigeneration way to go. No one bears the responsibility for meals, entertainment, etc, you can all go your own ways, but get together whenever you want. I think it is a great idea, and hope you all have a memorable trip.

For daytime, I am taking jeans--- and a couple of nice sweatsuits for "at sea" days. We have been on cruises before where we have days at sea, and the sweatsuits are very cozy and comfy.

I am also taking layers of clothing, since we really don't know what the weather will be for sure. We have been on an Alaskan cruise before, and I remember how happy I was with my polar fleece jacket and a polar fleece vest, which I could layer for the glaciers, etc. I am also taking a tee shirt or two, in case the weather is warm.

Have a wonderful time, and enjoy every moment with your family---and letting someone else do the cooking!
chicgeek is offline  
Jun 28th, 2007, 09:53 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,865
Thanks, chicgeek. Sorry we won't get to meet.
crosscheck is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 09:14 AM.