Victoria’s heritage buildings, tea rooms, horse-drawn carriages and flower gardens give the city its old-world charm. Its university students give it a youthful energy. Meanwhile, the first Chinatown in Canada and First Nations totem poles standing amid the stately public buildings of this former British outpost add to its cosmopolitan air.
Victoria’s charming Inner Harbour is in the centre of the city, home to the Fairmont Empress Hotel and the Legislative Buildings. A busy place, seaplanes land here, ferries and yachts put-put in and out while kayaks glide about. Street performers entertain visitors during the spring and summer months and at night the water sparkles from the thousands of lights of the Legislative Buildings.
Unlike Vancouver, Victoria is not a towering city of glass; there are few buildings more than seven storeys high. Like Vancouver however, the views of the mountains and ocean frame the city beautifully.
Most cheap flights to Victoria land at the international airport a half-hour away. Once in Victoria, almost all the key sights are within walking distance of the Inner Harbour – the Old Town, Fisherman’s Wharf, Chinatown, Beacon Hill Park and James Bay, the oldest neighbourhood in Victoria.
Victoria has the mildest climate in Canada, averaging more than 2,000 hours of sunshine each year. February often marks the start of spring when most visitors arrive on cheap flights to Victoria. Summer temperatures range between 18 and 32 degrees Celsius (64-89 degrees Fahrenheit). Off-shore breezes ensure summer temperatures never get uncomfortable. Most rain falls in January, February and March, but even then it is much less than what falls in Vancouver and the rest of British Columbia.
Victoria is a four-season destination, and there is no bad time to visit. Its climate is mild year-round and even during the rainiest months – January to March – Victoria and the rest of Vancouver Island receive less rain than nearby Vancouver.
The summer months are peak season. This is when most visitors take cheap flights to Victoria to enjoy the festivals and cultural events.
November to March are the off-season months when temperatures veer towards chilly. The weeks following Christmas and New Years are typically soft and visitors can usually get cheap airfares and hotel rooms.
If you’re planning on making a trip around Vancouver Island, then you’ll want to rent a car after your cheap flight to Victoria. In the city you can walk or ride a bike and soak up the local atmosphere. Public transit, which includes British-style double decker buses, is run by BC Transit. Buy day passes or books of 10 tickets to save a little money.