Why go to Victoria?
The city is extremely walkable, with nature trails and plenty of paths through the harbor.
Be wary of the 12 percent sales tax applied to every product or service you'll buy in port.
Victoria employs all the charms of British Columbia with a mix of high culture and abundant wildlife.
Victoria Cruise Port Facilities?
Cruise ships berth at Ogden Point, a short taxi ride or 15-minute walk northeast to downtown. Most cruise ships offer shuttles or taxi service, but it's a very pleasant walk along the waterfront on Dallas Road then on Government Street to reach the Inner Harbour -- or Douglas Street -- into town. Small passenger ships may dock or anchor in the Inner Harbour.
There are no facilities at Ogden Point -- just four well-maintained deep-water docks where passengers disembark. So file into line with your fellow cruisers for the stroll into town.
Tourism Victoria's information center is at 812 Wharf Street in the Inner Harbour. From there, you can see the landmark Parliament Buildings and Fairmont Empress Hotel; beyond, to the north, lies the inner city -- the entire area is very easy to negotiate with a city map.
Good to Know?
Victoria is a college town and fairly safe. There is, however, an abundance of panhandlers in downtown Victoria, although the police monitor them. Also, keep in mind that Canada's hefty sales tax is paid on everything you purchase.
On foot: Tie up your shoe laces; this is a walking city. The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority has a handy walking map on its website, which shows where the cruise port is in addition to shuttle bus stops, points of interest, restrooms and viewpoints.
By bike: Active-minded travelers can hire bikes or scooters from Cycle B.C (685 Humboldt Street). The Galloping Goose Trail is an easy and scenic cycling route to Sooke. Or, visitors can cycle the city's leafy streets eastward to Beach Drive and Oak Bay.
By taxi: Although pedestrian-friendly, taxis are numerous (Victoria Taxi, Blue Bird and Yellow Cab). At press time, rideshare services are still not allowed in Victoria.
By car rental: Many rental car outlets are located on Douglas Street and include Avis, Budget and National.
Victoria also bustles with cycle rickshaws that will whisk you around the inner city.
Currency & Best Way to Get Money?
The Canadian dollar is the official currency. There's a Custom House Currency Exchange across the street from the visitor's center on Wharf Street, and others are in Bastion Square and at 1140 Government Street. Major banks with ATM machines are located at Douglas and Fort Streets.