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Victoria, British Columbia Outdoor activities

Our most recommended Victoria, British Columbia Outdoor activities

Victoria: 3-Hour Zodiac Whale-Watching Tour

1. Victoria: 3-Hour Zodiac Whale-Watching Tour

Experience the awe and inspiration of seeing whales in their natural environment on this unique whale-watching excursion from Victoria. Cruise along in an open zodiac boat on the Salish Sea, and get the chance to spot orcas, humpback, minke, and gray whales, as well as porpoises and seals. After being collected from your downtown accommodation in a comfortable shuttle bus, you will venture down to the harbor where you will meet with your boat. After meeting your guides for the day, you will then depart from Victoria, setting off on your 3-hour whale-watching tour. Between April and October, you will have a greater than 95% success rate of spotting whales, including both transient and resident orcas, humpback, minke, and gray whales. Other wildlife you may encounter include Dall’s and harbor porpoises, harbor and elephant seals, and otters and marine birds such as cormorants and bald eagles. The zodiac vessels used on your tour are definitely recommended for the wild-at-heart. You can let the wind blow in your hair and be exposed to the true west-coast elements in an open-style, 12-passenger vessel. At the conclusion of your exhilarating tour, you will be returned back to the harbor, at which point you will be driven back to your accommodation in downtown Victoria.

From Victoria: Whale Watching 3-Hour Trip on Covered Boat

2. From Victoria: Whale Watching 3-Hour Trip on Covered Boat

Join certified marine naturalists on a cruise from Victoria to spot whales, including both transient and resident orcas, humpbacks, minke, and gray whales. Benefit from hotel pickup and drop-off and relax with guaranteed whale sightings and a conservation fee included in the tour price. After meeting at the pier, begin your carbon-neutral tour led by certified marine naturalists who will share their knowledge and passion for Vancouver Island’s marine wildlife with you. Whilst on the boat, enjoy complimentary coffee and tea, onboard bathrooms, and indoor and outdoor viewing areas.  You may also encounter Dall’s and harbor porpoises, harbor and elephant seals, otters, and marine birds such as cormorants and bald eagles.  Make the best of peak whale watching season in Victoria which runs from April through October. In the event of an unlucky tour, you will be invited to join again for a complimentary second whale-watching tour to bring your dreams of seeing these magnificent animals to life.

Vancouver: Victoria, Gulf Islands Cruise, & Butchart Gardens

3. Vancouver: Victoria, Gulf Islands Cruise, & Butchart Gardens

Experience the Pacific Coast and Vancouver Island by land and ship on a guided day trip from Vancouver with hotel transfers included. View the British Columbia coastline from a sightseeing cruise, followed by a stop at Butchart Gardens en route to the British-inspired city of Victoria. Board a BC Ferries vessel at Tsawwassen terminal for a 90-minute sail through the serene beauty of the Gulf Islands. On the way, look out for marine wildlife from the outdoor ship decks, especially eagles, sea lions, and whales. Arrive at Swartz Bay terminal on Vancouver Island and continue to the enchanting botanical paradise of Butchart Gardens. Wander through a series of themed gardens, highlighted by the massive Sunken Garden complete with a dancing fountain. Marvel at the architectural wonders of the city of Victoria boasts, including the iconic Parliament Buildings and the waterfront Fairmont Empress Hotel. Visit the shops and cafes of Government Street and Chinatown. Stroll along the Inner Harbour for prime ocean views, and enjoy some free time to take in this culturally significant city. Return on the bus to Vancouver by ferry to conclude this diverse tour.

Victoria, BC: 3-Hour Ultimate Whale & Marine Wildlife Tour

4. Victoria, BC: 3-Hour Ultimate Whale & Marine Wildlife Tour

The waters off Victoria, British Columbia are known as the Salish Sea. Discover its wonders and rich marine environment with this ultimate whale and marine wildlife tour. Board a brand new high-speed coastal explorer boat and set sail to look for orcas (also known as killer whales), humpbacks, harbor seals, California sea lions, and over 127 species of marine birds!  Take a tour of the west coast aboard a luxurious coastal explorer, with two outside viewing areas and a fully heated cabin. Enjoy complimentary coffee and hot chocolate as you set off on an adventure to learn all about the local marine wildlife and important landmarks. From playful orcas to giant humpbacks, your experience is sure to be memorable. Discover the marine wildlife in the waters off Victoria with the help of marine biologists and learn about efforts to establish Victoria as a world-renowned whale watching destination. 

From Victoria: Whale Watching Marine Wildlife Excursion

5. From Victoria: Whale Watching Marine Wildlife Excursion

Experience the world’s most beautiful coastline on a 3-hour marine wildlife tour from Victoria, British Columbia, and immerse yourself in the majestic beauty of the Pacific Northwest. Juan de Fuca and Haro Strait are renowned for their ample wildlife, including animals such as Steller and California sea lions, humpback whales, sea and river otters, Minke whales, harbor seals and many marine birds to name a few. You will travel on-board an open-top Zodiac boat to race across the seas. In a smaller, open style 12 passenger vessel, you can be on scene with the wildlife faster and get once in a lifetime exposure to the true west coast elements. Helping to protect the environment, the Zodiacs are powered by eco-friendly Yamaha 4-stroke outboards renowned for their ultra-low emissions and quiet operating levels. Modeled after fast-response coast guard rescue vessels, the zodiacs combine speed with stability, cruising at 25 to 35 knots. They are also equipped with well-padded bench seats and cushioned backrests for added comfort.

Victoria: Sunset Whale Watching Tour

6. Victoria: Sunset Whale Watching Tour

Depart in the evening from Victoria's beautiful inner harbor and head out into the Salish Sea in search of whales and other wonderful marine life. During the 3-hour tour, search for orcas, humpback whales, minke whales, and gray whales, that visit the Salish Sea in search of food. Encounter other marine life such as seals, sea lions, porpoises, otters and various marine birds. Listen to an inspiring and educational talk from the Marine Naturalists as they describe and interpret the spectacular environment, extensive history, and stunning scenery of the Salish Sea. If the weather cooperates, enjoy the stunning sunset views.

Victoria: 3-Hour Whale Watching Tour in a Zodiac Boat

7. Victoria: 3-Hour Whale Watching Tour in a Zodiac Boat

This 3-hour whale-watching tour boasts sighting just about everything there is to see, including groups of predatory transient orcas and breaching humpback calves. Recently, a guest proposed to his girlfriend as a pod of killer whales cavorted in the background! Get suited up in a cozy cruiser suit, ensuring your comfort and safety for the duration of the trip. The tour departs from Victoria’s beautiful inner harbor. Your ride on one of the zipping Zodiac-style boats will be nearly as exciting as seeing the whales. Each of the boats seats 12, and there are great views from every seat. On the way out of the harbor, the boat passes the historic Victoria coastline. Once out of the harbor you’ll see a variety of different species of sea life, including orcas, humpback whales, grey whales, minke whales, porpoises, dolphins, sea lions, elephant seals, otters, and bald eagles. Every tour is guided by a Transport Canada-approved skipper, who will provide information and commentary on all of the wildlife you see.

Full-Day Victoria and Butchart Gardens Tour from Vancouver

8. Full-Day Victoria and Butchart Gardens Tour from Vancouver

Enjoy an exciting full-day tour in Victoria that's packed with activities. Your day will start with a ride on board a minibus in Vancouver that will take you to the ferry terminal in Tsawwassen. You will then be driven onto a ferry with onboard amenities including a restaurant, gift shop, and arcades for the children. Walk around the deck while enjoying the scenery and look out for orcas, seals, and other marine life. Then dock in the port of Swartz Bay on Vancouver Island and tour the heart of Victoria. The area grew from the Gold Rush in 1841 and still displays many traditional buildings from the period by renowned Canadian architect, Francis Rattenbury. Once your guided tour is complete, enjoy 3 hours to explore the city at your own pace. Meet up and proceed to the magnificent Butchart Gardens, an area that stretches across 55 acres. Stroll through the charming gardens and admire its mix of traditional and modern landscapes.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Victoria, British Columbia

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What people are saying about Victoria, British Columbia

Brent was an excellent guide for our day and we appreciated the history of the region he shared. Would recommend Land and Sea to others wholeheartedly!

Our guide was really friendly and attentive, and we saw four pods of whales! Which is apparently very rare. An amazing day.

We had an amazing time on whale watching tour, seen many hump backs, a pod of orcas and a ton of sea lions. A great time!

Excellent trip. Saw lots of wildlife including two different whales.

Casey, our guide was great! Sights were beautiful!