Feeling Festive in Canada: Victoria and Capilano

Before I flew back to the UK for Christmas, I was determined to get out and about to see the very best festivities that Vancouver and the surrounding area had to offer. I got to do some pretty cool stuff!

But first, Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without making some gingerbread…

 And some snow…

Over the weekend, we headed over to British Columbia’s capital, Victoria. Despite having visited Vancouver four times over the last few years, Victoria was somewhere I’d just never got round to visiting. I’d heard (as the name suggests), it has a huge British influence, so I was excited to see how it matched up with my expectations.

To get to Victoria, you need to hop onto a ferry for 2 hours. Despite the cold, windy temperatures, the view from the ferry was just beautiful. Make sure you stop by at White Spot for one of the best burgers you could probably ever eat onboard a boat!

After driving from the ferry terminal to downtown Victoria and our hotel, we were welcomed to a setting sun over the harbour. Strangely enough – and despite the sub-zero temperatures – I couldn’t help but think it looked a little like Palma in Majorca!

Walking further around the harbour, we were treated to a view of the famous Fairmont Empress Hotel, named after Queen Victoria herself. Although we never got round to it, I’ve heard the afternoon tea there is second to none in B.C! Make sure you go for the Earl Grey, of course…

By this point, I think it’s fair to say we were pretty darn cold! We headed back to the hotel to defrost, taking advantage of the wood-burning fire and our complimentary bottle of bubbles.

We stopped off at a lovely little pub/restaurant called The Guild – I recommend the fish pie!

Before heading out to watch the Santa Claus Parade from the comfort of our hotel. It featured floats from various organisations all over B.C.

We then went to check out The Bard and Banker, a famous Scottish pub in the heart of Victoria. Its festive decor was just beautiful! And the live band were also superb – they have a different band playing every weekend, so make sure you pop in and have a look!

The next day, we woke up and popped out for huevos rancheros at brunch, before taking another stroll around the harbour.

We came across the home of famous Canadian painter and writer, Emily Carr.

Before literally staring across the border into the U.S. to the Olympic Mountains.

We left Victoria and headed down Vancouver Island to Sidney where we braved walking across a fishing pier in freezing temperatures! There were certainly no risks of us swimming or diving!

Arriving back home, we took in the beautiful, wintery scene from the balcony.

I rustled up a gingerbread house – what do you think!?

And the next day, we headed out to Vancouver Christmas Market for mulled cider, nutcrackers, bratwurst, and Russian dolls.

We also popped into Vancouver’s Downtown Hyatt and saw the biggest gingerbread house I’ve ever seen…

The next day we headed off to Capilano Suspension Bridge, on North Vancouver.

Each year, they decorate the area with Christmas lights. It’s pretty spectacular!

Walking over the bridge is actually pretty scary, as there are lots of other people on it at the same time, making it wobble and bounce as you walk across! The Bailey’s hot chocolate helped, though!

Later in the week, I was rambling around Vancouver and came across some pretty random stuff!

Here’s Jimi Hendrix’s old house and his nan’s old fried chicken restaurant…

Just before tucking into an amazing farewell dinner for me! I can’t believe how quickly Christmas came round. Check out these Yorkshire puddings…

So long, Canada – until next time!


I’m Laura, a roaming blonde who recently made the leap from my home in the Cotswolds, UK to be based across the pond in Vancouver, BC for a brand new job and plenty of adventures.

Find me on: Web | Instagram


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