Hikes in Victoria

Region in British Columbia, Canada

Victoria Hikes

Victoria hikes are surprisingly diverse. While Victoria is a charming city on the Ocean, the hiking trails etched around Victoria’s backyard offer a jumble of unique, exciting, adventurous explorations. The paths carved into mountainous slopes and forested groves surrounding the capital of British Columbia often lead to panoramic views of the verdant landscape cradling the Pacific Ocean or straight to the glimmering shoreline. Victoria hikes are the perfect way to get immersed into nature, no matter how easy or hard the trek.

People love to flock to Vancouver Island for outdoorsy adventures, but for many, Victoria may seem like a great city to stamp the beginning and end of a trip to the island rather than a place for hiking.

However, not only does Victoria have some of the best architecture in Canada (which definitely makes for charming town walks), but it also features an abundance of parks that sit super close to Victoria that are exploding with trails. If you are looking to get acquainted with all of the outdoor opportunities that the city has to offer, then Victoria hikes are a great place to get started.

Locals love jetting off to Goldstream Provincial Park, Gowlland Tod Provincial Park, East Sooke Park, Mount Work Regional Park, and more, for either quick but strenuous jaunts or long meanders amid Victoria’s natural playground.

After a half or full day of hiking, you can enjoy the fusion of cuisine, trendy bars, and quirky cafes scattered across Victoria.

Are you interested in hiking in Victoria? You’re in luck! We’ve gathered information on the best 10 Victoria hikes, so lace up your boots and get ready to explore the trails spanning this loveable Canadian city.

Types Of Hiking In Victoria

Victoria offers a range of hikes suitable for all fitness levels! However, most hiking trails around Victoria are short, but rewarding hikes and strolls. The half-day meanders definitely do not compromise on views.

Expect to admire coastal vistas, images of rolling landscapes, blanketing in various hues of green, or thick forest scenery with tumbling rivers curling through the trees on each hike, no matter the level of difficulty or length.

Easy Hikes In Victoria

Thetis Lake with McKenzie/Phelps: This 10.4 km circuit douses you with nature’s soothing ambiance without triggering your sweat glands! Meander along a pleasant loop that carries you along the ever-so shimmering Upper and Lower Thetis lakes.

Ogden Point via Dallas Road: The relatively flat paved route from Clover Point to Ogden Point explodes with character and charm. Breathe in the sea-scented air, admire the windsurfers and paddle boarders dotting the water, and enjoy refreshing dips at the array of beaches spanning the walk. It eventually leads to the lively, attractive Ogden Point.

Family Hikes In Victoria

Witty’s Lagoon with Tower Point: This hike encompasses the magical power to entertain parents and children alike! Encounter an array of coastal viewpoints, spend some time playing in the water at the beach following Beach Trail, and admire Sitting Lady Falls.

Day Hikes In Victoria

Jocelyn Hill from Caleb Pike: Stitched with epics views of Saanich Arm, this 10 km hike packs a punch when it comes to vistas and undulations. Be prepared to encounter some steep sections, but the hardest climbs always lead to the most remarkable views! This hike begins from numerous spots, but the route from Caleb Pike carries you to and through more breathtaking vistas than any other starting point.

Challenging Hikes In Victoria

Mount Finlayson hike: Get ready to sweat! Most locals seeking a combination of outdoorsy adventure and heart-rate-increase type exercise flock to this trail. This classic Victoria hike boasts of a challenging scramble, which requires you to use hands and feet to crawl up certain sections. It’s an ideal hike for those who prefer a jolt of adrenaline to accompany their workout.

Best Hikes In Victoria

East Sooke Coast Trail: The 13.0 km East Sooke Coast Trail packs total adventure into one remarkable trek. Expect to breathe in the scent swirling off the Pacific Ocean, to wind through lush woodland, to meander along the shoreline, and to enjoy the adrenaline spike as you do some Class 2 scrambling. This hike may only be 13 km, but the rugged terrain cloaking this one-way route can add some hours, resulting in a 5-8 hour trek.

Elk Lake: Meander through lush forested paths and along the shimmering Beaver Lake and Elk Lake. Enjoy a flat 10 km trail that loops around the two sparkling lakes, cradled by lanes of trees. Be sure to pack a picnic lunch for a mid-walk rest at Hamsterly Beach!

Goldstream Trestle Hike: Expect a collection of unique, stunning views on this hike through Goldstream Provincial Park. After meandering an underground tunnel, along a flowing creek and boardwalks, Victoria’s Niagara Falls will come into view. Once you’ve finished admiring the mighty falls plummeting through a vertical blanket of green, you’ll walk to the towering trestle!

Mount Work from Durrance Road: This hike may not be the longest one, but it sure knows how to pack in the views while also elevating your heart rate! The 8.0 km route snakes through the forest to breathtaking views of Saanich. Hikers, runners, and mountain bikers all share this popular trail.

Mount Douglas: This 5.9 km hike may only take around 2 hours, but it grants you the perfect chance to escape Victoria and to let nature totally envelop you while working up a sweat. Families with older children flock to this hike as well, but parents with young kids may want to wait a few years before taking their little ones on this hike.

When Is The Best Time To Hike In Victoria?

Victoria has some of the best year-round weather in Canada! However, the best time for hiking usually falls between April and October.

From March to May, blossoming flowers take over the scenery, and the sun begins to show itself more. The weather averages between 10-18°C.

Meanwhile, the warm weather blanketing June-August tends to attract more crowds from Canada and all over the world. This is the busiest time of year to experience Victoria hikes, but also one of the most popular.

The crowds start to thin out between September to November, but this is also when the clouds take over the sky and the city experiences more rainfall. Some hikes can be dangerous to attempt during wet conditions, so be sure to look out for warnings written into hike descriptions before you go.

Best Regions For Hiking in Victoria

Those seeking a difficult hike will enjoy the East Sooke Coast Trail, while locals wanting a quick getaway from the city can meander to Goldstream Provincial Park, where family-friendly paths and strenuous hikes can be found. Trail runners wanting beautiful views can revel in the lush, sparkling views spanning Thetis Lake. For spectacular views and moderate trails, head to Gowlland Tod Provincial Park.

The bottom line: Victoria hikes are perfectly suited for anyone craving an outdoorsy escape.

Other Outdoor Activities in Victoria

Victoria encompasses a plethora of outdoor activities! Opt to kayak or paddleboard Harbour or Brentwood Bay or join the locals and cycle anywhere and everywhere. Try out Russ Hays Waterfront, the Pat Bay route, Land’s End route, and more.

Adventure Tours near Victoria

While all of these Victoria hikes are spectacular adventures in their own right, sometimes you just can't be bothered to go through the hassle of planning a big hiking trip. If you want to leave the details to the professionals and focus on enjoying an incredible trip, be sure to check out these adventure tours on Vancouver Island.

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Best Hikes in Victoria

Open details for Kinsol Trestle Trail

Kinsol Trestle Trail

Easy
3.4 km
102 m
1h

The Kinsol Trestle Trail is a 3.4 km out-and-back hiking route near Victoria, BC, that will allow you to visit the historical site of the British Commonwealth’s tallest railway trestle. Standing at 44 m tall and spanning 187.0 km across the Koksilah River, the trestle is a true engineering marvel that will surely leave you in awe. The trail leading to and across the trestle is well-maintained and surrounded by picnic areas, making it perfectly suitable for hikers of all skill levels to enjoy a fun day outdoors.

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Open details for East Sooke Coast Trail

East Sooke Coast Trail

Moderate
12.3 km
400 m
3.5-4.5h

While the East Sook Coast hike is relatively close to Victoria, it still totally immerses you in the wild. Animals dot the land, the salty Pacific Ocean breeze is in the air, and the views stagger throughout the hike, whether you're snaking through the forest or walking along the rugged shoreline. You may have to do some Class 2 scrambling to get up some rocks, but it’s all a part of the adventure, right?

User Ratings
Overall Rating
10.0
Technical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Physical Difficulty
Intermediate (Square)
Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
Open details for Jocelyn Hill From Caleb Pike

Jocelyn Hill From Caleb Pike

Easy
8.5 km
357 m
2.5-3.5h

The Jocelyn Hill from Caleb Pike hiking trail ascends and descends through the hills, passing the ever-so stunning Holmes Peak before the scenery unfolds into the Ridge Trail. After a steep climb, Saanich Arm will emerge, granting a magnificent view and an epic picnic spot. You can start this hike from a few different places, but the trekking from Caleb Pike unveils the best scenery.

User Ratings
Overall Rating
9.9
Technical Difficulty
Intermediate (Square)
Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
Physical Difficulty
Intermediate (Square)
Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
Open details for Avatar Grove Nature Trail

Avatar Grove Nature Trail

Easy
1.6 km
61 m
0.5h

The Avatar Grove Nature Trail is a 1.6 km lollipop hiking route north of Port Renfrew on the west coast of Vancouver Island that will take you through a scenic stretch of old-growth forest. Along this two-part trail, hikers can expect to pass through breathtaking sections of forest with mammoth, moss-covered trees and a vibrant green forest floor covered with ferns. Don’t forget to explore the western half of the route for the chance to visit the knotty and twisted frame of a giant cedar known as ‘Canada’s gnarliest tree’.

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Open details for Mount Work from Ross Durrance Road

Mount Work from Ross Durrance Road

Moderate
8.0 km
446 m
2.5-3.5h

This hike may be short, but it will have you working up a sweat! It’s a fantastic option for those seeking an afternoon amid fresh air, where a path twists through lush forest to remarkable views from atop Mount Work. Expect to encounter other hikers, joggers, and even mountain bikers as you meander this out-and-back route!

User Ratings
Overall Rating
9.9
Technical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Physical Difficulty
Intermediate (Square)
Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
Open details for Thetis Lake with McKenzie/Phelps

Thetis Lake with McKenzie/Phelps

Easy
9.1 km
65 m
2-2.5h

This pleasant half-day hike around Victoria, BC immerses you in nature without inducing buckets of sweat! Enjoy a charming loop—with a brief out-and-back jaunt along Phelps Trail—along Upper and Lower Thetis Lakes. The calming scenery paired with a low elevation tends to attract joggers, dog walkers, and hikers of all ages.

User Ratings
Overall Rating
10.0
Technical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Physical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Open details for Witty’s Lagoon with Tower Point

Witty’s Lagoon with Tower Point

Easy
8.0 km
114 m
1.5-2.5h

The family-friendly Witty’s Lagoon hike gives everyone a chance to enjoy a splendid, pleasant day outdoors! Not only that, but the gentle trail will keep kids entertained, thanks to the mighty Sitting Lady Falls and the low tide beach resting just outside the forested path. Bring a picnic, splash in the water, and enjoy basking in nature on this mild out-and-back route.

User Ratings
Overall Rating
10.0
Technical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Physical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Open details for Sombrio Beach Trail

Sombrio Beach Trail

Very Easy
1.4 km
22 m
0.5h

The Sombrio Beach Trail is a 1.4 km out-and-back hiking route in Juan de Fuca Provincial Park that is split up into two separate halves on either side of the Sombrio River. Along the western trail, hikers will pass through a beautiful stretch of West Coast temperate rainforest and cross over a swaying suspension bridge to arrive at a rocky beach with views of the Pacific Ocean. Taking the route to the east will lead you through the rainforest to another stretch of beach with a hidden waterfall. Hikers looking to stay the night can also camp on either one of the beaches for a fee.

User Ratings
No Reviews
Open details for Mount Finlayson

Mount Finlayson

Moderate
4.0 km
410 m
2-2.5h

Mount Finlayson is a steep, adventurous hike that will undoubtedly elevate your heart rate. Locals in Victoria, BC love this classic hike for the scramble—which can have you crawling on all four limbs—and decent views of the landscape layered in vibrant greens below.

User Ratings
Overall Rating
10.0
Technical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Physical Difficulty
Intermediate (Square)
Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
Open details for Goldstream Trestle

Goldstream Trestle

Easy
3.5 km
145 m
1-1.5h

The Goldstream Trestle hike is a pleasant family-friendly hike in Goldstream Provincial Park. It has you traversing through an underground tunnel, along creek beds and boardwalks until you reach Victoria's Niagara Falls, cascading down a carpet of flora, and later on, the photo-worthy trestle. Do avoid going on the trestle, though!

User Ratings
Overall Rating
10.0
Technical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
Physical Difficulty
Easy (Circle)
Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.

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