hikes in Victoria
Hiking around Victoria is 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. Hikes in Victoria know how to immerse you 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 an abundance of parks, exploding with trails, sit super close to Victoria.
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 hikes in the region, 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 10.4km 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 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 13.0km 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 8.0km route snakes through the forest to breathtaking views of Saanich. Hikers, runners, and mountain bikers all share this popular trail.
Mount Douglas: This 5.9km 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, but also one of the most popular times to hike.
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 has hikes 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.Read More
The best hikes in Victoria
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