There’s warm cocoa on every corner. You can hear horse-drawn carriages clopping down the cobblestone streets. The culinary scene is unparalleled, and the whole city is flooded with dazzling lights. Holiday season in Victoria, BC, is special!

Named the 2nd best small city in the world by Condé Nast Traveler, Victoria turns 100 shades of magical come holiday season. And that’s precisely what makes this beautiful city the perfect destination to vacay around right about now.

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As proof, we present you with 9 experiences that will make you fall in love with the romantic BC capital…

Walk through the unreal Christmas light display at The Butchart Garden

If you think blooms in winter are a delight, wait till you see them all lit up for Christmas. The Butchart Garden, a historic Victoria attraction, is hosting its 12 Days of Christmas display. With boughs of greenery and lights galore, the garden turns into a Christmas wonderland after sundown.

Butchart Gardens
Photo via Tourism Victoria

Take in the scenic views from the FRS Clipper

Sure, the FRS Clipper is the easiest and fastest way to get from Seattle to Victoria. But this 2-hour and 45-minute journey on a fast ferry comes with more perks. Enter: the panoramic ocean views between Pier 69 in downtown Seattle and the Belleville Terminal in downtown Victoria.

FRS Clipper
Photo via Clipper Vacations

Enjoy cocktails on the patio or s’mores on the veranda at the Fairmont Empress

Yes, it’s still patio season here, only if you don’t mind wearing your fave snug sweater. Enjoy cocktails, bites, views and more at Veranda, the Fairmont Empress patio that overlooks the Inner Harbour. Whether you’re looking to enjoy s’mores and hot cocktails fireside on the Veranda, beautiful festive decor and twinkling lights throughout the hotel, or to ring in the New Year in style, Fairmont Empress offers the perfect backdrop for family feasts and celebrations.

Fairmont Empress
Photo via Tourism Victoria

Tour the dramatic BC Parliament Buildings

It would be an absolute shame to visit Victoria and not view its unparalleled architectural beauty, the BC Parliament Buildings. You can take a guided tour during the day to explore the inside of the building. Or you can visit it in the evening to see it all decked up in lights.

BC Parliament Buildings
Photo via Tourism Victoria

Feel the thrill at Malahat SkyWalk

The Malahat SkyWalk is Victoria’s answer to your prayers of wanting to experience being on top of the world. Walk along the 600m skywalk that takes you through a beautiful arbutus forest. And then make your way up a spiral ramp to treat yourself to insane views and an indescribable feeling.

Malahat SkyWalk
Photo via Tourism Victoria

Grab grub and a sip at Bard & Banker

This historic pub is housed in one of Victoria’s most beautiful spaces— inside and out. And they have been winning hearts with their impeccable service, flavourful foods and an extensive selection of drafts, whiskeys, wines, cocktails and more. All this with live music on the side.

Bard & Banker
Photo via Tourism Victoria

“Eat, drink and be merri” at the Merridale Cidery & Distillery

Award-winning, organic and straight-up delicious ciders and spirits, a delectable, farm-to-table meal or plain farm fun— whatever it is you need, Merridale has you covered. They promise “bold flavours and big smiles” and they more than live up to that promise.

Merridale Cidery & Distillery
Photo via Merridale Cidery & Distillery

Be dazzled by the holiday light with a Tally-Ho Carriage Ride

No Victoria trip is ever complete without touring the city in a majestic horse-driven carriage, an iconic attraction here. And they have a special tour for the holidays. Cozy up under a faux-fur blanket, relax and take in the sparkling views of lit-up streets and homes along a hidden country route.

Tally-Ho Carriage Ride
Photo via Tally-Ho Carriage Rides

Shop till you drop at The Bay Centre

The Bay Centre is well-known for featuring some of Victoria’s best local retailers, why not get in some Christmas shopping! And what’s more, during the holiday season, the place is decked out in stunning holiday decor & they put on an impressive Festival of Trees.

The Bay Centre
Photo via Tourism Victoria

Ready for a greener-than-ever Christmas? Head over to the Tourism Victoria website to find yourself a great package and a jolly good deal!