Are you planning a trip to Victoria this summer? Aside from all the great year round attractions that have made Victoria a favorite destination for many, there are some great special events and festivals you might like to take in while spending a few days in our capital city.
Victoria plays host to BC’s largest street festival when buskers arrive from around the world for the 6th annual Victoria International Buskers Festival, which starts on July 15th and runs for ten days. Everything from flame throwers to jugglers to puppets will entertain the crowds at several venues and stages around the downtown area. Also part of it: the International Food Village on the waterfront. And talking about food, “Taste”, Victoria’s Festival of Food and Wine, a long weekend of tastings, events and seminars, takes place July 14th – 17th. It starts with an evening tasting of more than 100 BC wines and local cuisine prepared by top Vancouver Island Chefs. This event with “a conscience” works with participants who are all about local, seasonal and sustainable in their business practices.
The very popular TD Art Gallery Paint-In is happening on Saturday July 16th. Ten blocks on Moss Street in downtown Victoria, from Fort Street to the waterfront on Dallas Road, become one big art gallery where 165 artists will showcase their work to thousands of visitors. There’s a great atmosphere, and of course there will be music and food to enjoy as well. Meanwhile at the Royal BC Museum there’s a huge exhibit on: Mammoths – Giants of the Ice Age. Come and see Lyuba, the world’s most complete preserved mammoth discovered in Siberia in 2007. This baby woolly mammoth is 40,000 years old!
On the BC Day long weekend, July 31st – August 2nd, you can take in Canada’s biggest cycling event, the Victoria International Cycling Festival. With Victoria considered to be Canada’s cycling capital, this only makes sense of course! Watch the mountain biking pros race at Bear Trax, a family friendly event. And of course don’t forget to bring your bikes, be it a mountain bike or road bike, to explore the Victoria area on your own that weekend (or anytime!) There are great cycling routes around the capital city, and lots of information online, or join a like-minded group of enthusiasts.
One of the most popular summer events in Victoria is the Symphony Splash, on the Sunday of the BC Day long weekend, which falls on July 31st this year. For the 27th year, the Victoria Symphony will play on a barge in the inner harbor, with up to 40,000 people filling up all the space on land and in the water to enjoy the performance. There is a Family Zone open from 1:00 – 4:00 pm and an opening act at 4:00 before the orchestra takes the stage at 7:30. The show always ends with Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture, complete with navy guns and fireworks. One thing to remember, get there early to find a spot!
Victoria is a great place to visit during the summer. There is so much happening! If you are coming, plan ahead and book your Victoria Bed & Breakfast accommodation well in advance as rooms fill up fast. You’ll be well looked after and won’t lack for a wide range of things to see and do while you’re being spoiled with great hospitality!