A Quick Stop in Victoria

Port Stop in Victoria

cruise ship docked in Victoria

Westerdam in Victoria

From Ketchikan to Victoria, the Westerdam raced against a Princess boat that left about the same time.   Apparently whoever arrives first gets through customs first and the other ship has to wait. I’m not sure whether we beat them or not because by the time we got off the ship both ships had long since docked, along with a ship from Norwegian.  Victoria night was the only time we could work in dinner at the Pinnacle grill, which meant we were eating when the ship docked, but it was a meal too good to miss.

all lit up and it's not Christmas

Parliament buildings with lights

Most of the family opted to stay on the ship at Victoria, the majority of them having seen it before. A couple of them who did not have dinner with us went right away when the ship docked.  My aunt, sister, and I went when we finished our dinner.

Canadian otter sea planes

Seaplanes fly tourists in and out of Victoria daily

Victoria has enough tourist business that even three ships at the dock really makes no difference.  Everything in town closed at its normal time meaning we had not much left to see. The ships dock a considerable distance from town.  Shuttles and taxis lined up to take passengers in, along with the horse-drawn tally-ho. Once in town we saw lots of small horse carriages, but the larger tally-ho never ventured far up the main street so I never got a chance to get a photo.

MV Coho from Black Ball Ferry Line

Black Ball Ferry docked in Victoria’s inner harbour

I don’t know what the tally-ho charged for the ride into town, but between shuttles and taxis, the taxi charged for the three of us about what the shuttle would have charged each person.

Empress Hotel

Empress Hotel photo taken from Victoria Harbour Ferry

We looked through a tea shop at the Empress Hotel, tea there being one of the things Victoria is most famous for. Not much else was open, but we did get to see the parliament building all lit up since it got dark before we went back to the ship.

Victoria Clipper

Victoria Clipper in the Ballard Locks in Seattle

If you want to see more of Victoria than the quick glimpse an evening cruise ship stop offers, it’s pretty easy to get there from Seattle. The Victoria Clipper sails daily from Seattle to Victoria. For faster transportation, seaplanes also fly frequently between Seattle and Victoria. From the Olympic Peninsula, the Black Ball Ferry makes daily trips across the Strait of Juan de Fuca from Port Angeles to Victoria. Any of those methods of transportation are good for a day trip there.  For longer stays Victoria has plenty of hotels.  Americans arriving in British Columbia, Canada by boat or ground transportation from Washington State just need either a passport card or enhanced driver’s license, although passports are always an option.  Taking the plane requires a passport for everyone.

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About LBcruiseshipblogger

MyCruiseStories blog tells stories about adventures in cruising on ships big and small. Things to do onboard and in port. Anything connected to cruising. Also food, travel, recipes, towel animals, and the occasional random blog.
This entry was posted in Canada, Holland America, Port Cities, Ports of Call, Westerdam and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to A Quick Stop in Victoria

  1. aFrankAngle says:

    Victoria is a wonderful port. Only visited once on a wine cruise (Celebrity) … and we found a wonderful tasting room in the city center. Next time will see more of the city.

    BTW … we walked from the dock to city center.

  2. Art Downing says:

    I walked from the ship to town and back to the ship and it was a pleasant walk, taking 15 or 20 minutes each way. A pedestrian route is clearly marked with signs. It was my first time in Victoria since I was a kid and it was nice to see that the Empress Hotel and Houses of Parliament were still there and looking as stately as ever.

  3. Chris Beath says:

    I like the vines growing all the way up the side of that hotel. It must have taken years for them to grow that high.

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